Chocolate chip banana muffins, berry-packed yogurt muffins and classic blueberry muffins are all things that bring me back to my early 20s when I literally lived on muffins. Totally addicted, I ate them almost every day. Monday to Friday that is. Okay, maybe it wasn’t just because I had a thing for muffins… it was, I had a thing for awesome muffins. Downstairs from where I worked there was a little coffee stand that sold the most amazing homemade muffins. Healthy muffins and not those oily, sugary, mass-produced ones. These ones were jumbo-sized, with fantastic monster muffin tops. That was the best part. These muffins were all about the muffin top. And if you too can think back to the 90s, you may just remember the famed American sitcom “Seinfeld,” and the episode where Elaine co-owned a pastry shop called “Top O’ The Muffin To You!” In this episode, only the tops of extra-large muffins were served to customers, and the “stumps,” or bottoms of the muffins were discarded. Well, that’s how good these muffin tops were.
But don’t expect a monstrous double D muffin top on these gluten-free chocolate chip banana muffins. They are modest in size but utterly delicious. :)
Some gluten-free flours provide protein or texture, others provide flavor
I use three types of flour for these muffins — whole grain brown rice as a base, buckwheat for its high fibre and protein content, and coconut flour for its subtle flavor and ability to lighten things up.
Brown rice flour
Whole grain brown rice and has a mild, nutty flavor. It makes a good base and is best when blended with other gluten-free flours. It is also a terrific source of fibre, as well as protein. I suggest choosing a brand of brown rice flour that has been finely milled to prevent your baking from having a gritty texture.
Buckwheat flour has a very distinct earthy flavor, is rich in essential nutrients and maintains a light and super soft texture in baking. I love it, making it a favorite for pancakes! Despite any confusion from its name, it not derived from wheat, but is actually a groat and from the same family as rhubarb.
Coconut flour has a mild aroma and taste of coconut which blends well with most flavors. Plus combined with other gluten-free flours, it helps lighten up a recipe with the added bonus of also being high in fibre.
Baking with other types of gluten-free flours
If you decide to substitute with different types of gluten-free flour, please keep in mind that the moisture level in this Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins recipe may need to be adjusted depending on what type of flour is used.
Dark Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins (Gluten-Free)
3/4 cup buckwheat flour (100 g)
1 cup whole grain brown rice flour (150 g)
1/2 cup coconut flour (50 g)
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
5 tablespoons melted coconut oil
1 tablespoons soft brown sugar (I recommend muscovado raw cane sugar)
1 teaspoon powdered vanilla
150 g Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
3 large overripe bananas, mashed with a fork
1 large egg, room temperature
1/2 cup walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped (50 g)
100 g dark chocolate (70% cacao), roughly chopped
NOTE: I like to use my favorite organic dark chocolate for these muffins. You can also use chocolate chips in place of a bar or for a sweeter muffin, or trade out dark chocolate for milk chocolate. Also, chocolate can contain traces of gluten, so if need be, choose a brand of chocolate that is certified gluten-free.
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F / 200°C. Line a 12-hole muffin tin with paper cases or lightly grease the pan with coconut oil.
2. In a medium bowl, mix together the flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the melted coconut oil, sugar, vanilla and yogurt until fully combined. Then add the maple syrup, mashed bananas and egg. Add the flour mixture to the bowl, and stir together just until coated. Gently, fold in the nuts.
4. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin and bake for 15-18 minutes; until a toothpick inserted in the centre of the muffins comes out clean and the tops are lightly browned. Turn muffins onto wire rack to cool for 5 minutes before enjoying.
5. These are best served warm and even yummier the next day. Once fully cooled, they can be stored in an airtight container for several days. Enjoy!