Dec 15, 2014

Raisin-Cran-Bran Muffins… date-sweetened, vegan and oil-free!

I made these scrumptious bad boys this morning because… baby, it’s cold outside! It was a great way to warm up my kitchen, not to mention a good way to fuel up my body for a busy day. Using traditional wheat bran was a fail-safe way to go. I imagine though, that you could use oat bran if you want to experiment and have a gluten-free version. I haven’t tried that yet so if you do, please share with us the results!

Are you a fan of bran muffins? I am! I love that they are not too sweet… perfect for breakfast. These are light yet hearty, airy, moist and slightly crumbly with wonderful pops of sweetness from the raisins and the dried cranberries. Of course, you could just use raisins, but adding cranberries creates a more festive treat for the holiday season, don’tcha think? Try to find fruit-sweetened, dried cranberries. Many health food stores carry them in their bulk sections this time of year.

Without further chatter, here they are…


~ dry

  • 2 cups wheat bran
  • ½ cup blanched almond flour
  • ⅓ cup brown rice flour
  • 1 TBS flax meal
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ½ cup organic raisins
  • ½ cup fruit-sweetened, dried cranberries

~ wet

  • ½ heaping cup pitted medjool dates
  • 1½ cups unsweetened, plant-based milk (I used soy)
  • ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tsp lemon juice


  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. Prepare a 12-count muffin tin with paper liners or lightly grease. If you’re using paper liners, you may want to spray them with some spray-oil. Otherwise the muffins will stick a bit after baking. Remember, other than the small amount of almond flour, there is ZERO oil of any kind in these.
  3. Mix all dry ingredients together, whisking well to combine.
  4. Blend the dates with the milk and the lemon juice until smooth. Add the applesauce and blend for a second or two on low to combine.
  5. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir well to combine.
  6. Fill the muffin cups, using a heaping ¼ cup per muffin.
  7. Bake for 30 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.
Makes one dozen muffins. Enjoy!

Healthy trails,

16 responses to “Raisin-Cran-Bran Muffins… date-sweetened, vegan and oil-free!”

  1. These look perfect! I love a bran muffin be it wheat or oat bran. Happy Holidays to you and your family!

  2. Helyn says:

    Thanks, Tami! They are really yummy if I do say so myself 🙂 Happy Holidays to you as well!!!

  3. Helyn says:

    🙂 Should I mail you some?

  4. John Carlson says:

    I am so glad you post recipes that are oil free. As someone who follows Dr. McDougal & wants to cut the fat without the flavor, your site is wonderful. Most vegan recipes are so heavy on the oil. Is this gluten free? My Dr. has advised me to avoid gluten too.

  5. Helyn says:

    Hi John,
    Yes, I am also avoiding oil as much as possible! It's not gf because I used wheat bran, but I think these would also work using oat bran (haven't tried it though). I'm gluten-senstive (not intolerant–no allergies) but I don't have a problem with the bran. Hope this helps!

  6. Ekko says:

    Wow is it really 1/4 cup ground nutmeg? I love nutmeg, but I don't think I've ever used that much in a recipe.

  7. Helyn says:

    Oh, no! No, no, no. Big typo there. Thanks so much for spotting it. It's 1/4 TEASPOON of nutmeg. Oh my gosh. Not only would that not taste good, that much nutmeg could be dangerous! :-

  8. Ekko says:

    I was thinking it sounded like quite a bit. No worries I had not made them yet. I need to find bran.

  9. Helyn says:

    Oh, good! Whew. Enjoy!

  10. Anonymous says:

    I just made these! Absolutely fantastic!!!! Could fresh/frozen cranberries be substituted from the dried? I'm all out of my fruit sweetened dried cranberries, and want to make another batch! Thanks!

  11. Helyn says:

    Yay! So glad you like them! Not sure about the fresh cranberries only because they would be so sour, but perhaps the raisins would offset that. I say give it a go! Let me know how they work out for you, okay?

  12. Anonymous says:

    Frozen cranberries worked great! Just took them out of the oven and tried one fresh out of the pan. imo-not sour at all! Sweet/sour in one bite, not just sweet/sweet! I noticed the cranberry taste a little bit more using the frozen cranberries. I also liked the texture contrast with the soft baked raisin and then the baked cranberry "pop" of fruit. (Did that make sense?) I will have to eat another one when cool, just to be sure! Hehehehe

  13. Helyn says:

    Excellent! Thanks for letting us know!! Happy Holidays!

  14. Anonymous says:

    Happy Holidays to you too! Btw- For second year in a row, I'm making your artichoke bean stuffed portabellas for our Christmas dinner. Red beans/green peas, so festive and yummy! It's a tradition now!

  15. Helyn says:

    Sounds perfect! 🙂

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