Blueberry and Lemon Muffin Recipe (Gluten and Refined-Sugar Free)

Blueberry and Lemon Muffin Recipe (Gluten and Refined-Sugar Free)




Hello again! Is it Friday already? Hooray!

You might have read on one of my recent Instagram posts, that I was frustrated with myself. I had previously made some delicious savoury muffins by following an American recipe online. It had taken ages, as I had to translate all of the measurements from American Cups to metric and foolishly, I hadn’t written it down. So when the time came for me to want to make them again, I took a deep breath, ready to embark on the translating for a second time. A gorgeous friend had given me this beautiful notebook a few months ago and I got it out (and a newly sharpened pencil) ready to diligently copy down the recipe. All was not going to be that simple however. As I searched the internet for this favourite recipe, I found that the recipe, and indeed, the entire baking website, was no longer in existence.

I spent the next hour, perhaps it was even two, searching for something comparable. Nothing piqued my interest… either the recipes had gluten in them, or sugar, or un-pronounceable ingredients.

Something wonderful did occur in that moment of desperation… I decided to develop my own recipe. I promise I had no idea how it was going to turn out, I didn’t even know where to begin until I glanced up to my cook books and saw Mary Berry’s encouraging face smiling down at me. After having a flick through one of her books, I decided to re-create her Lemon and Blueberry muffins but make them gluten and sugar free. I had to adapt some of the method as well, as without gluten, I wasn’t sure how well they would rise.

I was so pleased at how they turned out. It really was a stroke of luck! What’s so much more exciting is that we can eat them and still feel great!




Tip: I always have a packet of frozen blueberries in the freezer. They can be added to so many things and take a very short amount of time to defrost.

Makes approximately 12 muffins:

  • 275g Buckwheat flour (I either get mine online or at Holland & Barrett)
  • 1 tbsp Baking powder
  • 70g coconut sugar (again, online or at Holland and Barrett – it is expensive but I tend to use it sparingly if I can)
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 Eggs
  • 200ml Almond Milk (unsweetened – you can get this from most supermarkets)
  • 100g Softened butter
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 150g Blueberries


  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C/400 degrees F/Gas mark 6 and line your muffin tray with paper cases (I used to drop the mixture straight into a greased muffin tin, but cases make putting the muffins in lunchboxes and carrying them about, so much easier!
  2. Combine all of the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, coconut sugar and lemon zest) – I used a stand mixer, but you can easily use a food processor (except for when adding the blueberries later) or a regular bowl and spoon.
  3. Mix in the eggs, softened butter, milk and vanilla extract until everything is evenly combined – the mixture will seem gloopy, but it’ll be fine in the end!
  4. Stir in the blueberries.
  5. Spoon the mixture into the paper cases.
  6. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes – keep an eye on them. You want them just turning golden brown.
  7. Allow them to cool in the tray for a few minutes before putting them on a wire rack.

Enjoy! H x


This post contains affiliate links – this doesn’t affect you at all, but if people purchase from the linked shop after clicking, it might eventually cause a tiny payout to me. What would I do with it? Probably go out for a cup of tea and a slice of cake! You are welcome to join me. x


This Week’s Bakes

This Week’s Bakes




This week has been a hive of baking in the DF kitchen and because many of the bakes weren’t for us, I was able to indulge myself and make some traditional wonders! My go-to cake for pretty much any occasion is a Lemon Drizzle. It often gets asked for by my friends and it is one of the easiest cakes to make. All in a bowl, one quick mix and then straight into a lined loaf tin – minimal washing up, minimal fuss but maximum yumminess! My favourite recipe (and I’ve tried several!) is from The Primrose Bakery Book by Martha Swift and Lisa Thomas; both authors are advocates for making cakes using a food processor, where everything goes in together. I love this book because it is full of special but achievable bakes; one quick browse is all it takes to have me getting out the tins and trying something new. I’ve also made their gingerbread camel recipe (for Christmas one year) – they looked so pretty and went down a treat. I think everyone we knew ended up being gifted some!

I also made good use of my trusty friend – the Mary Berry Foolproof Cakes recipe book – which I think has been updated now into a different book, but if you can get your hands on one, it would be so worth it, especially if you are not a regular or confident baker. I used her recipe for Coffee and Walnut Cake with a walnut praline centre but this is also the book I go to for scones and Mr D-F’s favourite biscuits of all time: Diggers!

With all of these delicious treats being made around us, I made a Chia seed pudding for us to eat and to see how it went down. I LOVED it! Mr D-F was not pleased at all however, and did some crazy ‘yuk’ noise when he tried it. It wasn’t the flavour, he reassured me, more the texture of the little seeds once they turn into jelly. He likened it to eating frogspawn. Luckily, they can be blended before soaking, which helps with the texture, so I haven’t been beaten. I shall try again (*cue sly look)!!



I hope you have a great weekend ahead. See you on Sunday x


This post contains affiliate links – this doesn’t affect you at all, but if people purchase from the linked shop after clicking, it might eventually cause a tiny payout to me. What would I do with it? Probably go out for a cup of tea and a slice of cake! You are welcome to join me. x! x


Nutty Mint Chocolate and Banana Smoothie





Hello! I hope you’re having a wonderful weekend so far. Isn’t this warm weather uplifting?

As the afternoons have been so full of sunshine, I’ve taken to swapping my usual 4pm warm turmeric milk for a smoothie instead. By this point, the main jobs of the day have usually been done (or added to tomorrow’s to-do list), I’ve spend a good half an hour or more on my yoga mat and I’m in need of something delicious to refuel myself.

I love smoothies and I have been really getting into recipes that have a bit more texture, that you can eat with a spoon and yes, taste a bit like ice-cream! I’m quite conscious of not overloading my smoothies with too much sugary fruits and try and keep all of the ingredients to a good balance.

The recipe for this Nutty Mint Chocolate Smoothie came about by making a few tweaks to a favourite Vanilla and Banana Smoothie. Those of you who know my adoration for mint chocolate in any guise will not be surprised that this is the direction that my smoothie took!

So, for the recipe (I don’t have a fancy blender, I picked one up really cheaply in the Lidl aisle of delight last year and it’s still going strong – those Lidl go-ers, you totally know the aisle I mean right?!)

Tip – peel and freeze any old bananas and keep a stock in your freezer. They make great ice-creams and smoothie bases.

Serves one:

  • One large frozen banana
  • 200ml almond milk (preferably unsweetened)
  • 1 tbsp of smooth almond butter
  • 1 -2 fresh mint leaves (depends how minty you like things)
  • 1 tbsp of raw cacao powder

Blend it all together until it is all nice and smooth. Tip into a glass and enjoy (hopefully you’ll need a spoon)! If you want to be really fancy, you could grate some dark chocolate (>70% cocoa solids) over the top.

Let me know how you get on. H x

Lunch From The Sukha Lounge ~ Bournemouth

lunch from the sukha lounge

raw felafel, broccoli and cauliflower

sweet potato cake

Look what the lovely people at The Sukha Lounge left for me when I was in their vicinity last Sunday. They also had made me a matcha smoothie, which was green and frothy and delicious. I did take a photo and post it on Instagram, however, it didn’t last long enough for me to get it home to take ‘proper’ photographs – it was that good!

If you are as yet unaware of The Sukha Lounge; it is a vegan cafe which specialises in gluten-free and refined sugar-free food.  Such a perfect match for my current eating habits (I’m predominately gluten free and pretty much 100% refined sugar-free).  As they are not open on a Sunday, I took my take-away home with me for Mr D-F and I to share for lunch.

Our meal comprised of raw falafels (I’ve never had falafels raw before but these were so good), kale and mango salad with some raw broccoli and cauliflower, along with some zingy humous, which was amazing. For pudding, we had a slice of sweet potato cake, which I was expecting to be a strange consistency but it tasted like an in-between mix of chocolate cake and chocolate mousse. A combination I am very much in favour of!

I will definitely be going back to The Sukha Lounge on a day that it is open and after having another dreamy, green smoothie, I can’t wait to see what else is on the menu.


This post was sponsored by The Sukha Lounge, in that they gave me a free lunch, however, my opinions are completely my own and my general rule is that if I don’t love something, I tend to not write about it! 


This Week’s Bakes

This Week’s Bakes


close up of gluten free tart base

tart base of medjool dates and oats

gluten free refined sugar free chocolate tart

Can I just start by saying that this beautiful chocolate tart was a huge success, incredibly easy to make and can be made to be gluten and refined sugar free. However, this week’s baking adventure did not start out this confidently.

The whole story began with a conversation between myself and a friend of mine. It went something like this:

My friend (who shall remain anonymous): Would you like to come for supper on *this date*?

Me: Oh yes please. Can I be helpful and bring anything?

My friend: Yes, pudding would be brilliant please.

Me: Do you have any preferences?

My friend: No. Whatever you like…

(…and then she added): but it needs to go with Persian inspired food.

Me: Right. Ok then.

Which started me off in a grand panic. I googled, looked in my recipe books, asked friends – you can just imagine! Until I stumbled upon this recipe on Madeleine Shaw’s website.  I love Madeleine’s recipes, as well you know, due to their mainly gluten free nature (perfect for Mr DF) and generally refined sugar free ingredients (perfect for me). This chocolate tart is made from a base of oats and medjool dates and is finished with a filling of raw cacao, dark chocolate, more dates and a dash of espresso, which I felt would be a great compliment to a Persian main course.

The flavour is incredible but it is best eaten on the day that it is made.  By day 2, although still yummy, the intensity of the rich, chocolate flavour had started to lessen.  I cannot recommend it highly enough and when you taste it, you won’t believe the flavour that can be had with just a few, simple ingredients!

I’ll let you know how it goes down when I serve it up at supper.



This Week’s Bakes

This Week’s Bakes

green granny smith applesraisins in a bowlingredients in a bowl

I don’t need much of an excuse to mess about in the kitchen and this cold weather over the weekend had me pretty much setting up camp inbetween the kettle and the oven.

This recipe for Chewy Sultana Cookies by Deliciously Ella caught my eye and I had to try it out… no flour, no refined sugar and full of delicious fruits and filling oats. Plus, one massive bonus, is that the recipe doesn’t require any food processing. I had a majorly sad moment yesterday when I came to use my processor to find a massive crack in the bowl. I think the regular making of nut butters has taken its toll on my machine. As an aside, if anyone has a great recommendation for a pretty heavy-duty food processor, please leave me a comment. My current one is a KitchenAid and although I love it, I don’t think it’s up to the job. 

Each cookie has a healthy amount of grated apple (I substituted red apples for green), oats, sultanas (I used raisins), mashed bananas, cinnamon and honey. Once baked, these cookies have a lovely crunch to the outside and then a soft centre, which gave a nice hit of banana flavour.  We enjoyed them that afternoon and were happy in the knowledge that they were packed full of goodness.

Today, I’m going to indulge Mr D-F by making his all-time-favourite raspberry and pistachio brownies from the book Ready Steady Glow by Madeleine Shaw. All I can say is, if you can get your hands on the recipe – try them – you really will thank me! (…and Madeleine of course, who created them)!

I’ll post some photos on Instagram once I’ve made the brownies and if I can get to them in time before they’re eaten!

Have a great day x


This post contains an affiliate link. 

Plan Your Way To Healthier Meals ~ Free Downloadable Meal Planner

Plan Your Way To Healthier Meals ~ Free Downloadable Meal Planner

Many of you know that I’ve been trialling different menus and foods over the last year. We have embarked upon a primarily, whole-food based diet for two main reasons; enjoying experimenting being one of them and Mr D-F’s gluten and dairy intolerance being another.  We have also cut out all refined sugar – a big initial challenge but so worth while in the end.

Oh my goodness what a difference this shift has made to us both. More energy throughout the day and less cravings for snacks – I have always been a major grazer, no intolerance related effects for Mr D-F and the most amazing thing is that our meals are full of different flavours, packed full of nutrients and are in no way meagre! I must insert a link here to the first book that helped us to make this transition; Madeleine Shaw’s Get The Glow.

So this has all been great so far but what it has meant is that we’ve had to be mega-organised when it comes to shopping and meal prep, especially when we initially started out on this new food fun.  Most of our weekly menus up until this point have been scribbled on the back of a bit of paper, which would be totally fine, except that we’ve started to accidentally mis-read the menu meaning that some foods haven’t made it to the shopping list or ended up on there twice!

To solve this problem, I’ve created two menu planners, which are completely free for you to download and print as many times as you like. They have a space for each day of the week, so that you can plan out your breakfast, lunch, snack and supper. There’s also a space for the date, which I designed mainly for me, as I keep all of our old menus ensuring that if there was a particularly amazing week, we could recycle the ideas without re-writing!

I’ve made a Monday – Sunday version but the one I use the most is the Saturday – Friday version as we do our weekly shop on a Saturday and that’s when our menu for the week begins. You’ll find the links for the downloads below the photos.


Dorset Finca Meal Planner

Dorset Finca Meal Planner with favourite books

Click the gold link here for the Monday – Sunday planner: meal planner

Click the gold link here for the planner that starts on a Saturday: meal planner starting saturday

I hope you find these useful and if you want to keep updated with the various happenings on The Dorset Finca blog, please subscribe using the button on the right. x

This post contains an Amazon affiliate link.