Morning Glory Muffins (authentic recipe!)
Delicious and authentic, this recipe for morning glory muffins comes straight from Nantucket island. The on-the-go breakfast snack will satisfy your appetite and your tastebuds! It’s a quick and easy recipe full of flavor and unique ingredients.
I used to eat one of these muffins almost every morning when I lived in Nantucket. I couldn’t help it because I was the one baking them! The blend of vegetables and fruit makes morning glory muffins super delicious and flavorful. This is the best recipe because it is authentically New England!
Why you’ll love this recipe
- Healthy alternative. All the fruits and vegetables make this a healthier option to traditional muffins.
- On-the-go snack. Just grab a muffin and go when you need a quick snack!
- Absolutely delicious. The ratio of fruits, veggies, nuts and spices makes for a flavorful treat. Plus, the super moist and tender texture is perfection!
- Authentic recipe. I adopted this recipe from the Sconset Cafe in Nantucket, where I worked the summer after graduating college. I adjusted the measurements for home!
Did you know?
Morning glory muffins originated on Nantucket island at the Morning Glory cafe where Chef Pam McKinstry developed the recipe in 1978. While the cafe is no longer open, the recipe was published in Gourmet magazine in 1981.
- Shredded carrots: To guarantee flavor and moisture, shred the carrots yourself instead of buying pre-shredded carrots. You will need about four large carrots.
- Apple: Shred the apple using a box grater (you don’t have to peel it first). Granny Smith is best for flavor and texture, but you can also use Braeburn or Honey Crisp.
- Shredded coconut: If you want sweeter muffins, use sweetened coconut. For a healthier choice, use unsweetened.
- Crushed pineapple: You need one 8 ounce can crushed pineapple for this recipe. Remember to drain and discard the juice. You can also use frozen pineapple (defrosted).
- Orange zest: This is an optional ingredient that is not in the original recipe. I think adds a little extra something extra!
- Chopped walnuts: Another optional ingredient that adds crunch to each bite.
- Raisins: Break up the raisins if they are stuck together. Golden raisins are also a good option.
- Spices: Cinnamon and ground ginger provide extra flavor!
- Brown sugar: The original recipe uses granulated sugar, but I prefer brown sugar. I like the subtle molasses taste to complement the ingredients.
Add spices for more flavor. The recipe already calls for cinnamon and ginger, but you can also whisk in 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg or 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves.
Try using different ingredients to mix things up. Mashed bananas or chopped mango can be used instead of pineapple, and shredded zucchini is a great substitute for apple. You can also swap out walnuts for different nuts like pecans or almonds, and dried cranberries or golden raisins can be used in place of regular raisins.
Make it healthier. Cut the sugar in half for low-sugar muffins. Substitute the vegetable oil with melted coconut oil or applesauce. This recipe also works with whole wheat flour or cup-for-cup gluten free flour.
Use a different pan. Make jumbo muffins in a large muffin tin. Fill the cups about 3/4 full and increase baking time to 35 to 40 minutes. You can also make a loaf in a 9×5 loaf pan. Baking time will be 50 to 60 minutes.
How to make morning glory muffins
- Whisk together the dry ingredients: Flour, brown sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Set aside.
- Mix the wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Combine shredded carrots, grated apple, shredded coconut, vegetable oil, crushed pineapple, vanilla and orange zest. Mix until well combined.
- Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Mix just until combined. Stir in walnuts and raisins.
- Transfer batter to muffin tin and fill each cup about 3/4 full. Bake at 375 F for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few crumbs.
Weigh your ingredients for accurate measurements. If you don’t have a scale, spoon your ingredients into a measuring cup and level with a knife. Only pack down if directed (for example, the brown sugar).
Use room temperature ingredients for easy mixing and a consistent batter. It also results in better textured muffins. Avoid over mixing the dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Mix just until combined.
Shred the carrots yourself. It provides better texture and flavor as well as more moisture to the muffins. Use a Granny Smith apple (or similar tart, firm apple). It keeps its texture and flavor through the baking process.
Frequently Asked Questions
The batter was over-mixed causing the batter to be dense. Another reason is that the muffins are under-baked.
Morning glory muffins are more dense than regular muffins because of all the healthy and delicious mix-ins!
Yes, after they have cooled completely, place muffins in an airtight container and store in the freezer for up to 2 months. Defrost in the refrigerator before serving.
They are on the healthier side due to the fruits and veggies added to the batter. However, the recipe contains sugar and oil. It’s all about balance!
Check out these other classic recipes originating from the Northeast.
Did you love this recipe? Please leave a 5-star 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 rating in the recipe card below and if you REALLY loved it, consider leaving a comment further down the page.
Get the Recipe: Morning Glory Muffins (authentic recipe!)
- 2 cups (250 g) all purpose flour
- 1 cup (200 g) packed light brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger, optional
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups (260 g) shredded carrots, (about 4 large)
- 1 cup (140 g) grated Granny Smith apple with peel, (about 1 large)
- ½ cup sweetened shredded coconut, (unsweetened also works)
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- ⅔ cup (160 ml) vegetable oil
- 1 cup (8 oz can) crushed pineapple, drained
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon orange zest, optional
- ½ cup (64 g) unsalted chopped walnuts, optional
- ½ cup (80 g) raisins
- Preheat oven to 375° F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners and set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Stir in shredded carrots, apple and coconut. Set aside.
- In a separate large bowl, mix brown sugar, eggs, vegetable oil, pineapple, vanilla and orange zest. Mix until well combined.
- Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix just until combined. Stir in walnuts and raisins.
- Spoon batter into prepared muffin tin, filling each cup about 3/4 full. Add a sprinkle of sugar on top.
- Bake at 375° F for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few crumbs. Cool in the pan for a few minutes before inverted onto a wire rack.