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Lactose-free muffins are small baked goods that are made without the use of dairy products that contain lactose. These muffins can be savory or slightly sweet and are made from a combination of flour, sugar, a liquid, such as water or soy milk, oil, and eggs. Other ingredients such as nuts, chocolate, and dried or fresh fruits can also be included in lactose-free muffins. These types of muffins can be eaten by people who cannot digest lactose.
When selecting the ingredients for lactose-free muffins, it is important not to choose any that contain lactose. Lactose is an enzyme found in dairy products, especially milk. Fresh butter contains less lactose than fresh milk, though it may still have enough to bother some people with an intolerance to the enzyme. Fermented dairy products, including buttermilk, cultured butter, and yogurt contain only trace amounts of lactose and can usually be eaten by people with a lactose intolerance, though they should not be included in truly lactose-free muffins.
The same process used to make regular muffins can be used to make lactose-free muffins. The dry ingredients, including flour, sugar, salt and baking powder are first placed in a bowl and mixed together thoroughly. After this, the wet ingredients are added to the dry and the batter is stirred until all the ingredients are combined. Wet ingredients in lactose-free muffins may include eggs, water, or a milk substitute, such as soy, coconut, or rice milk, and a source of oil, such as vegetable oil or margarine.
Ingredients such as dark chocolate, nuts, seeds, or fruits are usually mixed into the batter for lactose-free muffins after the other ingredients are combined. Once the ingredients are mixed, the muffins are baked for between 20 and 30 minutes in an oven, usually one that has been heated to about 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Celsius). Muffins are allowed to cool for ten minutes or so before they are ready to eat.
Many people now choose to eat lactose-free muffins instead of regular muffins. People who need to limit their consumption of dairy, or those who cannot digest lactose, can continue to eat muffins when they are made without the use of dairy products. Vegans, who do not eat any animal products at all, can also eat lactose-free muffins as long as they are made without eggs. In most recipes, it is possible to substitute a tablespoon of oil for an egg.
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