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Old 05-03-2012, 09:01 PM   #1
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Help - Trouble With Muffins

I'm having trouble baking muffins - I want to make buttery ballooning melt-in-your-mouth muffins but I usually get flat, dry and dense ones, no matter what recipe I use and how well it's rated by others.

Can someone tell me what I'm doing wrong?

Jackie

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Old 05-03-2012, 09:05 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackie_hubert View Post
...Can someone tell me what I'm doing wrong?

Jackie
OK, but first you have to tell us what you're doing...
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:43 PM   #3
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Haha, I'll tell you the type of recipes I've tried: Easy Apple Cinnamon Muffins Recipe - Allrecipes.com

Naturally I had looked for a recipe that calls for butter instead of oil but didn't have much success.
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Old 05-03-2012, 11:17 PM   #4
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The oil should result in a moister muffin.

When the liquid ingredients mix with the dry, the baking powder is activated. There shouldn't be a lot of vigorous mixing. Just mix to combine and portion into the muffin tin.

Did you change any ingredients, change the process, leave the batter after it was mixed for a while?
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Old 05-03-2012, 11:34 PM   #5
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I use my stand up mixer and follow the instructions, just combining the ingredients. Is there a good video to watch that shows what exactly constitutes just combined? For years now I've had the same bad luck with muffins...

Does the size of the muffin tins and whether they are lined matter? I used paper cups in the regular 3-4" (?) metal pan cups. Should I use convection?
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:13 AM   #6
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How many muffin recipes have you actually tried? - They may not be the best recipes. The one you posted got mixed reviews.

If you'd like, I can post links to several of my favorites - all are moist with a great texture. Let me know which ones you're interested in:
Blueberry Muffins (Jordan Marsh copycat)
Chocolate Breakfast Muffins
Cherry Lime and Coconut Muffins
Jam-Filled Muffins (Williams-Sonoma)
Baked Donut Muffins
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:28 AM   #7
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Thanks! Some of those titles sound very interesting!

I've tried about 6-7 recipes over the years, all had similar ingredients as the one I posted.

I would love to know everyone's favourite muffin recipes! I'm especially looking for ones that use chocolate, cranberry, lemon, apple and raspberry.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:43 AM   #8
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First, have your muffin pans ready and the oven preheated before you even start to put the ingredients in the bowl.

Second, don't use your mixer, Mix by hand with a wooden spoon or large spatula just until all ingredients are wet. Don't worry about any lumps. They will cook out in the oven. I fold the dry ingredients into the wet.

Third, like stated before, once the liquid is added, the baking powder is activated. Mix quickly and place in muffin tins. The less handling, the better. Get into oven and start timing.

Take a look and try some of the TNT recipes that the other members of the DC Forum have so kindly listed. I often make just plain muffins with no fruit additons. Happy Baking!
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:52 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackie_hubert View Post
Thanks! Some of those titles sound very interesting!

I've tried about 6-7 recipes over the years, all had similar ingredients as the one I posted.

I would love to know everyone's favourite muffin recipes! I'm especially looking for ones that use chocolate, cranberry, lemon, apple and raspberry.
Here's the chocolate one (I omit the optional pearl sugar on top):
Chocolate Breakfast Muffins:
Chocolate Breakfast Muffins: King Arthur Flour

You can use raspberry jam or any other flavor in these:
Jam-Filled Muffins
Recipe: Jam-Filled Muffins
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Old 05-04-2012, 07:10 AM   #10
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To expand on what Addie said, mix by hand. Muffins are a quick bread, and quick breads require just enough stirring to get the dry ingredients wet.

Proper procedure is to combine sugar, fat, eggs and any other "wet" ingredient and stir well (you can stir as much as you need in this step). In a separate bowl or in a sifter, combine the dry ingredients and mix or sift. Pour the dry into the wet all at once and stir just until everything is moistened, or as Addie suggested, just fold in. You will have some small lumps, but that is OK, that's how it's supposed to look. At this point the first step of your baking powder is activated and creating small bubbles, that's good, just scoop the batter into the pan and bake.

Over stirring will "pop" that first set of bubbles (baking powder is "double acting" meaning the first reaction is from the liquid added, the second is from the heat of the oven). Over stirring will start to develop the gluten in the four, creating a less tender muffin. Oil makes a more moist muffin, since it is pure fat and butter contains a certain amount of water naturally.

One last thing, make sure the baking powder is FRESH, I would replace it once a year, just before the holidays is a good time since many people will be stocking up on baking supplies then. I use multiple cans a year, so it isn't a problem for me.
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