Chai Spiced Vegan Muffins

5 from 40 votes

This Chai Spiced Vegan Muffins recipe is a delicious healthy breakfast or snack filled with warm aromatic spices like cloves, cinnamon, ginger and cardamom!

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Chai Spiced Muffins are must-try vegan muffins that are moist, rich and flavorful! I use dairy-free milk, applesauce instead of butter and load it up with warm spices including cloves, cinnamon, ginger and cardamom. It’s a simple vegan muffin recipe that you can customize to add nuts, chocolate chips or dried fruit. And no one will even notice they’re vegan!

Large basket of the chia spiced muffins
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What are chai spices?

Chai is a blend of spices that originated from India. They provide a warming and soothing effect and act as a natural digestive aid so they have huge health benefits however you consume them! The spices used vary from region to region, but the mix most commonly includes:

  • Cinnamon
  • Allspice
  • Cloves
  • Nutmeg
  • Cardamom
  • Ginger

To make the vegan muffins recipe easier, I only included 4 of the spices, but feel free to substitute as you see fit.

Bowl of the four spices used in the recipe: cloves, ginger, cinnamon and cardamom

Ingredients and Substitutions

  • Flour: Use all-purpose flour for the best results. If you have a gluten intolerance, you can try swapping it for a 1:1 GF flour, although these chai muffins have not been tested with this.
  • Coconut sugar: Used to sweeten the vegan muffins. It’s less processed than granulated and adds a great flavor. You can use light brown sugar if you don’t have coconut.
  • Baking powder and salt: For light and fluffy muffins.
  • Chai spices: Cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and cloves.
  • Applesauce: To make these muffins vegan and eliminate the need for eggs, we use some unsweetened apple sauce instead.
  • Milk: You can use any dairy-free or dairy milk. I like to use oat, but almond, soy or coconut will all work well.
  • Oil: Grapeseed oil helps to keep the muffins nice and moist. You can substitute it with any other neutral oil like canola, vegetable or safflower oil.
  • Maple syrup: To natural sweeten the muffins. If not vegan, you can also use honey.

How to make vegan muffins

Preheat your oven and grease your muffin tin. In a bowl, mix together the dry ingredients. I like sifting the dry ingredients whenever possible for better results!

Process shots showing the dry ingredients before and after mixing

In another bowl mix together the wet ingredients: milk, applesauce, neutral oil (I like grapeseed) and maple syrup or another liquid sweetener.

Process shots showing the wet ingredients measured out and then mixed together

Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and combine. You should have a smooth batter, but some lumps are totally ok whenever you’re making vegan muffins, or even regular muffins!

glass bowl with muffin mix being stirred

Fill the muffin cups two-thirds full and bake. They will puff up in the middle, but not too much. You can also fill them all the way up, and make 9 muffins instead. I like keeping them on the smaller side.

Process shots showing the muffins in a muffin tin before and after baking

Tips for making this recipe

  1. Don’t substitute the oil for more applesauce. A little fat from the grapeseed oil (or another neutral oil) is ok in these vegan muffins because they help them become light and moist. There’s already applesauce in the recipe and adding more will make these gummy.
  2. Bring milk to room temperature so it doesn’t seize up. Just like non-vegan baking, it helps when the ingredients are all at room temperature, especially the milk.
  3. Sift the flour so the vegan muffins will be lighter and fluffier. And make sure to measure the flour after you sift it so you’re not using any extra flour, which can make the muffins more dense and dry.
  4. Don’t over beat the mixture together. Lumps in the batter are ok and even small specs of flour are ok. If you over beat the mixture, it leads the gluten to develop more, which can also lead to less fluffy muffins.

Frequently asked questions

How do you know when they are ready?

These vegan muffins will take around 18 to 20 minutes to bake. When they are ready, the tops will rise and be solid. Insert a toothpick into the center of a muffin and if it comes out clean, they are ready to be taken out of the oven.

What’s the best milk to use?

There’s only half a cup of non-dairy milk in these muffins, so you can use whatever you have. Soy, oat and almond all work well. If you aren’t following a vegan diet, you can also use regular cows’ milk.

How long do they keep?

Once you have baked the muffins, they will keep at room temperature in an airtight container for about two days. To prolong their life, you can store them in the fridge and they will be good for about a week. You can also freeze the muffins and they will keep for up to 3 months.

Basket of chai spiced vegan muffins

These vegan muffins are so perfectly spiced and no one will ever guess that they are vegan. The chai spice gives them such a great flavor and they are perfect to enjoy as a mid afternoon snack with a cup of tea or even for breakfast!

More vegan treats:

More muffin recipes:

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Chai Spiced Vegan Muffins

This Chai Spiced Vegan Muffins recipe is a delicious healthy breakfast or snack filled with warm aromatic spices like cloves, cinnamon, ginger and cardamom!
5 from 40 votes
Servings 12 muffins
Course Breakfast
Calories 203
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
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  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly grease a twelve-muffin tin or add muffin liners to a muffin tin.
  • In a large bowl, sift together the dry ingredients: flour, coconut sugar, baking powder, salt, and the spices.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients: applesauce, milk, oil, and maple syrup. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix.
  • Fill the muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake in the preheated oven for 18 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Let them cool down for 5-10 minutes before removing from the muffin tin. Yields 12 muffins.


Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container with a paper towel under them to absorb any moisture. They will last about a week in the fridge. You can also freeze the muffins for up to 3 months. 
Substitutions: For best results, follow the recipe as is. However here are some common substitutes that would work well in this recipe.
  • Feel free to change up the spices or increase/decrease quantities as you see fit.
  • Instead of grapeseed oil, you can substitute any other neutral oil like canola, vegetable or safflower oil.
  • Instead of applesauce, you can use other fruit purees like banana or pumpkin.
  • Instead of diary-free milk, you can use regular cow’s milk.


Calories: 203kcal, Carbohydrates: 28g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 10g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 75mg, Potassium: 157mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 11g, Vitamin A: 45IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 65mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American
Course: Breakfast

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  1. Jennifer Hollis says:

    I love how they turned out. I did use regular cane sugar and soy milk. I added Chinese Five Spice With the recommended Cinnamon And Ginger. Thank you so much. They are just right.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Yum, your tweaks sound so good!! I will have to try them with Chinese 5 spice. Thank you for sharing!

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