If you’re going to save one muffin recipe, let this be it.
Okay, that doesn’t quite cover my excitement. Hold on.
(OH HEAVEN THESE ARE THE BEST MUFFINS I’VE EVER MADE NOM NOM NOM OH NO I JUST ATE THREE MUFFINS AND NOW I HAVE TO MAKE MORE GAH MUFFINS MUFFINS MUFFINS THEY’RE LIKE FINS BUT WITH MUFFS)
But I have an awkward and painful relationship with muffins, just because they caused me so much stress for so long. A few months ago, I took a basic muffin recipe and tweaked it to the point where I wouldn’t know the original recipe if it slapped me in the face and introduced itself.
Okay, I probably would by then.
But I literally have pages of notes on which tweaks worked and which didn’t. It’s crazy. I’m crazy. These muffins are crazy (good).
I hate baking muffins now, but I love muffins at the same time.
The entire story of these muffins is quite long, and the road to here was difficult. Perhaps I’ll write about it one day. But for now, we’re here. Enjoy the view.
And then eat it. Eat five of them.
The Best Blueberry Muffins
Notes: Look, I know I’m all about that easy recipe, but muffins are like kids. You spend time with them, you nurture them, you mix them well, and they turn out good and sweet. You don’t prepare them for the world and they’ll turn out tough and nasty. This recipe isn’t one of my shortcut recipes (sorry not sorry), because if there’s one thing you shouldn’t take shortcuts on, it’s muffins and sketchy roads. Okay that’s two things. In both cases, it takes extra take time, but it’s worth it.
To enhance the blueberry flavor, I decided to incorporate the blueberries in concentrated jam form. Don’t even ask me how I came up with this idea. You can see my original jam recipe here, but I’ve included it below as well. You can use any berries you want; I just had blueberries on hand.
This recipe makes 12 muffins. Because I only wanted to eat 12.
Taste & Texture: Because the blueberries are mixed in in the form of jam, the blueberry flavor is more concentrated and prominent. I also used buttermilk to make the crumb lighter and fluffier. These muffins are soft and springy, and they don’t get tough after a couple of days in storage.
For the jam:
- 2 or 3 cups blueberries
- 3 tsp sugar
For the muffin (please don’t get scared and run away):
- 2 ½ cup flour + 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tsp baking powder + 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 ¼ cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- ¼ cup oil + 3 tbsp butter
- 1 cup buttermilk (or 1 cup regular milk + 1 tbsp white vinegar)
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
1. Make the buttermilk (if you don’t have any real buttermilk). Add milk to 1 tbsp vinegar until you reach the 1 cup mark. Let it sit while you go about your muffin-making business. It’ll curdle like a turtle.
2. Brown the butter. Turn stove to Medium, toss in 3 tbsp butter, and let it simmer and splatter until it turns brown and a nutty aroma comes from the butter. It’s heavenly. Now stop drooling and take it off the stove to let it cool.
3. Make the jam. Turn stove to Medium, mix 2 or 3 cups berries and 3 tsp sugar. Squish the berries as they heat up. After about 2 minutes it’ll be a jam-like consistency. Take it off the stove.
4. Preheat oven to 425F. Not too hard.
5. Mix some dry ingredients. Namely: 2 ½ cup flour, 1 tbsp cornstarch, 2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda, and 1 tsp salt.
6. Mix the wet ingredients. Take 1 ¼ cup sugar and add the 2 eggs, one at a time. Beat until pale yellow. Then add in ¼ cup oil, 1 cup buttermilk, 2 tsp vanilla extract, and that lovely 3 tbsp browned butter.
7. Pour the wet into the dry and very very gently fold. Using a spatula, scoop batter from the side of the bowl and with a turning motion, flip it into the middle of the bowl. No matter how much you want to, don’t mix completely. You should be able to see streaks of unmixed flour.
8. Pour into muffin cups. Fill it up almost to the brim.
9. Swirl in the jam. Use a chopstick or a small spoon and just whirl it a few times.
10. Sprinkle generously with sugar. Generously.
10. Let it rest in the fridge for 15 minutes, then bake at 425F for about 13-14 minutes, turning halfway through.
The sugar sprinkled on top turns into this crisp shell, crunching as you bite in. The blueberry jam is tangy, sweet, and very blueberry-y; it contrasts perfectly with the fluffy texture and soft sweetness of the muffin itself. The browned butter gives it a slight nutty aroma, and the buttermilk gives it that complex little twist of flavor. There is no way I can adequately describe this, so you take a look:
Holy. Freaking. Cow.
Because there’s a muffin in my mouth.