Glazed Gingerbread Muffins

It’s kind of remarkable that muffins are considered breakfast, isn’t it? One of my favorite stories from my friend Watson’s 2-year-old is that once Watson was trying to get her daughter to eat a muffin for breakfast and she pitched a fit — until said muffin was placed in front of her and she exclaimed, “Oh! It’s a cake!”

That’s right, kiddo. Muffins are, indeed, tiny cakes that are, somehow, acceptable as a breakfast food. Awesome.

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With that in mind, I have a great new muffin recipe to share with you! It will make your house smell like fall and it’s really delish. (Feel free to enjoy it at any time of day, morning or otherwise.)

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Ingredients (for muffins)

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon orange or grapefruit zest
  • 2 Tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons molasses
  • 1 1/4 cups milk

Ingredients (for glaze)

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 1/2 Tablespoons milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and spray a muffin tin with cooking spray.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg, and set aside.
  • In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, combine the brown sugar, butter, 1 Tablespoon of the vegetable oil, and citrus zest until it’s well combined and smooth.

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  • Blend in remaining 3 Tablespoons oil and applesauce.
  • Add in eggs, one at a time, and add vanilla. Mix until just combined.
  • Stir in molasses.
  • Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the wet ingredients using a rubber spatula to barely incorporate. Add 1/2 the milk, add another 1/3 of the flour mixture, add the rest of the milk, and then mix in the last of the flour mixture until just combined. (It’s okay — your batter should be lumpy!)
  • Spoon batter into prepared muffin tin, filling each well until it’s nearly full.
  • Bake in 400 degree oven for 8 minutes, then reduce heat to 375 degrees and bake for another 8 minutes.
  • Remove muffins from tin and cool slightly while you whip up the glaze.
  • For the glaze, whisk or blend together powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla until smooth.
  • Once the muffins are almost cool, dip the top of each one into the glaze and then let them cool completely.

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