Orange Cranberry & Oat Breakfast Muffins {vegan}

Orange Cranberry & Oat Breakfast Muffins {vegan} | Kneading Home

I must confess, I've always been a sucker for muffins. I'd choose a sweet, moist, crumbly muffin filled with bursting fruit over a cupcake any day. Don't even get me started on the the muffin top crumbles. I have a collection of muffin tin liners above the microwave with colors and designs for every season. But you see, I have this issue where once I eat one muffin, I eat ALL THE MUFFINS. Like zero self-control. They are just so small and delicious, I swear they call my name, and before I know it my desk is covered in dirty muffin tin liners and I feel super guilty. 

Orange Cranberry & Oat Breakfast Muffins {vegan} | Kneading Home
Orange Cranberry & Oat Breakfast Muffins {vegan} | Kneading Home

So in attempt to get inspired while scrolling through my favorite food blogs last week, I discovered these cranberry orange muffins. I've never been much of a cranberry fan, but I knew we had a big bag of them left-over from when I made Dark Chocolate Cranberry Crumble Cake last month so I figured I'd give them a try. Knowing my muffin obsession, I attempted to make these a little healthier so I tossed out the 3/4 cups of sugar the recipe called for and poured in a nice 1/2 cup of pure maple syrup (seriously, I put that shit in everything) instead. To make them more suitable for breakfast, I swapped out the all purpose flour and pulsed some oats into flour for added protein and fiber. While I was at it I trader butter for coconut oil and threw in some flax seed to replace the egg because why not make them vegan? How easy was that?! {cue Ina Garten} I added a touch of cinnamon for warmth and to combat the tangy citrus and topped things off with a sweet oat crumble. The results are so so good. 

Orange Cranberry & Oat Breakfast Muffins {vegan} | Kneading Home

They make the perfect breakfast muffins that won't leave you feeling guilty. They are bright and zesty (the fresh squeezed OJ does that!) which serves as the perfect pick-me-up for cold winter mornings. They are unbelievably moist and the oat crumble makes them feel like such a treat but somehow still healthy at the same time. Pop these guys in the toaster with a nice smear of butter/earth balance and you will thank me. 

Orange Cranberry & Oat Breakfast Muffins {vegan} | Kneading Home

Orange Cranberry & Oat Breakfast Muffins 
Adapted from Pastry Affair 
Makes 24 muffins 

For the muffins:
2 flax eggs (1/4 cup + 1 tbsp water + 2 tbsp flax seed meal + 1/4 tsp baking powder) or chicken eggs
2 cups old fashioned rolled oats 
1.5 cups whole wheat pastry 
zest of 2 oranges 
1 teaspoon cinnamon 
1 teaspoon salt 
2 teaspoons baking powder 
1 cup pure maple syrup 
1 cup coconut oil, melted
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1.5 cups fresh squeezed orange juice (from about 4 oranges) 
2 heaping cups cranberries (fresh or frozen) 

For the crumble: 
1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats 
2 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour 
1 tablespoon coconut sugar (or cane sugar)
1/4 teaspoon salt 
2 tablespoons coconut oil, cold 

Prepare the flax eggs. In a small prep bowl stir flaxseed meal, water, and baking soda together. Let sit for 15-20 minutes while preparing the other ingredients. 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Blend oats in a food processor fitted with a blade until it becomes powdery, about 1 minute. Don't worry about getting it as fine as regular flour, it will have more body and chunkiness and that's okay. In a medium bowl, whisk the oat "flour", whole wheat pastry flour, orange zest, cinnamon, salt, and baking powder together. Set aside.

Make the crumble. Whisk the oats, flour, sugar and salt together until combined. Using a fork mix in the coconut oil until mixture becomes wet and crumbly. Refrigerate until right before use. Even 3 minutes in the fridge will help the coconut oil harden up. 

In a large bowl whisk together maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla extract and flax eggs. The oil will look like it won't incorporate, but just keep whisking, it will. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, one third at a time, whisking to combine. Once incorporated it will be super thick and hard to stir. Pour in the orange juice and whisk until completely incorporated. Stir in the cranberries. Pour into lined muffin tins, top with oat crumble, and cook for 30-35 minutes until a skewer comes out clean.