These muffins took a few tries to get just perfect because, well, gluten-free baking is not for the faint of heart. I wanted these to be worthy of Valentine’s Day breakfast, which means that they needed to taste moist and sweet and more indulgent than they actually are. And finally, after a few tries that didn’t completely blow me away, my recipe tweaks finally resulted in total, mouthwatering success!
*photos by molly winters
These muffins are so perfect for V-Day thanks to their festive red centers; plus you can feel good knowing you gave your lovah the gift of a healthy breakfast. Studded with raspberries and sliced almonds, they’ve got just the right amount of crunch, and the fact that they’re made with coconut oil makes them not only more delish but also dairy-free.
A few baking tips that I discovered the hard way during my baking experiments (so you don’t have to):
1. Toss the frozen raspberries in just a bit of the spelt flour before folding into the batter, which keeps their color from running throughout the entire batter (unless you like your muffins pink which, come to think of it, could be kind of fun.)
2. Don’t skimp on the flavorings. You’ll notice this recipe calls for liberal amounts of “add-ins” like cinnamon, orange zest, vanilla, and almond extract. Those are the healthy flavor boosters that give these muffins lusciousness without added sugar or dairy.
3. When you make the “well” to hold the jam (see recipe below), really dig down kind of deep in the batter so that the jam stays put and doesn’t run all over the tops of your muffins.
You’re going to love these! Can’t wait to hear if you give them a try for Valentine’s Day — and bonus points if you serve them up with a cheesy love note, i.e. You’re my jam… or how about I love you berry much…
Okay, I’ll stop now. Keep scrolling for the recipe!
- 1 3/4 cups gluten-free flour (or spelt flour, which contains gluten but is more easily digestible for many)
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup almond meal
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/3 cup sliced almonds, plus 1/3 cup more for topping
- 2 eggs
- Zest of 1 orange
- 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/3 cup melted extra virgin coconut oil
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 1/2 cups frozen raspberries, tossed in a tablespoon spelt flour
- ¾ cup jam of your choice
- raw sugar (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350F. Line a standard muffin pan with 12 cupcake liners and set aside.
- Combine flour, baking powder, almond meal, cinnamon, and almonds in a small bowl and whisk to combine.
- In bowl of standing mixer, combine eggs, orange zest, orange juice, applesauce, coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla, and almond extract; whisk to combine. Add dry ingredients and use a rubber spatula to stir until just combined, then fold in frozen raspberries that have been tossed in a little spelt flour.
- Divide the batter between the muffin cups, then use a small spoon to make a deep (1” or so) well. Stir the jam vigorously, then spoon a teaspoon in the well of each muffin. Sprinkle the tops of the muffins with a heaping tablespoon of sliced almonds and a little raw sugar if desired.
- Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the batter comes out clean. Remove from oven, and allow the muffins to sit for 5 minutes before serving or transferring to a wire rack to cool.
- Store in an airtight container, and gently reheat in a 350 degree oven to “re-crisp” the top. These also freeze fantastically well!