Magical Leprechaun Treats

By Michelle Schwab, Macaroni Kid Peachtree City-Fayetteville-Newnan March 10, 2023

It's almost St. Patrick's Day!  And what's more fun than everything green!  How about naturally green muffins?  Seriously!  No dye!  

How is that possible?  Well, the answer is sunflower seeds, baking soda and an important part of plants called chlorophyll! Chlorophyll helps plants make food through a process called photosynthesis, and chlorophyll gives them  their green color. 

This recipe calls for sunflower seed butter.  Did you know that sunflower seeds also have chlorophyll? All plants contain chlorophyll in the stems and leaves, but sunflowers also have it in the seeds.  When we eat sunflower seeds, we are also consuming chlorophyll!

So how does chlorophyll in sunflower seeds turn the cookie green?  Well, in short, it reacts with baking soda. Specifically, when we mix baking soda with water, it creates a chemical reaction. This reaction causes the baking soda to break down into carbon dioxide gas, salt, and water. When we add sunflower seeds to this mixture, something really interesting happens! The chlorophyll in the sunflower seeds contains magnesium, which reacts with the baking soda to create a new compound called magnesium carbonate.  This is because baking soda raises the pH level of the water, making it more alkaline. Chlorophyll is able to survive in an alkaline environment, which allows it to turn the mixture green as it cools.

 It's amazing to see science in action!  Try this recipe to see how it works!

Magical Leprechaun Treats

  • 2/3 cup Sunflower seed butter
  • 1 banana
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vinegar
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp chocolate chips, optional but highly recommended

In medium bowl, beat wet ingredients: Sunflower seed butter, banana, eggs, vinegar, honey. 

Add in Baking soda and cinnamon. Mix well.

Add optional chocolate chips.

Grease silicone egg bite mold.  Then fill molds with batter about 1/2 full. Put silicone lid on top, or cover with foil.

Add 1 cup of water and a trivet to the Instant Pot. Place the covered egg bite mold on top of the trivet.

Put the lid on the Instant Pot. Pressure cook for 5 minutes and then allow a 5-minute natural release.
Open the Instant Pot lid, carefully remove the mold from the Instant Pot. Allow muffins to cool in the mold for 10 minutes. Remove lid and turn mold over to pop muffins out of the mold.

Note: These treats can be made like cookies.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Use a tablespoon to place heaps of batter onto baking tray, 2 inches apart.  Bake for 8-10 minutes.

Enjoy and be amazed!