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Vegan Cranberry Muffins

Enjoy these Vegan Cranberry Muffins that are oat-based and use zucchini and apple sauce. These hearty muffins are entirely plant-based and contain no oil.

close up of a vegan muffin

As stated in my Vegan Pumpkin Muffins post, I am obsessed with muffins right now. I am always on a quest to recreate whole food plant-based muffins to satisfy this craving.

Here is another great gluten-free muffin recipe that utilizes fresh cranberries, which are one of my favorite berries. I buy several batches of cranberry and freeze them for use all year long, especially in this Cranberry Pepper Jam.

Why I Love These Vegan Cranberry Muffins

These muffins are:

  • Gluten-free
  • Oil-free
  • Dairy-free
  • Processed-free
  • 100% plant-based
  • Delicious
  • Healthy
  • Fulfilling of 7 Daily Dozen Servings
  • Great for the Holidays

Plant-Based Cranberry Apple Muffins Ingredients

Here are the ingredients that you will need for these banana cranberry muffins. As with my other muffins, this recipe is divided up into three parts; the dry ingredients, the wet base, and the mix-ins.

  • flax seed
  • old-fashioned rolled oats
  • quick oats
  • oat flour
  • baking soda
  • salt
  • cinnamon
  • zucchini
  • apple sauce
  • banana
  • vanilla extract
  • plant-based milk
  • pure maple syrup
  • cranberries
  • apple
  • pecans

Greger’s Daily Dozen

Dr. Michael Greger is one of the top lifestyle medicine physicians that endorse a plant-based diet. He has made eating a well-balanced diet easier with his Daily Dozen checklist. The checklist has 12 categories with daily recommended servings of each. I use the Daily Dozen app to keep track of my dietary intake.

This healthy cranberry muffin recipe fulfills:

  • Berries
  • Other Fruit
  • Other Vegetables
  • Flaxseeds
  • Nuts & Seeds
  • Herbs & Spices
  • Whole Grains

zoomed in photo of cranberry muffins

How to Make Cranberry Zucchini Muffins

  1. Stir up all of the dry ingredients in one bowl.
  2. Mix the wet ingredients in another bowl.
  3. Mix the dry bowl into the wet bowl.
  4. Fold in the add-ins.
  5. Divide batter into lined muffin cups.
  6. Bake in a 350-degree oven.

Mix the Dry Ingredients

This recipe is gluten-free due to its use of oatmeal and oat flour. Rolled oats can be ground up in a food processor to create the oat flour.

While oatmeal tends to make for heavy baked goods, the addition of quick oat flour and quick oats absorb excess liquid and lighten up these oat cranberry muffins. Oats are also used in this Vegan Cranberry Apple Crisp.

The Wet Base

The main wet ingredients in this recipe are zucchini and banana. The sweetness of the muffin will vary due to the ripeness of the banana. I prefer soft bananas that are not bruised.

close up of 3 vegan cranberry muffins

The Mix-ins

Fresh cranberries are the star of this recipe. Do not use dried cranberries! Walnuts are a great alternative to the pecans. Pecans are best in my Fresh Cranberry Relish.

Tips for Making Apple Cranberry Muffins

Vegan baked goods can be made with flax eggs and plant-based milk to keep them dairy-free.

How to Make Flax Eggs

Mix 1 tablespoon of ground (milled) flaxseed with 3 tablespoons of water. Let the mixture sit for several minutes. Then the will egg thickens up so it can be added to a recipe.

What Plant-Based Milk Should I Use?

The variety of plant-based milk that you use is up to you. We usually have almond milk in our home. We blend our own to cut down on salt. Different nut milk or even soy would work well in these dairy-free cranberry muffins.

Oil Substitution

This gluten-free vegan pumpkin muffin recipe uses unsweetened applesauce in place of oil.

plate of muffins and mug of tea

How to Store Eggless Cranberry Muffins

Since these cranberry pecan muffins have no preservatives, they need to be stored in the refrigerator. They can also be frozen for later consumption.

stack of 3 muffins

I hope you enjoy these muffins as much as I do. Are you a big fan of cranberry too? If so, try this Cranberry Salsa.

Yield: 12

Apple Cranberry Muffins

white plate with 3 oatmeal muffins

These Vegan Cranberry Muffins are naturally gluten-free and healthy. They are a great plant-based option for breakfast or a snack.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes


Dry Ingredients

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • ½ cup quick oats
  • ½ cup oat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Wet Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons warm water
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened apple sauce
  • ½ cup mashed banana
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup plant milk
  • ½ cup pure maple syrup


  • 1½ cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup chopped apple
  • ½ cup chopped pecans


    1. Preheat the oven to 350° Fahrenheit.
    2. Mixing the water with the ground flax in a small dish to create a flax egg. Let it sit for a few minutes to thicken.
    3. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with paper or silicone liners.
    4. Mix the dry ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.
    5. Shred the zucchini. I prefer to leave the skin on. Squeeze out the water by wringing the shreds in a tea towel. Measure the 1 cup after getting the moisture out.
    6. Mix the zucchini, flax egg, banana, apple sauce, vanilla, milk, and maple syrup in a large bowl.
    7. Stir in the dry ingredients into the wet mixture.
    8. Fold in the cranberries, apple, and pecans.
    9. Place approximately ¼ a cup of the batter in each muffin holder.
    10. Bake the muffins for 30-35 minutes.
    11. Let the muffins cool completely so that they will cleanly separate from the liners.
    12. Store any leftover muffins in an airtight container in the refrigerator.


Date paste or syrup can be used instead of maple syrup.

Walnuts are a good substitution for pecans.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 151Total Fat: 5g

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