Muffins usually have an insane number of calories thanks to boatloads of sugar and huge portion sizes, but these homemade recipes are the delicious exceptions you've been waiting for.
The Problem with Your Morning Muffin
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A whole-grain blueberry muffin from your local coffee shop or bakery might sound like a relatively smart to-go breakfast choice, but that unassuming pastry has an incredible number of calories—not to mention way more sugar than you want to know about. Yes, even that gluten-free organic flax whatever-the-heck muffin made with farm-fresh eggs and unicorn dust. In many cases, you may as well have a piece of cake or a cupcake for breakfast. Instead, try these healthy homemade muffin recipes from registered dietitians and healthy eating experts who know how to keep the taste but leave out all that other nasty stuff.
Photo: PhotoAlto/Sigrid Olsson/Getty Images
Whole-Grain Chocolate Chip Zucchini Muffins
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Zucchini keeps baked goods from drying out and is a great way to sneak extra veggies into your breakfast or smart snack. Plus, these chocolate chip muffins are packed with filling protein and fiber.
Get the recipe: Whole-Grain Chocolate Chip Zucchini Muffins
Photo: Nutrition by Nazima
Banana Bread Muffins
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Banana bread can be a total sugar and calorie bomb—hardly a wholesome breakfast or snack. These banana bread muffins are a deliciously healthy alternative. Top these reasonably sized muffins with a smear of nut butter for an extra punch of protein.
Get the recipe: Banana Bread Muffins
Photo: RDelicious Kitchen
Banana Pumpkin Muffins
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Looking for an alternative to sugar and artificial sweeteners? This recipe uses naturally sweet dates, which pair perfectly with warm pumpkin and banana flavors to keep the batter moist. (Dates also make a great binding ingredient for energy balls. Check out some of our favorite recipes for the bite-size snacks.)
Get the recipe: Banana Pumpkin Muffins
Photo: One Hungry Bunny
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These muffins are bright and bursting with raspberry flavor, plus a little hint of lemon. The berries will add a pop of tartness when you bite into them, plus they add more fiber and antioxidants to your morning meal.
Get the recipe: Raspberry Muffins
Photo: Healthy Ideas Place
Coconut Oil Banana Muffins
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Coconut oil is a great plant-based substitute for butter because it provides a rich texture and flavor. Whether you're lactose-intolerant or are just looking for something new, you'll love this tasty dairy-free recipe. (If you haven't tried cooking and baking with coconut oil, you're going to wonder how you went so long without it in your kitchen.)
Get the recipe: Coconut Oil Banana Muffins
Photo: The Lean Green Bean
Banana Quinoa Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins
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Ancient grain quinoa lends a satisfying texture and extra fiber to these mini muffins. Grab a few for a healthy snack or crumble into plain yogurt for a DIY parfait. (Next up, try these mini blueberry muffins with a Greek yogurt and oatmeal crumble.)
Get the recipe: Banana Quinoa Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins
Photo: Nutrition to Fit
Double Chocolate Beet Muffins
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Want that red velvet color without any artificial dyes? Beets are a natural way to give baked goods that bright hue and a rich texture. They're also packed with fiber and antioxidants—talk about a power breakfast. This double chocolate recipe hits all the right notes. (Discover more ways to hide vegetables in your desserts.)
Get the recipe: Double Chocolate Beet Muffins
Photo: Dishing Out Health
Chocolate Cherry Muffins
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Chocolate and cherries are a match made in flavor heaven. These gluten-free muffins are a satisfying way to start your day, and they taste like you're getting away with having dessert for breakfast.
Get the recipe: Chocolate Cherry Muffins
Photo: KISS in the Kitchen
Oatmeal Molasses Muffins
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If you like oatmeal cookies, you'll love this whole-wheat muffin version with molasses. They're perfect as a healthy snack, too. (Enjoy these five other ways to eat oatmeal that aren't breakfast bowls.)
Get the recipe: Oatmeal Molasses Muffins
Photo: How To Eat
Pistachio Muffins with Cardamom and Rose Jam
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Nuts, spices, and exotic spreads elevate even the simplest foods to yummy treat status. This recipe dresses up a simple whole-grain muffin with pistachios, cardamom, and rose jam. Enjoy as a healthier treat with a cup of tea.
Get the recipe: Pistachio Muffins with Cardamom and Rose Jam
Photo: Food, Pleasure & Health
Cranberry Banana Whole-Grain Muffins
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These sweet-and-tart muffins are made with white whole-wheat flour, which provides the nutrients found in a whole-grain flour but without that "whole-grain" taste that turns some people off. They're also packed with both sweet and tart flavor thanks to the banana and cranberries. (Hey, more cranberry goodness is waiting here.)
Get the recipe: Cranberry Banana Whole-Grain Muffins
Photo: Nutrition Starring YOU
Vegan One-Minute Chocolate Muffin
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For those times when you want something sweet ASAP and don't want to turn on the oven, this whole-grain, microwave version is a healthier alternative to hitting the nearest bakery. (Psst, you can also make a blueberry muffin in a mug.)
Get the recipe: Vegan One-Minute Chocolate Muffin
Photo: 360 Family Nutrition
Coffee Banana Muffins
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Blueberry Oat Bran Muffins
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Most store-bought blueberry muffins are basically glorified birthday cake, but this delicious no-flour, low-carb, vegan, gluten-free version will nourish the body and satisfy those taste buds. Sounds like a win-win.
Get the recipe: Blueberry Oat Bran Muffins
Photo: 80 Twenty Nutrition
Vegan Banana Zucchini Chocolate Chip Muffins
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Made without butter or eggs, these just-sweet-enough muffins are the perfect healthy snack for plant-based eaters and omnivores alike. (Love the idea of a hearty muffin for your morning meal? Then wait until you see these healthy breakfast cookies.)
Get the recipe: Vegan Banana Zucchini Chocolate Chip Muffins
Photo: Whole Living Lauren
Coconut Flour Coffee Cake Muffins
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Coconut flour is perfect for gluten-free baked goods, thanks to its rich texture. It soaks up a lot of liquid, so it's great for moist recipes that call for egg, coconut oil, applesauce, and liquid sweeteners like honey or maple syrup. This grain-free take on coffee cake muffins also features chocolate chips. (P.S. You're going to want to eat this coffee cake in a mug basically all the time.)
Get the recipe: Coconut Flour Coffee Cake Muffins with Chocolate Chips
Photo: Avocado A Day Nutrition
Muffin Tin Cheddar Biscuits with Hidden Egg Inside
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When your savory side needs some attention, try one of these healthy biscuits with an egg cooked inside. This protein-rich option will satisfy your growling belly. (ICYMI, muffin tin recipes are the perfect strategy for portion control.)
Get the recipe: Muffin Tin Cheddar Biscuits with Hidden Egg Inside
Photo: Perspective Portions
Gluten-Free Oatmeal Muffins
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Looking for a gluten-free muffin recipe that doesn't taste like it's "free" of anything? This recipe, which also happens to be dairy-free, makes the perfect base for any flavor variations you decide to try.
Get the recipe: Ultimate Gluten-Free Oatmeal Muffins
Photo: Abbey's Kitchen
20-Minute Chocolate Peanut Butter Muffins
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If you haven't tried blender muffins before, you're in for a treat. No time to slave over mixing bowls? These chocolate peanut butter muffins, which are easy to adapt for grain-free and dairy-free eaters, are ready in just 20 minutes. Kitchen cleanup doesn't get any easier.
Get the recipe: 20-Minute Chocolate Peanut Butter Muffins
Photo: Back to the Book Nutrition
Honey Corn Muffins
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Corn is a whole grain that deserves some more attention. This recipe, which uses just a half-cup of honey in place of refined sugar, is the perfect pairing for chili or makes a great snack or breakfast that's not over-the-top sweet.
Get the recipe: Honey Corn Muffins
Photo: Bite of Health Nutrition
Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal Cups
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Craving carrot cake? You could blend up this pretty carrot cake smoothie bowl, or make these oatmeal cup muffins instead—you'll get in some veggies and whole grains without skimping on taste. The healthy cream cheese frosting swaps in some Greek yogurt for an added protein boost and lower fat and calorie count.
Get the recipe: Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal Cups
Photo: The Nutritionist Reviews
Whole-Wheat Apple Pumpkin Muffins
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Pumpkin is a no-brainer for muffins, thanks to its smooth texture, which makes even low-fat concoctions taste rich and moist. It also packs a powerful nutrition punch, thanks to vitamins A and C, fiber, and potassium. Sold.
Get the recipe: Whole-Wheat Pumpkin Apple Muffins
Photo: Your Choice Nutrition
Pear Cardamom Pecan Muffins
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These healthy whole-grain muffins are stuffed with pears and pecans and feature a pecan crumble top. The messy look makes for a hearty muffin that you'll come back to again and again. Try freezing a batch for easy access to a fiber-filled breakfast any time.
Get the recipe: Pear Cardamom Pecan Muffins
Photo: Lively Table
Healthy Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Muffins
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The juicy apple pieces and warm cinnamon in these healthy muffins will make your kitchen smell heavenly. Try these muffins for a healthy comfort-food breakfast for those on-the-go mornings. (This apple pie smoothie bowl is another genius and healthy way to trick your taste buds into thinking you're eating apple pie.)
Get the recipe: Healthy Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Muffins
Photo: Marissa Moore Nutrition
Whole-Grain Peanut Butter and Jelly Muffins
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Cheese and Herb Muffins
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Have some leftover cheese (leftover? cheese?) you want to use up? Make these delish cheese and herb muffins and stash some in the freezer for future enjoyment.
Get the recipe: Cheese and Herb Muffins
Photo: Dish & Delite
Grain-Free Vegan Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Muffin
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Do you ever feel like all the good grain-free recipes out there call for nuts? That's major buzzkill for foodies with nut allergies! This recipe, which also happens to be vegan, features coconut flour, ground flax, mashed banana, and sunflower seed butter, and absolutely zero nuts.
Get the recipe: Grain-Free Vegan Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Muffins
Photo: C It Nutritionally
Double Chocolate Banana Coconut Muffins
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These vegan, gluten-free muffins are full of delicious coconutty flavor. (LOTS more of that here, BTW.) Did you know that starchy bean water can be used in place of eggs in baking? Aquafaba is its name, and it's pretty incredible.
Get the recipe: Double Chocolate Banana Coconut Muffins
Photo: Sharon Palmer
Skinny Vegan Gluten-Free Pumpkin Spice Muffins
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Did you know that a pumpkin spice muffin from your typical coffee chain can pack in 400 calories? This recipe will satisfy your craving for less than 150.
Get the recipe: Skinny Vegan Gluten-Free Pumpkin Spice Muffins
Photo: Euphoria Nutrition
Zucchini Muffins with Skyr
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Skyr, a very thick strained yogurt that's traditional in Iceland, makes a delicious, healthy addition to muffins and lets you get away with using less oil and eggs. This recipe, which also features vitamin C-rich zucchini, gets its mild sweetness from maple sugar. (Discover more healthy zucchini dessert recipes and ideas.)
Get the recipe: Zucchini Muffins with Skyr
Photo: Culinary Nutrition Cuisine
Strawberry Greek Yogurt Balsamic Muffins
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In this recipe, the surprising addition of balsamic vinegar highlights the natural sweetness of strawberries. Swapping out half the flour for the whole-wheat variety increases fiber content.
Get the recipe: Strawberry Greek Yogurt Balsamic Muffins
Photo: Olive Tomato
Southwest Cottage Cheese Egg Muffins
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Chocolate Chip Cashew Butter Oatmeal Muffins
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Creamy cashew butter is a delicious addition to oatmeal muffins. (BTW, have you heard of cashew milk?) These whole-grain beauties are the perfect make-ahead solution for hectic mornings when you don't have time for that Instagram-worthy breakfast bowl.
Get the recipe: Chocolate Chip Cashew Butter Oatmeal Muffins
Photo: Nourish. Breathe. Thrive.
Whole-Grain Sweet Potato Banana Muffins
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Matcha Ginger Oat Muffins
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These spicy muffins get their pretty green color from matcha, an antioxidant-rich powder made of green tea leaves. Studded with chopped pieces of candied crystallized ginger, every bite will wake your taste buds right up.
Get the recipe: Matcha Ginger Oat Muffins
Photo: The Every Kitchen