Sourdough Banana Muffins are easy to make, using sourdough discard from your Sourdough Bread Starter! Whip these lofty sourdough discard banana muffins up in no time, using all purpose or whole wheat white flour, brown sugar, walnuts and a hint of vanilla. Like in my Easy Sourdough Biscuits, sourdough discard creates the most flavorful, and tender baked recipes! This recipe is vegetarian and dairy free.
Sourdough Discard Muffins
Soft. Tender. Fluffy. The magic is in the discard! Save it after feeding your Sourdough Starter, then hold on to the discard and repurpose it. Here are three reasons why sourdough starter discard is fabulous in baked goods:
- Sourdough discard has a tenderizing effect when combined with other leavening agents in gluten containing recipes making these banana muffins extra soft and tender.
- Sourdough containing recipes offer a little longer shelf life compared to its non sourdough counterparts.
- Using sourdough discard in recipes is a delicious way to maintain a no waste sourdough starter.
These sourdough muffins aren’t very sour however as the sourdough flavor is subtle. But, the magic can be found in their tender and fluffy texture.
Quick Guide: How to Make this Sourdough Starter Banana Muffins Recipe
Sourdough discard banana muffins are easy to make with limited hands on time. In summary, here’s how to make em’ (see recipe card for details):
- First, toast the walnuts in a preheating oven. Chop and set aside.
- Second, in a medium bowl, whisk the flour, cinnamon, salt, baking powder and soda.
- Third, in a large bowl whisk together the sugar, eggs, oil, vanilla, mashed banana and discard.
- Next, mix the dry into the wet ingredients. Allow the batter to set for 15 minutes.
- Last, fold in the chopped walnuts, scoop and bake.
Resting the batter helps hydrate the flour and supports a lofty muffin. It’s worth the wait.
How to Bake Banana Muffins
You’ll need a twelve cup muffin pan and tulip cups to bake these sourdough muffins. This fluffy banana muffins recipe creates extra tall sourdough muffins so tulip muffin liners give them the support they need. Tulip cups can be purchased or follow the Kitchen’s DIY method for homemade!
You’ll notice a relatively high temperature for baking these sourdough starter discard banana muffins at 400F (205C), but as soon as the muffins are popped in the oven, the temperature is lowered to 375F (190C). This high starting temperature helps give these muffins their loft and a nice domed shape.
Pro Tip: Knowing the temperature of your oven is key for best baking outcome. Use an external oven thermometer (dial or digital) to know its true temperature and adjust as needed.
How to Make Sourdough Banana Muffins Healthy(ish)
I tested this recipe with both all purpose flour and whole wheat white flour. They both work beautifully! I prefer whole wheat white flour, due to the bonus of whole grain goodness, and its nutty flavor. But it’s good to know there’s another option if needed.
About Sourdough Discard
For this sourdough muffin recipe you’ll need half a cup of 100% hydration sourdough discard. It can be old or young, and pulled straight from the refrigerator. If it’s been hanging out in the fridge for a while (a few weeks or more), smell the discard. If it smells fruity and ripe, carry on with your recipe. However, if it smells off or stinky, toss it and create new sourdough discard.
If you’re new to the sourdough world, I have a DIY Sourdough Bread Starter recipe that’ll help you get off an running with a sourdough starter! It’s super easy to pull together.
How to Store Your Sourdough Banana Nut Muffins
- Store at room temperature, covered for up to four days.
- Freeze individual muffins on a sheet pan then, once frozen, store in a covered container for up to two weeks. Thaw at room temperature.
How to Rewarm Sourdough Muffins
Warm muffins in a 350F oven for about 10 minutes. They’ll be soft and tender. Slather them with butter, or as my mom would say, cream cheese.
A Few Recipe Notes
- Muffin Liners: Use tulip muffins liners to support these fluffy sourdough banana nut muffins. They can be purchased (look for 2″ x 2 3/4″) or The Kitchn has a tutorial on how to DIY them!
- Oil Choice: I use coconut oil in this recipe, however, canola oil will also work.
- Flour Substitution? Choose all purpose or whole wheat white flour. Both make delicious muffins!
- Nut Options: Enjoy this recipe with walnuts or pecans. For nut free muffins, they can be left out.
- Bananas: Make sure they’re soft, dark and/or heavily speckled. Mash them, then measure the portion.
- Kitchen Tools: I recommend an oven thermometer, food thermometer and weighing your ingredients using a digital kitchen scale for best outcome. Use the scoop and sweep method for volume measurements if a scale is unavailable.
Need a sourdough starter? I’ve got a handy DIY Sourdough Starter for that!
More Sourdough Discard Recipes to Love
- Easy Sourdough Biscuits
- Cranberry Orange Sourdough Scones
- Sourdough Discard Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Strawberry Shortcake with Sourdough Biscuits
- Overnight or Same Day Sourdough Oat Pancakes
Fluffy Sourdough Banana Muffins Recipe
- 1 C (80g) Walnuts whole
- 1 1/2 C (215g) Whole Wheat White Flour or Unbleached All Purpose Flour
- 1/2 tsp Fine Sea Salt
- 1 tsp Baking Soda
- 1/4 tsp Baking Powder
- 1/2 tsp Cinnamon ground
- 3/4 C (155g) Dark Brown Sugar packed
- 2/3 C (135g) Coconut Oil melted, warm to the touch or use canola oil
- 2 Large Eggs
- 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1 1/4 C (305g) Mashed Bananas about 3 very ripe bananas
- 1/2 C (160g) Sourdough Discard 100% hydration, stirred down
- Preheat the oven to 400F (205C) and set oven rack in the center. Line a standard muffin pan with 12 tulip style muffin cups or DIY your own.
Toast the Walnuts:
- Place the walnuts in a pan and set them on the center rack in your preheating oven. They'll toast for 15-18 minutes while the oven is heating. Transfer toasted walnuts to a board and rough chop once cooled. Set aside a few tablespoons for sprinkling on top if desired. Chop fine. Set aside.
Make the Batter:
- In a medium mixing bowl, add the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon. Whisk the ingredients. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the sugar, warm coconut oil, eggs, bananas, and vanilla extract. Whisk until the ingredients come together. Add the sourdough discard and whisk again until no white streaks remain.
- To the wet ingredients, add the dry ingredients all at once. Using a silicone spatula, fold in the dry ingredients and mix until no dry flour patches remain. Fold in the chopped walnuts, holding out the small portion for sprinkling on top. .
- Set batter aside to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes.
- Scoop an overfilled large cookie scoop (#20) or about 1/4 C each with batter and transfer to the muffin liners. Distribute leftover batter evenly among cups. Sprinkle with remaining walnuts if desired.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 375F (190C). Place the muffins in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes. Use a toothpick to test several muffins starting at 25 minutes. Once the toothpick comes out clean with a few crumbs attached, the muffins are ready.
- Transfer the muffins to a cooling rack and cool completely. Once cool, cover for up to four days at room temperature. To Freeze: allow muffins to cool completely. Place individual muffins on a parchment lined sheet pan and freeze. Once frozen, transfer to a lidded container for up to two weeks. Thaw at room temperature.To Rewarm: rewarm muffins in a 350F oven for 10-15 minutes.
Can flax egg be used instead of a regular egg in this recipe? I want to make it for someone who does not eat eggs.
Hi Linda! I’ve not tried flax egg in this recipe so I’m not sure if it’ll work. If you give it a go, please keep us posted!
Made these for my 80yr old dad – whose tastebuds are really picky these days. He complains my sourdough is too sour! These were a hit! I didn’t pack the brown sugar, but lightly spooned it to reduce sugar level, and added dark chocolate chips (1/3 cup). Used 1/2c whole wheat bread flour, 1c AP flour
Baked in our air fryer/convection oven on the convection bake setting – took 21 min
Just made the fluffy sourdough banana muffins. OMG, absolutely delish!! Thank you for sharing
Hooray, Karla! thank you for your note :D
This is my go to discard using recipe! I’ve taken liberties; I add 1/4c mixed nut butter and fill up to 2/3c w/ coconut oil. I add 1/3c of chocolate chips and 1/3c of craisins, too. I don’t measure my discard; it’s about a cup. Makes fabulous fluffy muffin beasts!!!
Super happy to hear, Lisa! Love your nut butter and chocolate chips tip – SO yumm! Thank you for your note!
I really like the idea and texture of these muffins but all I can taste is coconut oil. They don’t even taste like banana muffins because the coconut is so overpowering. I can even feel it on my tongue after. Canola oil is an awful oil to use so I didn’t want to try crap oil. I think I’d even try yogurt or applesauce long before this much coconut oil again. Definitely change something up if you don’t want to take pure coconut.
Hi Samantha! I’m so sorry to hear these didn’t meet your expectations. I’m curious about the brand of coconut oil you used?
I’m not sure as I used the rest of it and it’s in my recycle bin now. I use this brand for everything and I’ve never had issues. I will try your recipe again but I will definitely alter it. I wanted to give a review for those who may not love something with a coconut taste. I’ll update once I try again.
Loved these! I used honey instead of sugar (1/2 cup) and decreased the oil to 1/3 cup and they turned out great!
Super happy to hear, Natalie! Thank you for your note and tips! Oh myyyy with honey… that sounds amazing!
Angela W Broyles
They were good, not sour, with discard straight from refrigerator. But they were very sweet! (all ingredients were weighed) Next time I will cut down on the sugar
Hi Angela! Thank you for your note and giving the recipe a go! Indeed, using sourdough discard in recipes isn’t generally for the flavor (like in sourdough bread), rather for texture and using up discard. To tease more sour flavor from these muffins, you could let them rest for an hour or so.
Could this batter be made ahead of time?
Hi Taylor! I’ve not tried it with these muffins, but have with others (non sourdough). With this recipe, there’s a lot more baking soda than baking powder. My concern is that as the baking soda sets, it looses its leavening power. But at the same time, you’ve got sourdough in there. So, some experimentation is in order. I’ll give these an overnight rest next time I make em, and update here. Otherwise, I’m just not sure it’ll work with this recipe. If you play with the timing, please keep us posted!
Maybe I’ll try it leaving the baking soda and powder until before I bake them? I’ll try a few things in the future and keep you posted.
I like that idea! Kinda like overnight pancakes. Looking forward to learning what you find! Thank you, Taylor!
Thank you for such an easy and DELICIOUS recipe! It was moist and fluffy and light.
I did adjust the recipe slightly:
– no walnuts
– half a lemon’s zest (so fragrant)
– 1 cup all purpose and 1/2 cup whole grain flour
Turned out super well!
Delicious! This is my go to recipe for using sourdough discard. I am in the UK and added 1/2 a tsp of biscoff spread (like caramel) for a hidden centre. ‘Best thing you have ever made’ was one of my family’s comments.
Hooray! What a complement :D Thank you for your note, Bethany… the biscoff spread sounds amazing for a hidden center!
It’s nice when a recipe turns out and it’s as good as it looked in the recipe. Thank you for sharing
Hooray! Thank you for your note, Gordon!
Did half and half flour mix with whole wheat and all purpose. Other than that, followed recipe and it was a delicious hit. I like having a non-butter option.
They were fluffy with a slight crisp to the edges. Lovely taste of toasted walnuts. I will definitely make this again!
Love that half and half mix, Jennie! Thank you for giving the muffins a go and sharing your thoughts. SO happy to hear!
I pretty much bake these weekly now. The fluffiness is unreal. Coconut oil gives it this buttery taste without being overwhelming
Only swap I did was pecans instead of walnuts cuz it’s what I have available and keep forgetting to buy walnuts
Hiii Esti! Loved seeing these fluffah muffins on Instagram! Thank you for your note and sharing your success. Isn’t the buttery taste so inviting? Pecans sound fabulous!
This is my first attempt at using a sourdough recipe. I loved how these muffins turned out to taste so yummy with a soft texture too. I did add some golden raisins that were soaked in bourbon to complete the banana ingredient amount as I only had two ripe bananas medium in size. It did not harm the recipe at all. I am thankful for your clear instructions it helped take away my intimidation with sourdough baking, So as I am doing this recipe I also chose to make your maple sourdough sandwich bread…it is in the oven …to be continued…
Hi Jean! Thank you for your note and giving the recipe a go! Golden raisins (!!) soaked in bourbon – yum – sounds so delish! Here’s to more sourdough baking (and hooray for a delightful maple sandwich bread in the oven!).
Made these this morning. So good! We are a gluten free household so I omitted the nuts and substituted gf 1:1 flour and my gf brown rice sourdough starter. Thanks for the recipe!
Hii Ar! Thank you for your note and sharing your adaptation! SO happy to hear these worked with GF flour and starter. Hooray!
I just finished eating my first muffin made from this recipe and I LOVE them! My husband also thought they were scrumptious. I only made a very few changes- I have a pathological need to change something in every recipe! I didn’t toast the walnuts- just folded them in raw. I didn’t have dark brown sugar, so I used light. Also, I used 1 cup of unbleached white flour and 1/2 a cup of whole wheat flour.
Hi Sarah! Hooray! Thank you for your note and sharing your tips – love that 1/2 n 1/2 approach!
This is a great recipe! Second time making these. I use coconut sugar instead of brown, avocado oil instead of coconut/canola oil, white spelt flour instead of wheat, and I cut the sugar to 1/2 cup because my bananas are usually very well past their prime. I also let the dough ferment longer each time, for 30min or more. They are sooo good! Thanks so much for the amazing recipe!
Hooray! Thank you for your note, Courtney, sharing your ingredient subs and note on fermentation. I’m so happy to hear you’re enjoying the muffins!
These muffins are absolutely delicious!!! So light and fluffy! They taste so buttery even though there’s no butter in them at all. This is now my favourite muffin recipe!
I used pecans because I didn’t have walnuts, so yummy 👌
Hooray, Yelena! SO happy to hear you’re enjoying the muffins! Thank you for your note and giving the recipe a go!
Katherine | Love In My Oven
Your sourdough recipes always inspire me to get that starter going again. I bet that light tang would be terrific in these fluffy banana muffins! Delicious!!
They’re such a treat Katherine and so tender! Since you’re a fan of sourdough, I know you’d love these! It’s time to get that starter going!
I didn’t have white flour so subbed whole wheat and subbed grape seed oil for canola. Turned out yummy!
Hooray! Thank you for your note Angela and sharing your tips! So happy to hear!
Katherine | Love In My Oven
What a great way to use up that sourdough discard! I bet the discard gives these muffins a nice little tang. I know I’d love these!
They’re so light and fluffy, Katherine! Even with white whole wheat flour!