I’m a huge fan of coconut milk, and it’s one of my favorite ingredients to use in both sweet and savory recipes. Since I tend to avoid baking with oil or margarine, the fat in coconut milk is also a great way to boost the richness in my baked goods. This recipe for Coconut Muffins is very basic, but the end result is luscious and decadent without being too sweet.
The coconut flavor in the finished muffins is not overwhelming at all, so if you want a heavier coconut flavor, I would suggest substituting coconut extract for the vanilla. Also, I usually use light coconut milk since it’s easier to find and moderately healthier, but if you prefer regular coconut milk then the muffins will still be delicious. Also, if you like a sweeter muffin then it might be a good idea to increase the amount of sugar in the recipe to suit your preferences.
One of my favorite variations on this recipe is to make piña colada muffins by adding pieces of chopped pineapple to the finished batter (my sister said that this variation was her favorite out every muffin I’ve ever made). Adding pineapple also helps to make the muffins a bit sweeter without requiring additional sugar. If adding pineapple, it’s important to cut the pieces very small so that they don’t just sink in the muffin cups and make the bottoms of the muffins soggy. Although I’ve never tried it, using dried pineapple pieces should also work well, though it would probably be best to partially rehydrate the pineapple pieces by soaking them in water before adding them to the muffin batter. Another delicious variation is to add chocolate chips, melted chocolate, or ever cocoa powder to the batter to help satisfy chocolate cravings.
No matter how you choose to make these muffins, I hope that you’ll like them as much as I do!
Yield: 1 dozen
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 14 oz. can of coconut milk (a generous 1 1/2 cups)
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup shredded coconut (plus more to sprinkle on top)
Preheat the oven to 400ºF.
In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In a separate bowl (or a liquid measuring cup), combine coconut milk, applesauce, and vanilla. Make a well in the dry ingredients, add the wet ingredients, and stir just to combine, then fold in the shredded coconut. Spoon batter into muffin cups and sprinkle additional shredded coconut on top.
Bake for about 20 minutes and allow the muffins to cool before removing them from tin. Enjoy!