Muffins are just ugly cupcakes. Or so the story goes. I, on the other hand, think muffins are pretty adorable! I also firmly believe that what a muffin may lack in pretty decorations, it makes up for in flavor. There's also nothing like a warm muffin with a cup of coffee and a good book; not that I'd know what that was like these days or anything. So, I guess I could have just came out and said "I love muffins", but that wouldn't have been very fun, now would it? If you've not skipped to the recipe yet, then I must be doing a good job! Yay, me!
Speaking of coffee and muffins, one of my all-time favorite muffins is one adapted from a Taste of Home recipe. These are the perfect blend of chocolate and coffee. And the espresso spread is to die for! I use leftover spread for bagels. These bad boys have enough "wow" factor to delight and impress guests, while also casual enough to enjoy with the family for a weekend brunch. Make extra to freeze or eat through the week! If you like this recipe, I now have a printable link. For the pinterest fans, I've added a "pin it" button so you can keep it handy.
Cappuccino Muffins with Espresso Spread
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
2-1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons instant coffee granules
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 oz cream cheese, softened and cubed
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 tsp instant coffee granules
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
Yields: About 14 regular-sized muffins and 1 cup of spread
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
In case you are not familiar with coffee granules, here's the kind of container you can find them in. As you can see, this brand says "crystals", but it's the same thing. I've also used many different brands with these and all with the same result.
In a small bowl, stir milk and coffee granules until granules are dissolved. There is no need to heat the milk to dissolve the granules. If there is a granule or two that doesn't dissolve, that's fine.
In another bowl, lightly beat egg into melted butter and vanilla. Pour into coffee/milk mixture and mix well.
Now this is the part where you may think you totally messed something up somehow. It's going to be very clumpy due to the coagulation of the warm butter and protein in the eggs mixing with the milk and coffee (that's my critical thinking skills at work). Don't try to beat it out. It won't work. Leave it how it is. (The first time I made these, about 5 years ago, I wasted a lot of time!)
Create a well in the flour mixture and pour your chunky coffee mixture into it.
Stir just until moistened.
Fold in chocolate chips.
Fill muffin tins about 2/3 full. Considering these make about 14 muffins, I like to break out my mini muffin pan too. I can get 12 regular muffins and 12 mini muffins out of this. Tip: When you have empty places in your muffin pans, fill halfway with water to help with even baking.
Bake at 375 degrees for 17-20 minutes or toothpick comes out clean.
While muffins are baking, in a food processor or blender, combine spread ingredients; cover and process until well blended. Refrigerate until serving.
You don't have to arrange your muffins and spread for pictures. You can just go straight to eating J
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