Here's How to Turn Any Muffin Recipe Into a Mini

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The world is full of pastries, but mini muffins crush all others with their cuteness. Bake some for brunch, for snacking or for breakfasts on the go: They're adorable in every situation.

Any muffin recipe can be made mini, but to get the best results, keep the following in mind.

Know Your Yield

Mini muffins are one third the size of regular muffins, which means that a recipe that yields 12 large muffins will produce 36 mini muffins.

Flavor With Care

With mini muffins, skip the mix-ins if you can and just add big flavor by (for instance) stirring more lemon zest into the batter for citrus muffins.

If you do want to use mix-ins, avoid fresh fruit; a single blackberry would leave too little room for batter. Better choices would be things you can chop down to size like chocolate chips, dried fruit and nuts. A swirl of Nutella, peanut butter or jam would also be delicious.

Skip the Liners

You definitely need liners when you're baking regular muffins; they make the muffins easier to remove from the pan and less messy to eat. But with mini muffins, we say skip 'em. Mini-muffin pans are a cinch to grease with vegetable oil or butter, so the muffins come right out. Plus these one-bite treats are nothing if not neat to eat.

Keep Your Pans Cool

Mini-muffin pans are sold in several sizes. The smaller ones make a dozen mini muffins while the biggest can handle up to four dozen at a time! If you need to bake your batter in batches, be sure to cool the pan completely and clean it out each time you empty it. The batter can sit out on the counter until you've used it all.

Adjust Baking Time

Mini muffins don't need as much time in the oven as regular muffins so be careful not to overbake them. At 350 or 375 F, most mini muffins only need from 10 to 13 minutes to bake. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the center of each muffin and seeing if it comes out clean or with only a few moist crumbs sticking to it. Or gently press the tops to see if they spring back.

Time to test out these tips!

Lemon Mini Muffins Recipe

Yield: 18 muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg white
  • ⅓ cup lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Optional mix-ins: 1 teaspoon poppy seeds, 1 tablespoon finely chopped candied ginger or 2 tablespoons chopped walnuts

1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Lightly grease 18 cavities of a mini muffin pan (or 12 cavities if your pan is smaller; this recipe can be baked in batches) with butter or vegetable oil.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a measuring cup, whisk together egg white, lemon juice, vegetable oil, lemon zest and vanilla extract. Pour lemon-juice mixture into the flour mixture and whisk to combine. If desired, stir in one of the optional mix-ins.

3. Divide batter into mini muffin cups, filling each about two-thirds full.

4. Bake for 11 to 13 minutes, until the mini muffins are set and a toothpick inserted into the center of each comes out clean or with only a few moist crumbs attached. Turn muffins out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

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