Healthy Strawberry Muffins
One bite of these strawberry muffins and you will agree, these are the BEST! Make these naturally sweetened muffins with applesauce, banana or Greek yogurt and store them in your freezer for busy days!
Have you ever had a fresh strawberry muffin? If not, now is the time to change that! These strawberry muffins are so addictive, thank goodness they are made with healthier ingredients! With these muffins you get a tender whole wheat muffin base that’s naturally sweetened with honey or pure maple syrup. Plus there are sweet fresh strawberries in every bite!
This strawberry muffin recipe is a great way to use up those last few strawberries that are starting to get soft. I try to buy organic strawberries but they always seem to lose their firmness after a few days. They’re still perfect for baking, though! My easy strawberry shortcake recipe and strawberry oatmeal bars recipe are two more of my favorite fresh strawberry recipes.
You’ll need about 1 1/2 cups of chopped fresh strawberries for these whole wheat strawberry muffins, or you can use a combination of fresh berries. Just try to use 1 1/2 cups of berries total. I’m excited to make blackberry muffins next!
If you are new to baking, muffins are an easy recipe to start with. This strawberry muffin recipe is especially simple because the batter is mixed up in one bowl, starting with the wet ingredients and finishing with the dry. You’ll mix the flour in last. When making muffins, you don’t want to over-mix the flour into the wet ingredients. Mixing the flour in until it is just incorporated will give you soft, tender muffins. If you mix the flour in too much you’ll end up with dense muffins. Try this tip when making my cranberry orange muffins, zucchini muffins, blueberry oatmeal muffins, and these healthy banana muffins, too.
Homemade strawberry muffins are simple to make for your family’s breakfast or snack. Pair them with a hard boiled egg or some yogurt or cottage cheese for protein.
Muffins freeze really well and taste just as good as the day you bake them after they defrost. Be sure to freeze your muffins right away after they cool for the freshest frozen muffins later on. Seal your muffins in an air-tight container. I recommend a zip-top bag because you can squeeze excess air out. All of the muffin recipes on my website freeze well, including these strawberry muffins and pumpkin muffins!
To keep these fresh strawberry muffins on the healthier side, I wanted to replace some of the butter with a more nutritious ingredient. In muffins, applesauce, mashed banana and yogurt are often used in place of some of the fat in a recipe. I tested these muffins three ways. I made strawberry muffins with applesauce, strawberry banana muffins and strawberry yogurt muffins.
All three batches were delicious, so whether you use banana, applesauce or yogurt is really just a matter of personal preference and what ingredients you have in your kitchen. I personally liked the banana and applesauce muffins best. My kids preferred the yogurt muffins.
Some strawberry muffin recipes call for sprinkling turbinado sugar (coarse sugar) on the tops of the muffins before baking. These muffins don’t need the extra sugar and I promise you will love them as they are! The strawberries add sweetness, as well as the honey or maple syrup that you mix into the batter. Both honey and pure maple syrup are more wholesome, unrefined sugars. Be sure to use pure maple syrup, not the artificial maple syrups that are marketed as toppings for your pancakes.
To muffins dairy-free:
- Use coconut oil in place of the butter.
- Use either mashed banana or unsweetened applesauce rather than yogurt.
- Use non dairy milk.
To make these strawberry muffins vegan:
- Use all of the dairy-free substitutions above.
- Use pure maple syrup, not honey.
- Use 2 flax eggs (to make the equivalent of 2 eggs, stir together 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed meal and 5 tablespoons water in a small bowl; let sit for 5 minutes).
To make these muffins gluten-free:
- Use a gluten-free 1:1 baking flour in place of the all-purpose and white whole wheat flours.
Tips for making these homemade strawberry muffins:
- Start by washing your strawberries and drying them well. Then chop them and stir in 1/4 cup of flour. The flour will prevent the berries from sinking and creating soggy muffin bottoms.
- You might be wondering if you can use frozen strawberries in this recipe. I do not recommend using frozen strawberries. Frozen strawberries will make your muffins soggy because of their extra water content.
- You can substitute other berries in this recipe. Try raspberry muffins, blackberry muffins or blueberry muffins.
- Use either 1 cup of mashed ripe banana, 1 cup of unsweetened applesauce, OR 1 cup of plain Greek yogurt in your muffin batter.
- Be sure to mix the batter really well with a whisk after adding the baking powder, baking soda and salt. You do not want any clumps of these ingredients left in your muffins.
- After adding the flour, do not over-mix the muffin batter. Mix lightly with a rubber spatula until the flour is barely incorporated. Over-mixing will produce dense, tough muffins.
Healthy Strawberry Muffins
- 1 ½ cups chopped fresh strawberries, about 10 ounces strawberries
- ¼ cup all purpose flour
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, may substitute coconut oil
- 1 cup unsweetened applesauce, or mashed ripe banana or plain Greek yogurt
- ½ cup pure maple syrup or honey
- ¼ cup milk, whichever kind you prefer
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup white whole wheat flour
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray or line with parchment paper liners.
- Place chopped strawberries in a bowl and toss gently with ¼ cup all purpose flour. Set aside.
- Place butter in a large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high heat until butter is melted.
- Add the applesauce, mashed banana or Greek yogurt to the bowl with the butter. Add the pure maple syrup or honey, milk, vanilla and eggs. Whisk until well combined.
- Add the baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk until well combined.
- Add the white whole wheat flour and ½ cup all purpose flour. Use a rubber spatula or spoon to mix until almost combined. Fold in the strawberries until just combined. Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tin wells.
- Bake for 16-18 minutes, until a tester inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Let muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then remove them to a wire rack to finish cooling.
- Muffins can be stored at room temperature for up to 3 days. Place them on top of a paper towel to absorb excess moisture, and seal them in an airtight container. Muffins can be stored in the freezer, wrapped airtight, for up to 2 months.