Today is Pecan Day and all about celebrating this sweet nut! Pecans may get a bad rap because they tend to be the star of more indulgent dessert recipes (think butter pecan ice cream and pecan pie), but eaten alone as a snack or sprinkled into a meal, they deliver health benefits.
Pecans (and other nuts) are relatively high in calories, but they contain protein, healthy fats, and compounds that seem to help lower LDL, or “bad” cholesterol. Pecans may also offer added benefits for men’s health too.
So go ahead, toss them in a mixed greens salad, treat yourself to a slimmed-down version of sticky buns when you’re craving a treat or try one of our favorite recipes below, ginger-pecan muffins!
Quinoa Ginger Pecan Muffins
1 cup water
1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
2 cups reduced-fat Bisquick
1/3 cup chopped pecans, toasted
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup fat-free milk
1/4 cup molasses
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
1. Preheat oven to 400°.
2. Rinse quinoa (to remove any bitterness). Combine 1 cup water and quinoa in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat; fluff with a fork, and set aside.
3. Combine Bisquick and next 4 ingredients (through salt) in a bowl; make a well in center of mixture. Combine milk, molasses, and egg in a separate bowl, stirring well. Add milk mixture, quinoa, and apricots to dry ingredients; stir just until moist.
4. Spoon batter into two 12-cup muffin pans coated with cooking spray (leave two cups empty in each pan), filling cups half full. Bake at 400° for 12 minutes. Remove from pans immediately; cool.