Bake Club students compete in Jr. Iron Chef contest

Herkimer Jr. High School students recently tested their skills in the Junior Iron Chef competition at SUNY Cobleskill.

Gianni Luce, Jessi Pfaff, Madison Gargas and Caiti Vriesen represented Herkimer’s FCCLA Club (also known as the Bake Club) in the Middle School session of the annual competition.

Before the competition, the team was tasked with developing a recipe, which had to include two or more locally produced foods, and two or more USDA foods that are available for use in a school cafeteria.

The “Cooking Magicians” developed a recipe for “Jumbo Healthy Blueberry Banana Muffins,” and were given 75 minutes to prepare and plate their dish during the competition.

“While the students didn’t win anything, they learned a lot, had a ton of fun, and were recognized by a judge (and president of the college) for the fact that the experience had given the students the opportunity to grow close bonds with one another,” Home and Careers teacher Holly White explained, adding, “The group is already preparing for next year’s competition!”

Congratulations to the “Cooking Magicians” and best of luck for the future!

Recipe for Healthy Jumbo Banana Blueberry Muffins


  • 2 bananas
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅔ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ¼ cup applesauce
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • ½ cup flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup blueberries, frozen


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mash bananas. Add other wet ingredients and mix.
  3. Add dry ingredients and mix.
  4. Fill large muffin tin with paper liners.
  5. Fill ⅔ full and bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.
  6. Serve with a bowl of yogurt or fruit.
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