As a breastfeeding mom to a beautiful daughter who is intolerant to milk and soy, I have eliminated all forms of both proteins from my diet. Repeatedly reading labels of the foods we buy (because what may not have had milk or soy in it one week, can suddenly contain one of these ingredients the next), being extra cautious when eating out or eating food that hasn’t been prepared by me or my husband, and trying to find milk and soy free recipes, can be challenging at the best of times.
Things have improved with experience, but in the past you could find me with a rumbling tummy staring at the pantry or refrigerator asking myself, “What CAN I eat?!?!”. (If you have ever breastfed, you know that one minute you are fine, but the next, you are STARVING!) However, despite these minor inconveniences, this is a choice I gladly make. Not only is our daughter happier because she isn’t in pain, which means we don’t have a baby that cries all day like our first born (YAY!), but research has shown the many benefits of breast milk. It can seem like a sacrifice at times (Mommy loves cheese) and there are many great formula options, but I consider myself blessed to be able to breastfeed. I personally know too many women who would love to breastfeed their children, but are unable to for a number of very legitimate reasons. Now, if wine had either of these proteins, it might be a different story. (JOKING!…sort of.)
Experience has taught me that milk and soy are commonly found in processed foods, so we try to eat foods that are closest to their natural state as much as possible. This has unintentionally benefited everyone in our family. With fewer processed foods in our pantry, we are all eating healthier.
Before I discovered egg muffins, (thank you, Pinterest), breakfast for me typically consisted of scrambled eggs with vegetables, a slice of sourdough toast, and some fresh fruit. Then I discovered Egg Muffins! They are almost exactly what I was eating for breakfast before, but now I can make a week’s worth of my typical breakfast in the same time I used to spend every single day! And who doesn’t like to save time? The beauty is you can add different ingredients to each muffin if you want some variety. The way I make them means they are milk, soy, and gluten free. I am not a nutritionist so please make at your own risk and check your ingredients carefully if you have food allergies. We don’t want anyone to break out in hives or need to bust out their epi pen!
Egg muffins are perfect for anyone looking for a quick and healthy breakfast (or even dinner), not just those with dietary restrictions. They are easy enough that you can include your kids in the process, are a great way to use left over produce you have before it goes bad, and are pretty enough to serve for bunch!
Here is how we make them – do all toddlers love to help in the kitchen this much???
For 12 muffins you will need:
Baking Cups – I have tried many different baking cups, but find If You Care Baking Cups to be the best
Vegetables of your choice (optional) – some choices include: spinach, tomatoes, zucchini, mushrooms, sweet peppers, onions, broccoli, artichoke hearts, garlic, and basil. (Yes, some of the ingredients listed are technically fruits, but adding fruit to eggs just doesn’t sound very appealing.)
Meats of your choice (optional) – some choices include: bacon, sausage, chicken, carne asada or Canadian bacon
Cheese of your choice (optional) – we used Daiya Cheese which is dairy, soy, and gluten free, but you could use cheddar, jack, mozzarella, brie, or whatever your favorite cheese is.
Salt and pepper
Ok, let the fun begin!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Chop any variety of meats of your choice
Shred cheese, if necessary.
Chop any variety of vegetables of your choice into small pieces – remember your tins aren’t very big so you want to make sure you chop your pieces small enough to fit. (If you are involving your kids, this is a great opportunity to teach them the names of the vegetables you are using, their colors, and even phonics. Z is for zuchinni…za za zuchinni! Please please please keep those precious fingers far away from the knife though!)
Place liners in muffin pan (a great counting opportunity if your kids are helping)
Crack 8 eggs into a large measuring cup or other container with a spout for easy pouring (another great counting opportunity)
Add ¼ cup of water
Season with salt and pepper (optional)
Whisk well and fill cups ¾ of the way with your choice of toppings – meats, cheese, vegetables
Slowly pour whisked eggs over toppings until the cups are almost full – the egg mixture will fill in the spaces between your toppings, but takes a little time, so it is important you pour slowly. If any egg spills onto the tray it can be very difficult to clean up once it is baked on so try to wipe up any spills before you place your muffins in the oven.
Place egg muffins in oven and bake until cooked through. Depending on your oven, this is typically between 15-20 minutes.
Serve and enjoy!!!
***Store any uneaten egg muffins in an airtight container in the refrigerator and then heat in the microwave for 30-40 seconds