Best Basic Banana Bread

You know how some recipes just seem elusive? I felt that way for a long time about cookies. I could make a good cookie, but the best? That was hard to find. Now I help my kids run a cookie business and after much trial and error we’ve baked our way into some pretty amazing cookies. I feel the same way about banana bread. I’ve always had good banana bread. Even very good banana bread, but I just keep trying recipes because I couldn’t find a recipe that I really loved. After tinkering around for years, I’ve finally come up with a recipe that I will be making again and again.

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My Perfect Banana Bread

My perfect recipe makes a great loaf but could also be used for 24 muffins. It tastes of banana but not overpowering. It is light, tender and can hold up to some mini chocolate chips thrown in. I like a banana bread recipe best if I can use one bowl for easier cleanup and I especially love a recipe that all of my kids like. This banana bread hits all of those notes. Even my daughter who is not typically a fan has been begging me to make this recipe again…and again! It is delicious 

Combining Butter and Oil for the Perfect Bread

A lot of quick bread recipes call for just butter or just oil. I love using a combination of the two in this recipe. Both oil and butter bring different properties to banana bread. Butter brings a rich flavor and oil helps with a tender, moist and delicious crumb. I find a combination of the two results in the best loaf of bread.

Brown, Over-Ripe Bananas for the Best Flavor

Banana bread has the most flavor when the bananas are really brown…disgustingly brown…even black. The “riper” the banana, the more flavor your bread will have. If you want a milder flavor, use a more brown/yellow banana. I often keep bananas on my counter and whenever I have one that has gotten overripe and no one in my family will eat it, I’ll let it sit a little bit longer until the peel is pretty dark. Then I’ll make a batch of banana bread if I have enough of them, or I’ll peel the banana and pop it in the freezer until I’m ready to use it. To use frozen bananas, let the bananas thaw and then drain a little bit of the excess water before using.

Brown Sugar and Yogurt Makes Moist Banana Bread

I used to always use white sugar in my banana bread. Never again! Brown sugar adds the perfect moistness, sweetness and flavor. The yogurt in this recipe also helps increase the moistness in this bread. If you want to substitute Greek yogurt, you can. The batter will be a little bit thicker than a regular plain yogurt.

Banana Bread Mix-Ins

My kids love this recipe plain, but they really love it when I add some mini chocolate chips into the batter. In my younger years I used to put almost as many chocolate chips as cups of flour into the banana bread for a resulting baked good that tasted more like chocolate bread with a bit of banana. Over the years I’ve cut back, and I love the addition of little mini chocolate chips. They give the perfect pop of chocolate with the sweetness and compliment the banana bread flavor instead of trying to hide it. You could also add some chopped nuts instead of mini chips, or leave them out all together.

A Few Tips

This recipe works perfectly in one bowl. You can mix the dry ingredients together first, but more often that not I pour the flour on top of the liquid ingredients and then the salt and baking soda on top of that. Lightly combine the dry ingredients and then mix the whole thing together carefully. This results in fewer dishes for me and seriously yummy banana bread. Another trick to get a nice high domed top is to bake the bread at a high heat for the first few minutes. The high heat reacts with the baking soda in the recipe and give the tall, domed loaf that you would find at a bakery. I’ve used this technique with great results in these amazing chocolate chip muffins, this sourdough zucchini bread and our favorite applesauce bread.

Bread, Muffins and Mini Muffins

I love this recipe so much because it makes one loaf of bread or twenty-four regular-sized muffins. These muffin tins (affiliate link), are my favorite because they don’t need to be greased. If i’m being honest, we make banana bread muffins far more often than actual banana bread because they are so helpful for a quick breakfast or to stick in school lunches. I also love that this recipe makes perfect mini muffins for when you don’t want to eat an entire muffin. It’s just an all around perfect banana bread! If you’re looking for a stellar sourdough discard banana bread, check out my other favorite banana bread recipe that uses sourdough discard. You can’t go wrong with either one of these recipes. Enjoy!

Best Basic Banana Bread

The best basic banana bread recipe. Tender, full of banana flavor and easy to whip up. This recipe makes one loaf of banana bread or two dozen muffins.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 5 mins
Course Bread, Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 1 loaf

Ingredients
  

  • 3 brown/black bananas mashed, about 1 1/2 cups
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil or other neutral flavored oil
  • 1/3 cup plain yogurt see recipe notes
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup mini chocolate chips or other mix-in optional

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • To a liquid measuring cup, mash the brown bananas until you have about 1 1/2 cups of mashed banana. It's okay if you have a few little chunks of banana. Set aside.
  • To a medium-sized bowl, whip the softened butter with a hand mixer until creamy.
  • Add the brown sugar and mix again until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and mix again until completely incorporated.
  • Drizzle in the vegetable oil while mixing and add the yogurt and vanilla extract. Add the mashed banana and mix together.
  • Put the hand mixer away and pull out a wooden or large spoon. Add the flour to the bowl. Add the salt and baking soda right on top of the flour and carefully mix (not letting any of the baking soda or salt leave the bowl as you mix). Mix just until the flour is just incorporated and only a few dry streaks remain.
  • Add mini chocolate chips, chopped nuts or dried fruit and lightly mix.
  • Lightly grease or line with parchment paper a 9 by 5 pan, affiliate link (see recipe note for muffin instructions). Pour the mixture into the pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
  • Bake for 10 minutes at 425 degrees. After ten minutes, lower the temperature to 350 degrees and bake for another 45-55 minutes until baked all the way through. Stick a sharp knife or toothpick into the center of the banana bread. If it comes out clean (with no batter sticking to it), it is ready to pull out of the oven.

Notes

Plain Yogurt: If you don’t have plain yogurt, you can substitute sour cream. Greek yogurt will make the batter a little thicker, but you can also substitute it for the plain yogurt if you don’t have anything else on hand.
Banana Muffins: Recipe makes about 24 muffins. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Bake muffins for 5 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 350 degrees and bake for another 15-16 minutes until baked all the way through.
Mini Banana Muffins: Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Bake mini muffins for 4 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 350 degrees and bake another 8-10 minutes until baked through.
Keyword banana, banana bread

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Sweet Spinach Banana Muffins

I make a lot of muffins. Muffins are delicious, quick, easy and freeze well for quick breakfasts, snacks and even perfect to pack in lunch boxes. We have been making these sweet spinach banana muffins for years and they are a hit every time. My youngest (preschooler) seems to have a vendetta against any and all vegetables (except carrots…he’ll eat carrots). These muffins though, are his favorite. Spinach banana muffins and green smoothies are about the only way I can get green veggies into him right now. The struggle is real over here folks. But these spinach banana muffins get him his greens and he begs to make them with me. I call that a win-win!

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Kid Friendly Muffin Making

Sweet spinach banana muffins are super easy to make with kids. The wet ingredients, including the banana and 8 ounces of spinach get blended up in a blender until nice and smooth. My preschooler loves packing the spinach into the blender, whirling it around and watching all those ingredients blend together into a very green liquid mixture. The dry ingredients only need a quick whisk in a bowl and then the magic happens…pouring the green spinach liquid into the flour mixture. It is very, very green. Kids love this fun green color and it’s all natural too.

Twenty-Four Beautiful Muffins

I love a muffin recipe that makes twenty-four muffins. If you fill the muffin tins just a little over halfway full, you’ll get 24 muffins out it. If I have any leftover batter I’ll usually spoon it into the tins that look like they need a little extra batter. These USA pans (affiliate link) are my favorite muffin tins. With these pans, I only need a little spritz of cooking spray and then I can bake my muffins without muffin liners. You can also use muffin liners if you prefer that option. Let the muffins cool a bit in the tins before popping them out.

Jam-Packed with Spinach and Whole Grains

I have always loved baking and cooking but as soon as I had my first baby (over 11 years ago), I became passionate about feeding my kids the least-processed foods as possible. Making almost everything from scratch was an affordable way I found to feed my family healthy foods. Spinach banana muffins have been our go-to for years because they are delicious but also filled with whole grains and veggies. I make these muffins with 100% whole wheat flour. I buy mine at our local mill, but any whole wheat flour should work. I always use fresh spinach and don’t notice much if any flavor from the spinach in the muffins…just the bright green color.

Freeze for a Quick Meal

I’ve mentioned this before but I love freezing muffins. Let the muffins cool completely and then stick them in a gallon-sized ziplock bag in the freezer. Sometimes I’ll individually wrap them if my kids take them as part of their school lunch. To reheat, just pop in the microwave for 10-20 seconds or let them come to room temperature and enjoy. A school lunch tip that we use all the time: put them in the lunchbox frozen. They thaw throughout the morning and are nice and moist when lunchtime rolls around.

Brown Bananas and Coconut Oil

Spinach banana muffins have a pleasant banana flavor. This flavor is more pronounced if you use brown (even black) bananas. The more ripe the banana is, the more banana flavor your muffins will have. If you prefer not as strong banana flavor, use a yellow-green banana. Because you are blending the banana up in the blender with the other ingredients, you can easily use any banana you have on hand, even if it’s not quite ripe. I also like to add the coconut oil while the blender is running. Coconut oil solidifies quickly if a certain temperature is not met and adding it while blending prevents the coconut oil from solidifying into chunks.

These spinach banana muffins are really and truly some of our family’s favorites. I find myself in the kitchen making them at least once a month and I don’t mind one bit if my kids eat them for an after school snack or a quick breakfast as we’re heading out the door because they are packed with vitamins and nutrients. We are a muffin-loving family, so even when we don’t have these spinach banana muffins on hand, we usually have some kind of muffins. Some of our other favorites are these amazing chocolate chip muffins, cinnamon sugar muffins (with or without sourdough discard), carrot cake muffins (perfect for spring), pumpkin spice muffins and so many more.

Sweet Spinach Banana Muffins

Sweet spinach banana muffins are packed with 8 ounces of spinach, sweet bananas and whole wheat flour. These muffins are delicious, full of nutrients and perfect for a healthy breakfast or snack.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 18 mins
Total Time 38 mins
Course Bread, Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 24 muffins

Ingredients
  

  • 3 medium-sized bananas mashed, see recipe notes
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk see recipe notes
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 6 Tablespoons coconut oil, melted you may substitute any neutral flavored oil
  • 8 ounces baby spinach
  • 3 3/4 cup whole wheat flour see recipe note
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray two muffin tins with cooking spray (my favorite muffin tins here, affiliate link).
  • To a blender, add the bananas, eggs, buttermilk, sugar, spinach and vanilla. Blend on high for 30 seconds to a minute until the mixture is smooth and creamy. With the blender running, drizzle in the melted coconut oil and blend together until the ingredients are completely blended together.
  • To a large bowl, add the whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk together.
  • Pour the spinach banana liquid into the flour mixture and gently combine with a large spoon. Stir until only a few streaks of flour mixture remain (be careful not to over-mix).
  • Fill each muffin tin about half full (about 1/4 cup batter per muffin tin) until all 24 tins are filled.
  • Bake for 16-18 minutes until muffins are baked all the way through. Stick a toothpick in the middle of a muffin. If it comes out clean, the muffins are ready. If a little wet batter is stuck to the toothpick, the muffins need a few minutes longer.
  • Let the muffins cool for 5-10 minutes and then remove from the tins to a cooling rack. Enjoy!

Notes

Bananas: If you want a strong banana flavor in the muffins, use very ripe bananas where most of the banana is brown or even black. If you want a more mild banana flavor, use yellow bananas.
Buttermilk: I prefer to use buttermilk. If you don’t have it on hand, you can mix together 1/2 cup milk with 1/2 cup sour cream or greek yogurt (for a total of 1 cup liquid) as a substitute.
Whole Wheat Flour: I like using all whole wheat flour. You can also substitute all purpose flour or 50% all purpose and 50% whole wheat flour.
This recipe was adapted from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe “Whole Grain Hulk Muffins.” This recipe makes 24 muffins instead of 16, calls for a little less spinach and I decreased the amount of sugar from the original recipe.
Keyword banana, muffins,, spinach

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Sourdough Blueberry Crumb Cake

My family has shopped at Costco since I was a child. I was actually brought home from the hospital to Kirkland, Washington (Costco’s headquarters city) where my parents lived at the time. That name may sound familiar to you if you’ve shopped at Costco, because Kirkland is the “Costco” store brand. My grandma used to buy us Costco muffins (you know those giant muffins that are more like cake than muffin?!) and I would always, always pick blueberry. I love the taste of the tart blueberries mixed with a sweet muffin. The minute I cut into this sourdough blueberry crumb cake I had a childhood flashback to those Costco muffins. This cake is thick and full of blueberries. It also has considerably less sugar than a Costco muffin and is jam-packed with tart blueberries. The crumb topping takes it over the top and had me coming back for “tastes” throughout the day. If you are also a fan of blueberry muffins, you’ve got to try this sourdough blueberry crumb cake.

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Sourdough Discard or Sourdough Starter?

If you’re new around here, you may not know that I love baking with sourdough. I’ve got a whole bunch of recipes that use sourdough discard and sourdough starter. Because I refresh my sourdough starter often, I end up with quite a bit of leftover discard in my fridge. I don’t like this discard to go to waste, so I find muffins, waffles, crackers, pretzels and breads to put it into. The sourdough discard enhances the flavor and creates less kitchen waste. Not all sourdough discard is created equal, though. The longer the discard sits in your fridge, the more fermented and sour it will taste. If you like this flavor in your baked goods, use discard that is older. For a more mellow flavor, use discard that is only a day or two old. If you love baking with sourdough but don’t want any sour flavor, use bubbly sourdough starter instead of the discard.

Fresh or Frozen Blueberries?

My local Kroger had a great deal on blueberries this past week, so I used fresh blueberries in this sourdough blueberry crumb cake. The fresh blueberries gave this crumb cake delicious flavor. If you can, I recommend using fresh blueberries. If fresh isn’t not an option, you can use frozen blueberries. Truthfully I don’t always have fresh blueberries on hand and more often than not have a bag of frozen berries available. Toss the frozen blueberries in 1-2 teaspoons of flour, lightly coating them before stirring the berries into the cake mixture. This helps so they don’t all fall to the bottom of the cake and will be more evenly dispersed throughout. I’ve made this sourdough blueberry crumb cake with fresh and frozen blueberries and it’s delicious both times. The frozen blueberry cake did take a little more time to bake, so be prepared to add on 5-10 minutes of bake time if you use frozen blueberries.

Blueberry Crumb Topping

One of the things that sets this cake apart is the delicious crumb topping. Melt the butter, add in the dry ingredients and mix together with a spoon until you get a thick and crumbly topping. Use your fingers to sprinkle the crumb topping all over the top of the cake. I also like to dot the top of the cake with a few more fresh blueberries, pressing them in between pieces of crumb topping so that there is blueberry in every bite. Once this crumb topping is baked up, it makes the perfect sweet, crumbly crust. My four year old could be found sneaking pieces of crumb topping all. day. long. And I don’t blame him. It is GOOD!

Baking the Sourdough Blueberry Crumb Cake

Sourdough blueberry crumb cake takes a little over an hour to bake. It bakes up nice and tall and can be cut into 16 good sized pieces. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and bake the crumb cake for a little over an hour. I like to check on the cake after about 55 minutes (oven temperatures can vary). If the cake is jiggly in the middle, keep baking for another 10 minutes. I’ve found that my cake needs about 65-75 minutes to bake all the way through. If you are using frozen blueberries it may take a little bit longer than if using fresh blueberries.

I love this sourdough blueberry crumb cake. It is not overly sweet (you can add a little more sugar if you want a sweeter cake) and the blueberry really shines through. The cake rises beautifully and would be perfect for a family brunch, to pull out as a special after-school snack or even to drink with a cup of tea on a snowy day. If you are a blueberry muffin lover like me, add this recipe to your “to-make” list. It’s delicious.

Sourdough Blueberry Crumb Cake

Sourdough blueberry crumb cake is a lightly sweetened cake made with sourdough discard, studded with sweet blueberries and topped with a sweet crumb topping. Perfect for breakfast, brunch or a snack, this crumb cake is delicious!
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 5 mins
Course Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 16 slices

Ingredients
  

Crumb Topping

  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all purpose flour

Sourdough Blueberry Cake

  • 1.5 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter softened
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup sourdough discard or bubbly sourdough starter
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk see recipe notes for substitutions
  • 2.5 cups fresh blueberries see recipe note for frozen blueberries

Instructions
 

Crumb Topping

  • Melt 6 Tablespoons of butter. Add the sugar, vanilla, cornstarch, salt and flour. Mix together until it forms a moist, crumbly topping. Set aside the crumb topping for later.

Sourdough Blueberry Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • To a small bowl, add the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, salt and baking powder. Fluff together with a fork. Set aside.
  • Using a stand mixer or a handheld mixer, mix together the softened butter and granulated sugar until light and creamy.
  • Add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla. Mix again, scraping the sides and bottom as needed until fully incorporated, light and fluffy.
  • Pour ¾ cup sourdough discard (direct from the fridge or use ripe sourdough starter) and add to the bowl. Mix together.
  • Add the flour mixture and mix until just incorporated. Pour in the buttermilk and mix until smooth.
  • Add 2 cups of fresh blueberries (reserving ½ cup for topping) to the batter and stir lightly to combine. See recipe note if using fresh blueberries.
  • Line an 8 by 8 pan (my favorite, affiliate link) with parchment paper. Pour blueberry cake mixture into the pan and spread evenly.
  • Sprinkle the crumb mixture on top of the cake, spreading it evenly and breaking up clumps with your fingers as you go. Dot the top with the reserved ½ cup of blueberries.
  • Bake the cake for 60-75 minutes until baked through. Once the cake has stopped jiggling in the middle, take a sharp knife and stick it straight in the middle of the cake. If it has batter on it, continue baking a few more minutes. If it comes out clean, the cake is finished baking.
  • Cool and slice to serve. The cake stores well at room temperature for a day or two or can be frozen for longer storage.

Notes

Buttermilk: If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can substitute 1/4 cup milk mixed with 1/4 cup sour cream.
Blueberries: Fresh blueberries are best for this recipe, but frozen blueberries work too in a pinch. If using frozen blueberries, toss them in 1-2 teaspoons of flour and then gently stir into the batter. This helps the blueberries spread throughout the cake and not sink to the bottom. Using frozen blueberries may also increase the baking time about 10 minutes. 
Keyword blueberry, crumb cake, snack cake

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One Bowl Pumpkin Spice Muffins

You guys. These muffins. They are what I want to serve to a big group of friends (you know, when we can have a big group of people over again). These pumpkin muffins will fill your kitchen with the aroma of pumpkin spice. “Hello Fall! Please come stay and play awhile” is how these muffins welcome the season. They have the perfect sweetness and are filled with all the spices I associate with the leaves changing and the holidays approaching. Not only are these muffins the perfect way to usher in September, they are super simple and only require one bowl!

Jump Directly to the Recipe: One Bowl Pumpkin Spice Muffins

One-Bowl. Easy Peasy.

I have four young kids. That translates to A. LOT. of dirty dishes and a dishwasher run at least once if not twice a day. I basically do everything in my power to not use up “one more bowl” or dish unless absolutely necessary. In an ideal scenario, should I mix the dry ingredients together before adding it to my wet ingredients? I probably should, but you know what? Sometimes you gotta do what is best for your sanity…and to me that is often not dirtying One. More. Bowl. I’ve found that if I add my baking soda, baking powder and salt directly to the center of the liquid mixture in my bowl and mix it in thoroughly before adding my flour, these muffins turn out great. Every time. If you don’t mind dirtying another bowl, go right ahead and mix the dry ingredients together and then the wet ingredients together and then mix the two together. But for me. I’ll be over here mixing in one bowl as long as I can, and these muffins are amazing either way.

Pumpkin Spice Topping

One of the things that makes these muffins stand out is the pumpkin spice topping that is added after they come out of the oven. I got the idea from these cinnamon sugar muffins and thought they would work perfectly on a pumpkin version…and boy was I right. Take your muffin after it has cooled a bit, dip the top in melted butter and then dip it in a pumpkin spice mixture to give a crunch, sweet, over-the-top delicious factor to a pumpkin muffin. My kids love helping dunk the muffins and put the finishing touches on these shortly after they come out of the oven. It’s the perfect activity for little fingers to get busy in the kitchen.

Recipe Doubles and Freezes Well

This recipe for one-bowl pumpkin spice muffins is an easy one to double. With school starting up again, I’m always looking for quick breakfast ideas. I like to make a double batch (then I can use one 15 oz can of pumpkin instead of the half a can this recipe calls for) and freeze them. I let the muffins cool and then place them in a ziplock gallon-sized bag. I’ll pull them out of the freezer one at a time for a quick re-heat in the microwave, or sometimes I’ll add them frozen to my kids lunchboxes, so by lunchtime they have a perfectly moist muffin. Sometimes I’ll omit the sugar topping and we eat them plain. Still delicious. Pick up a can of pumpkin on your next trip to the grocery store and give these easy muffins a whirl. 

One Bowl Pumpkin Spice Muffins

Amy
Fall is in the air with these one-bowl pumpkin muffins topped with pumpkin spice cinnamon sugar.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Servings 18 muffins

Ingredients
  

Pumpkin Muffins

  • 1 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

Pumpkin Spice Topping

  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8-1/4 teaspoon (or a sprinkle) of ginger, nutmeg and cloves

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Fill a muffin tin with 18 muffin liners or liberally spray your muffin tin (for no liners).
  • In a bowl, mix together the canned pumpkin, eggs, vegetable oil, applesauce and sugar with a fork or spoon. Add the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves and stir together. 
  • To the center of the bowl, add the baking soda, baking powder and salt. Stir to combine.
  • Add the flour and mix together until the flour is just incorporated, doing your best not to over-mix. 
  • Using a ¼ cup measuring cup, scoop batter into each muffin tin. 
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes until the muffins are baked through. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes until ready to handle.
  • Melt ⅓ cup of butter. In a separate bowl mix together the sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves (add more or less of the pumpkin spice flavor you like).
  • Dunk the top of each muffin in the melted butter. Then dunk and twist in the pumpkin spice mixture until completely covered. Repeat with the remaining muffins. Enjoy!

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Amazing Chocolate Chip Muffins

I have been searching a long time for the perfect chocolate chip muffins. I often think, “Would I want to serve these muffins to a friend or bring them to a brunch?” Sometimes I can answer yes. Other times, my kids gobble them up anyway and I move on to a different recipe. This recipe is one of those that needed to be shared. It is the kind of chocolate chip muffin recipe that everyone needs in their arsenal. One that will sell-out at a bake sale or get rave reviews at bible study…or just you know anytime when you are craving a bakery-style chocolate chip muffin. These are a little bit dangerous because they are so good.

What makes these muffins Stand out from other muffin recipes

This muffin recipe differs from a lot of recipes because it uses both melted butter and vegetable oil which gives you the benefit of both. It uses buttermilk which makes the muffin taste light (not dense and heavy). This muffin also has a small amount of cornstarch in the batter. Cornstarch, when used in small quantities, helps “soften” the flour resulting in a very tender muffin. All of these things work together to make an absolutely knock-your-socks-off delicious chocolate chip muffin.

Just a spoonful of Sugar…

Crunchy, sweet topping

This muffin recipe calls for 1 Tablespoon of granulated sugar sprinkled on top of the muffins before baking them. You could use any type of sugar here. I chose granulated sugar for my muffins because that is what I usually have on hand. Sprinkling the sugar on top and baking it gives the muffin a crunchy, sugary crust that makes for the perfect bite of muffin.

I also love that these chocolate chip muffins do not need a liner when baking in my favorite non-stick muffin pan (affiliate link). Muffin liners are very useful when making muffins with berries, fruit that gets sticky or these cinnamon chips so the muffins don’t stick to the pan. These muffins are not overly sticky and if you have a non-stick muffin pan and you grease it with some cooking spray before putting the batter in muffin tins, you won’t need to use a muffin liner. Score!

Quick, easy and Amazing

Another thing I love about these muffins is how quickly you can make them. Then come together in about 10 minutes and only take 15 minutes to bake. You could accept an invite to someone’s house last-minute, whip these up while you’re getting ready and basically look like a rockstar in the kitchen. Or if you’re like me and need a quick after-school snack you can throw these in the oven right before the kids get off the bus and you have instant “awesome mom” status.

Amazing Chocolate Chip Muffins

Yield: 12 muffins

Time: 10 minute mix, 15 minute bake

Ingredients:

  • 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup buttermilk, shaken
  • 1 cup plus 1 Tablespoon (reserved for the top) granulated sugar 
  • 1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

Waiting for the muffins to come out of the oven
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  2. Melt 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter in a large liquid measuring cup (affiliate link) or small bowl. Add vegetable oil, egg, vanilla extract and buttermilk. Mix in 1 cup granulated sugar and stir to combine.
  3. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the all purpose flour, baking powder, cornstarch and salt. 
  4. Add the liquid ingredients to the flour mixture and stir gently a few times. Add 1 cup of chocolate chips and stir until just combined. A few streaks of flour are okay!
  5. Spray a 12 cup muffin tin, (my favorite one here, affiliate link) and fill tins mostly full with batter.
  6. Sprinkle the reserved 1 Tablespoon of granulated sugar on top of the muffins before baking.
  7. Bake muffins for 5 minutes at 425 degrees. Then reduce the temperature to 350 degrees and bake for 10-12 more minutes. Check that muffins are done by inserting a toothpick into the center of one and making sure it comes out clean (there may be some melted chocolate–that’s okay). Let muffins cool and enjoy!

Follow me on Instagram @amybakesbread, like Amy Bakes Bread on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest for more baking ideas.

Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Post a photo and tag me @amybakesbread so I can see your bake 🙂

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Strawberry Orange Muffins

Do you still have fresh strawberries where you live? The farms near our house are mostly all picked out for the season, but visiting family in the Pacific Northwest they are still going strong. I am hoping that we will get to pick some other types of berries this summer. Fingers crossed! Picking berries is one of my favorite summertime activities…delicious and so much fun.

My boy loves, loves, loves muffins

My youngest son loves muffins. He would choose to eat muffins every day if I let him…and sometimes I do. His one request in picking strawberries was “could we please make some muffins with them?” How could I refuse that cutie. We came up with this yummy recipe that uses diced strawberries and some orange zest to give a strawberry-orange flavor to these muffins. The orange zest definitely gives orange flavor to these muffins which complement the fresh strawberries so well. If you aren’t a fan of the orange flavor, you can substitute vanilla extract for the orange zest, though you will miss out on the citrus-flavor.

What makes these muffins unique?

Greek yogurt gives these muffins a little added bit of protein that I am not complaining about. It also helps the muffins stay nice and moist. If you don’t have greek yogurt on hand, you can try substituting sour cream which should have a similar effect. 

I also love the beautiful domes that come from baking these muffins at a higher temperature and then quickly lowering the temperature when baking them. This trick works. Every. Single. Time. It has definitely upped my muffin game so I get bakery-style muffins every time I pull them out of my oven. Try it. You won’t be disappointed.

These muffins are so delicious that I will be making them even when my strawberries aren’t freshly picked from the patch. I will probably try them with blueberries, raspberries or blackberries this summer too. Yum!

Strawberry Orange Muffins

Yield: 14-16 muffins

Time: 15 minute mix, 15 minute bake

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup plain greek yogurt
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • ⅓ cup oil
  • Zest from one orange, about 2 teaspoons
  • 2 cups (10 oz) all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup diced strawberries

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  2. In a liquid measuring cup, mix together greek yogurt, milk, egg and oil. Add the zest from one orange (more or less depending on how much orange flavor you want to come through).
  3. In a mixing bowl add the flour, sugar, baking powder, soda and salt. Whisk together.
  4. Dice a cup of fresh strawberries and set aside.
  5. To the mixing bowl add the liquid ingredients and stir a few times. The batter won’t be completely combined. Add the diced strawberries and stir until the mixture is just combined. It’s okay if there are some little streaks of flour.
  6. Line a 12 cup muffin tin, (this is my favorite muffin tin affiliate link). Using a ⅓ or ½ cup measuring cup, fill the tins mostly full of batter.
  7. Bake muffins for 5 minutes at 425 degrees. Then reduce the temperature to 350 degrees and bake for 10 more minutes. Check that muffins are done by inserting a toothpick into the center of one and making sure it comes out clean (though there may be some residual strawberry…that’s okay). Let muffins cool and enjoy!

Recipe Notes: This recipe can also be baked as mini muffins. Grease the muffin tin and bake at 425 for 4 minutes and 350 for 5-6 minutes. You can leave the orange zest out of the recipe and replace it with 1-2 teaspoons vanilla, though you will definitely miss out on the orange flavor.

Follow me on Instagram @amybakesbread, like Amy Bakes Bread on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest for more baking ideas.

Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Post a photo and tag me @amybakesbread so I can see your bake 🙂

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Blueberry Lemon Cream Cheese Muffins

Dotted with blueberries and a little zing of lemon. These are so good!

I think this year I am especially excited for summer to come. 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. We are anxiously awaiting strawberry season here in Kentucky and shortly after strawberry season…it’s blueberry season! I remember one year taking my kids in the heat of the summer sun to pick berries. We were all exhausted from the humid, hot, weather but our bellies were full and our mouths were blue! 

These blueberry lemon muffins are perfect for the upcoming blueberry season, but would also work just as well with the fresh blueberries in your fridge or with frozen blueberries. I jumped the gun on making these this year in my yearning for summer weather and used frozen blueberries. Still delicious, sweet and yummy. The frozen berries also turn the batter (and my fingers) a beautiful shade of purple. It’s the little things right now, am I right?! 

I love the “bakery” domed tops on these muffins. Not only do they taste great but they look so pretty.

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!

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! 

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.

Yield: 18-20 muffins

Time: 15 minute mix, 20 minute bake

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium lemon, zested
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup milk
  • 4 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 4 Tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar, plus a little extra for sprinkling on top
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups (about 10 oz) all purpose flour
  • 2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line two muffin tins with muffin liners and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Zest a lemon and add it to a mixing bowl. In a liquid measuring cup, pour ½ cup of milk and squeeze two tablespoons of the lemon juice into the milk. Let stand for 5 minutes.
  3. To the mixing bowl, add the cream cheese and butter. Mix together with a fork or spoon. If the butter or cream cheese is cold, I will soften it in the microwave for 20- 30 seconds. Add in the sugar, eggs and vanilla extract. Mix until fully incorporated, glossy and smooth.
  4. Add the baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix together.
  5. Add 2 cups of flour on top of the mixture. Don’t mix yet! Add the 2 cups of blueberries on top of the flour and gently stir the blueberries and flour together. Alternatively, you can mix ¼ cup of the flour with the blueberries before adding to the bowl, but I am a fan of using fewer dishes, so I put them in the same bowl. This keeps the berries from sinking to the bottom of your muffins. Then mix gently. Beware of overmixing the batter. You want to have some streaks of flour left in the batter. 
  6. Scoop about ¼-⅓ cup batter in each muffin tin. Sprinkle tops with a little bit of granulated sugar if desired. I like to fill any unused muffin tins with a little bit of water to help with even baking.
  7. Bake muffins at 425 degrees for 5 minutes. Then decrease the temperature to 350 degrees and continue baking for 12-14 more minutes. Allow muffins to cool in the tins for about 10 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes: The cream cheese in these muffins keeps them moist and flavorful so they don’t dry out easily. They keep well covered or in a ziplock bag on the counter for a day, and they freeze well.

Please share this recipe if you enjoyed it! Post a photo and tag me @amybakesbread so I can see your bake 🙂

Follow me on Instagram @amybakesbread or like Amy Bakes Bread on Facebook for more baking ideas.

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