Whole Wheat Buttermilk Spice Muffins

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These muffins are more like dessert than breakfast, but they are still healthier than any baked good at a coffeehouse. Light, fluffy and spicy, they are a wonderful, early fall treat and a great break from pumpkin muffins. This recipe is an adaptation of a recipe from Williams Sonoma, using some coconut sugar and chopped pecans. Enjoy!

Whole Wheat Buttermilk Spice Muffins (makes 9 muffins)

  • 7 tablespoons unsalted, organic butter at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 2/3 cup unbleached, organic sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 stick unsalted, organic butter, melted
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Put chopped pecans in a shallow pan and toast in the oven for 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  3. Butter 9 muffin cups of a muffin tin or use unbleached paper liners. Fill remaining cups with water.
  4. Using a standing mixer or hand beaters, beat butter and coconut sugar for 4-5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Add the egg and beat until combined.
  5. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg. Stir well.
  6. Add flour to butter mixture alternately with the buttermilk. Stir in vanilla and chopped pecans.
  7. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full. Bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  8. Let muffins cool 5 minutes, then remove muffins to a cooling rack and let cool another 10 minutes.
  9. Mix cinnamon and sugar in a wide bowl. Put melted butter in a separate bowl.
  10. One at a time, pick up muffins by the bottom, turn them upside down and dip the tops in the melted butter, then very quickly roll the tops in the cinnamon sugar. Put each muffin back to the rack and repeat with remaining muffins.

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins

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I had a colleague once who coined the phrase “Fear the Muffin!” We would regularly meet for staff meetings at a nearby coffee shop and whenever someone would order a gigantic muffin, she would extol the horrors of commercial muffins. Even now, when I just see a muffin in a coffee shop, I hear her voice–Fear the Muffin! As it turns out, she was right.

Commercially baked muffins are not only 2-3 times a normal serving, they are laden with sugars (usually more than one kind), unhealthy oils and flavor substitutes. To make their profit margin, many commercial bakeries (including box mixes) skimp–or don’t even bother with–quality ingredients. Look at the ingredients list of many box blueberry muffin mixes. See real blueberries? Probably not. Instead, they oomph up the sugar and salt to substitute for real flavor, and many include artificial flavors. Who wants to pair all that with a marvelous cup of coffee? Not me, that’s who.

Muffins are quick, easy to make and inexpensive. Homemade muffins have the benefit of using ingredients that are better for you and allow you to control sugar, salt and fat. These muffins are by far my favorite. While blueberries won’t be in season for another three months, we froze some of last year’s blueberries so we would be able to make muffins and other blueberry recipes all year. Paired with lemon and locally produced Maple View Farm buttermilk, they are a little sweet and a little tangy. A great snack to send off to work with Tom (and hopefully a deterrent to stopping at the Krispy Kreme he has to walk by on his way to work!).

This recipe is adapted from Mom’s Bit Book of Baking by Lauren Chattman.

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins (makes 18 muffins)

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 tsp. organic baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cut (1 stick) unsalted, organic butter, melted and cooled
  • 1/3 cup unbleached, organic cane sugar
  • 2 large farm eggs
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon zest
  • 1 cup buttermilk or Greek yogurt
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 12-cup muffin tins with paper liners or grease tins.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and mix.
  3. In a larger mixing bowl, whisk together the melted butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, lemon zest and buttermilk/yogurt.
  4. Add dry ingredients to the large bowl and mix until just combined. Fold in blueberries. The dough will be pretty thick.
  5. Fill each muffin cup about 3/4 full (I use an ice cream scoop for this). Put trays in oven and bake about 25 minutes.
  6. Remove muffins from the pan and let cool on a wire cooling rack.
  7. Store muffins in an airtight container for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month.

 

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