Sometimes a recipe comes along and wheedles its way into your family’s heart. This is one of those. My sister originally began making these Lemony Blueberry Streusel Muffins a long time ago and frequently still does, much to my delight. I also bake them often, although I have tweaked the recipe slightly.
These moist, cake-like muffins are loaded with blueberries and have a light touch of lemon. The streusel topping is sweet and crunchy, but there’s not too much of it. Don’t you hate it when there’s too much streusel on a muffin and one bite sends crumbs in all directions? No streusel abuse, here.
Making Lemony Blueberry Streusel Muffins
Prepping your streusel first is a good idea. Simply stir your dry ingredients together then rub in the butter with your fingers. It will look like this, ready for you to sprinkle on your muffins before baking.
Now for some culinary talk … Because butter (as opposed to oil) is used as the fat in this recipe, creaming it with the sugar using an electric mixer is necessary. Creaming means to beat the butter and sugar together until it’s light and fluffy. Today I used my hand mixer, but a stand mixer works even better.
When making muffins – or any quick bread – it’s imperative to NOT toughen them by over mixing the dry ingredients into the batter. That goes for all cookies, pancakes, biscuits, muffins and quick breads out there.
In a quick bread batter, when you mix beyond the point of incorporation, you develop the gluten in the flour which toughens your final product. Terrific for pizza crust, bad for muffins.
… And when the power goes out while you’re mixing your muffins as ours did above, take a moment and enjoy the sunbeams. Carrying on …
Don’t have a rasp grater for zesting citrus or for grating things like fresh Parmesan? Here’s one of my favorite rasp graters.
Procedures, in short:
- Prep the streusel, reserve
- Cream the butter and sugar
- Incorporate the eggs and extracts
- Having already stirred together your dry ingredients, mix in half of that, alternating with half the milk; repeat
- Fold in blueberries and lemon zest
- Portion in muffin tin, top with streusel
- Bake, eat and be happy
Lemony Blueberry Streusel Muffins will store beautifully in an airtight container for several days.
Lemony Blueberry Streusel Muffins
- 3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 5 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom, optional
- 2 Tablespoons butter, room temperature
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon lemon extract
- ½ cup milk, preferably whole milk if you have it
- zest of 1 lemon
- 1½ cup fresh blueberries
- Preheat oven to 350°. Line a 12-portion muffin tin with paper liners or grease the tin well.
- In a small bowl, stir together the 3 tablespoons of flour, 5 tablespoons of sugar and spices. Cut up the 2 tablespoons of soft butter and rub it in with your fingers. Work it through until it's evenly distributed and resembles brown sugar.
- In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder and salt.
- Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until smooth. Stir in extracts.
- On low speed, stir in half the flour mixture, then half of the milk. Repeat. Mix just until incorporated, no more.
- By hand, fold in the lemon zest and blueberries.
- Portion into the prepared muffin tin. Evenly distribute the streusel topping over the muffins.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick tests clean. Cool in the pan a few minutes, then gently remove to a cooling rack.
- When testing the muffins for doneness, insert a toothpick into a muffin near the center of the tin. Wiggle it a little before removing it. That will enlarge the hole made in the crust of the streusel so the streusel won’t inadvertently “clean off” the toothpick and give you a false reading.
- You can also make these muffins with frozen blueberries, just thaw & drain them first.
- If you wipe drips from the muffin tin before baking, your clean up will be easier.
- These muffins will store several days in an airtight container.