Healthier-than-usual coffee muffins with chunks of chopped chocolate and an optional cream cheese topping.
I’m often surprised by how things can be lost in translation even though everyone in the room speaks English.
Case in point: While on a family holiday to England quite a few years ago, I have a distinct memory of getting my muffins mixed up. We were ordering breakfast, and I really wanted scrambled eggs for breakfast (which is strange given I’ve always preferred sweet foods in the morning, but I digress).
The waiter asked, ‘Would you like that with toast or muffins?’
‘Oooh, muffins!’ I eagerly replied.
I was intrigued and overly excited by the thought of seeing a plate of scrambled eggs sitting next to a blueberry muffin. How would that combination work? Would it be really good or just really weird? Or maybe the muffin would be savory instead – something like a thyme and cheese muffin.
Finally, the waiter returned with our breakfasts.
‘Oh, English muffins. Right. Should’ve guess that.’ I mumbled.
The breakfast was nice enough, and I do enjoy English muffins. But still, I couldn’t help but be disappointed by what might have been.
As you would’ve noticed, these coffee and chocolate muffins are not English muffins. Nope, they’re the sweet baked goods I was dreaming about on that cold December morning.
Truthfully, English muffins have been on my ever-expanding ‘To Make Soon’ list for over a year. I’ll get around to it… one day. But for now, I’m all about tall, addictive, chocolate-studded muffins.
Instead of cute, perfectly round chocolate chips, these muffins are bursting with chunks of chopped chocolate. These chocolate chunks melt more than chips, so the muffins are filled with slightly gooey chocolate goodness when warm.
When cool, the muffins can be decorated with a simple cream cheese topping – just in case you thought your muffins needed a little pizzazz. But the topping’s completely optional, since we’re dealing with humble muffins and not their high-maintenance cousins, cupcakes.
These muffins are nice and tall thanks to the power of extreme heat. The muffins are initially baked at 400°F (200°C) for 5 minutes, which encourages the muffins to rise. Then the heat’s reduced to 350°F (180°C) so the muffins can cook through without burning (hooray!).
As with my other muffin recipes, these ones are a little healthier than usual. There’s a minimal amount of oil (two tablespoons, to be exact) – instead we’re relying on Greek-style yogurt for moisture. And to add a few whole grains, these muffins a made with a mixture of all purpose flour, whole wheat (aka wholemeal) flour and rolled oats.
So there are a few healthy ingredients sitting in-between all that chocolate.
By the way, this is the second of several coffee-themed recipes that I’ll be sharing on the blog in the near future (after receiving and reviewing a Dolce Gusto coffee machine). Next up, an old favorite of mine… overnight oats!
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup (100g) brown sugar, packed
- 2 tablespoons (30mL) canola oil
- 2 teaspoons blackstrap molasses
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup (120g) Greek-style yogurt
- ½ cup (120mL) cold coffee
- 1 cup (130g) all purpose flour
- ½ cup (60g) whole wheat flour
- ⅓ cup (30g) rolled oats
- 2 teaspoons espresso powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup (70g) chopped chocolate
Cream cheese topping (optional)
- ⅓ cup (80g) spreadable cream cheese
- 1 tablespoon (15mL) maple syrup
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 10 chocolate-covered coffee beans
- Muffins: Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Grease 10 holes of a 12-hole muffin pan with cooking oil spray. Alternatively, line the holes with muffin papers, and lightly spray the papers with cooking oil spray.
- In a large bowl, whisk the eggs with a fork. Whisk in the brown sugar, canola oil and vanilla extract. Mix in the yogurt and coffee.
- Add the all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, rolled oats, espresso powder, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Mix until just combined. Gently fold in the chopped chocolate.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared muffin pan, filling the holes most of the way up. If desired, sprinkle some extra chopped chocolate over the tops of the uncooked muffins.
- Bake at 400°F (200°C) for 5 minutes, and then reduce the oven temperature to 350°F (180°C). Bake for a further 7 – 10 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean (or with a few moist crumbs).
- Let the muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooking rack. Cool completely before decorating with cream cheese topping.
- Cream cheese topping: In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the spreadable cream cheese, maple syrup and cinnamon. Add the confectioners’ sugar and whisk until smooth.
- Dollop small spoonfuls of cream cheese topping on top of the cooled muffins. Top with a chocolate-covered coffee bean.
- Store the decorated muffins, and any leftover cream cheese topping, in the fridge. Muffins that have not been decorated can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature, or frozen.
Whole wheat flour is also known as wholemeal flour, and confectioners’ sugar is also called icing sugar or powdered sugar.
Blackstrap molasses add a stronger brown sugar flavor. If you don't have this ingredient, simply leave it out.
Room temperature eggs are preferred.