Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Aussie Bites

**Updated with lower fat version below!**



This recipe came about when I was hooked on Costco's Aussie Bites--mini muffins with coconut, dried fruit and sunflower seeds in them. Although I had a huge container of them, I RAN OUT. (yes, I pretty much ate all of them myself) Since the nearest Costco is a four hour drive, I couldn't justify it, no matter how much I really wanted more.

I searched and searched on the Internet for a recipe, found one that sounded close, and made it. It wasn't even close. They were dry and crumbly, and the larger ingredients were just too large for a mini muffin. I made some changes, baked another batch, and they turned out better. I made more changes, baked another batch, and they were great--Number One says they are better than the Costco ones, but I'd have to get another container to do taste test...yes, that's exactly the reason! This batch I sent to preschool with H-Bomb for snack. And this is the recipe I'm sharing with you. I am baking a batch of these for us to take on our trip to Michigan next week. A yummy road trip snack--or breakfast if we're desperate!


Aussie Bites

Makes about 50 mini muffins.

Ingredients:
2 cups Regular or Toasted Oats
2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
2/3 cup Brown sugar
1 3½oz can of coconut (unsweetened) OR 1-1/4 cup flaked
½ cup sunflower kernels
1 cup finely chopped dried fruit (apricots, raisins, dates, figs, cranberries, etc)—I use a mixture of apricots, raisins and cranberries
¼ cup honey
2 sticks unsalted butter**
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons hot water
3 eggs, beaten


Method:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Mix first six ingredients in a bowl.

3. Melt honey and butter together in microwave.

4. Mix baking soda with hot water and add to butter mixture.

5. Pour butter mixture into dry ingredients, add eggs and mix well.

6. Place tablespoons of mixture into non-stick mini-muffin pans (lightly greased) and flatten mixture slightly. Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees or until golden. Cool on wire racks.



**For a lower fat version, reduce butter to one stick. Mix in 1/2 cup applesauce with eggs. You will have to grease your muffin pan, and bake the muffins a couple more minutes, but the muffins will be healthier and still delicious!

49 comments:

Cheryl said...

Having you bake these for us while you were here visiting was a treat! Dad, Grandma, your brother, sister-in-law & nephews loved them! I will be making them for our August camp-out - along w/Grandma's baked beans; unless I can keep the batch still frozen in the freezer until then. Maybe the chocolate cake, too! Thanks for everything! The party was great! Love you!

Dee said...

These look really good. What do you think about changing it to where you reduce the fat? Do you think that they might be good (maybe not as good) if you changed the butter to applesauce?

Min said...

Cheryl, my pleasure.

Dee, I've thought about the fat content. But, I would be hesitant to try it. Perhaps you could substitute something for half the butter, I'm just not sure what. I'll look into it. If you do, be sure to let me know how it goes! One thing I do know: you cannot use a substitute for the honey!

Thanks for the comments!

sidris said...

Hi! When you state "oats" or "toasted oats" in your recipe, would you please elaborate? I've used quick oats and the regular longer cooking oats in my own recipe and couldn't really tell any difference. The "muffins" turned out like lug nuts and dry as the desert both times. I'm going to try your recipe next, putting the oats and fruit through the food processor first so hopefully I won't end up with Aussie Lunks again! Thanks for your recipe. Nice site!

Min said...

Hi Sidris, I just use regular Old-Fashioned Quaker Oats (not quick cooking). Honestly, I've never used or found "toasted" oats. I would NOT process the oats, especially if you are using my recipe; I just don't know what would happen. AND, just be patient and finely chop your fruits with a sharp knife, I'm concerned that if you process those you'll end up with a sticky lump from the start. My mom has followed this recipe with perfect results too. Thanks for your comment, please come back and let me know how it all turns out!

Molly Culley said...

Oh these are the perfect little snack for our family! I've made 2 batches in the last two days! :) The lower-fat version is what I use, and it is amazing! Thanks for such a great recipe!

Min said...

Molly,
Thanks so much for your kind comment! I'm glad you love these, our family loves them too, they're such a healthy treat! I think I'll make more tomorrow!

lvlc said...

I will definitely try these! I bought them at Sams and love them! :)

chickadee3357 said...

So I love the Aussie Bites and thought the same thing. My first source was Allrecipes.com and I went with this recipe: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Oatmeal-Apricot-Almond-Bites/Detail.aspx
I made mini muffins with it and my review is pinkpigg33. The question I have, because I am quite new to baking, is how would you make it as dense as the Aussie Bites? I love that they are dense and not fluffy like a muffin. Though for a muffin, they are really good.

Min said...

Chickadee, I checked out that recipe you linked to. My guess is the regular flour and baking powder have something to do with your muffiny outcome. I encourage you to try my recipe, the mini muffins are dense the way we like them, even if you make the "low-fat" version. I think using all whole wheat flour helps too, come back and let me know what you think! I just made another batch of these a couple days ago, they're already gone!

Cheryl said...

Picking up the ingredients to make Aussie Bites again tomorrow. Thought maybe Jack would like them for a snack while helping put in the windows! We love them, as you know. Do they freeze well or haven't you tried that?

Min said...

I don't think I've frozen them yet, but I think that would work great! Let me know if you try it. (we end up eating them too fast to freeze any)

Colleen said...

We made these (the lower-fat version), but they are not as moist as the Costco ones. I think part of the problem was that they only unsweetened coconut I could find was almost like a powder. Where do you find shredded unsweetened coconut? I probably just need to go to a different store, but hate shopping with two kids in tow. Also, they weren't as sweet as the Costco ones, so maybe we would like it with sweetened coconut, but would that be too sweet?

Min said...

Hi Colleen, it sounds like your powdery coconut would definitely result in dryness. I use "raw unsweetened" coconut, it's sort of larger flakes and is in the organic/natural section of our store, it could also be near the nuts or in the baking aisle. (it's not in every store, I find it at City Market out here)

My mom uses regular sweetened coconut in a bag and she said it works fine, not too sweet or anything. I hope you try these again, remembering that they're not *exactly* like Costco, but our family likes them even better. Good luck, let us know how they turn out next time!

Stopher said...

The Aussie Bites at sams and costco are just the commercial version of an ANZAC Biscuit(cookie to Americans), which is probably one of the worlds most well known recipes. Just google ANZAC cookie, there are well over a million listings for the recipe along with the interesing history of the cookie.

Min said...

Stopher, we have an amazing recipe here, whatever you choose to call it. Incidentally, all the Anzac recipes I looked at made no mention of dried fruits or sunflower seeds and are truly "cookies," in other words, dropped onto a pan where they flatten out into a cookie shape, not muffins like these and the Costco bites.

Regardless, there are millions of ways to make anything. While Costco's and Sam's treats may "just" be a version of ANZACS, I happen to be partial to (and proud of!) this recipe. You should try it!

Thanks for your comment.

Kristen said...

I love it when people copycat store bought goodies and come up with something even better. I have copied this recipe down to try soon, thanks!

smexico said...

I just bought them at Costco and noticed that they contain flax seed and canola oil..how would you incorporate them into the recipe?..

Min said...

Oh thanks, smexico, the nearest Costco is 4 hours from here, so I don't get a chance to buy them very often!

I'd add about a 1/4 cup flax seed, and leave out the canola oil, which I don't think is very healthy.

If you want to use it, you could take out a few tablespoons of butter and add the same amount of canola. (but I haven't tried this, so let me know how it goes!)

smexico said...

Thanks for your help..I added 1/4 cup canola oil and 3/4 cup butter..they were moist..but still not quite the same..why no salt in your recipe? Is the recipe with applesauce closer to the original? Just curious before I make a new batch! Thanks!

smexico said...

opps! Also some recipes call for no eggs...do you think the original aussie bites have eggs for it is not listed on ingredients..(do you think adding vanilla will help?)..sorry for all the stupid questions..Thanks!
Blessings!...

Min said...

smexico, Thanks for all your questions! Keep in mind these won't be "the same" as the store-bought ones, but my family likes them just as well (if not better).

Why no salt? I don't know, they taste fine to me.

The applesauce is in a lower-fat version, it replaces some of the butter to cut down the fat content b/c someone else asked me if it could be reduced, and it can, deliciously! As for being closer to the "original" I have absolutely no idea.

I tried the no egg recipes with DISMAL results--they crumbled right apart. I added eggs to help bind the ingredients together and make them a bit more cakey and muffin-like.

And quite honestly I haven't bought Aussie Bites in a long long time now because we are nowhere near a Costco and our family LOVES these. (I don't remember the ones we had several years ago containing flax seed, so it's possible even Costco changes the recipe occasionally)

You could add 1 tsp. vanilla if you really want to, I'm sure it would be fine, I guess I don't know the flavor you're going for.

Were you dissatisfied with the results of this recipe? Or was it that they don't taste exactly like the ones out of a plastic container? Please let me know.

It's possible Costco adds preservatives and other things that you wouldn't add or even have available in your home, or uses different processing methods which ultimately affects the taste. I just don't know, but I do know that I love these little muffins!

I do appreciate your questions, I hope I've answered them sufficiently.

smexico said...

Thanks again, I guess I am trying to get the exact taste and cakeness of the Costco ones..that is my hang up..I tried adding vanilla to a smaller batch, but it didn't do it either..It's not that these aren't good..it's just that they aren't the same..I feel something is still missing and I don't know what...Thanks for all your help..Blessings...

viagra without prescription said...

I love muffins thanks for sharing the recipe certainly be of great use to me, are really delicious.

Birdsgotmail said...

has anyone tried replacing the brown sugar with splenda brown sugar or calculating the actual exchanges of this "new" aussie bite? i would love to make these for my diabetic BF if the carb count was lower.

Min said...

Birdsgotmail, I don't use sugar substitutes...maybe someone else will have ideas. And don't forget about the honey too. I'm sure there are websites where you can plug in the ingredients to calculate the exchanges.

If I were you, I'd try making a half or even a third of a batch with the splenda or other subs, and be sure to come back and let us know how it turns out! Thanks for your questions!

Melissa said...

Awesome. You are so awesome for figuring this out. We just discovered ABs a month ago - I am so stoked to quit buying them and start making them.

Min said...

Thanks, Melissa! Hope you like them! (my family actually likes these better than the costco ones!)

Jennifer said...

I'm so glad to have found this recipe and the other variation someone did off this base recipe. I made them tonight and they are perfect! My kids just loved them and so did my husband. Thanks a ton!
I did 1/2 cup less oats and did the 1/2 cup flax seed in place of the sunflower for Omega 3. Also did 3/4 cup almonds, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1 tsp vanilla. Lowered the coconut to 1 cup and used ultra fine.

Min said...

Hi Jennifer! I'm glad you liked them! I'll have to try flax seed, I haven't yet, but I think I'd probably just add them in addition to the sunflower seeds. Great idea to use almonds too! There are so many variations to make! Thanks for visiting!
~Min

Fern said...

I made these today following you recipe and they are very good. I made both the original and the healthy recipe. While the taste is a bit different than Costco, I like the fact that these are not filled with preservatives, etc. I made them with 1/4 cup sunflower and 1/4 cup flaxseed. They only fruit I had were golden raisins, cherries and Craisins. I will be making these often. Thank you for creating this recipe.

Min said...

Fern, thank you for your kind comments! I'm so glad you like them. I need to make some more, it's been a while since we've had any! I like the fact that I know exactly what's in them too...

Cindy said...

my daughter is allergic to apples I am going to substitute half the butter for avocado still fatty but better fatty I have a costco right next to me but they just stopped caring the AB I'm glad you did the work for me as I was determined to find away to re create them

Min said...

Cindy, I'm glad I could help! I am very very curious how it works with the avocado, I hope you'll come back and let me know!!

Anonymous said...

These are FANTASTIC!! My whole family loves them. Next time I plan to add flax seed, because the variety I tried at COSTCO included that ingredient and it provided the perfect crunch. THANKS!

Anonymous said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for not only creating but sharing this recipe. The first time I tried Aussie Bites I wanted to come up with my own homemade version but simply didn't have the time or energy. We haven't had them in quite awhile since I, like you, could easily eat the whole container myself and because of their high fat content. Earlier this evening my 8 year old son came in trying to descibe these muffins to me asking if we could get them the next time we go to Costco. I marched over to the computer and googled Aussie Bites. I am so glad that your recipe was the first to come up. It is GREAT!!! We just made and consumed a batch. I did the low fat version (New Year's Resolution time). We love pecans so I included some with the dried fruit (figs, cranberries, cherries). Also, since I had just gotten some organic sucanat on clearance I used it in place of the brown sugar. I like that they turned out even moister than the Costco version and a tad less sweet. All the best to you.

Min said...

Anon (11/11), I bet flax seed would be delicious in them. Or perhaps chia? So many things to try. Thanks for your kind words.

Anon (1/12), This makes me happy! Thank you so much for your kind comments. Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

Has anyone tried using mashed banana instead of applesauce in the low-fat version?

Min said...

Anon 2/11, I haven't, but someone above was going to try avocado. I bet it would work. If you try it, would you please come back and let us know? Thanks. Min

Sami said...

I just made these, and really like them! The only change I would make, and I wish I had thought of this while making them, is to add salt. I find that adding a small amount of salt really helps baked goods taste better. I would add probably 1/4 to 1/2 tsp.

Other than that, I love them! Thanks!

LT said...

Wow -- five years later, and people are still enjoying your recipe! These are great -- thank you for figuring it out and sharing! My variation was to use half butter and half canola oil, which is listed among the ingredients. I also went half and half with sunflower nuts and flax seeds (also among ingredients listed on the package). But I couldn't have done it without your recipe. Thank you!

Min said...

Thanks, LT! I mentioned above I don't feel that canola is that healthy, so I try not to use it, but I'm glad it worked out for you. Back when I first made these, I don't think the Costco ones included flax seeds, I don't remember, but they are a great addition that others have mentioned as well! So glad you like the recipe! ;-) I really need to make more of these!!

JaeD said...

I agree about NOT using Canola oil. I am SO anxious to try this recipe as I gotta have my Aussie Bites. Sent it to a friend, who loves peanut butter and suggested she may want to add some. She said she really liked the flavor and next time would add more. Another GREAT and HEALTHY oil that might be good in this, would be coconut oil, since the recipe calls for coconut anyway. Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I'm going to have to try this recipe. We have been going o costco to get these Aussie bites and finally decided to see if I could make them myself... Totally trying your recipe so thank you!!! And I will let you know how it turns out as I don't use butter but use substitutes like yogurt, applesauce and coconut oil. Thanks again!

Sue Steinhagen said...

Your page was the top result of my Google search for a recipe! My Costco just started carrying the AB again and I'd forgotten how good they taste when fresh. I will make these in hopes I can enjoy them if my store drops them again.

Although it would not be low fat, I want to try using coconut oil as I've read so much lately about the benefits. Impulsive as usual.

Min said...

Thanks Sue! Top google result is awesome!
Are you planning to sub coconut oil for the butter? I think that's a great idea. Please let me know how they turn out!

jaemom said...

Interesting that this recipe has 3 eggs. The Costco version doesn't have any eggs in it whatsoever, and since there is an egg allergy in the house, I will keep looking. Thanks for sharing, though!

Min said...

jaemom, Thank you for your comment.

If you read through the other comments you'll know that I tried the original "no egg" recipes that I found back in 2008 when I first made these, and they were dismal failures.

I'm sure you could use a substitute for eggs, as you probably do in other recipes? I know there is a chia seed/water substitute for eggs, although I haven't tried it in this recipe. Please report back if you do.

Min said...

k left a comment, and I accidentally hit delete instead of publish! So sorry, and thanks for your input. Here it is:
“I use ground chia OR flax seeds for egg replacers often ..with varying results, but I have read they are great replacers ..sometimes I use one egg, plus chia or flax ..I did notice our Costco ones we just bought had whole flax ..I suppose you could grind some & use some whole ..I can't wait to try these ..with some stevia perhaps ..Costco's were pretty sweet for us. I thought Costcos were great, but crumbly & a bit dry as well.”

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