After the busy holiday season I like to make these Cranberry Orange Muffins. Oranges are in season and I always have leftover cranberries in the freezer so this is a January recipe highlighting that classic combination.
Originally this was a coffeecake recipe with a delicious crunchy-sugary streusel topping. It's elegant enough for a Christmas brunch but just as welcome at a January work meeting. However, remaking this recipe gluten free presented a few challenges. Creating the structure of a cake is more difficult than that of an individual muffin…so for now this recipe is for Cranberry Orange Muffins.
Learn As You Bake
No gluten free flour blend can do all the things that wheat flour does in baking. As a home cook you simply need to get in the kitchen and try. Recipes most often call for a flour blend of some type and I've tried my share. Once I had success remaking old muffin recipes using the blend I now call my EGFG flour blend there was no going back.
It's All About The Flour
If you're still not happy with your gluten free baking you need to learn more about flour. I've written lots on this topic and you can check out these posts.
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The Role of Binders in Gluten Free Muffins
Xanthan gum is one of the binders used by gluten free bakers to add structure to baked goods. It's not inexpensive but you only need a tiny amount. As a general guideline add ¼ teaspoon of xanthan gum for each cup of flour in any muffin recipe. It also helps baked goods from drying out so quickly.
To learn more about binders check out this blog post, How To Use Binders from my year-long series on gluten free flour.
I have an arsenal of recipes I don't want to part with. Sure there are lots of gluten free recipes I could try, but everyone has a few old favourites they want to recreate.
From Everyday to Gourmet - Cranberry Orange Muffins
Lots of muffin recipes are loaded with sugar so when I make the same recipes over and over I experiment with decreasing the amount. Adjusting and substituting the sweetener does affect each recipe so make small changes and pay attention to the results.
If I’m taking these muffins to share with friends I want all the sugar and a little pizzazz. That's when I use nice paper muffin liners, all the streusel topping and I arrange them in a basket with a pretty napkin. A gourmet treat from an everyday recipe.
Get The Tools
Many people struggle with baking. Every oven is different and even standard baking pans vary a bit. Then there is the oven temperature and many more factors that challenge us everyday home cooks.
My advice is to buy quality bakeware since it will likely last you for more years than you can imagine. Then it's up to you to make notes about how long a particular recipe takes to bake in your pan and your oven. These are so many choices for baking pans that I would love to try but there is absolutely nothing wrong with all the metal pans I have. I prefer regular size muffins for everyday snacks and the mini size for a nicer presentation and to share with friends. Here are a few choices:
- regular size muffin pan in 6 or 12 cups, my choice for everyday snacks
- mini size muffin tin for a change from the ordinary
- silicone muffin baking pan, 6 or 12
- ceramic coated muffin tin
- a regular 10-inch Bundt pan, or even the mini Bundt pans
- regular round silicone muffin liners or a set of different shaped muffin liners
Are you reworking some old recipes? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below.
More Muffin Recipes
- Basic Banana Muffins
- Morning Glory Muffins
- Cornmeal Raspberry Muffins
- Pumpkin Ginger Muffins
- Rhubarb Streusel Muffins
- Muffins That Taste Like Donuts
- Gluten Free Muffins - A Recipe Round Up
Cranberry Orange Muffins
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoon EGFG gluten free flour blend* (or brown rice flour or sweet rice flour)
- 2 tablespoon melted butter
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 cups EGFG gluten free flour blend*
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon xanthan gum
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 tablespoon melted butter
- ¾ cup orange juice
- ¼ cup water
- 1 egg
- 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries, chopped
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Line muffin tins with paper or silicone liners.
- Combine streusel ingredients together in a bowl and stir with a fork until evenly mixed. Set aside.
- Mix dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Set aside.
- Mix wet ingredients in a 2-cup measuring cup. Pour over dry ingredients and stir until combined.
- Fold in chopped cranberries.
- Using a scoop fill muffin tins about ¾ full.
- Top each muffin with a spoonful of streusel.
- Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes.
- Let cool for 2 minutes then transfer to a baking rack and cool completely.