Nutty Bran Muffins Recipe for Breakfast

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These nutty bran muffins are not only delicious but they’re also packed with the goodness of wheat bran and other nutritious ingredients.

I wrote this recipe a few weeks ago when M asked for a healthy breakfast muffin. He’s always talked about these bran muffins he used to get in the coffee shop of his old office building, so I got to work to develop a healthy bran muffin recipe that we would be excited to eat each morning. These delivered!

Today we’ll explore the health benefits of wheat bran, provide a step-by-step guide on how to make awesome bran muffins, and offer tips for storage and variations.

bran muffin on cutting board

What is Wheat Bran?

Wheat bran is the outer layer of the wheat kernel, which is separated during the milling process. It is an excellent source of dietary fiber, particularly insoluble fiber, and contains essential vitamins and minerals. It promotes regular bowel movements, helps prevent constipation, and supports overall digestive health.

Incorporating wheat bran into your diet can aid digestion, promote heart health, and help manage weight.

Now, let’s talk about turning plain ‘ol wheat bran into a delicious nutty muffin.

Ingredients

  • Wheat bran: Rich in fiber, wheat bran supports digestive health and helps regulate blood sugar levels.
  • Buttermilk: Buttermilk adds moisture to the muffins and provides a good source of calcium and protein. The acidic nature of buttermilk helps make the muffins fluffy when it reacts with the baking soda and baking powder. Do not substitute regular milk. To make dairy-free buttermilk, combine 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice or apple cider vinegar with 1 cup of plain, dairy-free milk (e.g. almond, oat, rice), and let it stand for 5 minutes.
  • Brown sugar: The depth of brown sugar as the sweetener adds a touch of caramel flavor. Sugar is sugar when it comes to baked goods and how your body processes it. You can substitute white sugar, honey, or maple syrup, if you prefer. In my opinion, brown sugar yields the best texture in this recipe.
  • Extra virgin olive oil: Provides healthy monounsaturated fats, reducing the risk of heart disease. Oil is an essential muffin ingredient that contributes to the texture and holds the muffin together. I most often have olive oil on hand so that’s what I use. You can also use avocado oil or any other healthy cooking oil.
  • Egg: You only need 1 egg here. The egg adds moisture and acts as a binding agent. You can use a vegan flax egg, but the muffins will be more crumbly.
  • Vanilla extract: Vanilla adds a gourmet sweetness to your baked goods without adding in extra sugar. I love Madagascar vanilla if you can use it, but any vanilla works.
  • Hazelnut flour + 2 tablespoons water (or substitute with almond flour): Hazelnut flour adds a nutty flavor and a dose of healthy fats to the muffins. I had some left over from another recipe and it was wonderful here. You could also use almond flour. Or, leave it out altogether to make these muffins nut-free.
  • Flour: Flour gives structure to the muffins while retaining a light texture. You can use regular all-purpose flour, gluten-free all-purpose flour, or whole-wheat flour (the muffins will be denser). Nut flour is an optional addition above. I do not recommend substituting the cup of flour here with nut flour as the mixture will be too heavy.
  • Baking soda: Helps the muffins rise and gives them a fluffy texture.
  • Baking powder: Another leavening agent that contributes to the muffins’ rise. Using both baking soda and baking powder yields the best texture.
  • Kosher salt or fine sea salt: Enhances the flavors of all the ingredients.
  • Raisins or another add-in: Raisins add a natural sweetness and a burst of flavor to each bite. This bran muffin recipe can accommodate 1/2 cup of dried fruit (I use raisins) or chopped nuts folded in before baking.

How to Make Nutty Bran Muffins

These bran muffins are very easy to make! I’m giving you a lot of detail and images so you can get them just right.

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line a muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix wheat bran and buttermilk. Allow the mixture to stand for 10-15 minutes to let the wheat bran hydrate.
wheat bran and buttermilk in bowl
  1. Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, beat brown sugar, olive oil, egg, and vanilla extract until the mixture is light and fluffy.
bran muffins recipe step 1
  1. To the sugar and egg mixture, stir in the hazelnut flour (or almond flour) with 2 tablespoons of water. You can omit the nut flour from this recipe. If you do that, also omit the extra 2 tablespoons of water.
  2. Add the wheat bran mixture to the sugar and egg mixture in the large bowl and stir well.
  3. Place a strainer or colander over the large bowl and add the all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, then sift it into the bowl. Then, gently stir the dry ingredients into the buttermilk and bran mixture until just blended, being careful not to over-blend. (If you don’t have a strainer to sift, you can simply add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and gently stir until just blended.)
wheat bran muffins batter in mixing bowl
  1. Fold in the raisins gently, ensuring they are evenly distributed throughout the batter.
raisins in wheat bran batter
  1. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling each cup about 2/3 full.
wheat bran muffin batter in muffin liners ready to bake
  1. Bake in the preheated oven for approximately 15 to 18 minutes, or until the tops of the muffins spring back when lightly pressed or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  2. Transfer the muffins to a wire rack and allow them to cool completely.
wheat bran muffins

Variations

While these Nutty Bran Muffins are delicious as is, you can add your own personal touch with these variations:

  • Substitute the raisins with dried cranberries or chopped dates for a different flavor profile.
  • Sprinkle a handful of chopped nuts, such as walnuts or almonds, on top of the muffins before baking for added crunch.
  • Add a teaspoon of cinnamon or pumpkin spice to the dry ingredients for a warm and aromatic twist.

Storage

To store these delicious Nutty Bran Muffins, place them in an airtight container or sealable bags. They can be kept at room temperature for up to 3 days.

For longer storage, refrigerate them for up to 1 week.

You can also freeze the muffins for up to 3 months. To enjoy them later, simply thaw at room temperature or reheat in the toaster oven for a warm treat.

Print
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bran muffins in muffin tin

Nutty Bran Muffins Recipe

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  • Author: Elizabeth Rider
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 12 Muffins 1x
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Stir, Bake
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Get the health benefits of this delicious fiber-rich bran muffins recipe in a few easy steps. They’re perfect for breakfast or a satisfying snack!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 1/2 cups wheat bran
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup hazelnut flour + 2 tbsp water (or substitute with almond flour, or omit)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour (or gluten-free ap flour, or whole wheat flour; measure spoon and level method)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1.5 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup raisins

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line a muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. Mix wheat bran and buttermilk together in a medium bowl; let stand for 10-15 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, beat brown sugar, olive oil, egg, and vanilla extract until light and fluffy.
  4. Stir the hazelnut flour (or almond flour) and 2 tablespoons water mixture into the sugar and egg mixture.
  5. Add the wheat bran mixture to the sugar and egg mixture and stir well.
  6. Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together over the wet ingredient mixture, then stir until just blended.
  7. Fold in raisins; spoon batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling each 2/3 full.
  8. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 to 18 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes

You can omit the nut flour from this recipe. If you do that, also omit the 2 tablespoons of water.

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Hi, I'm Elizabeth

I teach you how to be healthier without extremes, so you can live more and obsess less.

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