Wild Chamomile (Pineapple Weed) Keto Muffins w/ Cream Cheese Filling

OH, MY GODDESS – you’ve got to make these Wild Chamomile/ Pineapple Weed muffins! Their unique aromatic flavor ( a cross between zingy pineapple and soothing chamomile) just permeates these moist fragrant muffins which are made doubly scrumptious by the cream cheese filling. These are one of my favorite summer treats and my poor pre-diabetic hubby can eat them without guilt!  I’m sharing this recipe from Gather Victoria Patreon because I’ve noticed that my Pineapple Weed Cookies recipe is especially popular on the website right now – and these muffins are even better!

Matricaria discoidea, popularly known as Pineapple weed (or wild chamomile) is related to chamomile but the flower and its white petals are missing. And its bald little heads and tender foliage are just plain delicious. Often used in teas, cordials, liqueurs and in baking, it has the same soothing sweet scent as chamomile but features fruity pineapple top notes.  Pinch its green buds between your fingers and if you DONT smell the heady pineapple fragrance –you’ve got the wrong plant.   

Pineapple weed is native to northwestern North America and Northeast Asia but has spread across both continents, so you can find them practically anywhere. First People used them medicinally and treasured their scent, using them to line bedding and cradles, and children wore necklaces of their buds to help repel insects. Pineapple weed is believed to share many of chamomiles (Matricaria recutita) soothing qualities, which is indicated by her Latin name (Matricaria discoidea) meaning “mother” and caria meaning “dear”. And so it’s no surprise when it comes to food magic that pineapple weed promotes domestic and familial harmony! 

You’ll find pineapple weed growing across North America in the most inhospitable places, thriving in dry, stony gravel areas, often near sandy playgrounds, sidewalks and trail sides.  Think twice about where you pick it, gravel used in many trail sides and park playgrounds can contain heavy metals. Look for natural areas where gravel isn’t brought in, sandy beachsides also are a good hunting ground for pineapple weed.

For this recipe, you’ll harvest the tops of the plant, both foliage and flowers. Pick about half a cup, and then pick some more because they are also easily dried for future use in teas, syrups, cordials etc!

Keto Pineapple Weed Muffins w/ Cream Cheese Filling

INGREDIENTS

Muffins:

  • 3/4 cup finely chopped pineapple weed heads
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened protein powder
  • 2 tablespoons psyllium husks * (see note below)
  • 1/3 cup almond flour
  • 1 1/2  teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 6 tablespoons granulated sweetener ( I use a Monkfruit/ Erythritol blend)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup chopped almonds/pecans (optional for topping)

Cream Cheese Filling:

  • 4 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sweetener ( I use a Monkfruit/ Erythritol blend)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray or line a muffin pan.  You can use a large muffin pan and make 6 large muffins, or use a smaller tin to make 9 muffins.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together filling cream cheese, sweetener and vanilla until smooth.  Refrigerate until you are ready to use it.
  3. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together coconut flour, protein powder, almond flour, baking powder, psyllium husks, spices and salt.
  4. In a large bowl, cream the butter, sweetener, and vanilla together until light and fluffy, 1-2 minutes. Beat 1 egg into the butter mixture.  Beat in 1/3 of the dry mixture, then 1 egg, then 1/3 of the dry, then 1 egg, and the remaining dry mixture. Mix in whipping cream and chopped pineapple weed. (you can also put the pineapple weeds heads in the food processor instead of chopping – just don’t pulverize completely!)
  5. Fill the wells of the muffin pan halfway up with batter.  Add a spoonful of filling to the middle of each well.  Top with the remaining batter. Sprinkle chopped almonds/ pecans on top and gently press them into the tops of the batter.
  6. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the tops of the muffins are firm and the nuts are lightly browned.

*Note: Psyllium seed comes from a plant known as Plantago ovato and the seed is covered by psyllium husk which absorbs water to form a gel. You can buy them anywhere keto-style ingredients are found. They’re not essential to this recipe but I find they do help non-gluten doughs/breads hold more moisture and achieve a lighter, chewier consistency.

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Whether its through wildcrafting, plant medicine, kitchen witchery or seasonal celebrations, I believe we can enhance personal, community and planetary well-being by connecting with mother nature!

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