Cranberry Streusel Muffins

Even though in this post I said I wasn't going seasonal, I think fall has finally hit me. 

Here are some things that have made me realize that summer is officially gone.

  • The first rain of fall arrived with gorgeous overcast window light and beautiful dew drops on all of the changing leaves.
  • My coworkers have returned to discussions of Halloween costumes, Thanksgiving and the temperature of the house we work out of.
  • I can now wear scarves without feeling like my neck is going to die.
  • Cranberries, apples, squash and Brussels sprouts have returned to my diet.
  • My birthday is in less than two weeks.
  • Kristen and I are already discussing what we are bringing to Thanksgiving. (Yes, we are a bit premature.)

To officially break into the large bag of cranberries I got from Costco, I made muffins. Also, I really needed to use sour cream that I had in the refrigerator. You know how the freezer and I work

Muffins are one of those things that can be temperamental to work with. They can go from delicious to mediocre if they are over mixed or over baked and it is pretty sad when both of those things happen. Every time I make muffins, I make it a goal for them to be the best they can be but sometimes I won't ever know until I actually eat them. Muffins can be deceiving that way. 

I was a little bit concerned with the thickness of the batter but when baked, they turned out to be incredibly tender on the inside. Originally I had intended to leave the cranberries whole but Kristen reminded me that cranberries are not blueberries. We even tasted one to make sure and yes they are very sour! 

To help out with that, I gave the cranberries a rough chop (Beware, they like to escape from the knife and cutting board) and added streusel topping in both the middle and the top. Streusel really does make muffins and cakes that much better. See this banana cake and these doughnuts

Sour cream is also not necessary for these. Yogurt would also be a healthier substitute but I'm currently not on a granola kick so there is no yogurt to be seen in my fridge!


Now, I have to figure out what other cranberry dish to make!

Cranberry Streusel Muffins

Adapted from these Blueberry Sour Cream Muffins

Yields: 12 muffins 


Streusel Topping

  • ½ cup flour
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup oil
  • ¼ cup brown sugar


  • 5 tablespoons butter, melted & cooled
  • ¾ cup sour cream or plain yogurt
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • Zest from ½ lemon
  • 1½ cups flour
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries, roughly chopped


Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spray a 12 cup muffin tin. Set aside. 

Mix all streusel ingredients in a medium bowl until thoroughly combined. Set aside. 

In a large bowl, whisk together the cooled melted butter with the sour cream, white sugar, egg, and lemon zest until well combined. In a medium bowl, mix the flour with the baking powder, baking soda, and salt until thoroughly combined.

Slowly add the flour mixture to the sour cream mixture until just combined. Fold in the chopped cranberries. 

Add about 2 tablespoons of batter at the bottom of each muffin tin. Sprinkle an even layer of streusel topping on top. Add 2 more tablespoons of batter and another layer of streusel.

Bake for 18-20 minutes or until muffins spring back to the touch and a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove to a rack to cool.