Chocolate Banana Sourdough Muffins

Brown bananas and sourdough discard are two things that I am constantly looking for ways to use up in my kitchen. I’ve got a good sourdough discard banana bread recipe but this recipe for chocolate banana sourdough muffins hits me straight in my chocolate-loving heart. Chock full of banana, oats and sourdough I can at least pretend the health benefits outweigh the brown sugar. But seriously, these are decadent, delicious and you probably have all the ingredients you need on hand to make them today.

Sourdough Discard in Baked Goods

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 rolls to put it into. The sourdough discard enhances the flavor and creates less kitchen waste.

How Long Does Sourdough Discard Last?

Typically sourdough discard can last a couple of weeks in your refrigerator. 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. You can use what you prefer. I typically use a 100% hydration sourdough discard–equal weights of water and flour mixed with the starter. If your discard is maintained at a different hydration you may need a splash of milk for a thicker discard or a little extra flour for a thinner discard.

Overripe Bananas and Ground Oats

Anytime you bake with bananas, whether it’s banana bread, banana muffins or these chocolate sourdough banana muffins, you will want to use overripe bananas. These brown or black bananas add a lot of flavor and moisture to the recipe. I also love the use of oats in this recipe. It gives an added punch of whole grains and combined with the flour gives a melt-in-your-mouth muffin texture. Grind up one cup of oats in a blender and mix it right in with the flour mixture. I haven’t used whole wheat flour or gluten-free flour in this recipe, but I bet either would substitute really well.

Good Quality Cocoa Powder

One of the key flavors in this recipe comes from the cocoa powder. I love this cocoa powder and buy it in bulk at Costco. It is deep, rich and flavorful. Use whatever cocoa powder you love, preferably one that has a rich flavor that will transfer through to the muffins. I also always use semi-sweet chocolate chips in this recipe. I prefer the rich taste of chocolate to come through. Good quality chocolate also helps mellow the sourdough discard flavor if you are using an older discard.

Mixing the Muffin Batter

Most of the time when I mix together this muffin batter I’ll smash the bananas, add the brown sugar, eggs, melted butter, vanilla extract and sourdough discard. I’ll mix that together really well until combined. Then I’ll add in the cocoa powder and mix it until incorporated. I’ll add the flour on top of the mixture and pour the salt and baking powder right on top of the flour, taking care not to get the salt/powder in the liquid mixture. I like to fluff the salt and baking powder using a fork to mix it into the flour (this saves me a bowl and makes clean up easier). Then I’ll add the ground oats on top and gently mix together the batter. Over-mixing muffing batter leads to gummy and dense muffins. I like my muffins light and airy so I don’t mind leaving a few little streaks of flour. Add in the chocolate chips for the perfect chocolatey banana muffin and stir gently before scooping and filling a 12 cup muffin tin.

Baking Temperature is The Key to a Nicely Risen Muffin

This recipe calls for baking the muffins at a high temperature of 400 degrees for the first 5 minutes and then reducing the temperature to 325 degrees for the last 15 minutes of baking. The reason: a perfectly risen muffin. The high heat helps activate the baking powder in the muffin which gives the muffin the perfect rise. If you don’t want to do this step, go ahead and bake the muffins at 325 degrees for the whole 20-22 minutes. You may not have quite the same bakery-quality rise, but they will still be delicious.

Don’t wait on these muffins! They are delicious warm and make for the perfect after school snack. Your family won’t even guess they have sourdough discard and whole grains in them. I hope you enjoy these chocolate banana sourdough muffins as much as we do!

These little fingers couldn’t wait to grab a muffin!

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is my sourdough discard good for?

Sourdough discard is good for a couple of weeks refrigerated. After a couple of weeks my starter is a little too strong for me to enjoy in baked goods. If I haven’t used it up I will throw it away and start again.

Can I freeze brown and black bananas?

Yes! I love freezing my over-ripe bananas. They can stay good in the freezer for a couple of months. Before you use them in a recipe bring them back to room temperature and discard a bit of the liquid that collects before using in your recipe.

Can I make muffins in a blender?

You may think to use a blender to mix up all the ingredients of this recipe, but I would not. I’ve actually made this recipe in a blender and the muffins turned out gummy and dense. I prefer to mix lightly by hand which results in a light and fluffy muffin.

How do I store extra muffins?

Once muffins have cooled, store in a ziplock bag in the freezer. When you’d like to eat on, reheat in the microwave for 20-30 seconds or let sit at room temperature until thawed.

Does this recipe make mini muffins?

This muffin recipe works great for mini muffins. Bake for 5 minutes at 400 degrees, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 10-12 minutes more.

Chocolate Banana Sourdough Muffins

Amy
Chock full of banana, oats and sourdough discard, these chocolate banana sourdough muffins are decadent and delicious. These muffins can be whipped up quickly and make the perfect sweet treat, breakfast or after school snack.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Bread, Breakfast, Muffins
Cuisine American
Servings 12 muffins

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup old fashioned oats ground
  • 2 bananas over-ripe are best: brown or black bananas
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter melted and cooled to room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sourdough discard 100% hydration (see recipe notes)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

Instructions
 

  • Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.
  • Pour 1 cup of old fashioned oats into a blender. Process about 30 seconds until the oats are ground into a fine powder. Set aside.
  • To a medium-sized bowl, mash the brown/black bananas. Add the brown sugar, eggs, melted butter and vanilla extract. Stir together to combine. Add the sourdough discard and stir until combined.
  • To a small bowl, whisk together the ground oats, flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder. Add this dry mixture to the wet banana mixture. Stir until just combined. You should still see some streaks of flour throughout the batter.
  • Add the 1/2 cup of chocolate chips and gently stir again until just incorporated. Over-mixing the batter can result in rubbery muffins. We are looking for light and tender muffins, so stir until just combined.
  • Lightly grease a 12 cup muffin pan. If using muffin liners, spray the muffin liners as well. Using a cookie scoop or 1/4 cup measuring cup, fill each muffin tin 3/4 of the way full.
  • Bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 400 degrees. After 5 minutes reduce the temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 15 more minutes.
  • Let muffins cool in the pan for about 5 minutes and then turn out and place on a cooling rack. Enjoy!

Notes

Sourdough Discard: I feed my starter with equal weights of water and flour for a 100% hydration starter. If your starter is fed differently, you will want to adjust the amount of flour called for in the recipe; adding more flour for a starter that is fed with a higher percentage of water and less flour for a lower hydration starter. The longer your discard sits in the fridge, the more “tang” it will have. I prefer using a younger discard in this recipe to balance with the other flavors.
Mini Muffins: This muffin recipe works great for mini muffins. Bake for 5 minutes at 400 degrees, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 10-12 minutes more.
Storage: Once muffins have cooled, store in a ziplock bag in the freezer. When you’d like to eat one, reheat in the microwave for 20-30 seconds or let sit at room temperature until thawed.
Keyword banana bread, banana muffins, chocolate banana bread, sourdough banana bread, sourdough muffins

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Disclaimer: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a very small amount from qualifying purchases.

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.

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!

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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.

Check out these recipes for similar baking ideas:

Cinnamon Sugar Muffins Two Ways

When I first started this blog, I had every intention of sharing recipes about sourdough…eventually. I had planned to take it slow and introduce my love for all things sourdough gradually because while I love all things sourdough, it’s not very common for a home baker and I wasn’t sure how many people would be interested in that area of bread baking. 

My sourdough starter

Fast forward a few weeks and we were at the beginning of a global pandemic with yeast flying off the shelves and food shortages everywhere. All of a sudden people showed a lot more interest in sourdough baking. Most of us are at home looking for things to do and learning to become a little more self-reliant. With this in mind (and a cancelled trip that made it possible), I upped my sourdough game and started sharing about sourdough earlier than planned. I have tutorials on my Instagram about making a sourdough starter and I have a handy worksheet that can help you make your own starter if you are interested. I’ve also got an awesome recipe that turns out some delicious sourdough bread.

One of the things that makes sourdough unique is the feeding process. You feed your starter daily (or once a week or so if it’s refrigerated) and then end up with a bunch of discard. I keep my extra discard in a tupperware in the fridge and then find recipes to make with the discard throughout the week…waste not want not! This recipe for cinnamon sugar muffins is the perfect vehicle for the sourdough discard.

Cinnamon Sugar Muffins…two ways: with or without sourdough discard

I also know that not everyone has a tupperware of sourdough discard sitting in your fridge and I didn’t want you to not be able to make these delicious muffins just because of that. I have a recipe option below for cinnamon sugar muffins without the sourdough discard. Both recipes use the same technique for the cinnamon sugar topping and are equally delicious and worth making. This recipe would be a fun treat to make with kids or the perfect treat for a family brunch or breakfast. The cinnamon sugar topping makes these muffins a standout weekly breakfast or sweet snack for a day at home.

Yield: 12-14 muffins

Time: 10 minute mix, 16 minute bake

Ingredients:

Cinnamon Sugar Muffins

  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup milk, 2% or whole preferable
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Cinnamon Sugar Sourdough Discard Muffins

  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • ⅔ cup milk, 2% or whole preferable
  • ¾ cup sourdough discard (150 grams)
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon salt

The topping is the same for both recipes, don’t forget about it! It adds a sweet cinnamon crunch to the muffins that should not be left out.

Topping for both recipes

  • ⅓ cup white sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
  • 4 Tablespoons butter

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a small microwave-proof bowl, melt the butter. Add the white sugar and combine with a spoon. Mix in the milk, eggs and vanilla. If you are using sourdough discard, mix it in with the wet ingredients now.
  3. In a separate bowl whisk together the dry ingredients. Whisk the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt together.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix with a spoon. Be careful not to overmix the batter. Your batter may still have small streaks of flour in it…that is okay. 
  5. Line and lightly grease 12-14 muffin tins. If you have extra muffin wells with no batter in them, fill them about ½  way full with water (this helps protect your pans and gives your muffins an even bake). 
  6. Bake for 6 minutes at 425 degrees, then decrease the temperature to 350 degrees and continue baking for 10 minutes or until a toothpick is inserted in the muffin and it comes out clean.
  7. Allow to cool for a few minutes while you prepare the topping. Melt 4 Tablespoons of butter in a bowl. Mix together ⅓ cup white sugar with 1 Tablespoon of cinnamon in a separate bowl. Dip the top of each muffin into the butter and then dip into the cinnamon sugar mixture. Continue this process until every muffin in coated in cinnamon/sugar. Enjoy warm or at room temperature! Tip: I freeze any extra muffins in a ziplock bag and they work great.

Recipe Notes: Baking your muffins at a high initial temperature and then decreasing to a lower temperature gives you the beautiful domed muffins that you look for in a bakery. It’s worth it…I promise!

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.