Funfetti Muffins

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This recipe is for sprinkle lovers – young, old, and in between. As my six year-old puts it: “Sprinkles are just fun.” He’s right.

Bake this recipe from scratch, and you will never use a commercial cake mix again!

The batter is buttery and rich with vanilla flavor. The crumb is incredibly moist. The ingredients in this simple recipe, you might likely find in any kitchen.

The muffins stay moist (and get even moister after a few days) because the butter and yogurt do a fabulous job keeping the cake together.

Each tender bite of this childhood favorite is loaded with sprinkles, colorful and bright. You could easily use sprinkles to match wedding colors or a birthday theme.

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Funfetti Muffins (makes 12)

1 and 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 large egg
1/4 cup yogurt  (plain or vanilla; or greek yogurt; or sour cream)
3/4 cup milk (cow’s milk; or soy milk; or almond milk)
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup sprinkles (not nonpareils)**

1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
2. Spray muffin pan generously with nonstick spray. Set aside.
3. In a medium bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
4. In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt butter in the microwave. Whisk in the sugars vigorously getting out any brown sugar lumps – mixture will be gritty. Whisk in egg, yogurt, milk, and vanilla extract until combined. Slowly mix in dry ingredients until no lumps remain.
5. Slowly stir in sprinkles, but do not over-mix because the sprinkles will bleed their color into the batter.
6. With an ice cream scoop, distribute batter into prepared muffin cups.
7. Bake for 25 minutes.
8. Remove muffins and cool completely on a wire cooling rack.*

*Muffins stay fresh covered at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 5 days.

**Instead of the sugar-laden sprinkles that you find at the supermarket, you can make all-natural rainbow sprinkles from shredded coconut and all-natural food dyes made from spinach, beetroot, and other vibrant veggies.

 

Cheesecake Muffins

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Luscious and dainty, these cheesecake muffins are dusted with powdered sugar, inspired by the delicate dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy.

Their sweet taste is tinged with a cheese-cake-y tang that is out-of-this-world. The vanilla extract and wafer cookie crust send a hint of caramel right to the heart of the cakes. And the bottoms are not soggy!

Rich and creamy, this great dinner party dessert is perfect for any season. The sprinkled powdered sugar on top suggests an edible winter wonderland. The velvety-smooth cream cheese makes a platter ideal for spring and summer and any holiday that highlights dairy foods.

These beautiful cakes are light but dense with flavor. They are sized just right for the calorie conscious and baked in small cups for little hands.

The best part of this recipe is that it’s so easy and effortless while still creating the illusion that a pastry chef has spent hours in the kitchen.

For a taste of New York, make cheesecake muffins ahead of time and serve, any time of the day.

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Cheesecake Muffins (makes 12)

24 vanilla wafer cookies (I recommend Nilla Wafers)
One 8 oz packages cream cheese (softened)
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp flour
1/8 tsp baking powder
1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 egg
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
12 foil cupcake liners
1 Tbsp powdered sugar

1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Spray muffin pan with cooking spray or line it with paper liners and spray liners.
2. In a large bowl beat cream cheese and sugar. Add in flour and baking powder and beat until combined. Then mix in eggs, one at a time, lemon juice, and vanilla.
3. Fill a muffin pan with cupcake liners and place two vanilla wafer cookies at the bottom of each one. Divide batter between 12 liners, filling each cup up to about 1/4 inch from the top.
4. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
5. Remove muffins from oven and place them on a cooling rack to cool completely.
6. Chill in refrigerator for two to four hours.
7. Top with powdered sugar and serve.

Coconut Muffins

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luscious and decadent, and not too sweet

My kids could not figure out the curly “things” on top.

Cheese? No…coconut.

In America, we do not see coconuts often, but hands down, the flavor is mouth-watering, especially in these muffins that are full of applesauce, coconut milk, and shredded coconut. The moist, home-baked goods practically call your name by filling your house with amazing aromas.

The coconut flavor is not overwhelming. For a stronger taste, substitute coconut extract for the vanilla. For a sweeter muffin, increase the amount of sugar in the recipe.

The tops round out nicely, in golden brown. The coconut flakes form toasty edges on top. Call these “muffins” if you like, but these are like CAKE.

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Coconut Muffins (makes 12)

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 14 oz. can unsweetened coconut milk (a generous 1 1/2 cups)
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup shredded coconut (plus 1/4 cup to sprinkle on tops)

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease muffin pan with cooking spray or line with paper liners.
2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
3. In a separate bowl (or a liquid measuring cup), combine coconut milk, applesauce, and vanilla.
4. Make a well in the dry ingredients, add the wet ingredients, and stir just to combine. Fold in the shredded coconut.
5. Spoon batter into greased muffin pan, filling each muffin cup about 2/3 full. Sprinkle additional shredded coconut on top.
6. Bake for 15 minutes and allow to cool before removing muffins from tin.

Jelly Doughnut Muffins

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Every baker in Israel makes jelly doughnuts, or sufganiyot, for the eight days of Hanukkah.

Traditionally, sufganiyot, were stuffed with jelly, but today innovative Israeli bakers fill them with Nutella, lemon curd, and even foie gras. We are fans of cherry jam and dulce de leche.

I use a cupcake corer to cut a hole in the middle of the muffins, which is a lot more fun and easier and cleaner than using a knife.

You can make great use of the cut-outs by dipping them in melted butter and sugar and serving bite-size “doughnut holes” alongside the doughnut muffins.

Every bite of these muffins is the ideal (miraculous) combination of sweet-cream-sugar-and jam. They are stupendous toasted. You will want to bake and eat them specifically for Hanukkah, and year round!

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Jelly Doughnut Muffins (makes 12)

2 2/3 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup milk

Topping:
4 Tbsp butter, melted
1/3 cup sugar
12 oz jar jelly, jam or preserves

1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Grease muffin pan with cooking spray or line with paper liners.
2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk flour, sugars, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg and salt.
3. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk butter, oil, eggs, vanilla and milk.
4. Pour wet ingredients over dry mixture and stir until thoroughly combined.
5. Bake for 15 minutes, until muffins are golden and tops spring back when touched lightly.
6. Let muffins cool for 15 minutes, then use a cupcake corer or knife to cut a hole in the top of each. (Save the “cut outs” to make doughnut holes, if desired.)
7. Dip each muffin in melted butter, then sugar.
8. Fill each hole with jelly.
9. Dip cut-outs from muffins into leftover melted butter and sugar (optional).

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Honey Muffins

 

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The honey flavor is outstanding in this recipe. These muffins are tender and delicious. They are light, fluffy, super easy to make, and lovely when warm, right out of the oven. Serve them warm with a little honey and butter drizzled over them or use a knife to insert a small pat of butter while they’re still hot.

This simple, delicious recipe is perfect for Rosh Hashana or just because. Start your own tradition by serving muffins instead of honey cake. These will definitely become a family favorite.

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Honey Muffins (makes 12)

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup honey

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
3. In a small bowl, combine egg, milk, butter, and honey.
4. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients just until moistened.
5. Fill prepared muffin cups three-fourths full.
6. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Remove from pan to a wire rack.

Chocolate Avocado Muffins

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Trust me, you are going to want to eat these muffins morning, noon, and night, whether you like avocado or not. If the rich, deep chocolate flavor is not reason alone, the healthful properties of these muffins add more fuel to a daily diet of avocado in a chocolate muffin. These muffins are unbelievably rich; your kids will detect no hint of green.

Fun Facts about Chocolate and Avocado

-Both chocolate and avocado are full of antioxidants. In fact, avocados are among the most antioxidant-rich foods.

-Fat is an important part of a healthy diet, especially for children. The healthy fat of the avocado helps lower cholesterol.

-Avocados are an excellent source of fiber and folic acid. They contain several kinds of carotenoids, including lutein, which is essential for eye health.

-Aside from being irresistibly delicious, chocolate contains serotonin, which stimulates endorphin production, which gives a feeling of pleasure.

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Sink your teeth into these muffins!

Chocolate Avocado Muffins (makes 18)

1 avocado, ripe
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
3/4 cup canola oil or unsalted butter, melted and at room temperature
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup milk
2 2/3 flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups frozen raspberries (optional)
1 cup chocolate chips (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease muffin pans with cooking spray or line with paper liners.
2. In a mixing bowl, mix avocado and sugar together until smooth. Add eggs, butter, vanilla, and milk.
3. In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt.
4. Add wet ingredients to flour mixture, mixing just until moistened.
5. Fold in optional ingredients (raspberries or chocolate chips or both).
6. Spoon batter into greased muffin pan, filling each muffin cup about 2/3 full.
7. Bake for 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Lemon Ricotta Muffins

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A wonderful way to start the day, these refreshing lemony ricotta muffins look fancy and taste delicious. Without the lemon, this recipe makes a great ricotta muffin. The almonds on top look great and add even more protein.

*Note: Omit almonds for young children.

Lemon Ricotta Muffins (makes 12)

2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar (plus more for sprinkling)
1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 cup), melted and cooled to room temperature
1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
1 Tbsp lemon zest, finely grated (from 2 lemons)
1 egg
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/3 cup sliced almonds

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease muffin cups with cooking spray or line with paper liners.
2. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
3. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the ricotta cheese and lemon zest. Add the egg, lemon juice, and almond extract.
4. Add the flour mixture to the ricotta mixture and stir until just blended. This is a thick batter.
5. Using and ice cream scooper, divide the batter into the prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle the almonds and extra sugar on top. Prod almonds into batter, slightly.
6. Bake for 20 minutes or until the muffins are a pale golden color.