Poor, misunderstood cranberries. They have such a bad reputation. People associate this sweet and tangy berry with that lumpy, clumpy, almost gelatin like blob of canned sauce that gets served on holidays. There’s so much more to this superfruit. It’s sweet and tart boldness takes your baked goods to a whole new level. Lucky for you and me, cranberries just happen to go wonderfully with chocolate and orange. Get your hands on a fresh (or frozen – they keep wonderfully in the freezer) baggie of cranberries and get to baking. These Cranberry Orange Chocolate Chip Muffins are a great way to kick it off!
I bake with cranberries often. Each time I write about them I like to remind everyone to stock up when they’re in season, or after the winter holidays when the prices drop. Cranberries freeze perfectly, just throw the little baggies in the freezer as is. Cranberries can be baked without being thawed – perfect for last minute baking! You’ll find many recipes call for cranberries to be coarsley chopped or thrown in the food processor. I pass on that – I enjoy a nice little chunk of cranberry in each bite. My suggestion is to take a few minutes and cut the cranberries in half instead. It’s not that terrible of a task when they’re frozen. If they’re not frozen, well, throw them in the freezer for a few.
These muffins are effortless to throw together. Bake for about 20 minutes or until tops are lightly golden and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Start to finish – you’ll be devouring these muffins in no time.
These delicious muffins disappeared quick in my house. For whatever unknown magical reasons, cranberries lose just a bit of their sharp bite when baked with sugar and spice and everything nice. You know it’s a cranberry, but it will remind you almost of a tart cherry chocolate muffin. Yummy.
I hope you enjoy these Cranberry Orange Chocolate Chip Muffins. They’re simple to throw together and great for breakfast, dessert or a snack. Thanks so much for stopping by : )
P.S. You’ll have half a bag of cranberries left, so here’s some great recipes I’ve made to use them all up!
- 2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1½ cups fresh cranberries
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- ¾ cup milk
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- ¼ cup applesauce
- 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
- Chop cranberries in half. This is done easiest when the cranberries are frozen.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, milk, oil, applesauce, orange zest and vanilla.
- Stir in flour mixture, just until combined - do not overmix.
- Fold in cranberries and chocolate chips - do not overmix.
- Spoon batter into greased or paper lined muffin cups.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until golden and a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Let cool in pan on rack for 5 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on rack.
- Enjoy 🙂