New year’s resolutions are really my thing. I’ve never thought that there’s any point in setting yourself up for failure so early in the year.
I do, however, make resolutions fairly frequently. Sometimes it seems like I make them on a daily basis. The road to somewhere is most definitely paved with good intentions. 

Sometimes these resolutions are fairly inconsequential like putting away my clean clothes and not leaving them in a pile by the side of my bed. Sometimes they are more intangible like being kinder or more patient with people. The one I make quite often though is resolving to eat better.

Perhaps ‘better’ is the wrong word. I resolve to eat more intelligently, to think more about what I’m eating (and when) and to make more informed choices. 
I’m the first to admit though that it is much easier to talk about than to actually do. 
Like last night when we mindlessly shared a pizza while glued to our laptops, occasionally stopping in between bite to discuss the how the sale of debt securities would be presented in consolidated financial statements (I bet you all are jealous of our exciting lives aren’t you?). 
Or last week when I got back to the office at 5pm after a 7 hour meeting and my manager and I decided that we probably wouldn’t get through what we needed to do that night without cake. 
Or when I get home from work and I know that I have a couple of hours before we can eat dinner together  (because I insist that we eat dinner together) at which point anything in the fridge is fair game. 

Having spent most of my life not seeing the point of breakfast, I have come to realise its importance. Even more so when, like at the moment, life is one long, breathless to-do list. When the rest of the choices in my day let me down, I like knowing that I’ve got one good meal in the tank. 

I have come to accept and embrace the fact that I’m always going to want something sweet, and preferably involving chocolate, for breakfast. If I’m really going to start the day off right, I need to marry that fact with my new-found knowledge about the importance of a good breakfast. 
If you’re going to eat a muffin, then these have a lot going for them. Whole grains, healthy fats, unrefined sugars. Whether that good stuff excites you or makes you roll your eyes, what is far more important though is that these muffins are light and fluffy, slightly sweet from the honey and scattered with bites of buttery pistachio and rich dark chocolate. There’s enough going on to capture your attention without feeling extravagant. They make it easy to eat better.
Pistachio, dark chocolate and olive oil muffins
Yield: Makes 6 muffins
  • 115g (1 cup) whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda/baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 35g (1/4 cup) roughly chopped pistachios, plus extra for scattering on top
  • 50g (1/4 cup) dark chocolate chips
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 60ml (1/4 cup) honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 75g (4 tablespoons) plain greek yogurt

Cooking Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F (fan-assisted) and line a 6-hole muffin tin with paper cases.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda/baking soda. Toss the pistachios and chocolate chips in the flour mixture and set aside.
  3. In a separate but also large bowl, mix together the olive oil, egg, honey, vanilla and yoghurt.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and fold through a couple of times; add the pistachios and chocolate chips and fold a few times again. As ever with muffins, don’t overmix; it doesn’t matter if there are still streaks of flour.
  5. Spoon into the muffin cases, scatter with the extra pistachios and bake for 18 -20 minutes until golden brown and firm.
  6. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.

    31 Responses to "pistachio, dark chocolate & olive oil muffins"
    1. Jenny @ BAKE says:

      These photos are stunning Kathryn! I love the table cloth you’ve used and how it affects the light and contrasts against the green of the pistachios!

    2. Erin says:

      Haha I am the exact same way about New Years resolutions. I make resolutions through the rest of the year, but not at the beginning.
      Also-I definitely have to have something sweet for breakfast as well. These look lovely!

    3. london bakes says:

      @Jenny – Thank you! It’s actually a tile from the tile shop that’s just opened opposite my flat. The guy thought I was crazy buying a selection of individual tiles but it was so worth it!

    4. Chocolate + pistachio = yum! I know you like chocolate for breakfast, but I promise that blueberry + pistachio is also amazing!

    5. yum!! i love this combo. I was snacking on some pistachios yesterday and they definitely need to be baked into something–this just might be it!

    6. Joanne says:

      I’m not really big on new year’s resolutions either…but daily or weekly or totally random ones? I’m all in! And I resolve to make these within the next week. I can’t think of anything i want more for a midmorning snack!

    7. mandalahi says:

      I so wanted to try it, it looks delicious and tasty, yummy

    8. 1. love the new header
      2. these muffins look amazing. great for breakfast, lunch, and those hours pre-dinner. Love the addition of chocolate.
      3. you can never go wrong with chocolate.

    9. I love everything about these muffins and I can see why they are perfect for breakfast. I usually have oats in the morning but sometimes all I want is a muffin. I’m sure these would be perfect for when that craving hits. Your pictures are amazing {as always}. So clever of you to use a tile instead of a tablecloth!!

    10. I admire you aspiring to eat more intelligently + with more awareness – i need to do more of the same on occasion. =) and these muffins look absolutely divine – i love everything about them!

    11. Mmm, I love pistachios and dark chocolate in baked goods! These sound wonderful!

    12. I love little resolutions…I started calling them “intentions” a year or two and that helped me look at them as something to always be striving toward, not something with an end goal. And if I fail one day, I’ll try again the next. I need to start thinking about some new ones, in fact. Until then, I will definitely enjoy some muffins with olive oil and pistachio!

    13. Absolutely gorgeous photos Kathryn – how do you line up two alongside each other like that? However you do it, it looks stunning :-)

    14. marla says:

      Love all of the unique flavors in these muffins!

    15. Something chocoaltey and sweet is a must for breakfast! And I totally know what you mean about resolutions. I stopped making resolutions years ago but try my best to be healthy and put the laundry away in a timely manner. I once left my clean clothes in the hamper for like a week. It was the worst.

    16. Oh my gosh Kathryn, these look a-mazing! Must pin these immediately.

    17. Yum! What a perfect little muffin. These will go on my to-do list. :)

    18. These look absolutely incredible!!! I love the addition of the pistachios. My kind of food :)

    19. I love every single thing about these muffins!!!

    20. I make New Year’s Resolutions like “read more books” or “look after feet more” – that way I don’t necessarily fail!

      I am with you on the breakfast front – I went through a phase of not eating it at all but realised you actually do need it to get your metabolism going.

      Muffins look delicious – chocolate is a good move!

      And me and my boyfriend come home and talk HTML to each other…so we are as thrilling!

    21. What stunning pictures, I love how moody they look and how the green of the pistachios contrasts with the dark tiles! And any recipe with olive oil, chocolate and pistachios is a winner in my books!

    22. I’m a big fan of breakfast…and I’d certainly love one of these at the start of the day…they look so tasty! :-)

    23. LemonCake says:

      These look so tasty. I must try to make them!

    24. I’ve been snacking on chocolate-y things all day and now I’m dying for a chocolate chip-studded muffin. These look and sound fabulous.

    25. Love these muffins as well as your new header!

    26. I agree with everyone else. Lovely pictures and great tile you have there! I like making little intentions like that, too. I even make a little box so I can have something to check off once I do it. And then I giggle when I get to check it off. Great fun it is. :)

      I love how healthy these are! They’re really pretty, too.

    27. All of my favorite ingredients in a muffin?! Sign me up!

    28. These muffins sound sooo good. Whenever I get pistachios we just end up eating them all, but I really need to save some to bake with. And I’m totally with you on the resolutions thing. Why wait till New Years? If I want to do something like get fit or lose 5 pounds or change my eating habits I’m going to do it as soon as I realize I should do it. I have an actual book for my schedule and stuff and I scribble all kinds of goals for the week and stuff in it. No sense in waiting for New Years to do all that :)

    29. I am always looking for ‘healthier’ alternatives for cake and biscuit recipes – everytime I bake anything the first question my mum asks is ‘how much butter does that have in it?’ Thank you so much – I will definitely be trying these out when I get a chance!

    30. Shabs says:

      Loved loved loved this! I am recovering from a broken arm, and cannot lift or put pressure on it; this was so easy to put together and simply scrumptious. All 6 gone within 24 hours :-) Thank you!

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