Achieve a bakery crumb and beautiful round tops with this gluten-free chocolate chip muffins recipe. This is a small batch, one bowl muffin recipe that uses my two-step baking method and is ready in under 30 minutes!
These dairy-free chocolate chip muffins are perfect for breakfast and for snacking topped with a little bit of dairy-free butter. We enjoy them most as a take-along snack for hikes and outings or a special brunch treat. You’ll love how simple these are to make and the results are truly delectable!
Gluten-free baking is a change of pace but with recipes like these, you’ll enjoy making all the baked goods you love. Try my Gluten-Free Pumpkin Muffins with almond flour and Best Bakery-Style Gluten Free Chocolate Muffins for more bakery-style tasty bites.
We make these gluten-free chocolate chip muffins yeah-around and quite frequently! They are too tasty to not have on hand for a snack attack.
Chocolate Chip Muffins for Everyone
It will be a surprising feat when your gluten and dairy-eating guests can’t tell the difference between these gluten-free muffins and regular muffins! Many of our guests even asked for the recipe.
What really makes this recipe special is the many trials to get the perfect rise, texture, and baking method for the most authentic muffin possible. We’re talking 10 trials of ingredient proportions and using different flours for a simple gluten-free chocolate chip muffin that hits all the marks. This recipe is overall a gluten-free copycat of traditional and much-loved chocolate chip muffins!
The Baking Method
Baking gluten-free can require some adjustments to get the perfect bake, a brilliant rise, and even cooking. For this recipe, we bake at a higher temperature for the first 8 minutes and then adjust to a slightly lower temp for the remaining time to accomplish these features.
Using this two-step baking method mimics traditional baking for this easy chocolate chip muffin recipe that is ready in under 30-minutes.
Why I love these muffins with chocolate chips
- They’re gluten-free and dairy-free. This recipe calls for a 1-to-1 gluten-free style flour, vegan butter, and dairy-free buttermilk for the most effortless exchange of ingredients.
- It is reminiscent of a bakery muffin. These muffins have a rounded soft top, perfect rise, and a delicately moist crumb. You’ll forget they're even gluten-free!
- Perfect for breakfast, brunch, or a snack. Pack up a lunch or enjoy these any time you have a craving.
- A small batch recipe that’s easily scalable. This recipe makes 6 muffins for a quick and small batch when you’re craving something sweet. Or double or triple the recipe for a larger batch.
- One-bowl, easy cleanup. I love making recipes in one bowl and do so by using a large measuring cup. I start by adding in the wet ingredients and stir in the dry ingredients for easy cleanup and less mess.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Gluten-free flour - Choose a 1-to-1 style flour, such as Bob's Red Mill gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour.
- Baking powder, baking soda, and salt
- Sugar - I prefer using coconut sugar, but regular granulated sugar could be used.
- Dairy-free buttermilk - Make your own buttermilk by combining almond milk and apple cider vinegar. This is key to the best rise as the acidity activates the baking powder and creates large bubbles while the batter heats up. Alternatively, if you’re not concerned with a dairy-free recipe, you can easily swap for regular buttermilk.
- Vegan butter - Use melted butter, but not hot. If it is too warm, allow it to cool before continuing with the recipe. This can also be substituted with regular dairy butter. I used these vegan buttery sticks.
- Egg - Adding egg to gluten-free baked goods helps retain moisture and allows for good structure.
- Mini chocolate chips - I love using the minis but feel free to use regular-size chocolate chips. You can also substitute them for white chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, or even peanut butter chips for a recipe that keeps on giving!
See recipe card for quantities.
This one-bowl muffin recipe is super simple and comes together in just minutes!
Prep: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (218 degrees F) and grease or line 6 cups of a standard muffin pan.
Buttermilk: Combine the buttermilk ingredients. I do this in a liquid measuring cup so the recipe needs only one mixing bowl. Set aside.
Dry Ingredients: Mix all dry ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl.
Wet Ingredients: Add wet ingredients and vegan buttermilk to the bowl of dry ingredients. Stir until just combined but do not over mix -- there will still be some small flour lumps in the batter and that's okay.
Chocolate Chips: Add chocolate chips and mix until just combined.
Prep for Baking: Portion the batter into the 6 greased or lined muffin cups. I like to use an ice cream scoop for this. Then sprinkle any extra chocolate chips on top for decoration.
Bake: Bake at 425 degrees F (218 degrees F) for 7 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 400 degrees F. Bake at 400 degrees F (205 degrees F) for 8 minutes. At this point, the muffins should be perfectly cooked. To double-check, insert a toothpick into the center of a muffin. When fully cooked, the toothpick should come out dry.
Cool: Cool for 5 minutes in the muffin pan. Then gently remove the muffins and set on a wire cooling rack for an additional 10 minutes before eating.
Variations: Gluten-Free Muffins Your Way
Take the chocolate chips out of the mix and you have a fantastic gluten-free muffin recipe that you can enjoy with different flavors.
Swap the gluten-free flour from any of these recipes for regular flour for dairy-free muffin recipes.
- Gluten-Free Strawberry Muffins - Chocolate and strawberries combine for a simple 10-ingredient recipe that will give you a new reason to love baking gluten-free.
- Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffins - Using the same base recipe, these blueberry muffins are topped with a crisp cinnamon sugar topping and loaded with juicy berries in every bite!
- Almond Butter Muffins - This alternative gluten-free muffin recipe by Sally's Baking Addiction has some amazing ingredients like almond butter, Greek yogurt, and oats.
- Gluten Free Mini Chocolate Chip Muffins -- Make this recipe in a mini muffin tin! Bake at 400 degrees F (205 C) for about 10 minutes (monitor carefully after 7 minutes) or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.
Topping ideas - Enjoy these bakery-style chocolate chip muffins by adding some tasty toppings. Try a healthy addition like walnuts or pecans, or a gluten-free crumble topping such as the one I add on top of this Showstopper Gluten-Free Apple Coffee Cake.
- muffin pan
- medium mixing bowl
- spatula or wooden spoon
- measuring cups and spoons
- ice cream scoop (optional)
How to store muffins
Store on the counter for up to 2 days in an airtight container or up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Remove from the refrigerator and bring back to room temperature for the best texture as they may not be as soft and crumbly when cold.
Freeze for up to 3 months in an airtight container. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then on the counter before enjoying.
Follow the baking instructions carefully.
The instructions for this gluten free baking recipe has two temperatures: 425 degrees F for 7 minutes followed by 400 degrees for 8 minutes. This high temperature for the first half of the baking time helps to get a nice rise and fluffy muffins!
Preheat the oven.
Similar to the last tip, putting your muffins in the oven before it is fully preheated will lead to a denser muffin and flatter tops.
Try them with butter or vegan butter!
These muffins are incredible on their own. But just a little bit of butter elevates them to a whole new level!
Use Buttermilk/Vegan Buttermilk if you can.
Be sure to use vegan buttermilk for this recipe for the best rise and rounded muffin tops. It was developed with this in mind, so skipping may leave you with a different texture that isn’t as light and crumbly but denser. Don’t worry, you can’t taste the vinegar!
Frequently Asked Questions
To make muffins moist, use plenty of butter and milk or cream in the recipe. You also want to bake for a short period of time but at a high temperature for excellent rise without drying out the crumb.
Butter is better than oil for muffins. Oil creates a soft and smooth texture like a cupcake. Butter offers more crumb and a buttery taste that goes perfectly with muffins!
The most important rule for making muffins is to fully preheat the oven and to not over-mix the batter.
Your gluten free muffins could have been dry in the past for one of these reasons: 1) they were baked too long or at a lower temperature 2) there was not enough liquid 3) a coarser, dryer gluten-free flour was used. Use a rice flour blend for moist muffins that are just like the traditional texture!