Healthy Vegan Savoury Muffins (Gluten Free)

These healthy vegan savoury muffins are filled with grated zucchini and carrot, with nutty gluten-free buckwheat flour, and the delicious herby flavour of dill. They’re perfect served as a healthy vegan breakfast, a lunch box snack, or as a delicious savoury side to any meal.

Box of vegan savoury muffins with one cut in half on the side

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My favourite muffin recipe

I’ve talked before about how important snacks are to me. Going hours between meals without something to nibble on just isn’t my jam, so we always have lots of healthy and easy snacks in the house. 

It’s a bonus when those snacks can also double up as a quick breakfast, or even a side dish to soups or stews. These healthy vegan muffins are just that. They’re so easy to make and always rise to be nice and fluffy (despite being completely gluten free!). 

They keep well in an airtight container, making hangry snack hunting so much less stressful! They’re perfect to grab and go on the way out of the door, but your friends will also love them at picnics and parties.

Why I love vegan savoury muffins

First of all, they taste delicious, with the herby flavour of dill going so well with the nutty tone of buckwheat flour. I’ve added some crunchy pumpkin seeds to the top for another dimension of flavour and texture.

Not to mention these vegan zucchini muffins are totally healthy. Not only are you getting a healthy dose of vegetables with each portion, buckwheat flour in itself comes with a whole host of benefits– providing high-quality protein and plenty of fibre, as well as beneficial minerals.

Overhead photo of muffins in a box

Including grated zucchini and carrot in this recipe is a great way to get more veggies into your diet. These ‘hidden’ vegetables are also great for fussy children!

The combination of high fibre buckwheat and vegetables makes them a great sustainable source of energy. They’re filling and will really keep you going, so they’re great as both a healthy snack and breakfast.

They’re super easy to make and so customisable– the base recipe works great with almost any vegetable and flavour combination (I’ve put some suggestions down below!). There’s no special equipment needed to make this simple recipe. All you’ll need is a grater, a mixing bowl, and a muffin tray.

What are the ingredients?

The ingredients in these healthy vegan muffins are simple, for the most part being pantry staples. For the dry part of the batter I have used:

  • Buckwheat flour. If you’re not used to gluten free baking, this may be something you have to add to your pantry. It’s worth it for the flavour, but if you would rather, I’ve suggested some substitutes a little further down.
  • Oats and oat flour. You can easily make oat flour by grinding or blending oats, but again this can be substituted if needed. I would still recommend keeping the whole oats in the recipe though.
  • Baking powder and baking soda. These add lift to the vegan savoury muffins (more on this below).
Ingredients for healthy vegan savoury muffins

The wet ingredients in this recipe are:

  • Almond milk (or use your favourite dairy-free milk).
  • Olive oil. This is the only fat that we are adding to this recipe, as a substitute for butter. Use vegetable oil if you don’t like the flavour of olive oil.
  • Apple cider vinegar gives lift to the muffins. I’ve explained this a little more below.

For flavour, I’ve added:

  • Grated zucchini and carrot bring a sweet, earthy flavour to these savoury vegetable muffins, and a healthy boost.
  • Onion and garlic powder/granules. These add an extra punch of flavour to the batter. You can experiment with other flavours and spices (I’ve put some suggestions lower down to get you started).
  • Fresh dill. I love the flavour of herby dill in these gluten free savoury muffins. It’s finely chopped to combine perfectly with the batter. If you can’t get fresh dill, you could try another herb, or add a tsp of dried dill.
  • Pumpkin seeds. These are sprinkled on the top just before cooking. They roast beautifully in the oven and add a satisfying crunch to the top of the healthy vegan muffins.
A bowl of grated carrot and zucchini

How do I make muffins without eggs?

As this is an eggless muffin recipe, it’s really important not to skip the baking soda or vinegar in this recipe. Combined, these two create a reaction which adds lift to the muffin batter, helping them to rise.

The combination of baking soda and vinegar is a really simple substitute for egg. There are so many different options out there for substituting eggs in recipes; you can use chia or flax seeds, mashed banana, apple sauce, chickpea water, or even a specially made egg substitute. However, in a recipe like these vegan zucchini muffins, I find that baking soda and vinegar works every time.

How to make vegan savoury muffins

Making these healthy vegan muffins is really easy and doesn’t call for any special equipment. Before you get started, preheat the oven to 200c/390f.

Grate the carrot and zucchini, and squeeze the water from them. I used a fine mesh bag for this (which is actually a reusable produce bag from Aldi!), but you can also use a sieve, pushing the water from the vegetables with the back of a spoon.

Retain the water from the vegetables in a small bowl, and add the milk, apple cider vinegar and oil. Give it a stir and set it aside.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the buckwheat flour, oat flour, oats, garlic and onion powder, baking powder and baking soda. Slowly pour in the wet ingredients and gently mix everything together until combined.

Add in the grated vegetables and chopped dill, then gently fold it through the batter.

Line or grease a six hole muffin tin, then evenly distribute the batter between them. Sprinkle the pumpkin seeds over the top and gently press them in.

Bake the muffins in the oven for 25-30 minutes, until they are risen and golden, and a knife or skewer placed through the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool fully before eating.

Ingredient substitutes

As they’re so easy to make, I’ve made this recipe for a batch of six. We like to have a variety of different snacks during the week, and it’s so easy to whip up another batch. If you would rather make 12 savoury vegan muffins, this recipe doubles without any problems. Take them along to work and make your colleagues happy!

There are so many great ways to mix up and customise this recipe, so I’ve put some suggestions down below to get you started.

Can I change the flour?

If you don’t like or have buckwheat flour in the house, the flour can easily be substituted for wheat flour. You can use plain or whole wheat flour, just make sure it isn’t self raising. The oat flour can also be substituted for wheat flour, or chickpea flour if you want to keep it gluten free.

Sometimes I like to make these savoury vegetable muffins with half wheat flour and half spelt flour, for a slightly different flavour and nutritional boost.

What vegetables can I use in vegan savoury muffins?

I love the combination of zucchini and carrot, but you can substitute in the same weight of different veggies if you would like to. Some of my favourites are:

  • Grated beetroot, butternut squash, or sweet potato.
  • Finely sliced cabbage or kale.
  • Chopped spinach, bell pepper, or chilli peppers.
  • Canned vegetables like sweetcorn or peas.
  • Sun dried tomatoes or gherkins, chopped finely.
Muffins on cooling rack with one cut open

Flavour ideas

Fancy mixing up the flavours in these savoury zucchini muffins? I’ve put some of my top suggestions below.

  • Add ¼ cup vegan cheese or a couple of tablespoons of nutritional yeast for a delicious and plant based cheesy flavour.
  • For a bit of a kick, add half a teaspoon of chilli or cayenne powder.
  • You can use a teaspoon of smoked paprika or substitute the salt for smoked salt for a smoky taste.
  • Ground cumin and turmeric are a great addition to give these vegan savoury muffins a curried flavour. A teaspoon of each is all that’s needed.
  • If you don’t like dill, try swapping it for coriander, parsley, thyme or chives
  • I’ve scattered seeds on top, but you could use any chopped nuts or seeds that you would rather. Sunflower seeds, chopped walnuts, hemp seeds and pecans all make great alternatives.

My top tips for the best vegan savoury muffins

  • It’s important that you squeeze as much water out of the vegetables as possible. If you skip this step they will release the water whilst cooking, which will mean that the muffins won’t cook properly inside. I’ve added the water from the zucchini and carrot back in, in place of extra water or milk, as it is full of healthy nutrients.
  • Be careful not to overmix the batter whilst combining everything together, otherwise your vegan vegetable muffins will not be light and fluffy.
  • Whilst cooking, keep an eye on the muffins to make sure they don’t overcook. To check if your muffins are one, poke a toothpick or sharp knife into the centre of a muffin. If it comes out clean, they’re cooked; if it has some batter on it, the muffins will need a little longer.
  • Once the muffins are out of the oven, remove them from the pan as soon as possible to stop them from sweating.
  • Let them cool before eating- vegan savoury muffins can be a little difficult to get out of the muffin wrappers. If you leave them to cool or even enjoy them the next day, they’ll come straight out. If you didn’t use muffin cases, then you’re good to go!
Savoury muffins piled up in a box with one torn open at the side

FAQs

How should I store the muffins?

Store the muffins in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days. You can keep them in the fridge for 5 days if you want them to last a little longer, but I’d recommend bringing them to room temperature before eating.

Can I freeze them?

You can freeze vegan savoury muffins in an airtight container, for up to three months. Remove them from their liners before freezing, as the paper liners can go soggy in the freezer. 
To eat them from the freezer, defrost in the fridge overnight or on the counter for a few hours. If you’re in a rush and need a quick and simple breakfast, you can defrost one of the breakfast muffins in the microwave on low/defrost for 1 minute (this may vary depending on your microwave- keep an eye on it!) 

Can I eat the muffins warm?

You can re-warm the muffins in the oven for 5-10 minutes at 200c/390f. You can also pop them in the microwave for 30 seconds (they will go much softer if you do this).

Looking for more snacking and quick breakfast ideas?

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Vegan savoury muffins pin
Box of vegan savoury muffins with one cut in half on the side

Healthy Vegan Savoury Muffins (Gluten Free)

Chloe from Forkful of Plants
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine English
Servings 6 muffins
These healthy vegan savoury muffins are filled with grated zucchini and carrot, with nutty gluten-free buckwheat flour, and the delicious herby flavour of dill. They’re perfect served as a healthy vegan breakfast, a lunch box snack, or as a delicious savoury side to any meal.

Ingredients
  

  • 50 g carrot (one small) grated
  • 100 g zucchini (approx half) grated
  • 100 ml almond milk ~scant ½ cup
  • ½ tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 100 g wholemeal buckwheat flour ~1 cup
  • 50 g oat flour* ~½ cup
  • 20 g oats ~¼ cup
  • ½ tsp garlic powder/granules
  • ½ tsp onion powder/granules
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 2 sprigs dill finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 200c/390f. Line or grease a six hole muffin tin.
  • Squeeze the water from the grated carrot and zucchini. You can also use a nut milk/fine mesh bag** or sieve to do this, pushing the water from the vegetables with your hands or the back of a spoon.
  • Retain the water from the vegetables in a small bowl, and add the almond milk, apple cider vinegar and oil. Give it a stir and set it aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the buckwheat flour, oat flour, oats, garlic and onion powder, baking powder and baking soda.
  • Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry and gently mix everything together until combined.
  • Add in the grated vegetables and chopped dill, then gently fold them through the batter.
  • Evenly distribute the batter throughout the prepared tin. Sprinkle the pumpkin seeds over the top, and gently press them in.
  • Bake the muffins in the oven for 25-30 minutes, until they are risen and golden. A knife or skewer placed through the middle will come out clean when they’re done. Allow to cool fully before eating.

Notes

*You can buy oat flour but it’s also super easy to make. All you need to do is add oats to a blender or food processor, and blend until they resemble flour. You can do a batch in advance and store it in an airtight container or jar.
**I used a fine mesh bag to squeeze the water from my grated vegetables (which is actually a reusable produce bag from Aldi!)
QUANTITY: As they’re so easy to make, I’ve made this recipe for a batch of six. If you would rather make 12 savoury muffins, this recipe doubles without any problems.
Notes on flour: If you don’t like or have buckwheat flour in the house, the flour can easily be substituted for wheat flour. You can use plain or whole wheat flour, just make sure it isn’t self raising. The oat flour can also be substituted for wheat flour, or chickpea flour if you want to keep it gluten free.
I’ve given further ingredient substitution suggestions and my top tips in the blog post above.

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