Gluten Free

Morning Glory Muffins

at a glance
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 23 minutes
Servings 21 muffins
5 from 1 vote

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These morning glory muffins are hearty, easy to pull together, and make for the most delicious grab-and-go breakfast!

morning glory muffins on a cooling rack

The morning glory muffin was actually first created by Chef Pam McKinstry of Morning Glory Cafe in 1978. While I could have come up with a handful of possible reasons these delicious muffins are referred to as “morning glory muffins,” it seems as though the real reason is simply just because they were the signature muffin at Morning Glory Cafe. So interesting!

These morning glory muffins taste like a combination of spice cake, apple cake, and carrot cake. They’re moist, delicious, and so, so cozy! Part of what sets morning glory muffins apart from any other muffin recipe is all of the really delicious ingredients that they’re loaded with. They make for a hearty breakfast, and *bonus*, they’re definitely a kiddo favorite (at least at my house!).

Morning Glory Muffins Recipe Ingredients

The list of ingredients may seem long at first glance, but that’s just because these muffins are packed with all kinds of really yummy, nourishing ingredients — these aren’t your average flour + sugar + fruit-only muffins. Here’s everything you’ll need:

labeled ingredients for morning glory muffins in bowls on a marble surface
  • Flour – to start, you’ll need 1 ¾ cups of flour (we use THIS one for gluten-free).
  • Carrots – 2 cups of shredded carrots head into the muffin mixture. We definitely recommend shredding your carrots either by hand or in a food processor. While we’re typically all for shortcuts (like buying pre-shredded carrots), shredding your own will definitely yield the moistest muffins here. 
  • Green Apple – 1 large, shredded green apple adds some really yummy texture and acts as a nice counter to the sweetness of the muffins.
  • Applesauce – a ½ of a cup of unsweetened applesauce (1 4-ounce pack) moistens the muffin batter.
  • Eggs – to bind the muffins together, you’ll need 2 eggs.
  • Raisins – a ½ of a cup of raisins head into the batter too. I recommend soaking your raisins ahead of time (to do this, just microwave 1 cup water for 1 minute, pour the raisins in, and let them soak for 5-10 minutes). This will allow the raisins to soften and add some really great texture to the muffins.
  • Chopped Pecans – a ½ of a cup of chopped pecans adds delicious flavor, texture, and healthy fats to the finished muffins.
  • Shredded Coconut – another texture add! Throw in a ½ of a cup of shredded unsweetened coconut too!
  • Butter or Coconut Oil – you’ll also need 5 tablespoons of either melted butter or coconut oil.
  • Ground Flax – a ¼ cup of ground flax heads into the mixture as well.
  • Orange Juice – a ¼ cup of orange juice brings a really delicious flavor to the muffins.
  • Orange Zest – if you have it, throw in a tablespoon of orange zest too!
  • Baking Soda – 2 teaspoons of baking soda help the muffins to rise just a tinge.
  • Vanilla Extract – 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract give the muffins a subtle hint of vanilla.
  • Spices and Seasonings – as far as the seasonings needed here,  you’ll want to grab a ½ teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, and a ½ teaspoon of ground ginger.

Ingredient Modifications

There are a lot of ways to make this recipe your own. I’ve listed a few swaps and subs you can make below, but again, feel free to let your imagination run wild!

  • Make them gluten-free: just swap the all-purpose flour for a GF all-purpose
  • Use another dried fruit: swap the raisins for dried cranberries or dried blueberries for a fun twist.
  • Use pumpkin puree or mashed banana: instead of unsweetened applesauce, use canned pumpkin puree or mashed banana!
  • Use a different nut: any chopped nut will do here, so take your pick!
  • Use zucchini: if you aren’t a fan of carrots, use shredded zucchini instead. Just be sure to squeeze out any excess moisture from it.
  • Use a different liquid: instead of orange juice, use milk or pineapple juice to moisten your muffins!
a morning glory muffin cut in half and buttered on a plate

Supplies Needed for this Recipe

How To Make Morning Glory Muffins

Here’s how you’ll make these hearty, nutritious muffins:

  1. Preheat the oven and line a muffin tin – to start, go ahead and preheat your oven to 375°F and line a muffin tin with muffin liners.
  2. Soak the raisins – microwave 1 cup of water for 1 minute, add the raisins to the hot water, and let them soak for 5-10 minutes while you shred the carrots and apple.
  3. Shred the carrots and apple – either by hand (using a grater) or in your food processor (my preferred method!), shred the carrots and apples. 
  4. Mix together the dry ingredients – to a large bowl, add the flour, brown sugar, ground flax, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and ground ginger, and whisk to combine.
  5. Add the carrots and apples to the dry mixture – to the dry ingredients, add the shredded carrots and apple, and mix until well combined.
  6. Mix together the wet ingredients – to a separate bowl, add the applesauce, eggs, vanilla extract, butter (or coconut oil), and orange juice. Then whisk to combine.
  7. Combine the wet ingredients with the carrot and apple mixture – pour the wet ingredients into the carrot, apple, and dry ingredient mixture. Mix until just combined.
  8. Add the raisins, coconut, and pecans – add the raisins, shredded coconut, and chopped pecans to the bowl, folding them in until just combined.
  9. Spoon the batter into muffin tins – spoon the morning glory batter into the lined muffin tins — this amount of batter makes 21 muffins.
  10. Bake – bake the muffins at 375°F for 23-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.
  11. Enjoy!
raisins soaking in water in a measuring cup
the dry ingredients for morning glory muffins being mixed together
the wet ingredients for morning glory muffins being mixed together
raisins in a strainer after being soaked
ingredients for morning glory muffins being mixed together in a large glass mixing bowl
shredded carrots and apples in a large glass mixing bowl
carrots and apples shredded together in a food processor
wet ingredients for morning glory muffins being mixed in a bowl
ingredients being mixed together for morning glory muffins
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Q Would these muffins be considered healthy?
A

I think these are definitely a healthy muffin option! Most muffins are loaded with more flour and sugar than anything, but these bad boys have several bonus add-ins (like ground flax, carrots, shredded apple, pecans, and shredded coconut) that take their nutrition up a notch.

Q What is the secret to making moist muffins?
A

These muffins are nice and moist thanks to the orange juice, applesauce, and shredded carrots + apples. Be sure to pull your muffins out of the oven after 23-25 minutes too, as overcooked muffins tend to dry out!

Q How to Store Morning Glory Muffins
A

Store any leftover muffins in an airtight container on the counter. Stored this way, they’ll last for up to 4 days.

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Morning Glory Muffins

By: Brandi Schilhab
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 23 mins
Servings: 21 muffins
These morning glory muffins are hearty, easy to pull together, and make for the most delicious grab-and-go breakfast!

Ingredients  

  • ½ cup raisins
  • 4 whole carrots or 2 cups shredded
  • 1 large green apple
  • 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup ground flax
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • 2 large eggs
  • 5 tablespoons butter or coconut oil melted
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • ½ cup chopped pecans

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F and line a muffin tin with muffin liners.
  • Microwave 1 cup of water for 1 minute, add the raisins to the hot water, and let them soak for 5-10 minutes while you shred the carrots and apple.
  • Either by hand (using a box grater) or in your food processor, shred the carrots and apples.
  • To a large bowl, add the flour, brown sugar, ground flax, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and ground ginger, and whisk to combine.
  • To the dry ingredients, add the shredded carrots and apple, and mix until well combined.
  • To a separate bowl, add the applesauce, eggs, vanilla extract, butter (or coconut oil), and orange juice, then whisk to combine.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the carrot, apple, and dry ingredient mixture. Mix until just combined.
  • Add the raisins, shredded coconut, and chopped pecans to the bowl, folding them in until just combined.
  • Spoon the morning glory batter into the lined muffin tins — this amount of batter makes 21 muffins.
  • Bake the muffins at 375°F for 23-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.
  • Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

I highly recommend shredding your own carrots and apples (vs. buying them pre-shredded). This will help to moistin the muffins!
Meet the Author
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Brandi Schilhab

Brandi leads our efforts on content audits, outline construction, website calendar management, and a great deal of writing. She could unashamedly watch reruns of Friends + Harry Potter movies and never get bored!⁠ ⁠ ⁠
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  1. Lilly says

    Lilly —  12/30/2021 At 15:36

    Can you sub maple syrup for the brown sugar?

    • Melissa Guevara says

      Melissa Guevara —  12/30/2021 At 16:30

      Hi Lilly! You can absolutely substitute maple syrup for the brown sugar. Since it is a liquid, I would do 3/4 cup of maple syrup for the 1 cup of brown sugar. ~Melissa

  2. Linda Williams says

    Linda Williams —  01/11/2022 At 00:06

    Can you sub gluten free flour for the regular flour?

    • Melissa Guevara says

      Melissa Guevara —  01/11/2022 At 13:17

      Hi Linda! Absolutely! We use King Arthur’s Measure for Measure in this recipe for gluten free. ~Melissa

  3. Erin says

    Erin —  07/22/2022 At 05:45

    Would these freeze well?

    • Melissa Guevara says

      Melissa Guevara —  07/25/2022 At 15:06

      Hi Erin! Yes, these freeze well. They are great for meal prep and reheat beautifully! -Team F&F

  4. Kiara says

    Kiara —  07/25/2022 At 13:56

    5 stars
    Saving this recipe! Absolutely delicious and so moist!

    • Melissa Guevara says

      Melissa Guevara —  07/25/2022 At 15:11

      Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback with us, Kiara! We are so glad you enjoyed. -Team F&F

  5. Claire Zaman says

    Claire Zaman —  07/26/2022 At 09:58

    Could you sub something else for the orange juice or leave it out?

    • Melissa Guevara says

      Melissa Guevara —  07/28/2022 At 09:55

      Hi Claire! You could substitute the orange juice for an additional 1/4 cup of applesauce or 1/4 cup of a milk of choice. These muffins are pretty forgiving! -Team F&F

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