Apple Gluten Free Muffins

These cozy gluten free muffins are spiced and lightly sweet, featuring apples, oatmeal, cinnamon and nutmeg. (They’re dairy free, too!)

Gluten free muffins

Here’s a gluten free muffins recipe for all eaters! Because they’re irresistibly delicious. This gluten free oatmeal muffin recipe came about because, confession: Alex and I are not muffin people. To us, muffins are an excuse to eat cake for breakfast. Right?! And it’s not that we’re so un-fun we don’t want to eat cake for breakfast. Maybe if we were 12 again?

But in adulthood, we’ve found that cake for breakfast really messes up how we feel the rest of the day: sugar crash, hungry 30 minutes later, shaky, upset stomach. So we wanted to create a muffin that was nutrient dense and satisfying, but at the same time tastes good. Meet our gluten free oatmeal muffins! Keep reading for the recipe.

Related: 18 Delicious Healthy Snack Recipes | 28-Day Healthy Meal Plan

Gluten free apple muffins

Gluten free by way of oats!

In very few of Alex and my recipes do we use gluten free flour. Instead, we try to make gluten free items with natural, whole food ingredients like oat flour and almond flour. Using this philosophy does make it difficult in baked goods to come up with a suitable texture. Gluten does go a long way in bringing in a fluffy, beautiful muffin texture. However, the texture of these muffins is a nice compromise. We’ve used oat flour and rolled oats as the base for the muffin. As you can see, they’re a little denser and not as tall as a typical muffin. But these gluten free muffins are moist and beautifully fluffy.

Related: Gluten Free Banana Muffins


How to make gluten free muffins

This gluten free muffins recipe is an update to an older recipe of ours, but totally revamped with the help of our star recipe tester Rochelle. Rochelle loves baking and muffins, which made her the perfect collaborator for making gluten free oatmeal muffins. She kept the concept of our previous muffins, but added a few twists. Here are the secrets to these NEW gluten free oatmeal muffins:

  • Oat flour: Instead of all purpose flour, these gluten free muffins feature oat flour that you can make in a food processor! All you do is process normal rolled oats until they are ground into a fine flour. If you don’t have a food processor, you can purchase oat flour at a grocery store or online.
  • Coconut oil: Coconut oil keeps the muffins moist and also dairy free. Make sure to follow the instructions about using coconut oil as it can sometimes solidify when mixing with cold ingredients. If you’re not into coconut oil and eat dairy, you could use butter as well.
  • Maple syrup: We love using natural sweeteners in our baked goods, and maple syrup brings the right gentle sweetness here.
  • Cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice:  This blend of spices helps to evoke the feeling of apple cinnamon oatmeal.
  • Apples: To bring more moisture and a hint of sweet, mixing in diced apples makes the perfect texture.

Want another apple muffin? Our apple muffins have a crunchy streusel topping that’s to die for (and there’s a vegan variation, too).

Gluten free oatmeal muffins

This gluten free muffins recipe is…

Vegetarian, gluten free, dairy free and naturally sweet.

Related: Gluten Free Breakfast Ideas for Everyone | Vegan Breakfast Ideas

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Apple oatmeal muffins

Apple Gluten Free Muffins

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (101 votes, average: 3.91 out of 5)

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 12 muffins 1x


These cozy gluten free muffins are spiced and lightly sweet, featuring apples, oatmeal, cinnamon and nutmeg. (They’re dairy free, too!)


  • 1 1/2 cups oat flour OR rolled oats processed in a food processor into a flour consistency (see below)
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup refined coconut oil, melted and cooled (substitute butter if desired)
  • 1 cup milk (non dairy milk, for dairy-free), room temperature
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup diced apple (1 medium apple)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease a 12 cup muffin tin.
  2. To make the oat flour, place 1 1/2 cups rolled oats in a food processor and process until it is very fine. (Note: Do NOT try this with steel cut oats, as they are a very different texture from rolled oats!)
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oat flour, oats, nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, baking powder, and kosher salt.
  4. Melt and cool the coconut oil. Bring the milk and egg to room temperature (so that the coconut oil does not turn solid when mixing). In another bowl, mix together the milk, egg, maple syrup, and vanilla, then gradually whisk in the coconut oil.
  5. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until smooth. Allow to sit for 10 minutes while the oats rehydrate.
  6. Meanwhile, dice the apple. After 10 minutes, gently fold in the apples to the batter. Then use a 1/4 cup measure to spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin. 
  7. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until puffed and golden.
  • Category: Muffins
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: gluten free, oatmeal, oatmeal flour, muffins, gluten free oatmeal muffins, homemade, easy

Looking for more gluten free recipes?

Many of our gluten free recipes are made with nutrient dense whole foods like oat flour and almond flour. Here are a few of our favorite gluten free recipes:

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.


  • Reply
    March 6, 2013 at 11:37 pm

    Awesome! I love how simple these are. Definitely will be making them soon!

    • Reply
      October 14, 2019 at 12:41 pm

      These look awesome, but not sure how they are not “cake” maple syrup acts like sugar…..

  • Reply
    March 7, 2013 at 6:42 am

    i’ll definitely try this recipe!

  • Reply
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
    March 7, 2013 at 7:31 am

    These look absolutely lovely! I would love waking up to these!

  • Reply
    March 7, 2013 at 10:36 am

    I’ve been playing with alternative flours a lot lately, and next on my list is oat flour. Will definitely have to try this!

  • Reply
    [email protected]
    March 7, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    I eat oatmeal almost every day, so it’s nice to find recipes like this where I don’t have to fuss with preparing a bowl of oatmeal. Grab and go is a nice change of pace, and these would be great snacks!

    • Reply
      March 10, 2013 at 1:54 pm

      Yes! I actually didn’t think of this being a great “to go” breakfast (since we ate them along with some dinners). Great idea!

  • Reply
    March 7, 2013 at 7:13 pm

    Will be trying this recipe! I make an oatmeal bread by grinding oats in my Magic Bullet (love my magic bullet!) and it is very yummy. Great, healthy alternative and oats are so flavorful. Thanks for the muffin recipe!

  • Reply
    March 8, 2013 at 12:58 am

    Gorgeous, gorgeous! I love that you guys are doing a Google Hangout! I’m not sure if I’ll be at my computer on Sat afternoon, but if I’m free, I would love to join. Also, I love cooking with oat flour – it gives baked goods such a nice texture and flavor (and I’m not even GF!)

    • Reply
      March 10, 2013 at 1:39 pm

      You are so sweet – thank you! Sorry to miss you, but we’ll have to do another soon. Yes, we are not GF either, but tend to feel better when we have a nice balance of gluten-filled versus gluten-free items, so it’s always fun to experiment for us :) We haven’t done too much with oat flour, but look forward to more in the future!

  • Reply
    March 9, 2013 at 11:31 am

    Sadly every celiac I know also can’t tolerate oats but that just means that there will be more of these for me! Love that shot of the muffins, really gorgeous.

    • Reply
      March 10, 2013 at 1:44 pm

      Yes, it is interesting all the levels of gluten tolerance! I think there are some gluten-free oats out there as well? But yes, these are just as delicious for non-gluten free diets! :)

    • Reply
      May 5, 2019 at 10:53 pm

      Celiacs can’t eat most oats because they have been cross-contaminated with wheat, but there is actually no gluten naturally in oats. So, a few companies now offer “gluten-free” oats, which, to be more accurate, are actually oats that have been protected from contact with gluten. Quaker is one such company.
      ere are gluten free oats (ie. Uncontaminated oats). Quaker brand makes them and a fee other companies.

  • Reply
    Courtney Jones
    March 9, 2013 at 11:41 am

    These look perfect. Such a simple recipe, but very wholesome and healthy. I’ll have to make these for breakfasts this week.

  • Reply
    March 10, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    I can`t wait to make these for my dad. He needs a glutenfree diet and gets tired of the same bread. Where I live you can buy glutenfree oats.

  • Reply
    March 11, 2013 at 6:18 am

    YUM! These look great! Does the recipe require regular/whole milk or could I use Almond Milk instead? Or could I use fat-free milk? Thanks so much for another great suggestion!

    • Reply
      September 27, 2018 at 11:52 am

      You can definitely use almond milk here!

  • Reply
    March 12, 2013 at 1:12 am

    I’m not much of a sweet breakfast person either, but somehow waffles have made a regular appearance at my breakfast table, as of late. I think it helps that they get smothered in peanut butter instead of syrup ;)

    Anyway, I am loving these. And need to give them a whirl because I haven’t baked with oat flour in ages.

    PS – I owe you an e-mail. Soon, I promise :)

    • Reply
      March 14, 2013 at 8:21 am

      PB waffles — what an excellent idea! Can’t wait to hear from you! :)

  • Reply
    May 13, 2013 at 7:37 pm

    Very nice muffin recipe. Second time I made them I tossed in some raisins, sweet potato and banana puree, ginger, and a tad of molasses–so you have a very versatile muffin formula! Thanks for the post.

    • Reply
      May 13, 2013 at 9:26 pm

      Fun! I love the sound of your twist. Thanks for writing!

  • Reply
    June 24, 2013 at 1:26 am

    Made this for breakfast yesterday, so yummy and customizable. I ate mine with a bit of honey drizzled on top, and my boyfriend ate his with jam. I used soy milk and it worked great.
    Do you know if they freeze well?

    • Reply
      October 21, 2013 at 10:50 pm

      You know what, we have not tried them frozen, but I’d think they’d do pretty well! We may try this out in the future – let us know if you have any luck!

  • Reply
    July 18, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    Just wanted to share- they came out excellent!!! Thank you!!!

    • Reply
      July 18, 2013 at 2:57 pm

      Oops- should have mentioned I used coconut milk. Will definitely be making these again.

    • Reply
      July 18, 2013 at 3:03 pm

      Glad you enjoyed them!

  • Reply
    Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward
    July 18, 2014 at 3:16 pm

    What is the total yield of oat flour in this recipe? I usually use around a cup. Looks super delicious! :-)

    • Reply
      September 27, 2018 at 11:57 am

      HI Shanna, this recipe has been updated and the total yield of oat flour is the same as the rolled oats, 1 1/2 cups.

  • Reply
    Billy Rhythm
    September 1, 2014 at 8:27 am

    Very yummy. I’ve made them twice for my wife, who is “gluten sensitive.” I’ve substituted molasses for honey with good results. One thing your readers might want to note: the batter is runny. Don’t be worried!

  • Reply
    September 6, 2014 at 1:40 am

    I JUST MADE THESE AND THEY’RE DELICIOUS!! They’re the perfect breakfast muffin. I added a handful of cinnamon chips for a little extra burst of flavor, and it’s great :)

  • Reply
    February 8, 2015 at 3:57 pm

    Maybe they meant 1 teaspoon instead of 1 tablespoon of baking powder?? I just tasted my batter and it was so bitter!!! They’re in the oven now… fingers crossed!

  • Reply
    March 25, 2015 at 3:50 pm

    I appreciate the simplicity of this recipe. Exactly what I was looking for. They turned out great! Mine were done in 20 minutes. Thanks!

  • Reply
    December 25, 2015 at 10:00 am

    These are wonderful. Adaptable. Good for you. And did I mention wonderful. I am very tired of gf muffins that are more likely to lumps of lead than food, and we don’t like gf flour mixes so these are really a treat!

  • Reply
    January 22, 2016 at 7:00 am

    so you say 1 1/2 cups of oats or oat flour. if i process 1 1/2 cups of oats i get less than 1 1/2 cups of oat flour… so which should i measure… the oats before they go into the vitamix to make flour? or the oat flour after it comes out of the vitamix?
    thanks! looking forward to trying these!

    • Reply
      September 27, 2018 at 11:59 am

      Julie: this should come out the same: 1 1/2 cups rolled oats should equal 1 1/2 cups oat flour. If it’s a little less, that’s ok! You can use the 1 1/2 cups of rolled oats to make the flour.

  • Reply
    February 15, 2016 at 9:53 am

    These turned out very good. They Rose up and stayed moist. I measured the oats before grinding them, not after, and it worked fine. I did make two additions. I put in a handful of cinnamon chips. My family that can eat gluten gobbled these right up. I made mini muffins and cooked for 18 mins. Made 24.

  • Reply
    Brittany Audra @ Audra's Appetite
    October 1, 2018 at 10:03 pm

    I adore cooking with oat flour! Especially in muffins. and I’ve been all about apple recipes lately; these are perfect! :)

  • Reply
    Peg L Arnett
    February 25, 2019 at 7:56 am

    I made them yesterday. Loved them. I put walnuts in mine and used homemade applesauce in place of some of milk. Loved them

    • Reply
      February 25, 2019 at 8:58 pm

      So glad to hear it! Thank you for making them!

  • Reply
    April 19, 2019 at 5:26 pm

    I am looking for a bread using oat flour but no apples just something a bit more plain. Do you think I could leave out the one cup of apples?

    • Reply
      April 19, 2019 at 7:13 pm

      I think this would work — it might taste a bit more bland without the apples but I’m not sure!

    • Reply
      May 10, 2020 at 2:16 pm

      I replaced the apple with a mashed banana and they were moist and delicious.

  • Reply
    June 22, 2019 at 12:20 pm

    I am always looking for gluten-free recipes for my B&B guests who ask. I’ve not been impressed with any recipe that calls for gluten-free flour as they always turn out tasting terrible, and coming inside. These were absolutely perfect! Beautifully risen, not crumbly, and also tasty. I followed the recipe exactly, except I created the apple instead of chopping it. Very important to let this sit To thicken up as the oats are absorbed. I might try another patch using a different kind of oil as I did find the coconut oil came through more than I wanted it to. But truly a great recipe. Definite keeper!

  • Reply
    August 1, 2019 at 12:34 am

    I went to Farmers Market and had a Gluten Free Oat Cake Muffin and was looking for something that would be moist and flavorful. I made your recipe and was very pleased with the taste – very moist. I added ground ginger and raisins. Thank You so much for sharing your wisdom and detail on the HOW TO. Excellent recipe for GF

    • Reply
      Sonja Overhiser
      August 1, 2019 at 2:12 pm

      You’re welcome! Love the addition of raisins — we’ll have to try it.

  • Reply
    April 10, 2020 at 7:04 pm

    Can you replace the oat flour with almond flour? I asked the hubby to get oat flour from the store today and he came home with almond flour. :) Thanks!

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      April 11, 2020 at 10:37 am

      We haven’t tested this variation — I’m not sure!

  • Reply
    May 7, 2020 at 1:40 pm

    I tried this recipe Tuesday night to have for breakfast Wednesday morning, they were amazing. The kids devoured them and were full until lunchtime, a breakfast miracle! They are moist and delicious, will definitely be making them regularly from now on.

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      May 8, 2020 at 9:55 am

      Awesome! Thanks for making :)

  • Reply
    claudia i shine
    May 23, 2020 at 9:40 am

    Do you know of an egg substitute that would work with the somewhat heavier texture of oat? My little one can tolerate baking soda and vinegar as a rise, but have no idea the amoun to use for this recipe? He has a tremendous number of allergies and oat is the only grain he can have. It would be wonderful for him to have these as I’ve found no other recipe for muffins.

  • Reply
    Andrea J Clifford
    June 16, 2020 at 6:30 pm

    Just made these for the first time today. They are fantastic!!! Also, my house smells wonderful.
    These work for both my Low-FODMAP eater, and my dairy and gluten free eater. The rest of our family loves them as well.
    Thank you. :)

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      June 17, 2020 at 9:31 am

      So glad you love them!

  • Reply
    June 24, 2020 at 2:00 pm

    These taste great but even after a few hours in my gas oven they are still a bit mushy inside and don’t really have a crumb aside from the top and bottom of them. Do you have any idea what might be causing this? Would be very helpful. Also, please could you share what the texture of the muffins should be if you cut them in half immediately they come out of the oven?

    • Reply
      Sonja Overhiser
      June 25, 2020 at 9:30 am

      Hi Ren, thanks for the note! Are you saying you’re storing the muffins in your oven for a few hours? Or that you baked them that long? Because of the chunks of apples inside, the muffins are a little gooier than other muffins you might be used to. Also we don’t recommend cutting them in half immediately out of the oven: they will collapse and be too soft. We’d recommend letting them cool at least 20 minutes before trying to eat. Thanks!

      • Reply
        June 26, 2020 at 11:46 am

        I bake them for about 2.5 to 3 hours and they still look underdone in the middle layer. Thanks, I mixed the batter for longer and let them cool for about 40 mins before cutting today and they were more set, but still had a ‘wet’ layer. In terms of substitutions, I followed the recipe but used all oat flour (instead of part oat flour, part rolled oats), almond milk, flax egg, choc chips (instead of diced apple).

        • Reply
          Sonja Overhiser
          June 26, 2020 at 12:00 pm

          Hi there! The bake time is 25 minutes. We’re not sure how you can bake muffins for 3 hours without burning? Perhaps your oven has an issue?

  • Reply
    Kylie Sparks
    October 6, 2020 at 8:45 pm

    I’ve made these probably five times now. Although I seldom follow the recipe exactly, they turn out deliciously every time. I usually add pecan pieces, put less baking powder, and more apple. I love the spice mix, the lightness of them and the chewiness of the oats. Thank you for sharing this recipe!

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      October 7, 2020 at 10:13 am

      I’m so glad you’re enjoying them!! :)

  • Reply
    Lu Sims
    February 9, 2021 at 2:20 pm

    This is the recipe I’ve been searching for! I wanted a heavy gluten-free muffin, not too sweet, and oat flour is my favorite. The 1-to-1 gf flours don’t taste good to me. I left out the Allspice, put in the cinnamon & nutmeg, a little more Vanilla and cherries that I’d quartered. Oh so good! This will be my go-to from now on, thank you!

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