Cranberry Orange Muffins

So the plan was to celebrate my mom’s birthday this weekend down in Newport, RI…the plan was made, reservations set…muffins were baked!  Then our baby girl got a fever and we found ourselves staying home for the long Memorial Day Weekend.  More of what we did later this week…

But first, I thought I would share the muffin recipe we used to make these muffins for my mom’s birthday brunch…we ended up eating a few and freezing the rest! (Note, my mom is an animal print fanatic so when I saw these muffin tin liners at Home Goods I had to get them!)

Cranberry Orange Muffins

1 C dried cranberries
1/4 C fresh orange juice
2 C unbleached flour
2 Tsp baking powder
1/4 Tsp fine salt
1/2 C unsalted butter, softened, plus more for preparing the muffin tin
1 Tsp grated orange zest
2/3 C granulated sugar, plus up to 1 tablespoon for topping the muffins, if desired
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 C milk

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Put the cranberries and orange juice in a small saucepan, and bring just to a simmer over medium heat. Remove berries from the heat, and set aside to cool and plump. Drain off any excess liquid and set aside.  Lightly brush a 12-muffin tin with butter (we used animal print muffin tin liners instead). Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.

In a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or with an electric hand-held mixer in a large bowl, cream the butter, orange zest, and 2/3 cup sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Remove the bowl from the mixer.

Fold the flour in 3 parts into the butter mixture, alternating with the milk in 2 parts, until just combined. Fold in the cranberries. Do not over mix. Divide the batter evenly into the muffin tin and sprinkle the tops with sugar. Bake until golden brown, about 25 minutes. Cool muffins in the pan on a rack. Serve warm.


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