These blueberry buckle muffins, with a crisp streusel topping, sweet-tangy berries, and the soulful addition of cinnamon add up to a beloved combination for good reason—they’re irresistible!
Many years ago I owned and operated a bakery in Westport, CT and these blueberry buckle muffins were one of our best-selling and most-loved items. They sold out everyday!
I also refer to them as "stress-dream blueberry muffins," because to this day I have a recurring dream that I show up late to open the bakery in the morning and there's a long line of people waiting for their muffins and they aren't made yet. Hah! Recurring dreams sure are a strange thing - who knows, maybe there's more than stress behind it, but I wake in a panic. Anyway, they're really delicious and so simple to make that—dare I say—they're stress-free!
What is buckle?
A fruit buckle is an old-fashioned New England-style dessert or breakfast food made with fresh fruit, dough, and a crumbled streusel. It is generally made with berries that are folded into a tender, yellow batter and topped with sweet, crunchy crumbs.
Can I make the muffins with other berries?
If you can’t use fresh blueberries, you can always use frozen but be sure to fold them in while frozen. Don’t used them thawed or they will turn the batter blue. You can also use fresh raspberries or chopped strawberries.
Ingredients you'll need
- Baking powder
- Orange or lemon zest
How to make the recipe
The basic technique for making muffins is very easy.
Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. This step will give the muffins a fine, tender texture like a cake. Scrap down the sides of the bowl using a rubber spatula when necessary to ensure that the ingredients are mixed evenly and thoroughly. Beat in the egg just until blended.
The liquid and dry ingredients are combined just until the batter holds together, no more than 15 seconds. Do not worry about lumps or bumps, they are natural. Be sure not to overbeat the batter or they will be tough and flat with an undesirable texture.
Gently fold in the blueberries using a rubber spatula.
Line the muffin-pan with paper-lined cups and fill ¾ full. I like to use a large scoop for this, it makes filling the cups less messy.
Make the topping by combining soft butter with the sugar, flour, and cinnamon. You could also add some finely chopped walnuts or pecans to the mixture. Spoon the topping over the muffins and pat down gently.
Bake the muffins in the center of a preheated oven, never a cold one. If they bake on the lower rack, the bottoms will brown too much, and if they bake on the top rack, the tops will cook faster than the rest of the muffins.
Muffins are done when the tops are domed and set when gently touched, and the sides pull away from the pan slightly.
How to store and reheat the muffins
Muffins in general are best eaten the day they are made, but they’re also great candidates for freezing. After they cool completely, store in plastic freezer bags for up to 3 months. Reheat in a microwave for a minute or less or wrap in foil and heat in a 350°F oven for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Let the muffins cool in the pan for just a minute or two, then be sure to remove them to cool completely. If they stay in the pan too long, the bottoms will begin to get wet from the trapped moisture of the heat.
- Muffins can be made in a variety of sizes. The standard muffin pan size has 2 /1-inch diameter cups and comes in pans with 6, 12, or 24 connected cups. There are also mini muffins pans with 1 ⅝-inch diameter cups, and jumbo muffin pans with 3 ¼-inch diameter cups. Almost all muffin batters can be adapted to any size pan, you’ll just need to adjust the baking time.
- If you make a lot of muffins from scratch, invest in a scoop for filling the muffin pan cups. It makes the process faster and easier and keeps them amount in each cup the same.
Blueberry Buckle Muffins
- ¼ cup unsalted butter softened
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 tsp. lemon or orange zest
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. table salt
- ½ cup milk
- 2 cups fresh blueberries
- ¼ cup unsalted butter softened
- ½ cup sugar
- ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a muffin pan with 12 paper liners. In a large bowl using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and sugar together until pale and creamy. Beat in the egg until well blended. Beat in the zest.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Alternately beat in the flour mixture with the milk, beating just until blended. Fold in the berries. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan cups, filling ⅔ full.
- Make the topping: In a small bowl, combine the butter, sugar, flour and cinnamon and mix until crumbly. Sprinkle or pat the topping over the muffins.
- Bake until golden brown and muffins are set, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes, then transfer the muffins to the rack to cool completely.