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Cranberry Maple Cornbread Muffins

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These cranberry maple cornbread muffins are a fun twist on a popular dish. They’re tender, moist, and sweet, and very easy to make. 

Overhead view of a muffin tin with cranberry cornbread muffins in some of the liners, and fresh cranberries in some of the other ones

I love to bake once the weather drops. In fall and winter, it seems like there’s always something coming out of my oven. And these cranberry maple cornbread muffins are one of my new favorite recipes to bake when the weather gets cold. 

Cornbread is one of my favorite foods, and this is a fun and fresh take on it. These muffins are sweeter than your average cornbread, so they work great as a breakfast food, or an afternoon snack. Fresh cranberries add a tart flavor to the cornbread muffins, while maple syrup really brings out the fall flavors. And while many cornbreads are dry and crumbly, these muffins are soft and moist. 

Why Add Cranberries to Cornbread? 

Cranberries aren’t the most traditional ingredient to add to a cornbread, but they fit perfectly with these cornbread muffins. The tartness of the berries balances out the sweetness from the sugar and maple syrup. And the berry flavor makes these muffins far more interesting and complex than your average cornbread recipe. 

Plus, cranberries are a common holiday ingredient. So adding them to these maple cornbread muffins means this baked treat is perfect for any Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Year’s spread. 

Cranberry cornbread muffins in a muffin tin, with a muffin resting on top of two of them, with muffins and cranberries in the background

Recipe Ingredients

Here are all the ingredients you need to make cranberry maple cornbread muffins. Be sure to scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of the article for the exact quantities of each ingredient.

  • All-purpose flour
  • Cornmeal – You can use fine or medium cornmeal, but avoid coarse ground cornmeal for this recipe, or you’ll end up with very gritty muffins.
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Eggs
  • Maple syrup – Make sure that you use 100% pure maple syrup, and not artificially-flavored pancake syrup. 
  • Sugar
  • Milk – I like to use whole milk for this recipe, but you can use low-fat milk if you want a healthier option.
  • Vegetable oil – You can use any neutral oil.
  • Fresh cranberries – Frozen cranberries also work fine for this recipe, you just don’t want to use dried berries.
  • Orange zest – This is an optional ingredient, but orange zest and cranberries go wonderfully together. 

How to Make Cranberry Maple Cornbread Muffins 

Here’s how to make these cornbread muffins. This recipe is quite straightforward, and only takes about 35 minutes to make. 

  • Prep. Preheat your oven to 400F, and line a muffin tin with muffin liners. 
  • Mix the dry ingredients. Place the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl, and whisk until everything is combined.
  • Mix the wet ingredients. Put the milk, oil, maple syrup, eggs, sugar, and optional orange zest in a mixing bowl, and whisk until well combined.
  • Combine the wet and dry ingredients. Use your hands or a spoon to carve out a well in the dry mixture. Pour the wet mixture into the well, and stir until combined.
  • Add the cranberries. Put the cranberries in the batter, and fold until combined. 
  • Put the batter in the muffin tin. Pour the cranberry maple cornbread batter into the muffin tin, filling each one about ¾ full. 
  • Bake. Place the muffin tin in the oven, and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. This should take about 18-20 minutes. Cool the muffins and then dig in.

Tips for Success

Here are a few little tricks and tips for making these tender cornbread muffins.

  • Use room temperature eggs. You’ll get the best results out of this recipe if you use room temperature eggs. Egg whites and yolks both break down more easily when at room temperature than when they’re cold, which allows them to better mix with the rest of the ingredients. Using room temperature eggs makes for a smoother and more uniform consistency. 
  • Rotate the muffins. Ovens usually aren’t perfectly consistent. Some spots in your oven might be a little bit hotter than other spots. To combat this, rotate the muffins halfway through cooking. Bake the cranberry maple cornbread muffins for 10 minutes, then rotate the muffin tin 180 degrees, and finish baking.
  • Don’t overcook. It’s easy to overcook these muffins, because they don’t get very brown. So if you’re watching for them to turn a certain color, you’re likely to bake them too long. Instead, rely on a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffins. If it comes out clean, the muffins are done, regardless of their color. Leaving them in longer will just make the muffins dry out.
Close up of cranberry cornbread muffins in a muffin tin, surrounded by cranberries

How to Serve 

One thing I love about this recipe is how versatile it is. These muffins can be eaten in so many different ways. Here are a few of my favorite ways to serve cranberry maple cornbread muffins.

Close up of cranberry cornbread muffins in a muffin tin, surrounded by cranberries

How to Store Cranberry Maple Cornbread Muffins

For best storage results, wrap these muffins in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, and then place in an airtight container. You can store them at room temperature for up to 3 days, or in the fridge for up to 1 week. Reheat the muffins in a toaster oven on medium heat. 

Can You Freeze This Recipe?

You can absolutely freeze these cranberry maple cornbread muffins. Wrap them in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, place them in an airtight plastic bag, and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. You can reheat them directly from the freezer in the toaster oven. 

Cranberry cornbread muffins in a muffin tin, with a muffin resting on top of two of them, with muffins and cranberries in the background

More Cranberry Recipes to Try

Hopefully you liked these cranberry maple cornbread muffins as much as I do. If you did, then check out some of my other favorite cranberry recipes.

Close up of cranberry cornbread muffins in a muffin tin, surrounded by cranberries

Cranberry Maple Cornbread Muffins

These cranberry maple cornbread muffins are moist, tender, and only take 35 minutes to make. They're the perfect addition to a Thanksgiving or Christmas feast.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 12 muffins
Author: Julie Chiou
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Ingredients 

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal, medium or fine
  • 2 teaspooons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup whole milk
  • cup vegetable oil
  • 1 ½ cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest, (optional)

The default measuring system for this website is US Customary. Unit conversions are provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. While we strive to provide accurate unit conversions, please be aware that there may be some discrepancies.

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 °F and line a muffin tin with liners.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, maple syrup, sugar, milk, oil and orange zest if using.
  • Make a well in the flour mixture and add in the wet mixture. Stir just until combined, then fold in the fresh cranberries.
  • Fill each muffin tin ¾ of the way full, then bake for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. These muffins will not brown a lot, so don’t be tempted to keep them in the oven for more than 20 minutes, otherwise they will dry out.

Recipe Notes

  • For the best texture, use room temperature eggs.
  • Don’t overbake the muffins, as they can easily dry out.
  • Rotate the muffins halfway through. 
  • To store, wrap the muffins in plastic wrap and place in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days, in the fridge for 1 week, or in the freezer for 3 months. 

NUTRITION FACTS

Serving: 1 muffin | Calories: 149 kcal | Carbohydrates: 29 g | Protein: 4 g | Fat: 2 g | Saturated Fat: 1 g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1 g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1 g | Trans Fat: 0.003 g | Cholesterol: 29 mg | Sodium: 132 mg | Potassium: 112 mg | Fiber: 2 g | Sugar: 10 g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.

Course: Muffins
Cuisine: American
Keyword: homemade cornbread, how to make cornbread, thanksgiving bread, thanksgiving side dishes
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