Recipe: Cranberry Orange Muffins

I love a good muffin in the morning, don't you? My kids sure do. Or at least Lucas does. Avery likes picking berries or nuts of chocolate chips or what-have-you out of muffins and leaving the delicious carby, cakey leftovers on her plate. She lives on air and mischief and bits of fruit, that girl.

But anyway, back to the muffins. I've been trying, as of late, to be the kind of mom who makes a real breakfast most mornings. I count oatmeal as a real breakfast, just so you know. But I try to pull out the big guns, like muffins and pancakes, once or twice a week as well. Baked goods just start the morning on a nice note, you know?

I favor these muffins in the winter, when cranberries and oranges are cheap and in abundance at the grocery store. The ones pictured here have dried cranberries, because I'm not always the best planner, but trust me, the real cranberries are worth the hassle if you can get them. They give that nice bright pop of flavor and color that will put a spark in your winter morning. Or something like that.

Cranberry Orange Muffins

makes 12

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon orange zest
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups cranberries, chopped (or 1 cup dried)

Preheat oven to 375F, line a standard muffin tin.

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda. In a separate bowl, whisk together butter, sugar, zest, juice, eggs, vanilla and milk. Stir into flour mixture just until combined. Fold in cranberries.

Fill muffin cups 3/4 full. Bake until golden and a toothpick comes out clean, 22-25 minutes. Cool for five minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.