Even after years of baking, I could never really get behind the idea of morning glory muffins. When it comes to sweets, even for breakfast, I’m usually of the mindset that chocolate is a must and the sweeter the better–so why the need to add grated veggies to a baked good? But with the start of a new year and a return to balance after a lot of holiday cookies, I’m actually excited for a recipe that satisfies my sweet tooth just enough, while also being packed with fresh fruits and veggies, warming spices, and hearty oats for a healthful start to the day. Even better? These morning glory muffins are made completely in one bowl.
So let’s chat morning glory muffins. Of all the different kinds of muffin options out there, it’s fair to say that more popular options like a classic blueberry muffin or lemon poppyseed version tend to get more enthusiasm. After all, isn’t a muffin basically an excuse to eat cake for breakfast? I myself have often thought of morning glory muffins as basically cardboard plus raisins. But as it turns out, it was only because I hadn’t found a recipe that I particularly enjoyed and that would garner the same enthusiasm as any blueberry muffin. So as usual, I set out to change my own mind with a recipe that’s easy, packed with flavor, and delicious and nutritious enough for me to bake a batch on the weekend to eat all throughout my weekday mornings.
So, what exactly is a morning glory muffin?
The original morning glory muffin, from Morning Glory Cafe in Nantucket, is packed with the classics: shredded coconut, raisins, apple, pineapple, carrots, and nuts. It’s basically the kitchen sink varietal of muffins. I wanted to riff off the classic, cut back on the sugar, and make a few ingredient swaps for items that I have on hand at all times, while also making some preferential decisions. And honestly, that’s one of the beauties of a morning glory muffin. You can always swap in for ingredients you have or leave things out that you don’t like!
The healthier swaps
For my version, I swapped the white sugar for a bit of brown sugar and maple syrup. I like the extra bit of caramel and maple undertones that the sugars give instead of white sugar. But you could also swap coconut sugar for the brown sugar. I also used unsweetened apple sauce to add a bit of moisture and to add extra natural sweetness for where I cut the other sugar. This is one ingredient I always have on hand for baking. While I don’t eat applesauce cups like you would pack in a child’s lunchbox, I find them incredibly handy to have in my pantry for vegan baking swaps. You can find unsweetened applesauce in 4oz cups at the grocery store, so just grab some to keep in the back of the pantry!
The morning glory muffin add-ins
The add-ins, arguably the most important part of this muffin, are where we can have a bit of fun. While I love the carrot in a classic morning glory, I also added shredded zucchini and apple. I like the added benefit of added fruits and vegetables, plus, they add to the moisture of this muffin. An *important note* here, you’ll need to squeeze as much moisture as possible out of the shredded fruits and vegetables as you can. Otherwise, you’ll end up with very dense and squishy muffins, and no one wants that!
I left nuts out of the batter itself and instead opted to sprinkle them over the top, but you can totally add some chopped nuts like walnuts or pecans into the batter with some raisins if you prefer. I just like the crunchy texture of having them on top versus inside the fluffy batter.
The best part? This is a one bowl morning glory muffin recipe, so it really couldn’t be easier. Just prep all of your ingredients and add them to your mixing bowl to combine.
Scoop and fill your muffin liners all the way to the top to ensure a little bit of a dome, and bake. These morning glory muffins are incredibly easy, and incredibly delicious. They’ve even converted me and my blueberry muffin loyalty!
- 1/2 cup brown sugar or coconut sugar
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 eggs
- 8 oz unsweetened apple sauce (2 apple sauce lunchbox cups)
- 3 packed cups of fresh grated fruit and veg (I used 2 medium carrots, 1 zucchini, and 1 gala apple) - wring out as much liquid as you can with a kitchen towel
- 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- Freshly grated nutmeg (optional but I think makes a difference in the flavor)
- 1/4 cup oat flour (take 1/4 cup rolled oats and blitz in a blender into a coarse flour, or use store bought oat flour)
- 1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- Sliced almonds and rolled oats for topping
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line a 12 cup muffin tray with liners.
2. Mix the brown sugar, maple syrup, and olive together in a stand mixer until smooth and syrupy
3. Add the eggs, and combine
4. Add the apple sauce and combine
5. Add the grated fruit and veg and combine
6. Add the shredded coconut and combine
7. Whisk the dry ingredients and spices together in a bowl, then add to the bowl of the stand mixer. Stir in mixer until JUST combined, finish mixing by hand with a spatula - this will help prevent over mixing and tough muffins
8. Fill muffin liner cups all the way to the top (I used three scoops of a 1.5 tbsp cookie scoop) - this will help get more of a domed bakery look rather than filling 3/4 of the way to the top
9. Bake at 400 degrees F for 23 - 25 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean - don't overbake these
10. Let cool in muffin tray for 5 minutes, then cool on a wire rack. enjoy!
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