James Beard Award-winning Cookbook Author

Recipe and Tips: Gluten-free Blueberry Muffins

 One of the many things I’ve discovered in my brief exploration of gluten-free baking is the amazing latitude I have in the flour and starch mixtures I use. There are so many gluten-free flours available, where does one begin? I began with a ready-made all-purpose gluten-free baking flour by Bob’s Red Mill.  It’s got sweet sorghum, fava bean, and garbanzo flours combined with tapioca and potato starch.  I’ve tried it in muffins, crackers, and cookies, and it works like a charm. I don’t know yet how well it’ll work in cakes and pastries.  If any of you do, please let me know.

A word about measuring.  For greatest accuracy, I strongly advise bakers, especially gluten-free bakers, to weigh flours and starches.  Starches, in particular, like to stick to utensils and can be hard to measure with precision.  And the flours vary tremendously in density and clumpiness.  If you must measure, spoon the flour into dry measuring cups to overflowing and level off with a straightedge.  The baking flour mix in this recipe will measure just fine this way.  It’s when you are making your own mixes that measuring, instead of weighing can give you problems.

In the meantime, here’s a terrific gluten-free blueberry muffin recipe that I’ll bet will please just about anybody.  The muffins are light and tender from butter, sour cream, oil, and eggs.

The muffins freeze well and reheat perfectly in a 325-degree oven for 10 minutes.

Gluten-free Blueberry Muffins

1 cup granulated sugar

2 ½ cups (12 ½ ounces) Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free all-purpose baking flour

¾ teaspoon xanthan gum

2 ½  teaspoons baking powder

1 tsp kosher salt (or 3/4 teaspoon table salt)

1 ½ cups (7 ½ ounces) fresh blueberries

2 large eggs, at room temperature

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

¼ cup vegetable oil

½ cup full-fat sour cream

½ cup whole milk

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Finely grated zest of 1 lemon

Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling on muffin tops

Adjust an oven rack to the center position and preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Spray a standard size muffin tin, preferably non-stick, with nonstick spray.

In a large bowl, whisk together thoroughly the sugar, flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, and salt.  Add the berries and toss to coat.

In a medium bowl, add the eggs, butter, oil, sour cream, milk, and vanilla.

Whisk to combine and add the lemon zest.

Add to dry ingredients and fold in gently until batter is thoroughly moistened and smooth.  Let stand 5 minutes.

Divide among muffin cups, filling them almost to the top. Sprinkle with the turbinado sugar.

Bake 17 to 19 minutes until golden and muffins feel firm to the touch, rotating pan halfway through baking.

Cool in pan 5 minutes, then prop the muffins on their sides in the cups to cool further. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 12 large muffins. These are great warm with butter.


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