These vegan blackberry muffins are made without oil and are perfect for a healthy vegan breakfast or quick afternoon snack! Enjoy them slathered with your favorite nut butter or extra blackberry jam. All you need is 20 minutes to get them in the oven!
This recipe took me quite a few tries to get right (6 to be exact!), but I am so happy with the results!
There is a bit of a learning curve when baking without dairy butter, oil, or eggs, but if done right, vegan muffins can be just as delectable, moist and fluffy as your old favorites!
And without added oil, you can feel great about enjoying one (or several) with your morning cup of coffee!
Why This Recipe Works
- Substituting apple sauce for oil in this recipe works without compromising texture or flavor.
- Almond flour gives these muffins the fat you’d get from using traditional buttermilk and oil.
- Using blackberry jam in addition to fresh blackberries boosts the blackberry flavor without artificial flavoring.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- all purpose flour – The best flour for light muffins. You likely will be able to substitute for a 1 to 1 Gluten Free flour, but it has not been tested. I don’t recommend whole wheat or substituting with additional almond flour.
- almond flour – Adds fat to these muffins. Essential to achieving the right texture.
- plant-based milk – Any unsweetened plant-based milk will work. You can also substitute vegan yogurt for a more moist muffin.
- cane sugar – Adds a neutral sweetness to the batter. You likely could substitute with coconut sugar, however the color of the muffins may be darker.
- flax eggs – binds this muffin batter the same way traditional eggs would. I don’t recommend substituting with any other egg replacers as it has not been tested.
- blackberry jam – Enhances the blackberry flavor and also sweetens the muffins. You could use any jam you have on hand.
- blackberries – Fresh blackberries are best. Make sure you dice them small enough to evenly distribute the berries throughout the batter and prevent large chunks of berry from weighing down the muffins while baking.
- unsweetened apple sauce – A substitute for oil that keeps these muffins moist. Be sure to use unsweetened apple sauce that does not contain any added sugar.
Step by Step Instructions
- Whisk together the dry ingredients. In a medium sized bowl, mix together the flour, almond flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
- Mix together the wet ingredients. In a larger bowl, whisk together the flax eggs, vegan unsweetened milk, unsweetened apple sauce, cane sugar, apple cider vinegar, and vanilla extract.
TIP! To ensure your cane sugar is vegan, use organic cane sugar. Conventional cane sugars are often filtered through bone char to bleach the sugar, making it both not vegetarian or vegan friendly.
- Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Using a spatula, gently fold dry ingredients into wet ingredients until just combined (do not use a whisk!). Some lumps are okay.
- Add blackberries to the batter and fold them in gently. Over mixing them in will result in a purple batter.
- Spoon batter into muffin tin. This batter will yield 12 regular sized muffins. I like to use a three tablespoon cookie scoop to make this easy and less messy.
- Dot the middle of each muffin with about 2 teaspoons of jam. I also used a smaller cookie scoop to make this super easy!
- With a toothpick or chopstick, lightly swirl the dot of jam into the top of the muffin.
- Bake for 21-23 minutes, or until golden and a tooth pick comes out clean! Once baked allow to cook for 5 minutes in muffin pan, then transfer muffins to a baking rack to cool completely.
Frequently Asked Questions
Use room temperature ingredients and make sure to start with the higher bake temperature of 425 degrees Fahrenheit. This ensures the muffins rise well by giving them a boost of steam and makes them lighter and fluffier in texture!
If you used the higher start temp and your muffins still didn’t rise, you could be using old baking powder and/or baking soda. Both have a shelf life of about 6 months and can lose their effectiveness even quicker if you live in a hot or humid climate.
Yes! You can swap the blackberries for blueberries or raspberries or use a combo of all 3. You can also use any jam you would like. Just be sure to dice the berries small enough so they do not sink in the batter.
This is the result of over mixing your batter. When you over mix the batter, the gluten gets overworked and the batter will become very elastic and stringy. This will result in very tough, chewy muffins! Be sure to use a spatula and gently fold the batter together until just combined.
Tips for Success
- Do not measure flour by scooping it out of the bag or container with the measuring cup. Instead, spoon it into your measuring cup and then level it off with the back of a knife. When you use the measuring cup to scoop, you’re packing the flour into the measuring cup and can end up with more flour than a recipe calls for.
- Measure your liquids in measuring cups meant for measuring liquid. Using a measuring cup meant for dry goods like flour will not yield the same amount.
- Don’t use muffin liners! Since this batter is oil free, the muffins stick easily to muffin liners. Just lightly grease the muffin pan to prevent sticking.
- Use room temperature ingredients! Room temperature ingredients help create light, fluffy baked goods. Don’t expect the same results if you use cold ingredients.
More Vegan Baked Goods You May Enjoy
Healthy Vegan Blackberry Muffins
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup almond flour - super fine
- 1 cup unsweetened plant-based milk - At room temperature. Can substitute unsweetened vegan yogurt
- 1 cup blackberries - diced
- ¾ cup unsweetened apple sauce
- ½ cup cane sugar - organic for vegan friendly sugar
- ½ cup blackberry jam
- 2 flax eggs - 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed, plus 5 tablespoons water
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract - can omit if desired
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees, Fahrenheit and lightly grease a 12 cup muffin pan or use a silicone muffin pan to keep the recipe completely oil free.
- Prepare the flax eggs. In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed with 5 tablespoons water. Set aside and allow to get gelatinous, about 5 minutes.
- In a medium sized bowl, mix together the all purpose flour, almond flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
- In a larger separate bowl, whisk together the room temperature unsweetened vegan milk, unsweetened apple sauce, cane sugar, flax eggs, and vanilla extract.
- Pour the dry ingredients into the bowl with the wet ingredients. Gently and slowly fold together with a spatula until just incorporated. Do not over mix or use a whisk – this will result in dense, gummy muffins.
- Next, fold the diced blackberries into the batter.
- Divide batter evenly between 12 cup muffin pan.
- Dot each muffin with 2 teaspoons of blackberry jam, then using a toothpick or chopstick, swirl the jam into the top surface layer of the muffin. See step by step photos in post for a visual guide.
- Bake at 425 degrees for 5 minutes, then with the muffins remaining in oven, lower temperature to 350 degrees and bake an additional 16-18 minutes or until a tooth pick comes out clean. Total baking time: 21-23 minutes.
- Allow to cool in muffin tin for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wired cooling rack to cool completely.
- Enjoy with extra blackberry jam, vegan butter, or nut butter!
- Storage: Store leftovers at room temperature for up to 4 days.
- Read the body of this post for baking tips and step by step visual guide!
- If you use vegan yogurt, the muffins will be more moist. In retesting this recipe, both work however I preferred the muffins made with unsweetened plant-based milk.
- I do not recommend substituting the almond flour with additional all purpose flour. Since these muffins do not contain oil in the batter, the almond flour helps substitute the lack of fat.
- I do not recommend using muffin liners for this recipe. Since the batter does not contain oil, they stick to the muffin liners. Either grease the muffin pan or use a silicone muffin pan.
- Wait for the muffins to cool completely. They are the best texture once cooled. When warm, they feel and taste a bit too moist.
General note about salt
Please pay attention to the type of salt called for in the recipe (if applicable). Not all salts are made equal and cannot be substituted 1 for 1. If you are substituting table salt for kosher salt, you will need to cut the amount called for in the recipe by at least half.
Disclaimer: The Nutritional Information provided for this recipe is only an estimate. The accuracy of the facts listed is not and cannot be guaranteed.
This recipe was originally published August 5, 2020 and was updated on July 9, 2021 to include an improved recipe, new photos including ingredients shot and step by step visual instructions, FAQs, tips for success, and ingredient notes.