Remember my very famous skinny banana chocolate chip muffins from a few years back? I’ve made them time and time again, but finally, I figured it was time for a new healthy banana muffin recipe that’s just as irresistible as my first born (muffin, that is!).
This recipe was actually a happy accident. I told my sister in law I wanted to bake her some banana muffins with my extra ripe bananas, and she requested that they be made without chocolate chips. Since I knew they weren’t going to have the sweetness from chocolate, I decided to naturally sweeten them with honey and they turned out beautifully AND incredibly delicious.
Since I was low on butter at the time, I made these banana muffins with a little bit of heart-healthy olive oil to keep them moist and they ended up having BEST crumb texture. They’re seriously SO fluffy, tender, moist, infused with sweet cinnamon flavor and a nice crunch thanks to walnuts (leave out if you aren’t into nuts). I found myself eating a few here and there throughout the day, some with peanut butter on top or even a little drizzle of honey + sea salt. YASS.
Your fav banana muffins made healthier
These healthy banana muffins have everything you love about those nostalgic, fluffy, bakery-style banana muffins, but with a few tweaks to make them a little better for you:
- Naturally sweetened. Instead of using white or refined sugar in this recipe, we’re naturally sweetening these banana muffins with super ripe bananas and a little honey.
- Whole grains. These healthy banana muffins are also made with my favorite whole wheat pastry flour for the perfect boost of whole grains.
- Dairy free. You’ll just need a bit of your favorite dairy free milk and olive oil to keep these muffins perfectly moist without using any dairy!
- Healthy fats. I love adding some chopped walnuts to the batter and on top of the muffins for a boost of healthy fats.
Ingredients in healthy banana muffins
As I mentioned, these delicious, healthy banana muffins are not only dairy free, but also seriously moist, flavorful and use honey as a natural sweetener. Here’s what you need:
- Overripe bananas: make sure they’re almost all the way brown so that these muffins have the right amount of sweetness.
- Honey: for a little boost of natural sweetness. I love the flavor that honey gives these banana muffins.
- Egg: you’ll just need one egg in this recipe. You can also try using a flax egg but I have not tested it.
- Vanilla: always baking with vanilla for delicious flavor.
- Olive oil: a bit of olive oil makes these healthy banana muffins super moist. Feel free to sub melted butter or melted and cooled coconut oil.
- Dairy free milk: I like to use unsweetened vanilla almond milk for a little extra flavor, but you can use any milk you’d like!
- Whole wheat pastry flour: I love baking with whole wheat pastry flour because it adds a boost of nutrients while making these muffins perfectly fluffy. If you don’t have this flour feel free to use all purpose flour. You can also use a ratio of ¾ cup whole wheat flour + 1 cup all purpose flour.
- Baking soda: to ensure that these bake up properly.
- Cinnamon: a little cozy spice to make them extra delicious.
- Salt: this will help pull the flavors together.
- Walnuts: I love to add chopped walnuts into the batter of these healthy banana muffins and on top! Feel free to omit or sub pecans if you’d like.
Can I make them gluten free?
I have not tried making these healthy banana muffins gluten free, so I’d suggest making one of my other gluten free muffin recipes:
How to make healthy banana muffins
These healthy banana muffins are made in just one bowl for minimal cleanup and maximum deliciousness. Bake them up in a few simple steps:
- Prep your pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12 cup muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray and line with muffin liners. This guarantees that the muffins will not stick to the liners or the pan.
- Mix the batter. In a large bowl mix together all of your wet ingredients until well combined. Then add the dry ingredients and use a wooden spoon to mix together until the batter is just combined. Fold in ½ cup chopped walnuts.
- Divide & bake. Divide the muffin batter evenly into muffin liners, sprinkle each muffin with chopped walnuts and bake.
- Cool & enjoy. Cool muffins for 5 minutes then remove and transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. Enjoy warm — they’re even more delicious the next day!
Tips for making fluffy & moist banana muffins
- Use extra ripe bananas. Yes, I mean EXTRA ripe and almost brown. They’ll give these healthy banana muffins a natural sweetness.
- Use fresh baking soda. This will ensure that the muffins rise properly. If your baking soda is more than 3 months old I’d suggest swapping it out.
- Don’t overmix the batter. Mix the flour into your wet ingredients until it’s just combined. If you overmix the batter your muffins may turn out dense and almost rubbery, which we don’t want.
Have fun with delicious mix-ins
Feel free to add your favorite muffin mix-ins! This healthy banana muffin recipe is a great base for delicious toppings, too. Here are a few suggestions:
Freeze them for later
Yes, these healthy banana muffins are freezer-friendly! Simply wrap muffins individually in freezer-safe bags or store them in a large freezer bag. When you’re ready to enjoy them, reheat for 30-45 seconds in the microwave or simply thaw them at room temperature.
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I hope you love these healthy banana muffins! If you make them I’d love for you to leave a comment and rating letting me know how you liked them. Enjoy xo!
The Ultimate Healthy Banana Muffins
The ultimate healthy banana muffins are incredibly moist, dairy free and naturally sweetened with ripe bananas and honey. This easy, healthy banana muffin recipe comes together in one bowl in just 30 minutes with options to add a delicious crunch from walnuts! The perfect healthy breakfast or snack that’s freezer-friendly, too.
- 3 VERY overripe bananas, mashed (make sure they are almost all the way brown)
- ⅓ cup honey
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- ½ tablespoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of choice)
- Dry ingredients
- 1 ¾ cup whole wheat pastry flour*
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup chopped walnuts, plus ¼ cup chopped walnuts for sprinkling on top of muffins
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin pan with liners and spray the inside of the liners to prevent sticking.
In a large bowl, mix together mashed bananas, honey, egg, vanilla, olive oil and milk until well combined. Add in whole wheat pastry flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt and use a wooden spoon to mix together until the batter is just combined. DO NOT overmix. Fold in ½ cup chopped walnuts.
Divide batter evenly into muffin liners, sprinkle each muffin with chopped walnuts. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs attached.
Cool muffins for 5 minutes then remove and transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. Muffins are best served warm and even better the next day. Makes 12 muffins.
*If you don’t have whole wheat pastry flour feel free to use all purpose flour. You can also use a ratio of ¾ cup whole wheat flour + 1 cup all purpose flour.
To make gluten free: I suggest making my gluten free dairy free banana muffins.
To make vegan: I haven’t tested these muffins with a vegan alternative, but let me know in the comments if you do!
To freeze: wrap muffins individually in freezer-safe bags or store them in a large freezer bag. When you’re ready to enjoy them, reheat for 30-45 seconds in the microwave or simply thaw them at room temperature.
Servings: 12 muffins
Serving size: 1 muffin
Saturated fat: 1.2g
Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eats
This recipe was originally published May 14, 2020, and republished on April 21, 2021.