These pina colada muffins have all the flavours of the classic cocktail; coconut, pineapple, and rum. They are also gluten-free and dairy-free and make a delicious poolside treat or just a refreshing summertime dessert.
About Coconut Flour and Tapioca Flour
Both coconut flour and tapioca flour are excellent for gluten-free baking. While they are quite different from all-purpose flour, they offer intriguing flavours and textures to baked goods.
Coconut flour has a slightly naturally sweet coconut taste. As a result, it is also incredibly nutritious including plenty of fiber and iron, as well as some protein, carbs, and fat. Even if you don't require gluten-free baking, you may decide you would like to bake with coconut flour simply due to its taste and its nourishing elements.
Besides its taste and nutrients, coconut flour is also beneficial for gluten-free baking because it absorbs moisture very well. In fact, if you are replacing 1 cup of regular flour in a recipe with coconut flour, you will likely only require a ¼ cup.
Tapioca flour is similar to coconut flour in that it contains fiber and protein. It also has a somewhat sweet taste and is beneficial to the texture of gluten-free baked goods like these pina colada muffins. In fact, it helps with a lighter crumb texture in these muffins. It also adds crispness to baked items like pie crusts and cookies.
How to Make Pina Colada Muffins
To start making these piña colada muffins, you should begin with preheating your oven to 375°F. While some ovens preheat quite quickly, others take some time so it is integral that you start warming your oven straight away. Since the muffin batter includes baking powder and baking soda, which are chemical leaveners and react in the batter quite quickly, you do not want your batter to sit for very long before baking.
Next, you line a traditional 12-cup muffin pan with baking cups. For this, you can use parchment paper liner or silicone baking cups. The silicone ones are wonderful because you can reuse them each time you bake. However, paper liners have intriguing patterns.
Making the Batter for these Pina Colada Muffins
The process of making these piña colada muffins starts with mixing the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. These ingredients include tapioca starch, coconut flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, baking soda, and salt. I like to use a whisk for this because it ensures that everything gets evenly incorporated.
The next step is to combine the wet ingredients in a separate bowl. The wet ingredients for these pina colada muffins involve coconut milk and melted coconut oil for the coconut elements of these piña colada muffins, in addition to eggs, maple syrup, vanilla, and rum extract. However, if you or your family don't love the flavor of rum, you can feel free to leave the extract out. A whisk is also perfectly fine to combine these ingredients although you may choose to mix with electric beaters if you like.
Next, you stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until you have a smooth batter. Then, divide the batter between the prepared muffin cups. To make the pina colada muffins an even size, you can use a measuring cup or cookie scoop to ensure you measure equal portions into each cup of the muffin tin.
Baking the Pina Colada Muffins
Just before baking the pina colada muffins, they require the pineapple element which is some finely chopped fresh pineapple chunks added on top of each muffin. As an alternative to fresh pineapple, you could also use well-drained canned crushed pineapple when pineapples aren't in season. I like to push the diced pineapple into the muffin tops gently so they stay in place.
The pina colada muffins require approximately 20 to 25 minutes to bake through. To tell if they are done, you can insert a toothpick into the middle of a muffin and pull it out. If it comes out clean or with a few dry crumbs, you will know the muffins are cooked through properly. However, if you see some stodgy or wet crumbs or batter on the skewer, they will require more time. The finished muffins may also be slightly golden around the edges while having an opaque top. Afterward, you can place them on a wire rack so they cool quickly.
To turn the pineapple muffins into a more decadent dessert, you can add some whipped coconut cream onto the cooled muffins as a frosting. Make it even more piña colada-like by spiking the frosting with real rum or flavoring it with rum extract. You could also add coconut extract if you would like a more pronounced coconut taste. I also like to stick a fresh pineapple wedge into the frosting as decoration, but you could try some shredded coconut in addition to enhance the pineapple and coconut combination.
Storing these Pina Colada Muffins
Similar to other coconut flour muffin recipes, you can store these unfrosted in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days. Alternatively, you may place them in the fridge so that you can keep them longer or even in the freezer.
If you choose to keep them in the freezer, they should keep for several months. Simply whip up a few batches of these pina colada muffins and freeze them until you are ready to enjoy them. You can pull out some muffins as needed and allow them to thaw at room temperature to add to school lunches, eat for snacks or desserts, or even serve to guests.
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Piña Colada Muffins
- ½ cup coconut flour
- ¼ cup tapioca starch optional
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs
- ¼ cup coconut milk
- ½ cup coconut oil melted
- 6 tablespoons maple syrup or sugar-free alternative*
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon rum extract optional
- ½ cup pineapple cut into small cubes
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a muffin pan with baking cups (silicone or parchment).
- In a bowl whisk together coconut flour, tapioca starch, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- In another bowl mix together eggs, coconut milk, melted coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla extract and optional rum extract.
- Add dry ingredients to wet mix and stir to combine. Fill batter into prepared pan. Top each muffin with pineapple dices and gently push them into the batter.
- Bake muffins for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.