We developed this recipe for Nike (yes, the global running brand🤩). This is a variation of our whole wheat muffins base recipe. Sweet potatoes are delicious, versatile, and full of nutrients. These healthy sweet potato muffins are packed with veggies, whole grains, almond butter, and a touch of spice – perfect for a satisfying breakfast or snack!
Three Must Know Cooking Skills
For recipe success, learn how to:
Culinary Tips for the Best Healthy Sweet Potato Muffins
Measure the flour properly to prevent dense muffins. Fluff, spoon, and level; don’t scoop and pack!
Whisking the dry ingredients together mimics sifting and evenly distributes the ingredients, so don’t substitute another utensil.
When measuring brown sugar, pack it in the cup. If you are trying to reduce your sugar consumption or prefer less sweet muffins, reduce the sugar to ⅓ cup; the recipe will still come out great!
Don’t overmix the batter! Watch our muffin method culinary technique video to learn how to mix the batter just enough so that you end up with light and fluffy muffins.
Use a portion scoop to distribute the batter into the muffin tins. This handy tool can help make perfect muffins, cupcakes, pancakes, and more. It also makes the work easier; just squeeze the handle, and the batter slides right out!
Bob the spoon or knife up and down in the muffin batter when adding the almond butter to help it slide off the utensil.
We used a dark non-stick muffin pan to bake these muffins. If you use a light colored pan, the cooking time will increase.
Usually, to check for doneness, you insert a toothpick into a muffin in the middle of the pan and if it comes out clean, it’s done! However, because the almond butter is in the center of these muffins, it may not come out entirely clean. Use your chef’s intuition of timing from past muffin recipes, or try to angle the toothpick so that it won’t hit the almond butter center.
- White Whole Wheat Flour: substitute whole wheat pastry flour or spelt flour for a similar taste, color, and texture. You can also substitute 1 cup whole wheat flour and ½ cup all-purpose flour. We don’t recommend subbing all regular whole wheat flour, as the muffins will come out dense and grainy. To make gluten-free sweet potato muffins, use a gluten-free flour mix, such as Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten-Free Flour.
- Pumpkin Pie Spice: substitute cinnamon or apple pie spice.
- Sweet Potato: substitute canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) or butternut squash.
- Buttermilk: substitute plain yogurt, Greek yogurt, kefir, or sour cream. You can make your own buttermilk by mixing ½ cup milk or milk alternative with ½ Tablespoon white vinegar or lemon juice.
- Brown Sugar: substitute cane sugar, but note that the flavor will be slightly different.
- Canola Oil: substitute avocado oil. Do not substitute olive oil, as this has a strong flavor. Do not substitute vegetable oil, as this is not a heart-healthy oil.
- Eggs: to make vegan sweet potato muffins, substitute the eggs with flax eggs. To make one flax egg, mix 1 Tablespoon of ground flaxseeds with 3 Tablespoons of water and let it rest for 10 minutes. Eggs help leaven the muffins, so a vegan version might not be quite as fluffy.
- Vanilla: substitute ¼ teaspoon almond extract.
- Almond Butter: substitute any nut, seed, or soybutter. Peanut, cashew, sunflower, or pistachio butter are all great options!
To make chocolate sweet potato muffins, add ½ cup chocolate chips. Note that adding chocolate chips will increase the yield, so bake extra batter in silicone liners.
For banana sweet potato muffins, substitute ½ cup mashed sweet potato with 1 mashed ripe banana.
Want to make mini muffins? Prepare a mini muffin pan with liners or non-stick spray and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
This batter works for quick bread too! To make whole wheat quick bread, prepare a 9×5 loaf pan with parchment paper or non-stick spray. Swirl the almond butter into the top of the bread. Cook for 50-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
Want some more muffin recipe inspiration?
Use our base recipe as a guide to make it your own, or check out some of our favorite whole wheat muffin variations!
You just need a few pieces of equipment for this recipe:
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Nested mixing bowls
- Tovolo scoop spatula
- Portion scoop
- 12-cup muffin pan
- Reusable muffin liners
Are these Sweet Potato Muffins Healthy?
Yes! Many pre-made muffins or store bought mixes contain way too much added sugar. Some even contain up to or even more than your daily allowance of sugar – yikes! The key ingredients that make this recipe healthier than store bought varieties are whole wheat flour, sweet potato, and less sugar than leading brands.
Whole Wheat Flour
Whole wheat flour is a good source of fiber, B vitamins, Vitamin E, trace minerals, and phytochemicals. Replacing refined grains (i.e. white flour) with whole grains (i.e. whole wheat flour) may reduce the risk of developing chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer. (1)
Sweet potatoes provide beta carotene, fiber, and potassium. These nutrients promote immune function, healthy cholesterol, and normal blood pressure.
Less Added Sugar
High sugar consumption is not good for health, and in general, most Americans eat way too much. Men should aim to consume less than 9 teaspoons (~36 grams) of sugar per day, and women and children should aim to consume less than 6 teaspoons (~24 grams) of sugar per day. (2) Each muffin in this recipe has ~2 teaspoons (8 grams) of added sugar.
We doubt you’ll be able to resist biting into a warm, fluffy muffin when it’s fresh out of the oven! Enjoy on its own for a satisfying snack or dessert, with a side of fruit for a balanced breakfast, or as a sweet addition to lunch.
Storage Tips for Homemade Muffins
Because these are moist muffins, they will spoil more quickly at room temperature. Cool completely, then store in a bag or airtight container at room temperature for a few days or in the refrigerator for up to one week.
Got a busy few weeks ahead? These muffins are great for the freezer! Cool completely, wrap individually or in pairs, then store in a freezer-safe bag for up to 3 months. When ready to eat, thaw overnight in the refrigerator, or reheat in the microwave.
Want more healthy snack recipes?
Try out these favorites, and as always, adjust to YOUR taste!
Sweet Potato Muffins with Almond Butter
- 1 medium sweet potato (~6 ounces)
- 1 ½ cups white whole wheat flour
- ½ Tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup packed brown sugar
- ½ cup buttermilk
- ¼ cup canola oil
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 6 Tablespoons almond butter
- Cook the sweet potato. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. Use a fork to poke several holes into sweet potato and set on baking sheet. Roast 40-50 minutes, or until easily pierced with a fork. Allow potato to cool significantly. Scrape the flesh out of the skin and use a fork to mash in a bowl. Measure out 1 cup of puree.
- Reduce oven temperature to 350°F. Prepare a 12-cup muffin pan with nonstick spray or muffin liners.
- In a large bowl, gently whisk flour, pumpkin spice, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
- In a separate medium bowl, whisk together mashed sweet potato, brown sugar, buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients. Using a spatula, fold ingredients just until combined. Do not overmix.
- Use a small measuring cup or portion scoop to fill cups. Drop ½ Tablespoon nut butter in center of each muffin. Push to the center of muffin by bobbing your spoon up and down. Cook for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into muffin (not nut butter) comes out clean. Enjoy!