Chocolate Cherry Muffins (Gluten-Free)

Whether you’re baking for Valentine’s Day or just because it’s a Monday and you need a pick me up- the combo of Chocolate + Cherry is something worth getting excited over! Time for a little confession though (yes, my blog is also a confessional- like the time I shared how I really feel about cookbooks)— I haven’t always so giddy about cherries and chocolate. My grandma used to get those chocolate covered cherries (maraschino cherries, of course….which I like in cocktails, but not inside a chocolate blob) on clearance after V-Day and at some point I just couldn’t stand them anymore. I boycotted anything chocolate + cherry for a very long time. BUTTTT— the combo of real cherries + dark chocolate in a muffin- now, that’s legit.
Yum
Chocolate Cherry Muffins (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)

And not only are these muffins gluten-free, but they’re both lightened up and sweetened with good-for-you ingredients like bananas and apple-sauce. But not to worry, the texture is still totally muffin-worthy and delicious. And speaking of good texture- if you haven’t tried baking with coconut flour before, check out my Grain Free Pumpkin Blender Muffins!
Chocolate Cherry Muffins (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)

Look at that big cherry nestled underneath those melty chocolate chips.. I’m literally taking a break from this post to eat another one.
Chocolate Cherry Muffins (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)

And just in case you’re not into cherries (I won’t judge), you could easily swap out strawberries, blueberries or raspberries for that same fruit + chocolate combo.
Chocolate Cherry Muffins (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)

KISS Tip: Slice a warm muffin in half (from the oven or re-heated in the microwave for 5-10 seconds) and spread a little almond butter (or peanut or sunflower seed- whatever your jam is) on top for a protein boost that is seriously delicious.
Chocolate Cherry Muffins (Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free)


KISS Chocolate Cherry Muffins
Makes: 18 muffins
Time: 30 minutes total (20 minute bake-time)
 
Ingredients
Dry:
2 cups Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour*
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
 
Wet:
3/4 cup, (2 medium bananas) mashed
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
1/3 cup applesauce
1/3 cup almond milk
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
2 Tbsp honey**

Mixins: 
3/4 cup chocolate chips plus extra for topping
1 cup fresh or frozen cherries, chopped in a half
 
Instructions
1.) Preheat oven to 350°F and lightly muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray or use with paper liners.
2.) In a medium bowl, mix together dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt).
3.) In a separate large bowl, mash bananas with fork until smooth. Add in the melted coconut oil, applesauce, almond milk, beaten eggs and honey. Mix well until no lumps.
4.) Slowly add in dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring just until mixed (over-mixing makes tough muffins!). Fold in cherries and chocolate chips.
5.) 
Evenly divide the batter between the prepared muffin tins. Top with additional chocolate chips and bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool for at least 5 minutes and transfer to wire rack.

*All Purpose Flour or whole wheat flour can be substituted for the GF Flour
** Feel free to eliminate the honey if you don’t want any added sugars or increase it if you’re wanting a seriously sweet muffin. I found 2 Tbsp to be the perfect amount for a slightly sweet muffin.

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