Kitchn Love Letters

These Versatile Gluten-Free Muffins Are the Best Thing to Happen to My Mornings

updated Jan 28, 2020
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
Credit: Sheela Prakash

I know many people think muffins are simply cupcakes without frosting, but I feel otherwise. Sure, there are those that lean in the direction of dessert— like the crumb-topped ones and chocolate-studded ones you see in bakery cases and coffee shops. But muffins can be healthy and nutritious, too.

I love making a batch of muffins on the weekend and tucking them away in the freezer for quick grab-and-go breakfasts all week. But because those light, more sugary muffins tend to leave me (and my husband) facing sugar-crash hanger by my mid-morning, I’ve spent some time researching muffin recipes that are wholesome. I’ve come across some great ones but the one recipe I keep coming back to, without a doubt, are the Flax-Coconut Muffins from Elizabeth Prueitt’s cookbook, Tartine All Day.

The Protein-Rich, Whole-Grain, Gluten-Free Muffins I Can’t Stop Baking

Gluten-free, full of fiber, and protein-rich thanks to the mix of ground flaxseeds and oat flour — with its long list of wholesome credentials, you might not think these muffins would taste any good. But they’re honestly some of the best muffins I’ve ever made — healthy or not.

They’ve got a nutty flavor that’s not too strong, which I appreciate because I sometimes find the flavor of flax to be overpowering. Oat flour helps mellow it, as well as a generous pinch of cinnamon. These muffins also have just the right amount of sweetness and a savory note from the olive oil that makes them feel sophisticated. And they’re so moist — thanks to grated apple and molasses — that I never feel like I need to slather them with butter. They’re comforting with my morning coffee or tea and I never worry about the 10 a.m. slump.

But the best part of all is that these muffins are infinitely flexible.

Credit: Sheela Prakash

How to Make These Muffins Your Own

I am going to admit here that the first time I made them, I actually didn’t follow the recipe: Using what I had available, I swapped the molasses for honey, used a mix of whole milk and water in place of the coconut water, subbed brown sugar for the coconut sugar, and opted for fancy dried cranberries instead of the plainer raisins. The next time, I used almond milk and swapped grated carrots for the apple. And you know what? Both times, the muffins came out perfectly.

To be completely honest with you, I’ve probably tweaked at least one thing in this recipe practically every time I’ve made it. I never keep coconut water or coconut sugar stocked, so those almost never make it in. Since I always have rolled oats but never oat flour, I usually pulse some oats in the food processor to make my own oat flour. And I make other swap-ins and add-ins depending on what I want to use up in my pantry. So far, my alterations haven’t failed me.

These muffins also freeze like a dream — though they can also keep well, stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, for up to five days. To defrost, just pull out what you need, let them warm up on the counter for about 15 minutes while your oven preheats to 350°F, them toss them in for about 10 minutes. Or you can just pack one in your bag the night before and enjoy it room temperature at your desk the next morning. This is the preferred method in our household.

Get the recipe: Flax-Coconut Muffins from Tartine All Day