Get Convenient Updates!

Banana Cranberry Muffins: Grain-Free, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free

Gluten Free Banana Cranberry Muffins

This post is linked to: A Gluten Free Holiday I,   Hearth and Soul Blog Hop and Slightly Indulgent Tuesday.

A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to do a guest post on Go Dairy Free, the wonderful website about all things dairy-free, run by Alisa Fleming, author of the amazing cookbook, Go Dairy Free (who, incidentally, also authors One Frugal Foodie).

I chose to feature my Banana and Fresh Cranberry Muffins that I usually only whip up during fall and winter months because, if you have ever tried to find a bag of fresh cranberries during the middle of summer, you will quickly find that your efforts will most likely be met with defeat. 

Now there is just something about the winter months that inspires me to think up innovative and resourceful endeavors involving the elusively tart but nutrient-dense cranberry. I normally find myself using them in holiday decorations, as glistening accents to my meals, and as beds for my tea light candles.

Of course, I also love to throw a few frozen ones into my champagne, or, better yet, my vodka cocktails, as well (but that is for after the kids go to bed). But, on chilly nights when those silly boys of ours just will not hit the hay (and therefore Mom and Dad cannot hit the sauce), we love to make mulled cranberry juice by simmering cranberry juice, cloves, fresh cranberries, cinnamon sticks, and sliced oranges together for about twenty minutes.

But finding ways to use fresh cranberries as the star ingredients in my recipes that do not involve alcohol is a challenge I also like to tackle. I have a number of cranberry-inspired dishes that have been successful, but these Grain-Free, Dairy-Free Banana-Cranberry Muffins have been the chosen favorite in my family involving these antioxidant-rich berries.

The sweetness of the bananas, the slightly sweet dried cranberries, and the dash of honey add a perfect balance to the tartness of the fresh cranberries that are also called for here.

Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Banana Cranberry muffins

Banana and Fresh Cranberry Muffins:

Grain-free, Gluten-free, Dairy-free


1/2 Cup: organic coconut oil (measured in liquid form)

1/3 Cup: honey

2: eggs, ROOM TEMPERATURE, separated

2: ripe bananas, (mashed with a fork)

3 Cups: almond flour, VERY finely ground (such as Digestive Wellness or Honeyville) Course almond flours will not give good results

1 1/2 tsp: baking soda

1/4 tsp: salt

1/3 Cup: dried cranberries, (soaked in 1/2 cup water for 30 minutes, then drained)

1/3 Cup: fresh cranberries, finely chopped (measure the cranberries while still whole)

1 Tablespoon Turbinado (or other large crystalled) sugar, to sprinkle evenly over the tops of the muffins


1.  Preheat oven to 325°F. Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners or grease the muffin tin thoroughly.

2.  In large bowl, mix oil and honey with electric mixer.  Add egg yolks and continue to mix until blended Add bananas and mix until incorporated.

3.  In another bowl, whisk together almond flour, baking soda, and salt.

4.  Slowly add almond flour mixture to wet ingredients in mixing bowl and mix on low speed until just incorporated. Do not over-mix.

5.  Once incorporated hand mix in dried and fresh cranberries until just combined.

6.  Beat whites until soft peaks form, then gently fold into batter until just incorporated.

7.  Spoon batter into the muffin cups, filling only 2/3 of the way full – do not over-fill.  Sprinkle Turbinado sugar evenly over each muffin.

8.  Bake 20-23 minutes, until toothpick inserted into the middle of a muffin comes out clean and they turn a golden brown.

Do you have any fun ideas for cranberries? I would love to hear them. I have three bags of fresh ones sitting in my refrigerator right now that I would love to try something new with. 

Oh! And one more question. Does anyone know how to tell if a cranberry is ripe? I do know the answer but would love to know if you do too…

This post is linked to:

Monday Mania

Foodie Friday

Food On Fridays

Wholesome Whole Foods

Fresh Clean and Pure Friday

Fight Back Friday

  1. On October 28, 2010 Cristina said

    This couldn’t be a more timely post for me. I’m all geared up to make cranberry muffins this weekend and I like this recipe. I have the almond flour on hand and have been looking fwd to using my fresh bag of berries!

    On another note, Kim…you’ve been tagged on my site! Please stop by and check it out when you have some time. 🙂

    • On October 29, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Cristina!! Knowing your creativity, I am absolutely sure that those cranberries of yours will be put to excellent use!!
      And, yay! I just peeked and saw how I was tagged! I love it! I accept and look forward to passing it on! 😉
      Thanks so much!

  2. On October 29, 2010 Jenn said

    Awesome looking muffins! My dad makes a fresh cranberry sauce by heating them up with a little brown sugar and orange juice….very simple and a tasty Thanksgiving tradition 🙂

    • On October 29, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Jenn! I also make a similar sauce for Thanksgiving (in fact, I am going to be posting about it soon)! You are so right, it is really simple, but amazingly good. My kids even really like it. They love spreading it on their sandwiches the next day with the turkey!

  3. On October 29, 2010 Shirley @ gfe said

    Oh, I love this post, Kim! Such fun … you always provide such a “good read” as well as a great recipe! I was just looking at recipes for cranberry cocktails the other day. They have such eye appeal as well as taste. 🙂 But, yes, sadly, one cannot use cranberries entirely for cocktails. 😉 But maybe not so sadly, when one has a muffin recipe like this one. That photo is such perfection, it almost doesn’t look like a photo … more like a glorious oil painting. Seriously.

    Thanks for this one, Kim!

    • On October 29, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Aww! Thanks, Shirley! I think there is something about the color of cranberries that also totally draws me to them. If you make it to my house, you will see that there is the color red spread throughout. It is one of my favorite colors – so warm and inviting. I will have to post what my indoor holiday decorations look like one of these days – pretty color coordinated (red, red, and more red, lol).

  4. On October 29, 2010 Lexie said

    These look bakery-perfect! Kim, tell me more about the almond flour you are getting from digestive wellness? Is it finer and superior to Honeyville? I’d love to pop over of muffins and tea. Wish I could : )

    • On October 29, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Thanks Lex! The DIgestive Wellness flour is by the far the fluffiest and lightest one that I have tried yet. It really makes for the lightest texture and is my favorite by far to work with.
      And, oh my goodness, how much I wish we lived close so you COULD just pop over for muffins and tea! 😉

  5. On October 29, 2010 Maggie said

    Kim! These look perfect. I love how you put the muffin on the cranberries for the photo – you’re gifted girl! I also love how these are grain-free. Amazing! I can’t get Honeyville in Canada so I’ll have to see if I can get Digestive Wellness so I can try it and see what the difference is. I love cranberries because of their tartness. I don’t eat turkey anymore but I always add some cranberry sauce to my plate because I love it so!

    • On October 31, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Maggie! I just love the texture of the Digestive Wellness Flour. It makes all of the baked goods that I use it in have a lighter texture than some of the other ones that I have tried so far. And yay for cranberry sauce! We love it here too. 😉

  6. On October 29, 2010 katie's cucina said

    WOW! These look amazing. I’ve never cooked with Almond flour before… I’m intrigued I must go buy some! Make sure you stop by Katie’s Cucina and link up this recipe and other great ones too!

    • On October 31, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Katie! You should definitely try using almond flour. It adds a wonderful taste and even some protein to your baked goods. It also is grain-free, which is why I love it even more! 😉

  7. On October 30, 2010 ButterYum said

    Yummo! Love that color and tart cranberry flavor!


    • On October 31, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi ButterYum! Thanks so much! I love the tartness too! Sometimes I just crave tart over sweet (not often, but it does happen 😉 )!

  8. On October 30, 2010 Sophie said

    I made these delightful muffins today & they were the best!! All of my friends loved them!!

    Thanks again for your tasty & lovely recipes! You Rock!

    Many greetings from Brussels, Belgium!

    • On October 31, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Sophie!! Yay! I am so so happy that you liked them and that they turned out well for you! Thanks for your kind words and for coming back and letting me know that they were approved of by your friends!! 😉

  9. On October 30, 2010 Alisa said

    Thanks for sharing Kim, this is an amazing recipe!

    • On October 31, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Alisa!! 😉 Thanks for letting me share this one on your site!
      ps I think a couple of my comments are sitting in your spam box…again. Oye!

  10. On October 31, 2010 InTolerantChef said

    We can only get frozen cranberries here in Australia of course, so could I use those instead? And isn’t a ripe cranberry supposed to bounce or something?

    • On October 31, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      HI IntolerantChef! You could totally use frozen cranberries in these as well. And yes, you are right (and also the only one who guessed)! Supposedly, a ripe cranberry is supposed to bounce! 😉

  11. On October 31, 2010 Ellen said

    Kim, Kim, Kim – these look fantastic!!!!!! I’m flying all the way across the country for tea and one of these babies. You up for company???!!!

  12. On October 31, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

    Ellen! I am up for your company ANYTIME!!!! Hop on that plane and you will have a nice cozy spot to stay in AZ with LOTS of gluten free food, my friend! 😉

  13. On November 2, 2010 Lael Hazan said

    Great post with wonderful photos. I haven’t used fresh cranberries and you’ve inspired me to try.

    • On November 4, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Lael! You should try the fresh cranberries. They really do add an interesting flavor to things. And are a great touch in baked goods. Hope you are well! 😉

  14. On November 3, 2010 Dakota said

    I’m on a muffin kick right now and made blueberry ones and pomegranate muffins. This will be my next recipe to try, so thanks for sharing!

    • On November 4, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Dakota! Pomegranate muffins?? Those sound divine! You have intrigued me enough to try that! Yum! Thanks for stopping by!

  15. On November 3, 2010 Sue said

    Never would have thought of banana & cranberry together, but sounds positively delicious.
    Sue 🙂

    • On November 4, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Sue! I guess bananas and cranberries are not a normal combo, but they work really well here. I have also swapped out the bananas for pumpkin with awesome results! 😉

  16. On November 4, 2010 Ricki said

    I remember reading about these when you first posted but didn’t leave a comment–so I will now! Perfect combination of flavors. And a perfect healthier treat for the Gluten Free Holiday event–thanks so much for submitting it! 🙂

    • On November 4, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Ricki! These are one of my kids favorite muffins. And I love that they are grain-free for a bit of a healthier alternative. Thanks for being one of the hosts in this great GF Holiday event!!

  17. On November 5, 2010 Christy said

    Ripe cranberries float – yes? I love the sound of these muffins – and that they are g/f – I have a friend whose children will go crazy for these – I am sending her the link. Thanks for sharing this with us at the Hearth and Soul Hop!

    • On November 7, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Christy, you are right. Ripe cranberries float in water, or bounce if you drop them on the counter. Thanks for letting me share these muffins at the Hearth and soul Hop this week!

  18. On November 7, 2010 judee@glutenfreeA-Z said

    Yum. I’ve been looking for a healthy versatile muffin. I will be trying this recipe today.The cranberries sound perfect for the season, but I will also try it with other berries as well. thanks for a great recipe.

    • On November 7, 2010 Cook It Allergy Free said

      Hi Judee! I hope you enjoy the recipe. This would be great with any other berries as well. Blueberries are good in these too. I made them this summer with those and they turned out perfect! 😉

  19. On November 12, 2010 Serene said

    Those are so pretty! My brain doesn’t want to believe they don’t have flour in them. 🙂

  20. On November 13, 2010 judee@glutenfreeA-Z said

    I am going to try making these amazing looking muffins today. My husband just was informed he needs to eliminate ( lower salt intake)
    Any substitution ideas for the baging soda and salt??

  21. On January 13, 2011 Christine Kelly said

    I really will try this one – looks fantastic.

Post A Comment

Your email is never published nor shared.