Magic Muffins

Magic Muffins

Let Them Eat Cake! This easy recipe makes light, tasty and versatile vegan muffins and is really popular. The muffins can also be made gluten-free by using g-f flour plus a mashed up banana plus an extra splash of plant milk to thin the batter a little (eg soya, almond, rice…)

As you will see, this basic recipe is very versatile and you can ring the changes with different flavoured icing also. Most icing sugar in the UK is vegan (but not the Royal variety).

Muffins and cupcakes can be as simple or as elaborate as you wish. Some of us love tons of rich icing and decorations, others prefer them plain, as below.

Main picture courtesy of Dotthecozyvegan with thanks

Not too trickyNot too tricky Gluten free Wheat free
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Preparation time

Cook time

Total time

30 minutes

Meal

  • vegan-desserts

Servings

12-14

Ingredients

DRY INGREDIENTS – SIEVE INTO A MIXING BOWL

  • 330g/12oz self raising flour (Use all white OR half and half fine wholemeal and white)
  • 225g/8 oz caster sugar
  • 1½ tsp bicarbonate of soda

WET INGREDIENTS – MEASURE INTO A JUG

  • 110ml/4 fl oz plain vegetable oil (not olive)
  • 290ml/scant 11fl oz soya or other plant milk, eg almond, rice…
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence

EGG ALTERNATIVE. CHOOSE FROM ONE OF THESE

  • 1 tbsp flax meal +3 tbsp warm water mixed together to make a flax egg. Add this to the combined wet and dry mixture at the end
  • OR 4 tsp soya flour – sieve this into the dry ingredients
  • OR 3 tbsp aquafaba (the gunky water in a tin of chickpeas or other white beans), whisked to make it frothy. Add this to the combined mixture at the end BUT reduce soya milk to 250ml

PLUS whatever flavourings you like – see suggestions below.

  • Chocolate and cinnamon (substitute some of the flour with cocoa powder and 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • Blueberry – a handful of any frozen or dried berries
  • Apple and cinnamon – apple chunks and 1 tsp cinnamon
  • Pear and cinnamon – as the apple variation
  • Carrot – 1 medium grated carrot. Nice with some lemon zest added too
  • Maple and pecan – replace some of the sugar with maple syrup and add a handful of pecan pieces
  • Banana – 1 well-mashed ripe banana (add 1-2 tbsp extra liquid if mixture too dry)
  • Lemon and poppy seed – zest of 1 lemon, 2 tbsp juice and 1 tbsp poppy seeds
  • Orange and cranberry – zest of 1 orange, 2 tbsp juice and 1-2 tbsp dried cranberries
  • Mixed berry – frozen or dried berries are best because they keep their shape whilst baking but fresh will do at a pinch
  • White vegan chocolate (Organica’s vegan white) and berry Chocolate
  • Triple vegan chocolate chip or else use broken pieces from a bar of vegan chocolate. Eg Organica’s dark chocolate or their Couverture bar (which tastes rather like Galaxy). If you have a good health food store they may sell vegan chocolate chips.
  • Or try just about any dried fruit (chop if large, like apricots)
  • BUTTERCREAM ICING
  • 100g/generous 3oz icing sugar, sieved
  • 30g/1oz vegan margarine, eg Pure OR 30g mild coconut oil OR Trex
  • Flavouring, eg vanilla essence; lemon essence and zest; cocoa powder etc

ALL KITTED OUT
Mixing bowls small and large; jug, sieve, medium-large muffin tins and cases; mixing spoon, measuring spoons, scales

Instructions

1. Pre-heat oven to 200°C/400°/Gas Mark 6. Get muffin tins and cases ready.

2, Sieve the flour, sugar, bicarbonate of soda (and dried soya flour if using) into a large mixing bowl. If you’re using cocoa powder, sieve that in too. Mix well.

3. Mix the plant milk, oil, vanilla essence plus any liquid flavourings together in a jug.

4. Gradually pour the liquid mix into the dry mix. This is better done by hand. If using whipped up aquafaba or the flax egg option, add it now, making it’s well distributed into the batter.

5. Spoon batter into muffin cases placed in muffin tins for 17-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. (Check after 17 minutes).

6. While the muffins are baking, make the icing by creaming the fat then mixing in the icing sugar and flavourings until everything is amalgamated. This can be made in a food processor for speed – add a splash of plant milk if it’s too stiff. Chill in the fridge or freezer until you want to serve the cooled muffins. Use a fork or piping bag to ice. Add any vegan cake decorations you can find – many regular shop bought ones are suitable but check with the manufacturer.

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