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Fluffy Vegan Blueberry Muffins (Gluten Free and Sugar Free Options)

Unbelievably soft and fluffy, these perfect vegan blueberry muffins have a beautifully rounded top and are bursting with blueberries and a bright (optional) lemon zest!  No one will ever know they are vegan and gluten free!  

One muffin with a bite taken out

Muffins for breakfast. What brilliant individual in history do we have to thank for this? Who looked at a cupcake, thought “make the batter a little thicker and it’s acceptable to eat at 8am”, and normalized it?!

Let’s talk about these vegan blueberry muffins you have so wisely clicked on. What makes a perfect muffin? It’s soft. It’s fluffy. It has a beautiful domed top. It is filling, but doesn’t weigh you down. It stays moist on the inside while firming up enough on the outside to live free outside of its paper liner shackles.

Lucky for you, these vegan blueberry muffins are all of that and more!! They are SO soft and fluffy, they puff up gorgeously, they stay moist throughout. They are the right mix of sweet and tart, waking up your taste buds with juicy bursts of berries and the brightness of lemon zest.

Though the batch I chose to make for these photos doesn’t have anything on top, I have tested them with coarse sugar on top, and they are wonderful that way too.  Also if you want to drizzle some delicious sweet or lemon icing over them, head on over to my Lemon Blueberry Scones recipe and follow the icing instructions there!

Let’s. Get. Going!

Artistic photo of muffins on a cutting board
Artistic photo of muffins on a cutting board

How To Make Them:

Start here by zesting and juicing your lemons if you are using them, so you can use the juice to curdle the soy milk, as the milk has to sit for a few minutes before mixing it in with the other ingredients. If you are NOT using lemons, then do not skip this step!, you will use white vinegar or apple cider vinegar in place of the lemon juice to curdle the milk into vegan buttermilk.

Haven’t done this before?  It’s so simple!  The idea is that if you add vinegar or lemon juice to non-dairy milk, it will curdle and more closely resemble a buttermilk consistency, which is great in muffins, particularly ones that have heavy mix-ins like blueberries, as the density of this curdled milk will keep them from sinking to the bottom.  Soy milk gives the best consistency, but if you don’t have any on-hand, other non-dairy milks will work too.  You can use lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, or white vinegar.  My go-to is apple cider, but here of course I’ve got lemon juice easily on hand!

The other quick step at this time – if you are using lemons – is to mix the zest with the sugar (see the Ingredients Needed section to learn how to make these sugar free!). The zest will be moist, which will turn the mixture into a crumb-like texture. This perfumes all of the sugar with the lemon, and is a great tool to make sure your lemon flavor is evenly distributed throughout the whole muffin.

Back to the step by step..

While your milk is curdling, mix the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl and set aside.  Then in a large bowl whisk together the curdled soy milk, neutral oil, and vanilla extract.  Once your wet ingredients are whisked together, add in the granulated sugar/zest mixture and whisk again until fully combined.  Then add in the dry ingredients and mix together with a rubber spatula or large spoon until smooth.  There will be some small lumps, that’s okay! 

Blueberry Muffin - Ingredients
Blueberry Muffin - Ingredients
Blueberry Muffin - Ingredients

Remember when I said the vegan “buttermilk” would help keep the blueberries afloat?  Well, we’re going to use one more trick to keep them from sinking.  Some people toss their blueberries in a little flour coating to keep them from sinking, but I’ve never loved this tactic.  Instead, BEFORE adding the blueberries into the dough, spoon a tiny bit of batter into the bottom of each muffin liner in the tin.  As you can see in the photos, I do juuuust enough to cover the bottoms.  We are going to use a lot of blueberries in this recipe, which is amazing for the end result, but wouldn’t be so much fun if the bottom of each muffin got soggy from sinking blueberries. Because this is so blueberry heavy, I also strongly recommend you use liners here versus just greasing the pan and putting the batter directly in.

Once that is done, mix the blueberries into the remaining dough, and fill up each liner.  These will fill over 3/4 of the way up, and personally I like to push a few extra blueberries in near the top of the batter before baking.

Batter including blueberries
Batter in muffin tin
Baked muffins still in muffin tin
Bake time!

Put into the oven right away and bake at 375 degrees for 22-26 minutes.  When they are out, I let them sit for about 10 minutes in the pan to firm up, then move to a cooling rack so the muffin doesn’t get soggy.

And that’s it! Time to eat your perfect soft fluffy amazing vegan blueberry muffins!! Nutritional info can be found in the Notes section below the recipe instructions.

Storage:

Here’s the thing about muffins, especially vegan and gluten free ones – they lose their quality pretty quickly. If you are eating them all immediately, for which I do NOT judge you, then they will be fantastic. But if you want to enjoy them for more than a day or two, I’d recommend letting them cool, then within the day wrapping them in something air tight and freezing them. Saran wrap or a tupperware or a Ziploc bag. This way when the muffin craving hits, you just defrost one and it’s as good as new!

Pro Tips & Tools:

  • Make sure you are measuring your flour either by weight or using the spoon and level method.  Do not scoop directly from the container, as you will wind up with too much! This is so important! If you want to buy a pre-made gluten free flour blend, make sure it’s King Arthur’s Measure for Measure Gluten Free Flour, it is BY FAR the best one for my recipes, NOT Bob’s Red Mills or any others. If you want to make a homemade blend, here is a link to the one I use.
  • Make sure you measure your liquid ingredients using liquid measuring cups.  This will ensure accuracy!  I love this set.
  • If you are using frozen blueberries, do not thaw them!  Mix them into the dough while still frozen.
  • Be a lemon master! Get the finest zest using this microplane, and get the most juice out of them using this juicer.
  • Missing any of the basics? Here is my go-to muffin tin, and my go-to cupcake liners.
Stack of three muffins

Ingredients Needed:

  • Soy milk + lemon juice or vinegar – more on this above, but this will create a vegan “buttermilk”.  The best consistency comes from using soy milk, though I have had success using almond milk as well.  Even if you are not using lemon flavor in your muffins, DO NOT skip this step! This isn’t for flavor, it’s to help give the muffins their rise, and to help keep the blueberries from sinking.
  • Neutral oil – any will work, I usually use grapeseed.
  • Vanilla extract
  • Granulated sugar – If you want to make these sugar free, I love using this Monkfruit Sweetener in place of granulated sugar.
  • Flour – Make sure you are measuring your flour either by weight or using the spoon and level method.  Do not scoop directly from the container, as you will wind up with too much! This is so important! If you want to buy a pre-made gluten free flour blend, make sure it’s King Arthur’s Measure for Measure Gluten Free Flour, it is BY FAR the best one for my recipes, NOT Bob’s Red Mills or any others. If you want to make a homemade blend, here is a link to the one I use.
  • Baking powder – I recommend using baking powder that has no added aluminum. This one is my go-to.
  • Salt
  • Blueberries – fresh or frozen.  If using frozen ones, do not thaw!
  • Lemon zest – optional

What To Bake Next:

One muffin with a bite taken out

Vegan Bakery Style Blueberry Muffins (Gluten Free Option)

Soft and fluffy, these bakery style blueberry muffins have a beautiful domed top and are bursting with blueberries and a bright (optional) lemon zest!  No one will ever know they are vegan and gluten free!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Course Breakfast, Lunch Box, Snack
Servings 12 muffins

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup soy milk can be another type of dairy-free milk, but soy works best
  • 2 tsp lemon juice this can can subbed out for white vinegar or apple cider vinegar if you are not using lemons
  • ½ cup neutral oil
  • tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup + 3 tbsp + 1 tsp granulated sugar *if you want a sugar free option, this links to my favorite sweetener, you can substitute it 1:1 in place of regular granulated sugar
  • 1-2 lemons’ worth of zest optional
  • cups gluten free flour can sub all-purpose if desired. This links to my favorite store bought gluten free flour blend that works best with all of my recipes, or see “Ingredients Needed” section for further info.
  • tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • heaping cups blueberries fresh or frozen, but if using frozen do not thaw

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven to 375°F and line a muffin tin with cupcake liners. These muffins do best with liners, NOT just greasing the pan as you may do with other muffins.
  • Make the “vegan buttermilk” by combining the soy milk with the lemon juice. Set aside to curdle for 5-10 minutes. If you are not using lemons in this recipe you can sub this for white vinegar or apple cider vinegar. This will not alter the taste, it is just to help with the texture and add acidity to help the muffins rise.
  • During this time, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl and set aside. Also if you are using lemon zest, separately combine it with the sugar. This will make the sugar a little more like a crumb texture, and ensure that the lemon flavor spreads evenly throughout the whole muffin.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together curdled “buttermilk”, neutral oil, and vanilla extract. Add in the sugar/lemon zest mixture and whisk again until smooth. Then add the dry ingredients and mix with a spoon or spatula until the large lumps are gone.
  • Before adding the blueberries to the batter, spoon a very small amount of dough into each muffin liner. This will ensure the berries don’t make a mess of the bottom of each muffin. Then add the berries to the batter and gently mix throughout, then spoon batter evenly into each liner. You will fill these around 3/4 of the way up.
  • Bake for 22-25 minutes, remove from the oven and let cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before moving to a cooling rack.
  • Eat and enjoy!

Notes

NUTRITION INFO

Total amount: 12 muffins
Serving size: 1 muffin
Per serving amounts:
  • Calories – 236
  • Grams of fat – 9.8
  • Grams of carbs – 34.4
  • Grams of protein – 2.9
Keyword blueberry, blueberry lemon muffins, blueberry muffins, breakfast, breakfast muffins, gluten free, lemon, muffins, vegan
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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