bcmom's kitchen

bcmom's kitchen

Friday, November 7, 2014

Cranberry Cream Cheese Muffins

When I saw this recipe, I knew I had to try it. I love anything with cranberries (I previously made these amazing Lemon Cranberry Muffins from the same blog), and the addition of the cream cheese just sounded amazing.

I've made these twice this week.  The flavor is really amazing.  It reminds me of this Almond Tart a bit - probably because of the almond extract and the cranberries.  Those flavors just go together so well.  The soft, slightly sweetened cream cheese is just a bonus.

If you want, you can take a knife (or your finger) and spread that soft cream cheese all over your muffin. Yum!

Cranberry Cream Cheese Muffins
adapted from The Pajama Chef

  • 4 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar, divided 
  • 6 oz. fresh cranberries (or frozen)
  •  2 eggs
  •  1/4 cup brown sugar
  •  1/4 cup oil
  • 3/4 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp. almond extract
  • 1-1/2 cup flour, part whole wheat (or use all white whole wheat)
  • 1 T ground flax seed (optional)
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.  Line muffin tin with paper liners or grease well.
  2. Mix cream cheese with 2 T sugar; set aside
  3. In small saucepan, combine another 2 T sugar with the cranberries.  Heat on medium, stirring occasionally, until cranberries pop.  Mash slightly with a wooden spoon and set aside.
  4. In mixing bowl, beat eggs then stir in the rest of the granulated sugar and the brown sugar.  Mix in oil, vanilla, and almond extract.
  5. Stir flour, flax seed (if using), baking powder, and salt together; mix into wet ingredients.  Then gently fold in cranberries, being careful not to over-mix or your batter will turn pink.
  6. Pour batter into prepared pan, filling muffin cups about 2/3 full.  Use a spoon to scoop cream cheese mixture into the center of each muffin, pressing down gently.
  7. Bake 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.  Cool 5 minutes in muffin tin then remove to wire rack to cool.
Makes 12 muffins

I like my muffins dense and not too sweet, so I used the white wheat flour and flax seed and cut the sugar down just a touch.  They were still plenty sweet, but if you like your muffins sweet and light, use 1 cup of sugar in the batter, with an additional 2 T sugar for both the cream cheese and the cranberries.  And use white flour instead of the whole wheat, though white wheat isn't as heavy as regular whole wheat would be.  I would also recommend using cupcake liners because, even with the wheat flour, these muffins wanted to stick to my muffin pan just a little.

The reason I made these twice in one week wasn't just because I love the flavor - which I do - it was because the recipe, as first posted, called for about 1/2 the flour it should have.  (Sarah weighed all her ingredients, so she got it right, but then she used an online conversion calculator when she wrote the recipe post)  I did not even bother to check, just followed the recipe - and they still turned out really good!  Just very delicate.  And hard to stop eating.  Very hard to stop eating.

I will definitely be making these again!

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