Vegan Walnut Muffins are sweet and nutty with a soft, velvety texture. Moist and tender oil-free and gluten-free muffins, great for breakfast, snacks, or dessert!
One of the foods that I made often in my bakery days was muffins. After one of my first days of work, I grabbed one of the pumpkin ginger muffins that I had made that day. I took a bite and fell in love.
Wow, the muffin was incredible. And it kind of got me on a muffin kick. In the next couple days, I started trying all the other muffin flavors that we offer at the bakery. I was hooked.
Thus, these Vegan Walnut Muffins (and several other flavor variations) were born.
Muffins are such a fun treat. When done right they can be both incredibly delicious and dessert-like while being so nutritious.
Y'all know by now that my biggest thing around here is feeding our bodies foods that we can feel good about eating but also thoroughly enjoy.
Why I love these Oil-Free Vegan Walnut Muffins
Dietary needs — these muffins are plant-based, oil-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined sugar-free
Sweet, nutty flavor — the vegan bakery I worked at used nutmeg in many baked goods and I swear this is the key to giving vegan baked goods the same flavor as 'regular' baked goods
Soft & velvety texture without oil — applesauce helps create an extremely moist (but not dense) muffin. It has that perfect melt-in-your-mouth texture. All without oil!
Applesauce: Unsweetened applesauce gives these muffins the perfect light and fluffy texture. You can also use a banana or pumpkin puree but both of these will likely give a flavor you don't want (and if you do want, try my strawberry banana muffins or my pumpkin muffins)
Maple Syrup or Date Syrup: in a previous version of this recipe I used date syrup, but I now recommend using maple syrup for the best texture. If you want a completely fruit-sweetened muffin, this recipe does work with date syrup and you can sub in a 1:1 ratio
Apple Cider Vinegar: in combination with baking soda, ACV helps the muffins to rise properly, so don't skip this!
Homemade Oat Flour: I recommend using homemade oat flour, which you can blend easily in your food processor. Homemade flour is fluffier than store-bought and results in a lighter texture. The recipe will still work with store-bought oat flour.
Almond Flour: Almond flour is my go-to flour to balance oat flour. Almonds have more fat, which means that they help lighten up the muffin, making it less dense. AND they add flavor!
Baking Powder & Baking Soda
Cinnamon & Nutmeg: the vegan bakery I worked at used nutmeg in many baked goods and I swear this is the key to giving vegan baked goods the same flavor as 'regular' baked goods. I add nutmeg to many of my baking recipes now and it seriously works - don't skip this spice!
Walnuts: I love adding nuts to give the muffins some texture and more of a rich, nutty flavor.
How to make Vegan Walnut Muffins
Step 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a muffin tin with liners.
Step 2. In a large bowl, mix the applesauce, syrup, nut butter, and apple cider vinegar. Stir until thoroughly combined.
Step 3. Add the oat flour, almond flour, nutmeg, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Stir until the mixture is smooth.
Step 4. Fold in the walnuts.
Step 5. Scoop into your muffin cups and press a walnut half onto the top of each cup. Bake for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove them from the oven and let cool completely. Enjoy!
Expert Tips & FAQ
I'm allergic to nuts, what can I use instead?
Flour. Instead of almond flour use cassava or coconut flour.
Nut butter. Instead of nut butter, use sunflower seed butter or pepita butter.
Chopped Walnuts. Stir in pepitas, raisins, or omit the nuts entirely.
I have to say, muffins aren’t always the easiest to get right. As always, feel free to reach out to me if you have trouble. But below are some common issues that you might run into…
Gluey Muffins: I often have gluey muffins if I use store-bought oat flour. Store bought is easy, and has its uses, but it is ground very finely, so it sticks together. If you find your muffins are super dense, try using homemade oat flour, which is coarser.
Crumbly Muffins: The opposite of a gluey muffin. If your muffin simply breaks apart, it may need more fat or moisture. This could occur if your nut butter is thick and not super runny. Try to use a runny nut butter (not the end of the jar). Or add some extra moisture, like a flax egg or a bit of non-dairy milk.
Burnt Muffins: Hopefully you are able to keep an eye on your muffins as they cook, but sometimes muffins burn even when we are watching. My first tip is to cover the pan with foil so the tops don’t continue to burn. You can also remove burnt parts as soon as you see them and place the muffins back in the oven so the entire muffin can get crispy again. If your oven tends to run hot, decrease the temperature and bake for the same amount of time.
Avoid Moldy Muffins. Muffins made entirely from plants will get moldy faster than the average muffin. If you plan to keep your muffins around for more than 5 days, store these guys in the fridge.
Freeze in an air-tight container. These muffins hold up well in the freezer. Simply defrost them in the microwave when ready to eat.
Thank you God for muffins. Thank you for giving us treats to enjoy. Amen.
Love WFPB muffins? Me too! Here are some of my favorite plant-based muffin recipes: