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We Made All 24 of the New Superhero Muffins. Here are Our Favorites.

Seriously, we made them all.

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Superhero muffins, the whole-grain muffins made famous by Shalane Flanagan and Elyse Kopecky’s book Run Fast. Eat Slow., are the best—our Senior Writer, Erin Strout, makes a batch every Sunday to fuel her runs through the week. They’re fast, tasty, and nutrient-dense, popular with runners everywhere (this apple-carrot version continues to be a favorite on our site, years after publishing it).

So when we learned that Flanagan and Kopecky’s newest book, Rise and Run, would feature 24 new recipes for Superhero Muffins, we knew we had to try them all. Strout (our resident gluten-free baker), Managing Editor Jessica Campbell-Salley (the traditional tester), and Associate Editor Malissa Rodenburg (vegan superstar) made batches of muffins for weeks. Here’s the inside scoop on each recipe, available now in Rise and Run.

*Vegan-Tested: As the resident vegan, nearly all the recipes I tried included some form of substitution (usually applesauce for eggs, coconut oil for butter, and a plant-based milk or yogurt when called for), but I kept the spirit of the recipe the same. —Malissa 

[Find three of these new Superhero Muffin recipes here.]

Sweet Muffins

Original 2.0

The headnote for this recipe declares that “Our Superhero 2.0 is just the evolution of the movement.” I think it’s a perfect description for this veggie-packed muffin with lots of textural interest from the nuts and a depth of flavor from warm, fall-friendly spices (and so easy on my stomach!). Plus, it was the easiest recipe I made, coming together in one bowl. —Jessica

Lemon Chia Blueberry

God, I bought so much almond flour for these recipes. (The little Bob’s Red Mill bag ran out, uh, quickly, so I invested in a large bag from Costco.) I’m not really an “almond flour” person, preferring full gluten and fluffy crumbs whenever possible. This was the first recipe I made where the almond flour wasn’t balanced with another type, and the batter itself felt a bit like wet sand—I was #concerned. And while I think the crumb would’ve benefited from some other type of flour (the muffins themselves didn’t have the best structural integrity), these are straight-up delicious—lemon and blueberry are a tried-and-true combo, and the chia seeds came out wonderfully crunchy. —Jessica

Peach Cardamom

Peach (pear) cardamom superhero muffins

Not a personal favorite. I had to make with pears instead of peaches due to the season, and I felt like the chopped fruit didn’t lend itself well to a cohesive texture or flavor profile. I also couldn’t make out much cardamom, so highly recommend doubling if you make these. —Jessica

Jessica’s Favorite: Spelt Blueberry Yogurt

Top of my list. The combo of flours, rich butter (yes please), and full-fat yogurt made for the ultimate healthy blueberry muffin. I love blueberry muffins but don’t make them much, because traditional recipes don’t deliver on many nutrients beyond sugar. These have tons of good-for-you stuff in them like whole grains and healthy fats (the recipe calls for spelt flour but I subbed in white whole-wheat as that’s what I had, and they came out great.) I ate one of these, warmed, sliced in half with some butter, alongside a cup of coffee many mornings. —Jessica

[We’ve got the recipe for Spelt Blueberry Yogurt here.]

Malissa’s Favorite: Vegan Red Velvet Superhero Muffins*

vegan red velvet muffins

As the only true vegan recipe, the red velvet muffins topped my list of favorites. Though a bit dense, they were truly filling for their size. And despite the earthiness of the beets—the source of the red color—occasionally coming through, the warmth of chocolate overwhelms all else. —Malissa

[We’ve got the recipe for Vegan Red Velvet Muffins here.]

Lily’s Chocolate Superhero Muffins*

Another favorite—though it feels almost too obvious—because you literally cannot fail when chocolate is involved. —Malissa

Grain-Free Pineapple-Coconut Superhero Muffins

A refreshing little tropical bite. You really need to be a coconut lover to enjoy these (I am)—they’re very coconut-y. As noted in the recipe, they’re also very delicate (crumbly). I ate mine with a fork. —Erin

Raspberry-Zucchini Cornbread Superhero Muffins

As I was making these, I didn’t think I’d like them much. I was wrong. They’re just the right balance of sweet and savory. I paired one with a salad (the DIY Grain Salad from Run Fast, Cook Fast, Eat Slow) for dinner and it was the perfect complement to the meal. I’d add a few more raspberries next time. I also didn’t have corn flour so I used cornmeal for a true cornbread texture and it worked perfectly. —Erin

Yam Spice Superhero Muffins*

Like the red velvet muffins, these ones also turned out very thick but not too heavy, making them really great quick fuel for a run. The combination of cinnamon, ginger, yams, and maple syrup is like a fall flavor dream. Chopped walnuts are an optional addition, but I highly recommend them! —Malissa

RELATED: Elyse Kopecky Has Perfected the Art of Cutting Sweet Potatoes

Minute-Mug Raspberry Lime Superhero Muffins*

Just a minute in the microwave and you get the absolute fluffiest muffin on the planet? Yes, please! The zingy sweet and sour flavor was not only a treat, but a bit of a wake up call first thing in the morning. —Malissa

Strawberry Rhubarb Superhero Muffins*

Moist and sweet, like strawberry rhubarb pie.—Malissa

Superhero Smash

superhero smash muffin with a cup of coffee

As advertised, these are low-glycemic treats with no added sweeteners, just fruit (bananas and applesauce). The notes suggested adding in chocolate chips and I never dismiss a suggestion to add chocolate chips (duh). I really loved this muffin, I have to say. They satiated me in the morning and were also gentle on my stomach, so I could eat them right before a run. Super easy to make, too. These earned a spot on my go-to list for weekly meal prep. —Erin

Pumpkin Streusel Superhero Muffins

Tis the season for all-things pumpkin. I don’t really need a season to make pumpkin baked goods, to be honest. I made these to share with some early morning 5K race volunteers (I’m not above bribing the community to volunteer at our races) and received some great feedback. The the streusel on top adds the right amount of sweetness (confession: I did not have coconut sugar so I used regular old sugar, but the recipe only calls for two tablespoons, which is not a lot) and I enjoyed the chai spice in the muffin. —Erin

[Find the recipe for Pumpkin Streusel Muffins here.]

Dark Chocolate Banana Superhero Muffins

I was horribly distracted when I was making these (college football had more of my attention than the recipe did) and I think I may have either forgotten an ingredient or left them in the oven a touch too long. I want a re-do because they were delicious anyway, just a little dry. I also served these up to our 5K race volunteers and they were a crowd-pleaser. Seems like kids would like these a lot for breakfast. I actually used them as a dessert—admittedly a wholesome, healthy dessert, but I’m generally sold on anything with chocolate chips. —Erin

Erin’s Favorite: Race Day Superhero Muffins

race day superhero muffins

OK, these are a new favorite. I haven’t actually raced in years, but harkening back to my younger marathoning days and this was actually what I probably needed. I had always struggled with what to eat a couple of hours before the marathon and I think if I ever go back to racing, these muffins will come with me. They are delicious, so they check the box of something I’d actually enjoy eating before a race (always difficult to find) and they have all the things I generally reach for to fill me up: peanut butter, bananas, oats. They settle well in my stomach pre-run. I could also see this as an excellent pre-bedtime snack the night before a race. A+ muffin. —Erin

Savory Muffins

Minute-Mug Sweet Potato Cheddar

For these, I’m simply going to say that sweet potato and cheddar is not a flavor combination I, personally, enjoy. —Jessica

Zucchini-Cheddar Cornbread

All the yes on these savory muffins. The recipe calls for a mix of almond and corn flour, but as a self-respecting Southern woman, no way was I not using corn meal in cornbread. And good news: They came out great, and my husband enjoyed two with his chili the night I made them. I actually think corn meal made for a superior texture here vs. corn flour, which I believe would’ve lost the sweet, corn-heavy flavor of a classic cornbread. —Jessica

Green Eggs and Hammer On Superhero Muffins*

OK, this one surprised me. As an egg-based savory muffin, I didn’t think I could make it work for this plant-based runner. But I accepted my part in this baking challenge and I was going to rise to the occasion. Using Just brand ‘eggs’ (made from mung beans), the muffins turned out to be deliciously egg-like. I followed the guidance on the Just website, 3 tablespoons per one egg, which came to about a bottle and a half. Blended with all the other ingredients to create the batter, you couldn’t tell the difference. The final product made a perfectly balanced breakfast (carbs, protein, and veggies all present) that was also incredibly tasty. I recommend adding a splash of hot sauce, if that’s your thing. —Malissa

Apple Cheddar Superhero Muffins

apple cheddar superhero muffin

Cheese, butter, apples…this one hit a lot of my favorite notes. I didn’t especially care for it for breakfast, but it was a great snack. Because I can’t eat gluten, I substituted the whole wheat flour for all-purpose gluten free flour (I use Cup4Cup) and they were probably a little lighter and fluffier with that change. I gave a few to my neighbor and she asked for the recipe, so they were a hit beyond my house, too. If you want a little more sweetness, I’d choose a sweeter apple than the suggested Granny Smith. —Erin

Bacon Black Bean

The flavor in these was actually quite good (the chili powder made me nervous), but the texture, somewhere between a muffin and a mini frittata without being either one, left a lot to be desired. The 10 grams of protein per muffin almost makes up for it, though, and makes my occasional macro-counting heart sing. Stands in well for when you want a breakfast burrito but don’t have the time or energy to make one. —Jessica


A fun, different way to use pesto, which I often relegate to pasta or stirring into soups. If you want something savory that leans a little Italian, this is the one. —Jessica

Everything Bagel Superhero Muffins*

everything bagel superhero muffin

As a lover of everything bagels, I was a bit disappointed in this one. The onion and sweet potato strongly overpowered the everything bagel seasoning and had a party of their own. The win? The texture came out thick and bready, not unlike a bagel itself. —Malissa

Quinoa Veggie Superhero Muffins

I’m a sucker for a good quinoa veggie concoction so I knew I’d enjoy these. They’d be perfect for a make-ahead post-run brunch with your running crew. I also struggle with lunch and these fit the bill. Instead of grazing in the afternoon, I can have one of these and get a healthy and filling meal (packed with protein and veggies), grab-and-go style. —Erin

Sweet Potato Kale Superhero Muffins*

If baking all these muffins has taught me anything, I’m now fully convinced that sweet potato is the best pre-run carb and that the easiest way to eat it is in muffin form. In this case, it goes great with kale and dairy-free feta (I used the Follow Your Heart brand). As Kopecky and Flanagan write in the book, “Athletes usually crave salt in the morning because their bodies need sodium to hydrate properly before a morning sweat session.” I know I prefer a savory over sweet breakfast and was glad to have the option. —Malissa

RELATED: Elyse Kopecky’s Rules for Storing Muffins and Waffles