cherry lemon almond meal muffins with cashew cream frosting {grain free}


We made it back safe + sound from Costa Rica earlier this afternoon.  While I’m a bit groggy from the 2 days of return-travel I’m also feel recharged and ready to go.  This was truly a relaxing vacation which we both needed.

I’ll share a few highlights from the trip and eventually a post full of photos from our dear friends’ wedding this past Monday.  With all of the catching up I have on the doughnut front it may be a few weeks before I sort through the 3,500 wedding photos. 

I made these muffins for a little travel snack before we left. If you have yet to try making or eating almond meal muffins I urge you to do so. They are my absolute favorite! It may seem a bit odd that you can make muffins out of nuts but it’s true.

Ohhh the possibilities of nuts.

cashews = frosting?


Soaked overnight, blended with milk, smeared on a muffin.

Gluten-filled flours are for the birds.

Almond meal is where it’s at.

Stuffed with cherries.

Infused with lemon zest.

Combined with cream cheese.

Your morning muffins have never tasted so good.

Print this!

Cherry Lemon Almond Meal Muffins

gluten-free, grain-free // yields ~12 muffins, depending on pan size

  • 3 cups almond meal
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup chopped dried cherries
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese, softened
  • 3 tablespoons safflower oil
  • 3 tablespoons ground flax meal
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  1. Preheat your oven to 350* and line a muffin tin with 12 liners.
  2. In a large bowl combine all of the dry ingredients and mix until thoroughly combined.
  3. In a medium bowl whisk the eggs together then add in the milk, honey, oil, and vanilla extract.
  4. Add the cream cheese into the liquid mixture breaking it up into smaller pieces with your fingers then whisk together.  You want the cream cheese to be broken apart throughout the mixture but not fully smooth.
  5. Combine the wet with the dry and stir until just combined.  Avoid over stirring.
  6. Fold in the lemon zest and dried cherries.
  7. Let the batter sit to thicken for 5 minutes.
  8. Spoon batter evenly into the muffin liners and bake for 25-30 minutes until deep golden brown on top and a toothpick comes out moist, but not gooey or bone dry.
  9. Let cool for 5-10 minutes then move muffins to a cooling rack.
  10. Frost once fully cooled. 

notes: Almond meal is simply a flour made from ground, raw almonds.  You can find it at Trader Joes, Vitamin Cottage/Natural Grocers, Whole Foods, Amazon, etc.  You can also make it at home by pulsing small amounts of raw almonds [skin on] in your food processor or high speed blender.  Process until soft and flour-like with no large pieces.  Be careful not to process to long or you will start to make almond butter.

Cherry Cashew Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 3/4 cup soaked cashews
  • 2/3 cup soaked dried cherries
  • 1/3 cup cream cheese
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 Tbsp honey or maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • slivered almonds + dried cherries
  1. Place soaked cashews [soak in a bowl on the counter overnight or for at least 6 hours] in a high speed blender with 1/4 cup milk, cream cheese, soaked cherries [soak at least 4 hours], honey or maple syrup, vanilla, and salt.
  2. Turn on and let blend until completely smooth.
  3. Add more milk to reach desired thickness.  I used 1/3 cup.
  4. Spread the frosting on the muffins [or so many other things!] and garnish with slivered almonds and dried cherries.
  5. Refrigerate leftovers in a sealed container for up to 1 week.

notes: You can make this frosting in a large food processor but it doesn’t get quite as creamy.  This frosting is very lightly sweetened.  Add more honey/maple syrup if desired.

If only I could have returned home to another batch of these.

Instead, an empty fridge + a ton of laundry.

But also, my own bed.  Night!