Coconut Sourdough Muffins

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This is a happy day! Please join me in welcoming Erin back to the blog! She’s been understandably wrapped up with family life for some time, but is now back. And regularly, too, for she will be joining the (soon-to-be-announced) crew of regular contributing writers on this site. –Wardee

It’s hard to believe three years have passed since teaching the Sourdough eCourse with my dear friend Wardee. More surprising still, we continue to receive delectable and nourishing offerings almost daily from the same trusty sourdough starter in exchange for a simple daily feeding or two. Pancakes or waffles to start the day. English muffins and crackers for mid-day power. Pizza, tortillas, and biscuits to help us bring our day to a satisfying close. Delicious, and crazy how time flies!

I look at most recipes through the lens of sourdough, always wondering if I can up the nutrition and digestibility by including our sour little friend. Today’s recipe is a tasty example of one of my favorite remakes.

The original muffin sports refined sugar, table salt, sweetened coconut, and unbleached flour. My remade recipe uses sucanat, sea salt, unsweetened coconut, whole wheat flour, and sourdough. Doesn’t that just make your heart sing?!

Oh, the joy that comes with bringing our dear ones delicious and nutritious treats! And on top of all this goodness, the recipe is highly adaptable. Curious how to make the muffin egg and dairy-free or as a simple soaked recipe? Read on, friends!


Coconut Sourdough Muffins

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin coconut oil or butter, barely melted
  • 1-1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3/4 cup full fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup sourdough starter
  • 1/3 cup sucanat, rapadura or coconut sugar
  • 1 pastured egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut (plus a bit extra for sprinkling on top)

Makes 12 regular sized muffins.

In a small bowl, stir together the coconut milk and sourdough starter. Add whole wheat flour. (If you are using whole wheat pastry flour, spelt, or fresh ground flour you may have to add a bit more. You are looking for a thick batter consistency.) Cover the bowl with a cloth and a plate and set aside to sour for at least 8 hours or overnight. Your souring time could be significantly less if you have a very warm kitchen.

Once the batter has finished souring, preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease 12 muffin cups or line them with paper liners.

In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the egg, sucanat, vanilla, coconut, salt, and coconut oil or butter. Using 1/3 cup sweetener creates an only slightly sweet muffin. Feel free to increase the sweetener if you are looking for something sweeter. And I must put a plug in for Wardee’s homemade bourbon vanilla. Oh, my! I add it to most everything!

Put the soured batter on top of this mixture and stir to incorporate. I like using my hands for this job, but I’m sure a mixer or a Danish dough whisk would work well, too. Sprinkle the baking soda and baking powder on top of the dough and mix well.

Divide batter among the muffin cups and top with a sprinkling of unsweetened coconut. I’ve found filling the muffin cups with a scant 1/4 cup makes 12 just-right-for-us muffins. Bake for 15 minutes or until a tester comes out clean. Larger muffins will take longer. Allow to cool for just a bit. Remove from tin and enjoy! Store up to a week in a sealed container. Warming the muffins just slightly before enjoying will provide a scrumptious fresh-from-the-oven experience. Truly.

A Few Notes

You might need variations or options, and here are some for you — plus troubleshooting advice.

Don’t have coconut milk or prefer coconut? Want an all together different flavored muffin?

Use plain yogurt, cultured buttermilk, cultured sour cream, dairy kefir, whole milk, or your preferred non-dairy milk instead of the coconut milk. Adjust the amount of flour as necessary. Use butter instead of coconut oil.

Using plain yogurt and butter will allow you to create any flavor muffin you fancy. How about raspberry/lemon, apple/cinnamon, cherry/almond, or blueberry/orange?Toasted fennel and orange zest is a new favorite over here. The possibilities are endless.

Don’t have a sourdough starter going… yet?  :-)

Use 1 cup of fermented dairy in place of the coconut milk and sourdough starter. Plain full fat yogurt, dairy kefir, cultured buttermilk or cultured sour cream will all work well. Soak for at least 8 hours.

And here’s a free video and directions for getting a starter going for next time. :)

Need a soaked option?

Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of your preferred acid to a one cup measure.  Lemon juice*, water kefir, kombucha, and apple cider vinegar will all work well. Fill to the top with water, making 1 cup total of acidic water. In a medium sized bowl stir together the acidic water and 1-1/4 cup flour of choice. You may need to add a bit more flour to achieve a thick batter consistency. Cover the bowl and soak for at least 8 hours. Proceed with recipe.

Our preferred combo for this soaked muffin is to soak the flour with lemon juice and water and then add lemon zest and frozen raspberries to the batter just before baking. My favorite taste testers give them two thumbs up!

Need it egg-free and dairy-free?

When ready to make the muffins, use coconut oil instead of butter and a mixture of 3 tablespoons water and 1 tablespoon ground flax seed for the egg. Let the flax seed meal and water mixture sit for 5 minutes to get gummy; then add to the mixture. The texture of this muffin is slightly different, but the flavor is still delicious.


Muffins don’t dome beautifully?

Make sure they have baked long enough. Try adding a bit more flour next time. If your batter ends up on the thinner end, use dry add-ins instead of wet.

Want add-ins or tasty additions?

Try adding lemon or lime zest; crispy nuts, chocolate chunks, or unsweetened carob chips; pieces of fruit like banana, mango, blueberry, raspberries or pineapple; or
favorite spices or seeds.

I just shake my head when I think of these muffins. They are truly one of our favorites, and I look forward to hearing how you make them one of your own! What are you your favorite muffin add-ins?

This post may contain affiliate links. We only recommend products and services we wholeheartedly endorse. Thank you for supporting Traditional Cooking School by GNOWFGLINS with your purchases. Our family thanks you!


    • Erin says

      Thanks Mare! Let me know if you come up with any fun twists off this recipe. :-) It’s so flexible. Your rolls sound great!

  1. Karen says

    Welcome back Erin!!!! Looking forward to your future posts! Maybe you could
    include a picture of your little boys!

    • Erin VL says

      Thanks Karen. You are very sweet. And next time around, I’ll happily include a pic of my boys. :-)

  2. Rhonda says

    Just seeing your name on this post brought a warm smile. Welcome back Erin! We’re still loving your sourdough recipes ~ many family favorites came from that E-Course so long ago!

    • erin vl says

      awwwww, thanks rhonda! good to be back in this place. wardeh’s so great. :-) glad to hear you are still enjoying many of those recipes. thanks for the smile and your kind comment!

    • Erin says

      Hi Wilda! I am so sorry I missed your question. As far as gluten free flours go, I am no expert, but it’s definitely worth a try. Just make sure your batter is thick enough when you begin the souring process, so if you need to add more, do. You may have to play around with the thickness/flour combination that works best as it can create a too wet/too dry muffin. Also, I know chia seeds or guar gum might be added to baked goods as well, but I’m sure you know more about that than me! :-) I hope they work out for you!

    • Erin says

      Oh mercy, Shannah! I am so sorry I missed your comment. Let’s see… you’ve got to be a little careful just adding in something wet like pumpkin. I’d try subbing 1/2 cup of the coconut milk with 1/2 cup pumpkin and then use only 1/4 cup coconut milk (or any ratio you choose, really). Sour the batter with the pumpkin. I’d love to hear how it goes. I love pumpkin!

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