New Chef Recipe Series: Healthier Treats For Kids

Chef Recipe Series With Sharon Hearne Smith, Blackberry & Apple Breakfast Muffins, I Love Cooking, I Love Cooking Ireland

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In this Chef Recipe Series we have teamed up with one of Ireland’s leading food stylists and cookbook author Sharon Hearne-Smith to bring you “Healthier Treats For Kids”.

In this recipe video series the focus will be on delicious treats that are refined sugar free, using natural sugars such as fruit to sweeten and using healthier alternatives. In our first episode Sharon shares her delicious recipe of Blackberry & Apple Breakfast Muffins.

Over the coming weeks we will bring you easy child friendly recipe videos, that are easy to follow and super tasty without all the nasties! These are a much healthier alternative to some of the shop bought treats that are ladened with sugar and E numbers.

To follow the series subscribe to our YouTube channel here.

Blackberry & Apple Breakfast Muffins

“Muffins are a firm fave with kids, so I like to make them as healthy as possible. These muffins are sweetened only by the natural sugar in the fruit making them a healthy treat for any time of day. They are ideal for using up over ripe bananas, which often tend to lurk in the fruit bowl. They are perfect for freezing and can be taken out the night before as necessary. This recipe is ideal to get the kids involved as they are really quick and easy to make. I hope you enjoy our “Healthier Treats For Kids” series” – Sharon

Makes 12


  • 2 ripe, medium bananas
  • 1 small apple
  • 150ml natural low-fat yoghurt
  • 50ml olive oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 200g wholemeal flour
  • 50g rolled oats + 1 tbsp for decorating
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 200g blackberries


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C (fan 160C), 350F, Gas Mark 4. Line a 12 whole muffin tin with muffin cases or cut out 24 x 15cm squares from baking parchment. Take two squares per hole and place one on top of the other like a star. Push them down into the muffin tin holes, they may pop up a bit but once the mixture is in, they will stay down.
  2. Mash the bananas really well in a large jug. Roughly grate the apple in, skin on. Add the yoghurt, oil, eggs and vanilla extract and mix to combine.
  3. Place the flour in a large bowl and add the oats, cinnamon, baking powder and bicarb. Toss everything together and make a hole in the centre.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix together to give a sloppy mixture. Finally, stir in two thirds of the blackberries.
  5. Spoon the mixture evenly between the paper cases. Scatter the remaining blackberries evenly over the tops and press them in lightly. Finally, scatter the extra oats over to decorate.
  6. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes until risen and cooked through. Remove and leave to cool a little and then enjoy!

Getting to know Sharon:

Sharon Hearne-Smith is a food stylist and cookbook author. She has worked her magic with food in the media for 20 years in Ireland, the UK and the US. Her experience includes ghostwriting, recipe development and food styling for cookbooks and magazines and she has worked on over 30 cookery TV shows. Sharon has worked behind the scenes supporting top celebrity chefs including Jamie Oliver, James Martin, Gordon Ramsey, Lorraine Pascale, Donal Skehan, Rachel Allen and Neven Maguire.

 In recent years, Sharon has written two of her own cookbooks, No Bake Baking  and The No-Cook Cookbook, published by Quercus (London). She is a regular cook on RTE’s Today Show. Sharon is in her second year as ambassador for Supervalu’s ‘Get Ireland Cooking’ project where she helps encourage the nation to get cooking fresh, healthy and homecooked meals with a particular emphasis on encouraging kids to get involved.

Since becoming a Mum to Pearl (6) and Poppy (2), Sharon has become even more passionate about encouraging other parents to create healthy, wholesome food for their children. In this mini series with ‘I love cooking’, Sharon shares some of the healthier sweet recipes she treats her kids to.

Sharon Hearne Smith Facebook

Sharon Hearne Smith Twitter

Sharon Hearne Smith Instagram

You can watch our videos across all of I Love Cooking’s social channels and the longer versions in our Food TVsection or subscribe to our YouTube channel.




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