{Gluten-Free} Bakery Blueberry Muffins

When we moved to Sydney, about five years ago now, we arrived with a nearly six-month old and a three-and-a-half-year old who was still adjusting to having a sister. The Foreign Service life can be abrupt; we had been living in a house with all the “stuff” that comes along with a toddler and a baby and in one day it was all packed up not to be seen again for five months. We said good-bye to good friends, the neighborhood cats, the funky playgrounds, and boarded a plane in Riyadh to arrive, with a brief stop in Doha, about 16 hours later back in the West. We got into our new house pretty late at night; we had gone from winter (such as it was in Saudi Arabia) to mid-summer in Australia — the first thing to do besides lugging everything upstairs to the sparsely furnished bedrooms was to figure out the air conditioner. We fell asleep to the sounds of unfamiliar buzzing insects and woke to kookaburras and a thunderstorm.

As we started exploring our new environs, finding the wonderful parks we’d visit so frequently for the next two years, we also found our new grocery stores. In the early weeks I’d take the girls for a walk and/or park then stop at Coles for a few essentials, which more often than not included mini banana muffins or chocolate cream cupcakes, and a pack of blueberry muffins for me. We’d go home and spread a blanket out on the upper lawn under the enormous eucalyptus tree in the backyard and devour our treats. S still remembers doing this; for me, in a new country, totally sleep-deprived and living super minimally, not having made any friends yet, this became an essential part of our weekly routine. The blueberry muffins were so good — just grocery store muffins, sure, but sweet and tender and bursting with berries.

I put together a new gluten-free blueberry muffin recipe last week that reminded me so much of those Australian muffins — they are also gluten-free but you’d hardly know it. A bit sweeter than what I try to do but not too, using maple sugar to balance out the juiciness of the berries. A teaspoon of vanilla extract plus a few spices — cinnamon and nutmeg — make these muffins extra flavorful and homey. I did a blend of three flours here rather than keeping just to oat flour as in my other gluten-free blueberry muffin recipe because I wanted to lighten up the oat flour a bit. The almond flour keeps things nice and cakey while the sweet white flour gives bounce and binding. I call these “bakery blueberry muffins” because they do taste like they could come from a bakery (albeit a grocery store one?)!

Try to use frozen blueberries if you can. I think they bake up better than fresh in this recipe. And try a muffin with a generous swipe of cream cheese or butter — dairy-free if that’s your thing. So good on a weekend morning or with a mid-morning cup of coffee any day. Feel free to imagine yourself in Australia; I know I do on a regular basis.

Til next time – N x

Need substitutions? Swap sorghum flour for the oat flour, tiger nut or another nut flour for the almond flour. Swap granulated sugar for the maple sugar. If you don’t do eggs, try two flax eggs in place of the eggs. Use your favorite non-dairy butter for the butter

{Gluten-Free} Bakery Blueberry Muffins

Recipe by Nicole Spiridakis



Tender, sweet blueberry muffins lightly spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg,


  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted, or light olive oil

  • 1 cup whole milk

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 3/4-1 cup maple sugar

  • 120 g/about 3/4 cup sweet white rice flour

  • 125 g/about 1 1/4 cups gluten-free oat flour

  • 130 g/about 1 packed cup + 2 Tablespoons almond flour

  • 1 Tablespoon baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • Pinch of ground nutmeg

  • Zest of 1 lemon

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries


  • Line a muffin pan with liners and heat oven to 350 F.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter, milk, eggs, vanilla, and maple sugar.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and lemon zest.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix well to combine. Gently stir in the blueberries.
  • Use a 1/4 cup measure to scoop the batter into the prepared pan. I got 14 muffins.
  • Place the muffins in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, until a tester inserted comes out clean and muffins are springy to the touch.
  • Remove pan from oven and remove muffins from pan and place on a rack to cool.
  • Store muffins in an air-tight container for up to 5 days.
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