Another Monday, another Muffin recipe! These Apple Crumble Protein Muffins are full of apple cinnamon goodness with a buttery oat crumble on top. They also happen to be gluten-free, low in fat and sugar, and high in protein! The texture is dense but tender… definitely hearty enough to keep you full for a couple hours. That’s why I use protein in all my baked goodies – it turns what would be a “treat” into a more filling snack.

Did you know? Pea protein from golden peas doesn’t have lectins, which is one the key proteins that causes upset or allergens (source). Pea protein also happens to be a complete protein, containing all nine essential amino acids, although it is low in methionine.

The base of this recipe combines cinnamon pea protein and gluten-free baking flour for the maximum protein without ruining the texture and mouthfeel. These definitely have a different taste and texture than your typical bakery muffin (which has way more oil and sugar), but they are scrumptious nonetheless!

If you don’t have pea protein, you can substitute three-quarters cup of gluten-free baking flour. If you don’t have gluten-free baking flour, you can substitute all-purpose flour, brown rice flour, cake flour, cassava flour (Paleo), oat flour (oats blended into flour), sorghum flourspelt flourtiger nut flour or whole wheat pastry flour. Note: To lower, the carbs, substitute up to half a cup of the gluten-free baking flour for one-quarter cup of coconut flour (the muffins just won’t be as fluffy).

To sweeten these muffins, I used Pyure Organic Stevia Blend that’s calorie-free and twice as sweet as sugar. Truvia would also work! If using a sweetener that measures cup for cup like sugar, such as baking stevia or granulated erythritol, you’ll need three-quarters of a cup. Coconut sugar or raw sugar can also be used, but this will increase the calories, carbs, and sugar!

Since these are vegan muffins, I used two tablespoons of ground flaxseed plus half a cup of water instead of eggs. You can totally use two whole eggs or half a cup of egg whites if not vegan! Of course, this recipe calls for lots of unsweetened applesauce (sub pumpkin puree for a pumpkin version) and a hefty dose of cinnamon. Almond butter adds even more richness, but can be substituted for more unsweetened applesauce, cashew butter, or sunflower seed butter, or two tablespoons of vegan buttery spread like Earth Balance.

For the crumble, I combined rolled oats (use certified gluten-free if needed), cinnamon pea protein (can sub flour), unsweetened applesauce, vegan buttery spread, and more granulated monk fruit sweetener.

The optional drizzle is just some six tablespoons of unsweetened almond milk, three tablespoons of confectioner’s erythritol, and one half teaspoon vanilla extract. Totally optional, as they’re delicious without!

Here’s the printable recipe for these vegan Apple Crumble Protein Muffins! I hope you’ll rate and comment below if you try them 🙂

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5 from 1 vote

Apple Crumble Protein Muffins (Vegan)

These apple crumble protein muffins are gluten-free, low in sugar and fat, and full of apple cinnamon goodness with a buttery oat crumble on top!
Course Breakfast
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Servings 12 muffins
Calories 158kcal
Author Sarah Wilkins, No Excuses Nutrition


  • 1 cup (140g) gluten-free baking flour*
  • 3/4 cup (90g) cinnamon pea protein powder*
  • 6 tbsp. calorie-free sweetener* I used Pyure organic stevia blend
  • 2 tbsp. ground flaxseed*
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt optional
  • 1 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce*
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup almond butter*


  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup apple chopped
  • 2 tbsp. tbsp. calorie-free sweetener* I used Pyure organic stevia blend
  • 2 tbsp. cinnamon pea protein powder*
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp. melted buttery spread I used Earth Balance brand
  • 2 tbsp. unsweetened applesauce

Icing (optional):

  • 6 tbsp. confectioner’s erythritol I used Swerve brand
  • 3 tbsp. unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Whisk together dry ingredients for muffins (through salt) in a medium mixing bowl.
  • Add wet ingredients (through almond butter) and mix just until no dry clumps remain (batter will be thick, almost like dough).
  • Generously coat twelve wells of a nonstick muffin pan with cooking spray. If using cupcake liners, lightly coat insides with cooking spray.
  • Divide batter between wells evenly and press down with wetted fingers.
  • Combine crumble ingredients in a small bowl and spoon over top muffins, one heaping tablespoon each.
  • Bake for 25-35 minutes until a toothpick or knife inserted comes out clean.
  • Let muffins cool for 10-15 minutes.
  • If desired, combine ingredients for icing and drizzle over top. Muffins will keep in the fridge in an airtight container at least one week.


Calories (per slice, minus optionals and icing): 158kcal, Fat: 5.5g, Sat fat: 0.9g, Carbs: 18g*, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 11g, Sodium: 158mg
Calories (per slice, including optionals and icing): 159kcal, Fat: 5.5g, Sat fat: 0.9g, Carbs: 18g*, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 11g, Sodium: 258mg
*minus carbs from erythritol – erythritol has 0.2kcal per gram which is negligible.
© 2019 No Excuses Nutrition. If you wish to publish this exact recipe digitally (website, blog, ebook) or in tangible format (cookbook, magazine), you must first request permission by emailing If publishing an adapted version with one or more ingredients changed, it is sufficient to mention “inspired by No Excuses Nutrition.”