“ Brand: Weight Watchers / Type: Cakes „
While I make lots of both sweet and savoury muffins each week I was intrigued to try this Weight Watchers Mini Muffin Mix, even more so by the fact that each muffin would contain just half a Weight Watchers point whereas even my most low fat offerings have at least 2 1/2 points in them so that's quite a difference.
The muffins are extremely simple to make, it really is just a case of pouring the dry muffin mix and chocolate chips into a bowl and adding cold water. The only useful thing I can think of to say about the preparation is to measure the water out carefully and if you think you need more then add it drip by drip as I ruined my first batch by accidentally pouring too much water into the dry mixture - well, it wasn't actually ruined as I salvaged it using cocoa powder and caster sugar but that would have made the points values rocket up so I didn't get to eat any of them!
The muffins take just twelve minutes to cook and from around the eight minute mark my kitchen was filled with a delightfully rich chocolate orange aroma, not the synthetic smell you usually get from packet cake mixes but a really robust and delicious aroma which had my mouth watering and made me feel like quaffing the muffins before they were even cooked through! I always take the tray out of the oven after ten minutes and check that the inside has cooked with a skewer, although the box advises me that once the muffins feel firm to the touch then they are done and this proved to be accurate advice on the one occasion that I had misplaced my skewer.
Once cooked the muffins looked and smelled absolutely delicious. I forgot to mention earlier that you need to retain some of the chocolate chips to put on top of the muffins before cooking, this gives you a wonderful topping of proper chocolate instead of the usual pathetic icing you are provided with from most packet cake mixes.
They taste wonderful, absolutely delicious. You could easily serve these up to guests and they would think you had put time and effort into making them from scratch as there is absolutely nothing that marks them as 'packet' made. As I bit into my first still-warm mini muffin I was instantly reminded of Terry's Chocolate Orange as the orange is so apparent in the flavour and mingles beautifully with the chocolate hit provided by the chocolate chips. The muffins are very light and fluffy which again gives the impression that they were slaved over while you sifted flour and painstakingly measured out ingredients, I was actually surprised by the very pleasant texture of these muffins as I have come to the conclusion over the years that muffins and small cakes that come out of a packet are always slightly heavier than their home made counterparts. Not so with these, Weight Watchers have obviously spent time perfecting this muffin mix and I was extremely impressed that these actually had the taste and texture of muffins - and by this I mean they are not simply chocolate and orange flavoured fairy cakes which have been called muffins because it's so much trendier!
I adore the chocolate topping on the muffins. When cool the chocolate sets into a semi hard shell which adds a delicious dimension to the muffins and completely hides the fact that here I'm actually eating a diet product! It's not cheap and nasty chocolate either; while it's no Lindt Excellence experience, the chocolate chips have melted together to give you a smooth and nicely creamy topping which goes down very nicely with the lovely airy muffin texture.
I cannot believe that packet mix snobbery has stopped me sampling these lovely little muffins before, in actual fact it was only because I spotted boxes of them in my local pound shop that I decided to give them a go. The usual price is around £1.79 which isn't bad considering the packet will make twelve muffins - and don't worry that you'll have to eat them all quickly as they freeze very well and can be defrosted within around an hour at room temperature. They are very small though, but then the clue should have been in the word 'mini' on the box - two bites and the muffin has gone, although at just 1/2 a point each you can easily afford to eat a couple and really indulge your sweet tooth.
For those of you not following the Weight Watchers plan let me give you a brief explanation on the points system. You are allocated so many points per day with each food you eat having a points value, I am allowed 20 points each day so one of these muffins barely makes a dent in my allowance. Of course, one of the reasons they are so low points is because the muffins are so small - but they do have enough flavour to satisfy any sugar/chocolate cravings you may have. If you're not counting points then one muffin will 'cost' you 42 calories and 0.5g of saturated fat (the bad stuff) which is absolutely excellent news for all our waistlines!
I have never been a great lover of chocolate, but ever since starting my weight watchers diet in January I have been craving chocolate even thought this is something I have never been interested in before.
Armed with a points calculator I headed to Morrison's for me weekly shop, I went down the cake and sweet alley trying to find a sugary treat that would not ruin my diet if I was to eat it.
When I tapped out the point's values for things like Mars bars and cakes I throw them back on the shelves is disgust as they had extortionate point values, I then spotted these weight watchers chocolate and orange muffins for only half a point per muffin.
The only down side was that I had to actually make them, but this I could cope with as the point values were brilliant compared to buying the pre made muffins and cakes.
ORANGE AND CHOCOLATE MUFFIN MIX
This muffin mix was exactly what I was looking for it would give me the chocolate fix I was looking for and allow me to stick to my diet, without feeling guilty after eating them.
This mix makes 12 individual muffins, each equalling half a point per cake as they will only contain 42 calories and 0.5 grams of saturated fats. these are the guidelines for 12 cakes so if you only make 6 cakes you are looking at a point per cake.
In the muffin making kit you get everything to make the muffins, chocolate orange mix, 12 x cake cases and a packet of chocolate chips are included. So you can have guilt free indulgence.
MAKING THE MUFFINS
This is very simple to do and you don't need to be a certified chef to produce these great tasting treats.
1) Preheat your oven to 220 degrees of 200 degrees if you have a fan assisted oven.
2) Place the twelve cake cases on to a tray, ready for you to add your muffin mixture.
3) This is the easy bit, place your muffin mix and half of the chocolate chips in a bowl and then add 75mls of cold water. Mix the ingredients until it goes light a fluffy and then share the mixture between the twelve muffin cases.
4) Once you have filled the cases and all of the mixture has been used, sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips on to the top of the muffins.
5) Now place them in your preheated oven for ten - twelve minutes, before you remove them insure they are firm to touch, if not place them back in the oven until they are firm otherwise they will sink and go very flat.
6) Allow them to cool and the scuff them up, it's as simple as that.
As these are a packet mix I was not expecting that much but I have to say I was very impressed as they were very delicious, they reminded me of the chocolate terry's orange in taste and the melted chocolate chips on the top of each cake made them for me.
As this made twelve cakes so I froze six of them down, so I could have them at a later date. If I have not froze them I would have eaten them all I one go, as It happens I did eat all six within a day but I didn't fell guilty as these only cost me three points in total.
This muffin mix cost me 1.59 for Morrison's, I have never seen this is any other supermarket so I am unsure if you can buy it elsewhere.
Overall these cost me roughly 13p each, which I feel is very reasonable. Some may be let down by these as they are very small at only a few bite per muffin but if you are dieting you can't really expect anymore as they can be eaten without ruining you weight loss plan.
These were very tasty as I was expecting them to be bland, but they were very rich in flavour and satisfied my chocolate cravings instantly.
I would recommend these to any weight watcher as they are so simple to make, without taking up to much time and the only things you need to wash up are the mixing bowl, spoon and baking tray so they certainly get my vote.