Have you ever been curious about how to make healthy muffins from scratch?
I love to make healthy muffins from scratch. Muffins are one of my favorite things to bake.
They are so easy. It’s hard to mess them up.
They provide maximum return with minimal effort. Always a good thing when you are lazy like me!
All you need is a few tips for how to make healthy muffins from scratch and you are in business.
It’s probably easier buy muffins from your favorite coffee shop or bakery. That’s what I used to do. But the trouble is that they’re usually huge and high in calories. (Here’s a newsflash for you – if the muffin you’re eating tastes like a cupcake, it probably has as much fat, sugar and calories as one too! It’s something I discovered years ago when I first got serious about losing weight.)
It’s much healthier to make homemade muffins from scratch. Why?
When you mix up and bake your own muffins from scratch you are in control of what ingredients you use and the size of the muffins you make.
But it’s important not to get too crazy when making healthy baked goods or else you can wind up with muffins that are either dry and tasteless or that have a rubbery texture.
If you like eating muffins for breakfast, use these 12 tips to mix up more healthy ones.
12 Tips for How to Make Healthy Muffins from Scratch
1. Decrease some (NOT ALL) of the fat. Usually just 3 to 4 tablespoons of oil or butter for each batch of 8 to to 12 muffins is enough to keep your muffins tender, moist and tasty
2. Use whole wheat pastry flour. It’s much lighter than regular whole-wheat flour so it works better in muffins. Replace half the flour in your favorite muffin recipe for whole wheat pastry flour or another whole grain flour. Two of my current favorites are oat flour, which you can make by grinding rolled oats in the blender or food processor and barley flour.
3. Replace 1/4 to 1/2 cup fruit or vegetable puree for the same amount of oil in your favorite muffin recipe. This will increase the nutrition, moisture, tenderness and natural sweetness of your muffins. Applesauce and pumpkin puree are personal favorites.
4. Add nuts that are high in omega-3 fats. Walnuts and almonds are good choices.
5. Mix together the dry ingredients well with a wire whisk or fork. Fluffing up the flour will help make your muffins more tender.
6. Mix the dry and wet ingredients together gently just until blended. Over mixing can make your muffins tough and/or heavy.
7. Add 1/2 to 1 cup of healthy additions. Berries, chopped fresh fruit, dried fruit pieces, shredded carrots, shredded zucchini and mini dark chocolate chips are all good sources of vitamins and minerals and extra fiber.
8. Use yogurt or buttermilk. For all or some of the milk or fat in your muffin recipes. It will create moist tender muffins. If you are an inexperienced baker, look for recipes that use these ingredients so you don’t need to determine how to make the changes.
9. Use an ice cream scoop to fill the muffin cups. It’s much faster and neater.
10. Add water to any empty muffin cups in you muffin pan. To stop your muffin pan from buckling.
11. Don’t let the baked muffins sit in the pan too long. If you do, they will get soggy.
12. Muffins should be golden brown with slightly rounded bumpy tops. They are tender and light to fairly dense and moist inside and easy to remove from the pan. If not, check out our tips for trouble shooting problems with your muffins below.
Solving Common Muffin Problems
Sometimes things go wrong when making muffins, especially if you are just learning how to make healthy muffins from scratch. Here are some common muffin making problems and cures…
- Pale muffins usually mean the oven was too cool. Make sure your oven is heated to the required temperature before placing your muffins in the oven to bake. (You may need an oven thermometer to check the temperature of your oven.)
- Muffins with very smooth or peaked tops means you mixed the batter too much. Be sure to only mix until the dry ingredients are just moistened being as gentle as you can.
- Tough and heavy muffins means you used too much flour/mixed the batter too much. (Be sure to fluff your flour well and then lightly spoon it into your measuring cup before leveling it off with the flat side of a knife.)
- Muffins with uneven texture and large holes/tunnels indicates too much mixing.
- Dry muffins usually mean you used too much flour, your oven was too hot or they were baked too long.
- Sticking usually means the pan was not properly greased. Grease your muffin cups well or line them with paper liners.
- Muffins that are dark on the outside but not done in the center usually means that the oven was too hot.
Some of My Favorite Healthy Muffin Recipes
Looking for The Perfect Muffin Cookbook?
750 Best Muffin Recipes: Everything from breakfast classics to gluten-free, vegan and coffeehouse favorites by Camilla Saulsbury is full of every kind of muffin you can think of including all the classics like blueberry, corn and bran, as well as all kinds of indulgent coffee house muffins. But, what I love best about it is its chapters full of healthy superfood, farmer’s market, vegan and gluten-free muffins. Everything I’ve made from it has been delicious. Read my cookbook review.