This year I am especially excited for summer. Beautiful weather, farm fresh fruits and veggies and hopefully lots of time spent outside. I have many memories of picking berries as a kid in the summers, and now I love taking my own kids berry picking. Even in the heat and humidity of the a Kentucky summer, the laughs, fully bellies and blue mouths are cherished memories. We are always looking for the best recipe to turn our haul into something crazy delicious. These blueberry lemon muffins really are the best. Quick to whip together and full of bursting blueberry flavor and fresh lemon zest/juice, you just can’t beat a blueberry lemon muffin with freshly picked berries!
Can I use Frozen Blueberries?
The best blueberry lemon muffins are perfect made with fresh blueberries during blueberry season, but also work just as well with the frozen blueberries. I have made them both ways with fresh and frozen berries. Still delicious, sweet and yummy.
A couple tips for working with frozen blueberries:
- Don’t thaw the blueberries. Use them frozen!
- Toss the frozen blueberries in about 2 Tablespoons of flour before adding to the batter. This helps the berries suspend and not all sink to the bottom of the muffin.
- Frozen blueberries will turn the batter (and your fingers) a beautiful shade of purple.
Adding Cream Cheese in Muffins
One of the unique things about these muffins is the cream cheese in the batter. It gives the muffins a cake-like texture, very moist, super delicious and it means the muffins can sit on your counter all day and still taste delicious. No dry muffins here! I also love the beautiful dome shape of the muffins which you get when you bake your muffins at a higher heat for about 5 minutes and then reduce the temperature. It’s like magic. Works every time!
Tender Crumb in Blueberry Lemon Muffins
Many muffin recipes also call for buttermilk. While I do love baking with buttermilk, the lemon in this recipe lends to an easy buttermilk substitution, which means you don’t need to head to the store for buttermilk to make these. The milk in this recipe is mixed with some lemon juice before adding it to the batter which takes the place of traditional buttermilk. This mixture enhances the lemon flavor and gives the muffins its tender crumb. Win win!
Add More or Less Lemon Flavor
If you want even more lemon flavor in the muffins, add another Tablespoon of lemon juice and some extra lemon zest. I think these muffins have a beautiful hint of lemon that complements the blueberry so well. I would venture to guess you have most of these items in your pantry right now, so what is stopping you? Surprise your kids this morning or better yet, make them together! This is such a delicious recipe. I freeze my leftover muffins and reheat in the microwave or pull them out about 30 minutes before serving. These are some of our favorites! I hope you’ll give them a try.
The Best Blueberry Lemon Muffins
- 8 Tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- 4 oz cream cheese softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar plus a few Tablespoons for sprinkling on top of the muffins
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 medium lemon zested
- 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 eggs beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all prupose flour about 10 oz
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups blueberries fresh or frozen see note
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray muffin pans with non-stick cooking spray or line with muffin liners and spray with cooking spray.
- To a mixing bowl, add softened butter and cream cheese. Using a hand mixer, mix together until combined. Add the sugar and mix with the hand mixer.
- Continue adding the ingredients and mixing with the hand mixer: eggs, lemon zest/juice and vanilla extract. Mix for about a minute until fully incorporated, glossy and smooth.
- Pour 2 cups of flour on top of the liquid mixture. Don’t mix yet! Add the baking powder, baking soda and salt right on top of the flour. Use a fork to fluff together. Alternatively you can mix all of these dry ingredients together in a bowl and add them to the top of the liquid mixture. I just like saving myself from washing another bowl.
- Use a kitchen spoon/spatula (no mixer!) to gently fold the flour mixture into the liquid mixture. Right before the flour has completely incorporated, add the 2 cups of fresh blueberries. Gently mix until the blueberries are spread throughout the batter. The key here is not to OVER-mix the batter. If using frozen blueberries: Mix frozen blueberries with 2 Tablespoons of flour before adding to the batter. This keeps the berries from sinking to the bottom of your muffins.
- Scoop about 1/3 cup batter in each muffin tin. Sprinkle tops of muffins with a little bit of granulated sugar if desired. I also fill any unused muffin tins with a little bit of water to help with even baking.
- Bake muffins at 425 degrees for 5 minutes. Then decrease the temperature to 350 degrees and continue baking for 15 more minutes. Allow muffins to cool in the tins for about 5 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. Enjoy!
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