Best Homemade Banana Oatmeal Muffins (Gluten Free)

I love having a piping hot banana oat muffin for breakfast, but if I wanted them gluten free I’d have to get creative. That’s what led me to create a gluten free banana oat muffin recipe that was just as fluffy in texture as those with gluten.

Muffins are particularly challenging to make gluten free. As with many baked goods, it is the gluten development that helps the dough rise and provides the signature texture. It took many failed batches of muffins to compensate but I persevered until I finally created the perfect texture.

Two of the key components of this recipe are the oats and flour, which had to be made gluten free. There are a good number of brands with gluten free options these days, which led me experimenting with Bob’s Red Mill. I had great results with this brand and recommend sticking to it for this recipe if you can.

The gluten free flour I’ve chosen is specifically a 1-to-1 baking flour. It is a blend of sweet rice and brown rice flour, potato starch, sorghum flour, tapioca flour and xanthan gum that can be interchanged with wheat flour without changing the quantities. This results in an airier muffin than if I’d just used something like plain rice flour.


  • Bob’s Red Mill Rolled Oats-It’s important to double check that your oats are gluten free. You can pick a different brand, but I’d recommend Bob’s Red Mill.
  • Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour-As far as gluten free flours go, this is the one I’ve had the most success with. You can try to substitute another brand’s gluten free baking/all purpose flour but it may affect the texture.
  • Banana-It stands to reason that you can’t have banana muffins without bananas but did you know that adding banana to baked goods became popular in the 1930’s? It was a good way to stretch your budget by using overripe bananas, which is what I’d recommend you use in this recipe.
  • Eggs-Eggs are the leavening agent in this recipe to help these muffins rise.
  • Whole Milk-Milk helps to give the muffins a fluffier texture and sweeter flavor.
  • Irish Butter-Irish butter has a higher fat content than the standard American butter, which gives baked goods an even more delicious flavor.
  • Brown Sugar-I love using brown sugar when baking. The added molasses add so much flavor.
  • Mini Chocolate Chips-You can use regular sized chocolate chips or even a chopped up chocolate bar. Any type of chocolate will work so whether you prefer milk or dark, use what you love.
  • Cinnamon-Cinnamon is a spice made from the dried inner bark of several tree species from the genus Cinnamomum. It has a sweet, woodsy, and slight citrus flavor, which is most similar in taste to clove.
  • Baking Powder-Baking powder is a dry chemical leavening agent which is made by mixing a carbonate or bicarbonate and a weak acid. It is used to add volume and a lighter texture to baked goods.
  • Baking Soda-Sodium bicarbonate is also known as baking soda, bread soda, cooking soda, and bicarbonate of soda. Baking soda is usually a component of baking powder but the two are often used together as they are in this recipe to reach the perfect texture.
  • Vanilla Extract-Vanilla extract is made by crushing vanilla pods and extracting the flavors into a mixture of ethanol and water, in a process similar to making coffee. It is an essential pantry stable for Western baking.
  • Cardamom-Cardamom is an Indian spice made from the seed pods of the cardamom plant. It is closely related to ginger and can be used in sweet or savory dishes.
  • Nutmeg-Nutmeg is the seed of an Indonesian evergreen tree, which pairs wonderfully with cinnamon.
  • Salt-Salt is typically used in baking to strengthen the gluten, but it also boosts the flavor of the final product, which is why we’re using it here.

Why isn’t oatmeal always gluten free?

Pure oats are gluten-free and safe for most people with gluten intolerance, including those with celiac disease or a wheat allergy. The issue comes from how the oats are grown and processed. Studies have shown that there is a high risk of cross-contamination starting from sowing the seeds all through packaging.

Farms will often grow different grains alongside each other and harvest them using the same equipment. Many facilities process oats alongside other grains as well, such as wheat, rye, and barley. This causes cross-contamination that may trigger a person’s gluten intolerance.

How can I customize banana muffins?

When it comes to muffins, the easiest way to make them your own is with toppings. These can be applied before or after baking. This recipe is topped off with brown sugar and chocolate chips but there are plenty of other options to swap in.

Fruits, such as blueberries, bananas or strawberry slices can be arranged on top of your batter before baking. You could also experiment with other varieties of flavored sugar, of which the options are practically limitless. After baking, top it off with a drizzle, such as chocolate, caramel, or peanut butter, and you’re golden.

What makes something a muffin and not a cupcake?

It’s the age-old question, are muffins just ugly cupcakes? The correct answer is a definitive no. To start with, muffins are eaten for breakfast, but cupcakes are exclusively eaten for dessert. This is because cupcakes are usually baked with more sugar and topped with frosting and thus are a lot sweeter than muffins. Muffins can even be savory, incorporating cheese, bacon, vegetables, and fruits.

Another important distinction is the texture and mixing process. When making muffins, the dry ingredients are mixed together and then added to the wet ingredients. Cupcakes, however, involve adding the ingredients one at a time and whisking them thoroughly. This causes cupcakes to have a lighter and fluffier texture than muffins.

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Begin by preheating the oven to 375°F.
  2. Place muffin liners in the muffin tin. If you’re out of liners, you can just grease the tin with extra butter.
  3. In a bowl mix all the dry ingredients and mix well, then set aside.
  4. In a separate bowl beat the eggs, then add the mashed bananas, milk, melted butter, and vanilla extract, then mix well.
  5. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet mix while stirring. You don’t have to mix it for a long time, just until it comes together.
  6. Scoop the mixture into the muffin liners, sprinkle with the remaining brown sugar and chocolate chips.
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes until you can poke the centers with a toothpick, and it comes out clean.

Recipe (GF Banana Oatmeal Muffins)

First, gather your ingredients: 

  • 1 1/2 of Bob’s Red Mill rolled oats.
  • 1 1/2 of Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour.
  • 1 ½ cup mashed banana.
  • 2 eggs.
  • 2/3 cup of whole milk.
  • 1/3 cup of Irish butter, melted.
  • 1 cup of packed brown sugar, reserve 1/3 for topping.
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips.
  • 1 tablespoon of cinnamon.
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder.
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda.
  • 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract.
  • 1/8 teaspoon cardamom.
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg.
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt.



  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  2. Place muffin liners in the muffin tin.
  3. In a bowl add the rolled oats, flour, 2/3 cup of brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, cardamon, nutmeg, and salt. Mix well, then set aside.
  4. In a separate bowl beat the eggs, then add the mashed bananas, milk, melted butter, and vanilla extract, then mix well.
  5. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet mix while stirring until everything is incorporated.
  6. Scoop the mixture into the muffin liners. Sprinkle the tops with the remaining brown sugar and chocolate chips.
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes until you can poke the centers with a toothpick, and it comes out clean.

What to serve with banana muffins?

These banana muffins are a great snack on the go or a quick breakfast. While they’re perfectly filling on their own, you can jazz them up. Try adding a spread of butter, a drizzle of chocolate or caramel sauce, peanut butter, or your favorite jam to suit your tastes.

If you’re looking for a full meal, I’d recommend a side of fruit salad, iced tea or coffee, yogurt topped with your favorite berries, and cheese and crackers. This will make a luxurious breakfast to pamper yourself with or to make for someone special.

Ready to start baking? Come back and let me know what you thought.


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