Whole Grain, Dairy-Free Coconut Cranberry Orange Muffins

 In Breakfast, Dairy Free, Fall Favorites, Recipes

Whole grain, dairy-free coconut cranberry orange muffins

I love cranberry and orange together.  The flavors, colors and textures of both fruits complement each other so well.  These muffins are mom- and kid-approved, too!  I used whole grains and low-fat coconut yogurt and milk, but the kids said they tasted like bakery muffins.  Win!

Whole grain, dairy-free coconut cranberry orange muffins

So, it snowed this weekend in the Carolinas.  It wasn’t a major event, but it is rather early in the season for snow here.  It didn’t really stick, so there was no snowman-making or snowball fights or driveway sledding.  And (in my opinion) those are the only activities that make snow tolerable.

As you probably know, I grew up in Southern California.  My parents are from the Midwest and as soon as they landed in sunny LA, they wanted nothing more to do with cold weather.  As such, we never went skiing or to the mountains in winter.  They stayed far, far away from the snow.  So, I didn’t have any experience with the stuff until I married a boy from Buffalo.  He knows a thing or two about snow.

The first year we were married, we went to Buffalo for Christmas.  When we got to his parents’ house, my new mother-in-law put me back in the car and drove me to the Mall where she promptly bought me a “real” winter coat. It was a puffy, white, floor-length number that made me look like the Michelin Man.  But it was so cold in Buffalo, that thing couldn’t even keep me warm.

On Christmas Eve, it began to snow.  I was elated to see my first White Christmas.  I thought it was right out of the storybooks!  And what fun I was going to have playing in the snow on Christmas Day!  I was giddy.  I recall the looks exchanged by my in-laws.  And the eye-rolling.  I figured they were just weary of it, but I was a rookie snow-baller.  It was going to be awesome!

Next morning, I bundled up in my Michelin Man coat and headed outside with a sled and a shovel.  I began to shovel the snow into a pile to make my first snowman.  Boy, was that snow cold.  So, I abandoned the snowman and found a spot in which to sled.  Their yard had a slight incline, which was good enough for a few runs.

And then I was ready to go in.  I was frozen to the core.  I had been outside for seven minutes.  SEVEN MINUTES!

I sat in front of the fire for the remainder of the day.  None of us will forget my first White Christmas!

I’ve gotten a little more accustomed to it now.  I’ve learned that you just need the right equipment – layers of warm clothing, ear-covering beanies, gloves and at least two layers of socks.  Wool, preferably.  Waterproof boots.  Hand warmers.  Scarves.  Whiskey helps, too.

But, I still don’t like it.

I’d rather be inside, next to a warm fire, sipping a warm (or warming) beverage and eating these muffins.  I’d forget all about the cold!

Whole grain, dairy-free coconut cranberry orange muffins

Whole grain, dairy-free coconut cranberry orange muffins

Whole Grain, Dairy-Free Coconut Cranberry Orange Muffins


  • Prep Time: 10m
  • Cook Time: 25m
  • Total Time: 35m


  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, solid
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup vanilla coconut milk yogurt
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk (from the carton)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons orange zest
  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries (if using frozen, toss with 1 tablespoon of flour first)

Glaze (optional)

  • 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice

How To Do It

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F).
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat the coconut oil and sugars with an electric mixer on medium speed.
  3. Beat in eggs, one at a time.
  4. Stir in the yogurt, milk, vanilla and orange zest.
  5. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, coconut, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt with a fork.
  6. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir to combine.
  7. Fold in the cranberries.
  8. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners or grease with coconut oil.
  9. Pour the batter evenly into each cup, filling almost to the top.
  10. Bake for 25 minutes.
  11. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pan about 15 minutes then transfer to a rack to cool completely.
  12. In the meantime, prepare the glaze, if using. In a medium bowl, whisk the powdered sugar and orange juice. To change the consistency, add more juice to thin or sugar to thicken. Pour over the cooled muffins.
  13. Store these muffins in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five days.
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