Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Cake of the Week: Peanut Butter and Jam Muffins

Peanut butter. Jam. Muffins. These are literally three of my favorite things and I don’t know why it took so long for this recipe to make an appearance in my life.

I don’t eat peanut butter in large quantities, but I do eat it constantly. So that means that I open up my jar at least twice a day, but it takes me about a month to finish it off. I’ve always preferred crunchy, natural, salted (oh hello Trader Joe’s!), but when desperate (i.e. I just finished mine and all there is in the house is some Skippy/Jif leftover from someone else; I’m in a relay van with six other people and we bought food together; Soviet Safeway was out of the good kind; etc.), any peanut butter will do.

It is the universal condiment. Chocolate sauce goes well with most sweet things, and ketchup goes well with most savory things, but peanut butter is the one that can cross the line and work with both! Think about it – peanut butter cookies are great, as is Thai peanut sauce.  (The only flaw in this argument is citrus…peanut butter and citrus is not ok.) (And clearly I’ve thought too much about this – what can I say? Condiments = accessories for food = yum!)

And jam. I feel strongly about jam. People always look at me quizzically when I say I’m having a "peanut butter and jam sandwich," because you’re supposed to say "peanut butter and jelly." But they are not the same thing! Jelly is made out of fruit juice and has no seeds or chunks of fruit. Jam (aka “preserves”) has all the good stuff still in it. And I have always been on team jam, so yes I would like a peanut butter and jam sandwich thank you very much.

Ok back to these muffins. They’re barely sweet and pretty dense, i.e. definitely muffins and not cupcakes sans frosting. They’re not terribly unhealthy, since the only butter is the peanut butter. You can use any jam you like – I started with raspberry, and when I ran out I switched to fig. And they’re pretty awesome straight out of the oven or warmed up in a toaster oven the next morning for breakfast.

I adapted this recipe, using a combination of plain yogurt and water instead of milk. The dough is super-thick, but they turned out well so don’t worry!

Peanut Butter and Jam Muffins

Printable recipe.
Yield: 12 muffins (I tend to make littler muffins, so I got about 18 out of this recipe)
  • 2 all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup peanut butter, creamy or crunchy
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • Jam of your choice
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard muffin pan with paper liners, or spray each well with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with an electric mixer, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  3. Add peanut butter, and mix on medium speed until well combined and crumbly.
  4. Add in egg, yogurt, water, and vanilla, and mix until just combined.
  5. Use a medium-sized spoon to scoop about 1 ½ tablespoons of batter into each muffin well. Shape a little well in the center of the dough for the jam. 
  6. Next, place 2 teaspoons of your favorite jam in the center of the muffin batter and top with another scoop (1 1/2 tablespoons) of muffin batter. If necessary, use a spoon or knife to gently spread batter to cover the jam.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes.