These High-Altitude Vegan Blueberry Muffins are transcendent. Subtle flavors of lemon, vanilla, and coconut compliment the blueberries beautifully. I've been making these muffins since 2016. These have wowed many non-vegans & vegans.
Course Breakfast, Dessert, Holiday, Kids, Snack, To go
Preheat the oven to 375F. Line muffin tin with baking cup liners and set aside or grease the muffin tin with Earth Balance.
Zest the lemon, then juice the lemon. In a jar or mug, combine lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, and oat milk. Set aside, allowing milk to curdle.
In a small mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
In a separate large bowl, stir together sugar, coconut oil, lemon zest, and vanilla extract. Add oat milk/vinegar/lemon. Stir in the dry ingredients until well incorporated. Be careful not to over-mix; a few lumps are fine.
Gently fold in the blueberries if using fresh. If using frozen blueberries, you can rinse, thaw, and drain in a colander or push them while still frozen into the batter after you've poured it into the batter. Today I used 1 cup of fresh blueberries and 1/3 cup of frozen wild blueberries. I folded in the fresh berries and pushed the frozen berries into the portioned batter with my fingers.
Spoon or scoop batter into muffin tins, filling each cup about three-quarters or a little more full. I like using an ice cream scoop to portion the batter. Bake for 20-25 minutes, using the center rack, until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. If desired, leave the muffins on the center rack, turn the broiler on at 20 -22 minutes and watch them turn golden—watch them closely to avoid burning, between 1 & 2 minutes.
Remove from oven and allow muffins to cool for at least 10 minutes before removing them from the muffin tin. See notes below on how to store muffins.
Nutrition Information is approximate.
I've adapted this recipe from a sea-level recipe. I recommend subbing coconut oil.
I'm a mile high here in Denver. The extra moisture from the lemon juice helps make these muffins fabulous at high-altitudes. If you are higher up than I am, you may want to add more moisture or bake for longer at a lower temp.
Zest Then Juice
To prep the lemon, first zest, then cut and juice the lemon. If you don't have a zester, use the fine side of a grater. Aim for mostly the yellow part of the peel and not the white part when zesting. While this recipe contains the lemon juice & zest of one lemon, the muffins are not lemon-forward, just a little brighter. My friend Mo uses the zest of two lemons when they make these muffins.
Curdle that plant milk
To make vegan buttermilk, combine vinegar and/or lemon juice with plant milk and let it sit and curdle. It's super easy, and it often makes baked goods extra delicious.
Please do not over-mix the batter
Over-mixing the batter will cause the gluten to overdevelop, taking the muffins from ethereal to a bit tough. A few lumps in the stirred, combined batter are evidence that your muffins will be ethereal.
If you are using frozen berries and decide to fold them in the batter, the batter might take on a grayish-blue color. To avoid this, you can rinse the berries and let them drain, and thaw in a colander. Alternatively, you could pop them into the batter once it's been poured into the tin with your fingers to reduce the chances of coloring the batter.
Plant Milk Options
I've successfully made these muffins with unsweetened almond, soy, rice, and oat kinds of plant milk. When I first started making them, I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk. If you are using vanilla flavored plant milk, I recommend dropping the vanilla back to just one teaspoon.
Coconut Oil Bath
If it's cold, your coconut oil might be solid. Place the sealed container of coconut oil into a hot water sink-bath to liquefy the oil.
Info from Adventure SnacksFully Cool The MuffinsFirstly, it’s important to note that muffins need to be fully cooled before storing them – otherwise they will end up soggy! Once you remove them from the oven, leave in the pan for a few minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.OvernightIf you know the muffins are going to be eaten the next day, or will be put into lunchboxes in the morning, the best way to preserve their freshness is to leave them on a wire rack with a clean, dry dish towel covering them. If you’d prefer to put them in a container, you can (once fully cooled) put them into an airtight container and leave at room temperature for up to 24 hours.Two to Four DaysIf muffins are left exposed, the moisture starts to leak from them and they dry out. To store muffins up to 4 days, line an airtight container or zip-lock bag with paper towel and store the muffins in a single layer. Place another layer of paper towel on top of the muffins as well. They can be stored in a container without paper towel, but are more likely to become soggy the longer they’re in there.Up to 3 MonthsMuffins are the perfect snack for freezing! That way you lock in the moisture and flavor, and can grab them out as needed. The easiest method is to use zip-lock bags and place muffins in a single layer inside the bag. You may also wish to wrap the muffins in foil first before placing in the bag. Make sure you get as much air out of the bag as possible, and to reduce the chance of freezer burn, place that sealed bag inside another bag and seal that one too.Tip: write on the bag what flavor the muffins are, and what date they were frozen to eliminate surprises and to ensure to eat them all within the recommended time frame of 3 months.Defrosting Frozen MuffinsTo defrost your frozen muffins, you can place them at room temperature to defrost, or place them unwrapped on some paper towel in the microwave for 20-30 seconds.www.planttestkitchen.com