Healthy & Delicious: Orange-Cranberry Muffins Recipe

Healthy and Delicious

Healthy and delicious recipes from Serious Eats

Healthy & Delicious: Orange-Cranberry Muffins Recipe

Editor's note: On Mondays, Kristen Swensson of Cheap, Healthy, Good swings by these parts to share healthy and delicious recipes with us. Take it away, Kristen!

[Photograph: Kristen Swensson]

When it comes to healthy and portable breakfasts, muffins are the way to go. I feature them fairly frequently in the Healthy and Delicious column for their versatility and minor expense. Not to mention, they're pretty easy for anyone to throw together.

I'm no baker—not by a long shot—but I rarely botch a batch of muffins. Parallel parking, yes. Muffins, not so much.

Now is an excellent time for muffin-making, before it becomes too warm to fire up the ol' oven. And with asparagus already showing up in supermarkets, it's a good opportunity celebrate those flavors that tided us over the frosty, vicious winter.

Cranberry-Orange Muffins come straight from Cooking Light, the arbiters of all things healthy and muffin-esque in nature. They're dairy-free, wonderfully crispy around the edges, and feel like an appropriate "thank you" to late-winter citrus. Including cooking time, they come together in about 30 minutes and cost a few nickels each. Mama likes.

The recipe calls for fresh cranberries, which no doubt, would be dang tasty. I used dried, and they're a decent alternative if the fruit is out of season. Honestly, you could omit both the cranberries and walnuts and have a light, perfectly delightful orange muffin.

Here's to healthy muffins. Done right, there's fewer better breakfasts.

  • Yield:16 muffins


  • 2 cups flour, plus 1/2 tablespoon, divided
  • 1 cup sugar, plus 1 tablespoon, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons grated orange rind
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup dried cranberries, or 2 cups fresh cranberries, chopped
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • Cooking spray


  1. 1.

    Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray two eight-cup muffin tins with cooking spray. (Or one 16-cup tin, should you own one.)

  2. 2.

    In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 2 cups flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. Make an indentation in the middle.

  3. 3.

    In a large glass measuring cup, mix orange rind, juice, oil and egg. Pour mixture into flour indentation and stir until everything is just combined.

  4. 4.

    In a small bowl, stir dried cranberries, toasted walnuts, and remaining 1/2 tablespoon flour. Stir into batter.

  5. 5.

    Divide batter evenly among muffin tins. Sprinkle with reserved 1 tablespoon sugar. Bake 15 minutes. Remove from tins and cool on a wire rack.