Skinny Tropical Muffins

Made with bananas, pineapple, orange zest, yogurt, whole wheat flour, and coconut. Easy, moist, low-fat, healthy muffins! 

tropical muffins

Meet my latest breakfast obsession. Summer is here and I am ready to soak up the sun! Today I’m sharing a little taste of the tropics. 

Juicy pineapple, bananas, orange zest, toasted coconut… everything I love about the tropics in one tasty muffin. I made these fruity little gems a few weeks ago and again today. They have summer written all over them and are a perfectly acceptable bikini-friendly treat.

The first step? Buy a couple bananas and let them ripen. They are the base of today’s recipe.

ripe bananas

Some other ingredients you’ll need:

√ White Whole Wheat Flour
√ Honey
√ Greek Yogurt (or regular)
√ Fresh Pineapple
√ Shredded Coconut
√ Orange Zest

Substitutions: a mixture of whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour (about half and half of each) may be substituted for the white whole wheat flour in this muffin recipe. I do not suggest using all whole wheat flour, as the resulting muffin may have a tough texture. Maple syrup may be used instead of honey. Canned or small frozen pineapple chunks may be used instead of fresh.

The shredded coconut on top is optional. The orange zest is not! It gives the muffins their flavor and adds a little zesty extra to each bite. I can’t imagine them without it!

tropical muffins in a muffin pan

tropical muffins on a blue plate

tropical muffins on a cream plate

Just like my Skinny Banana Blueberry Muffin recipe, today’s breakfast treat is sweetened with honey and a touch of (lightly packed) brown sugar. The recipe makes 15 muffins, so the amount of sugar in each is teeny tiny. The banana and pineapple sweeten them up too.

“Healthy” or “Low Fat” baked goods have a bad rap. They are known for lacking flavor and moisture, often tasting dry and bland. These muffins are the complete opposite. Two ingredients bringing moisture to the muffins are mashed bananas and vanilla greek yogurt. Both ingredients are fabulous healthy substitutes for fat in certain recipes. Fat is moisture-laden and you don’t want to sacrifice that when you cut it out. 1 cup of mashed bananas and 1/4 cup of vanilla greek yogurt do a fine job of keeping the muffins soft, tender, and moist.

There is plenty of juicy pineapple in each big bite. If using fresh pineapple, cut it up into tiny chunks. Frozen pineapple tends to come in larger chunks, so that is why I emphasize using fresh. You could used canned as well, but again… fresh is preferred!

Dancing inside the muffin batter are a touch of cinnamon and orange zest. If you’re anything like me, you love bananas and cinnamon together! The zest from 1 orange gives the muffins a little something extra. And like I mentioned above, you do NOT want to leave it out. You can slice up the rest of the orange to enjoy alongside your freshly baked muffins.

tropical muffins on a blue plate

stack of tropical muffins

tropical muffins on a blue plate

The sliced bananas on top seep their moisture inside the muffin as they bake. So not only do the bananas look cute on top, they serve a moisture-inducing purpose. The muffin tops are my favorite part! 

Imagine yourself with your toes in the sand, listening to the ocean, and breathing in the salty air. You’ll be tasting the tropics after one bite. What is so wonderful about them is that I don’t feel too heavy after eating one or two, either. I had two this morning before getting in my suit and taking Jude to the river to swim and play fetch. They are low in fat, high in flavor, and will keep your energy up all morning!

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

More muffins to make:

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tropical muffins

Skinny Tropical Muffins

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 18 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 15 muffins
  • Category: Muffins
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Made with bananas, pineapple, orange zest, yogurt, whole wheat flour, and coconut. Easy, moist, low-fat, healthy muffins!


Ingredients

  • 2 and 1/2 cup white whole wheat flour (spoon & leveled), or mix of whole wheat and all-purpose flours
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup honey or pure maple syrup (I use honey)
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup mashed very ripe banana (about 2 large very ripe bananas)
  • 1/4 cup nonfat vanilla greek yogurt (or any yogurt)
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 3/4 cup milk (I use almond milk, but you can use any kind)
  • zest from 1 orange
  • 1 and 1/4 cup fresh pineapple, diced
  • optional: 1 thinly sliced banana for topping
  • optional: 1/4 cup shredded coconut

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Spray a muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.*
  2. Gently whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon together in a large bowl until combined. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix the honey and brown sugar together – it will be thick and lumpy. Try to get out as many lumps as you can. Add the mashed banana, yogurt, and beaten egg. Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Gently begin to fold it all together. It will be very thick. Add the milk slowly and continue to gently mix the ingredients together. The milk will thin everything out, but the batter will still remain thick. Fold in the orange zest and pineapple. Do not overmix the batter.
  4. Divide the batter between 15 muffin cups. Fill all the way to the top. Bake the first 12, then the last three in another batch. (Fill the empty muffin cups halfway with water in the 2nd batch to ensure even baking.) Bake muffins for 17-18 minutes OR until very lightly browned on the edges. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean. Remove from the oven and place pan on a wire rack. Allow muffins to cool and enjoy!
  5. Muffins remain fresh and moist stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 days or in the refrigerator for 1 week.

Notes

  1. Freezing Instructions: Muffins can be frozen up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and warm to your liking before serving.
  2. Tip: Do not use cupcake liners, muffins will stick to liners.
  3. Adapted from Skinny Strawberry Chocolate Chip Muffins.

Keywords: tropical muffins, skinny tropical muffins

Today’s recipe is a spin-off from my Skinny Banana Blueberry Muffins.

stack of banana blueberry muffins

20 Comments

  1. Hey Sally, I love your blog and these muffins look amazing! Just a question, could ONLY all-purpose flour be used instead of mixed with whole wheat flour and if so would it affect any of the other ingredients or baking time?

    1. Hi Lisi! Yep, no *need* to use whole wheat flour. I just like using it to increase the whole grains. Only all-purpose may be used instead. No need to change anything else about the recipe or bake time.

  2. Hey Sally,
    These muffins look amazing and I can not wait to try them. I am just wondering if you can apply your sky high technique to them? If I bake them at a high temperature for a few mins will it result in a taller muffin?

    1. You certainly can!

  3. Hi Sally,
    I finally got around to making these muffins & have made them twice in the past week! They are totally my new favorite muffin, so I thank you very much!

    We made them the second time today with both of my little girls “helping” although the 17 month old just stood on her chair at the counter eating Greek yogurt! 🙂

    You have such a wonderful gift, God bless you & thank you for sharing it with us!

    Julie (& Maria & Susie, my daughters)

  4. I really love these muffins. I’m just about to make a batch right now and popped by to print the recipe off since I’ve made them a few times already, so I guess they’re going into my “favorite recipes” pile. I’m out of oranges at the moment, so I’m going to try them with a little lemon zest. I’m hoping it’s a good substitute. Thanks for the recipe!

  5. Wow this recipe looks amazing! Would it be possible to make as a loaf of bread instead of muffins? If so, do you know what adjustments need to be made? The only reason I ask is because I don’t have a muffin tin on hand but I have plenty of bread loaf pans. 🙂

    1. I’m sure you could turn this recipe into a loaf, but I am unsure of the bake time.

  6. Do u think a lemon would work as a substitute for the orange?

    1. Zest from just 1 lemon would be fine. Enjoy!

  7. Hey Sally! I was perusing your blog to see what variation of banana muffins you have and found these! I have a question though.. Do you think I could use canned pineapple?

    1. That would be fine. Enjoy!

  8. Yum! I made these last week, and they have a great flavor and texture. Everything is delish about them .Thank you so much for the recipe! You rock

  9. Do you think I can take out the pinapple?

    1. Absolutely! Not a problem at all.

  10. Loved these muffins, very much like banana bread! Also a flexible recipe: I forgot to include the yoghurt and didn’t have any orange on hand. I also reduced the sugar a bit but they came out super yummy anyway! Thanks Sally!

  11. Sarah-Mae Adam says:

    I had a half can of crushed pineapple leftover from a previous baking session, this was the perfect way to use it up with ingredients I usually have on hand!

    I made a half batch, which still yielded 11 “normal” sized muffins, using the following (minor) substitutions;
    – 1 cup whole wheat flour, 1/4 cup white all-purpose
    – used 1/2tsp orange extract instead of orange zest
    – my kiddo ate the rest of the yogurt without telling me, so I blended 1/4 cup of 2% cottage cheese until smooth.

    These turned out wonderful! My family is very happy with the moisture and perfect level of sweetness in these little tropical bites!

  12. You are a genius!
    These tropical muffins are SO groan-worthy! Moist, tasty, heaps of flavour- and I even did them with gluten free flour!
    Thankyou

  13. Hi Sally. I have two question about these great looking muffins. I plan to make them soon. I have unflavored Greek Yogurt that I could use, or do you suggest the vanilla flavored? Also, if I want to add the banana slices for the topping, do I add them at the beginning or at the end of the baking? Thank you.

    1. Plain yogurt works! And I add the bananas prior to baking 🙂

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