Seriously Good Vegan Banana Muffins

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These bakery-style Vegan Banana Muffins are fluffy, moist, and packed with sweet banana flavors. They’re easy to make with simple ingredients and topped with a nutty walnut crumble for a delightfully soft crunch.
Prep 30 minutes
Bake Time: 25 minutes
Total 55 minutes
5 from 33 votes

If you want to capture the magic of my Vegan Banana Bread into one easy, grab-and-go snack, then you MUST try these moist and fluffy Vegan Banana Muffins.

A true bakery-style muffin, these vegan banana bread muffins are wildly delicious and incredibly fluffy! You don’t need any fancy ingredients to make them, either. Just simple, everyday baking staples and the ripe spotty bananas on your kitchen counter.

Each muffin is topped with a nutty walnut crumble, yielding a melt-in-your-mouth muffin interior with a sweet crunch on top (ridiculously good!). 

Grab a muffin when you’re heading out the door, bring them to Sunday brunch, or enjoy either as a snack or dessert!

Table of Contents:
1. Why this recipe works
2. Ingredient notes
3. Step-by-step instructions
4. Tips for making this recipe
5. Frequently Asked Questions
6. Recipe card

Side view of baked banana muffins on a cooling rack.

Why this recipe works

A soft and fluffy dream

These bakery-style muffins have a dreamy texture thanks to the combination of ripe bananas and whipped aquafaba. When these two get together, they create banana muffins that are perfectly moist, fluffy, and bouncy. No dense muffins here!

Meanwhile, the sweet walnut crumble on top of the muffins almost caramelizes in the oven, resulting in a soft crunch with each bite. It’s the best contrast to the soft, pillowy interior.

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A mashup of two favorite recipes 

If my Banana Bread and Blueberry Muffin recipes had a baby, it would be this vegan banana muffin recipe. I am not exaggerating when I say these are some of the best muffins you’ll ever try!

Even my partner, Max, said that these were the best muffins he’s ever had, and this is coming from a guy who typically hates fruit in desserts.

The muffins look like they were baked fresh from the bakery, with large, rounded tops and maximum fluffiness. Meanwhile, the warm and sweet flavors and tender crumb will remind you of a loaf of vegan banana bread. Put the two together and you have a real winner!

Simple ingredients; gourmet flavor

These muffins are made with simple and familiar ingredients that should be easy to find at almost any grocery store. Ripe bananas are key but it’s the warm spices that jazz up the sweet banana flavor to make everything better.

Overhead view of baked banana muffins on a cooling rack.

Ingredient notes

Various banana bread ingredients in small ingredient bowls on a tan table.

Aquafaba

This is simply the liquid from a can of chickpeas. It’s my favorite egg substitute and when lightly whipped, it makes these muffins, as well as other baked goods like Vegan Lemon Cake, supremely light, tender, and fluffy.

Bananas

This is a perfect recipe to turn to when you those bananas you forgot to eat turn spotty and brown. The riper your bananas are, the more flavorful and sweeter the muffins will be. The ripe bananas also add moisture and act as a natural sweetener.

Are your bananas still green but you can’t wait to try these muffins? Skip to the Tips section to learn how to ripen bananas quickly.

Or, if you don’t have ripe bananas, try my Bakery-Style Vegan Chocolate Chip Muffins instead!

Vegan buttermilk

You can make a buttermilk alternative by simply using a mix of oat milk and lemon juice. It’s a game-changer in this recipe, as the acidity shortens the gluten strands in the flour, giving you extra tender and light muffins.

Substitute: While we’ve had the best results with oat milk (the natural sugars help baked goods brown better), most plant milk will work fine here. We also have had the best results using lemon juice but apple cider vinegar can be subbed.

Brown sugar 

Brown sugar has a richer flavor and more moisture than white sugar. Try to buy organic brown sugar to ensure it’s certified vegan (if you live in the U.S.). 

Substitute: Coconut sugar can be used instead with lovely results.

Flour 

All-purpose flour is all you need to give the muffins structure and a tender crumb.

Substitute: We tested these muffins with spelt flour for a more nutritious option, with pretty good results. They weren’t as fluffy as the version made with all-purpose flour but still had nice flavor.

You can also try using half or all whole wheat pastry flour (not 100% whole wheat flour). Our own tests with gluten-free flour did not work great here, but at least one reader had success using the below substitute:

1 1/3 cup Bob Mill’s gluten-free all purpose flour and 1 1/3 cup + 1/4 cup Bob mill’s oat flour using 3 large ripe bananas, instead of 4 medium bananas.

Warm spices

Cinnamon and nutmeg add a touch of warmth to each bite. They also complement the sweet flavor of the bananas.

Walnuts

Walnuts are folded into the batter and combined with sugar to create a crumble that’s sprinkled over the top of the muffins. This way, the interior has a warm, nutty flavor and a soft crunch while the top is coated in crunchy caramelized nuts.

Substitute: Pecans work just as well, but slivered almonds or finely chopped hazelnuts would also be nice.

Nut free: Try using shredded or flaked coconut instead or omit the crumble topping entirely.

Step-by-step instructions

Mix the walnuts, brown sugar, cinnamon, and a pinch of salt in a small bowl to make the walnut crumble. Set aside.

In a small bowl, beat the aquafaba until it’s foamy.

In a separate large mixing bowl, add the sugar and oil and beat them together until well combined. Then mix the beaten aquafaba into the sugar-oil mixture until well incorporated.

Beat in the vegan buttermilk and vanilla until smooth. Add the mashed bananas and mix again until well incorporated.

Now that the wet mixture is ready, you can add the dry stuff! Add the flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg to the bowl with the wet mix.
Gently stir everything together with a silicone spatula until they’re just barely combined. A few traces of dry flour left behind is ok.

Transfer the batter to a greased muffin tin. Sprinkle the walnut crumble over the top of each one, then bake.

Bake the muffins at 425ºF until they have risen nicely. Afterward, lower the heat to 350ºF and continue baking until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean (or with a few crumbs attached).

Let the muffins cool for a few minutes, then enjoy!

Tips for making this recipe

Don’t overmix

The more you mix and work the muffin batter, the more gluten will form. This, in turn, gives you dense muffins. Do yourself a favor and only mix the batter until the ingredients just barely come together to achieve the perfect fluffy and tender crumb.

Use overripe bananas

Just like banana bread, banana muffins are a great way to use up the spotty and brown bananas on your kitchen counter. Ripe bananas are easier to mash and incorporate into the batter, plus they add a sweeter and more distinct banana-y flavor.

If your bananas are still green or not quite ripe, you can ripen them quickly by placing them on a foil-lined baking sheet and warming them in a 300ºF oven for 15 to 25 minutes. However, the bananas will be more watery, so it’s important to add the bananas to a strainer and let them drain off the excess water. 

Ripe and overripe bananas on a baking sheet.

Fill the tins to the top

Most muffin recipes will have you fill the muffin tins to only ⅔ or ¾ full. Not this one, though. If you want big, bountiful muffin tops, you gotta fill the tins right to the top.

Grease your muffin tins

In my muffin tests, I’ve found that muffins baked with muffin liners are a bit soggy with ridged edges, so I almost always prefer to use a naked muffin tin. But it’s important to generously grease the muffin tins with nonstick spray or cooking oil. 

If you skip the muffin liners like I do, make sure to cover every inch of the muffin cavities, and leave any residual oil or spray on the top of the pan—that prevents the caramelized crumble topping from sticking to the tops of the pan. 

Use the two-temperature system

The muffins start in a hot oven (425ºF) for a few minutes before the temperature is lowered (350ºF) for the remainder of the bake time. This method helps the muffins rise more right off the bat and gives you tall and bountiful muffins every time. 

You can learn more about the two-temperature system and how it can give you better-quality muffins and quick breads in this guide by The Kitchn.

Don’t open the oven door 

Do not, under any circumstances, open the oven door when the muffins are baking (especially in the beginning and including when you change the temperature!). Even just a few seconds will reduce the temperature and rob you of peak fluffiness

Let the muffins cool (but not for too long) 

Allow the muffins to cool for 20 minutes before removing them from the muffin tin. If they’re a bit stuck, use a small offset spatula or butter knife to loosen them. Just don’t let the muffins sit in the tin for too long or else they can get soggy bottoms.

Baked banana muffins on a serving platter.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I make these gluten-free?

We tried testing this recipe gluten-free with a mix of gluten-free all-purpose flour and oat flour (which works well in our Blueberry Muffin recipe), but unfortunately the muffins came out too dry and too moist at the same time.

That said, at least one of our readers had success making these GF with this formula:

1 1/3 cup Bob Mill’s gluten-free all purpose flour and 1 1/3 cup + 1/4 cup Bob mill’s oat flour using 3 large ripe bananas, instead of 4 medium bananas.

Can I use this recipe to make a loaf cake?

Although we haven’t tested it, this recipe should be able to be baked in a standard loaf pan instead of a muffin tin since it’s adapted from my Banana Bread recipe. Grease the pan really well before adding the muffin batter and walnut crumble. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center top at a slight angle comes out with a few moist crumbs attached.

What kind of oil is best for these muffins?

We typically use sunflower oil in baking, but avocado oil, safflower oil, canola oil, vegetable oil, or any neutral-flavored oil will work. Refined coconut oil (melted) is also fine.

I’m allergic to nuts. How should I adapt the recipe?

Feel free to omit the walnut topping or use shredded or flaked coconut instead. Even rolled oats may work but you’d want to add a little coconut oil or melted vegan butter so everything mixes together well.

How can I make these muffins more nutritious/wholesome?

There are a few substitutions you can make:

Instead of all-purpose flour: Use spelt flour or whole wheat pastry flour instead of all-purpose flour, or use a 50-50 mix. You can also substitute up to 1 cup of all-purpose flour with oat flour (but no more than that).

Reduce the sugar: Lower the amount of sugar to ½ cup. Don’t reduce the amount any more or else the muffins will be dry. Also, you can use only half of the amount of sugar called for in the crumble topping.

Instead of brown sugar: Use coconut sugar for a lower GI sweetener (it works quite well, but has a slightly different flavor).

How should I serve these banana muffins?

Any way you’d like :) They can be eaten for dessert, breakfast, or snacks. If you want to make an epic brunch spread, serve them alongside my Tofu Scramble and Tempeh Bacon, plus roasted potatoes and sauteed greens.

How do I store these muffins? Can I freeze them?

The muffins will stay moist and fluffy for 2 to 3 days when stored in an airtight container or bag on the counter. They also store well in the fridge for 5 to 6 days.

You can also freeze them! Place the baked and cooled muffins in an airtight freezer-safe bag or container and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost in the fridge or at room temperature. We like to double the recipe so we can store the extras in the freezer for quick snacks and breakfasts on the go. 

banana muffin sliced open and slathered with butter on a ceramic plate.

That’s all you need to know about making these moist and fluffy Vegan Banana Muffins! If you love this recipe, please rate and review it below!

Seriously Good Vegan Banana Muffins

5 from 33 votes
These bakery-style Vegan Banana Muffins are fluffy, moist, and packed with sweet banana flavors. They’re easy to make with simple ingredients and topped with a nutty walnut crumble for a delightfully soft crunch.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Bake Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Serving size: 12 jumbo muffins

Ingredients

  • ½ cup + 1 tablespoon (135 mL) oat milk
  • 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice (or apple cider vinegar)
  • 4 medium-sized very ripe bananas [mashed bananas should weigh ~ 425g, 1 scant pound]
  • ½ cup (112g) sunflower oil or any neutral-flavored oil
  • ¾ cup (120g) organic brown sugar (or 135g coconut sugar)
  • ½ cup (120 mL) aquafaba
  • 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups (375g) all-purpose flour
  • Heaping 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

Walnut Crumble

  • cup (38g) walnuts, finely chopped
  • cup (50g) organic brown sugar (or coconut sugar)
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of sea salt

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 425°F/220ºC. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven.
    Option 1: line muffin tins with muffin liners.
    Option 2 (my preference): Generously grease a standard 12-cup muffin tin on the bottoms and sides with oil or nonstick cooking spray—be generous to avoid sticking. Rub your oiled hands on top of the tin as well to ensure the muffin tops don’t stick to the pan.
  • Stir the lemon juice into the oat milk and set aside for 5 to 10 min. This is the vegan "buttermilk."
  • Add the bananas to a medium bowl and mash with a fork until smooth and no lumps remain. Transfer to a cup or plate so you can wipe out the bowl and use it in step 6.
  • Make the Walnut Crumble: In a small bowl, mix the finely chopped walnuts, brown sugar cinnamon, and pinch of salt until well combined.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add the brown sugar and oil. Mix using the electric mixer or a whisk until well combined. Set aside for a minute.
  • Shake the can of chickpeas to evenly distribute the starches. Measure ½ cup (120 mL) of the aquafaba into the bowl used for the bananas. Using a handheld electric mixer, whip the aquafaba on medium speed for 1 minute until uniformly foamy.
  • Add the whipped aquafaba into the sugar-oil mixture, and mix until well incorporated. Add in the vegan "buttermilk" and vanilla and mix until smooth. Add the mashed bananas and mix until well incorporated.
  • Add the flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg to the wet ingredients. Switch to using a silicone spatula (or a wooden spoon). Gently stir until the ingredients are just barely combined. It’s okay if you can see a few traces of flour.
  • Evenly divide the batter between the muffin tins, filling to the top. Sprinkle the Walnut Crumble evenly over each muffin.
  • Add the muffin pan to the oven and bake at 425ºF/220ºC for 6 minutes, or until muffins have risen nicely.
    Then, without opening the oven door, reduce the heat to 350ºF/175ºC. Bake for another 18 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean or with a few crumbs.
  • Transfer to a cooling rack and cool for 20 minutes. Use a small offset spatula or butter knife to slide underneath the muffin tops. Once the tops have been released, you can lift the muffins up and out of the pan with your hands. Store cooled muffins in an airtight container on the counter for 2 to 3 days, or in the fridge for 5 to 6 days, or up to 3 months in the freezer.

Calories: 330kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Sodium: 193mg | Potassium: 210mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 25g | Vitamin A: 45IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 2mg

Recipe: Nisha Vora / Rainbow Plant Life | Photography: Megan Morello

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63 comments on Seriously Good Vegan Banana Muffins

  1. Zita

    5 stars
    Amazing recipe (as all of your recipes)! I have a question though, I’m an ovo-vegetarian and I don’t always have aquafaba on hand. If it’s not too inappropriate to ask on a vegan site, how many eggs would I need if I wanted to use them as substitute? Thank you in advance ^^

    1. Kaitlin @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Hi Zita! We’re vegan and don’t cook with eggs, so I’m afraid we cannot advise you about whether it will work in this recipe.

  2. Carly

    5 stars
    Husband called these the best banana muffins he’s ever had! He said banana muffins are normally too moist but these were perfect! I left out the crumble (tree nut allergy) but the sweetness was still just right. We will definitely make these again and maybe try an oat streusel for the crunch.

  3. Brody

    4 stars
    Delicious but are the quantities off?? I made the recipe with a scale and according to the “normal” setting/size. I then used a normal size muffin tin filled to the very brim of each cup – and had enough batter leftover to make an entire-ass banana bread lol (not that that’s exactly a bad thing but if you really do want 12 muffins you could probably halve this recipe).

  4. Sarah Anderson

    5 stars
    :)

    1. Kaitlin @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Thanks for the awesome rating, Sarah!

  5. Sarah Anderson

    Oh my goodness these are wonderful! So yummy! Your pumpkin sheet pan pancakes are another family favorite, but these definitely top the list!

    1. Kaitlin @ Rainbow Plant Life

      That’s so great to hear, Sarah! Next time, would you mind leaving a rating alongside your review? Star ratings are big help to readers who are thinking of making the recipe. Thanks!

  6. Stephanie Allen

    5 stars
    Just made these for my niece as she has an egg allergy.. WOW these taste so yummy!!

    1. Kaitlin @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Thank you for your lovely comment, Stephanie! It makes us happy to know that you two enjoyed the recipe.

  7. Z

    5 stars
    I was skeptical since I don’t usually like banana bread or muffins but I had 4 bananas i needed to use up and had all these ingredients so i tried it and my goodness these are delicious

    1. Kaitlin @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Hi Z, Thank you so much for such a fantastic review! Appreciate you taking the time!

  8. Anne

    Hi, is the nutritional info for a single muffin?

    1. Kaitlin @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Hi Anne, yes, this recipe makes 12 jumbo muffins and the nutrition info is for 1!

  9. Michelle Pelletier

    5 stars
    OMG… thèse muffins are heaven!! Just made them tonight for the first time!! My husband loooves them. Have no doubt they will not last a week in our home!!

    1. Kaitlin @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Hi Michelle, it’s great to hear you had success with the recipe. Thanks for the review!

  10. Sara

    5 stars
    The title ain’t lying, these are seriously good! I’ll say its not as simple as some other recipes but they’re worth the extra work. The only change I made was I cut back the sugar to 2/3 cup because my bananas were very ripe.

    1. Kaitlin @ Rainbow Plant Life

      It’s lovely to hear you are a fan of the muffins, Sara! Thanks for giving them a shot!

  11. Allison Smith

    5 stars
    Seriously Good for sure! Great recepie. Thanks.

    1. Kaitlin @ Rainbow Plant Life

      Thanks for the lovely feedback, Allison!

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