Blueberry Lime Muffin Cake

Do you know the muffin cake?

A lofty, larger, cooler cousin of the classic single serve muffin. Muffins get a lot of flack for either a) being to dry or b) pretending to be healthy when in fact they are just a cupcake with the glasses/moustache disguise.

Here we’re leaning into the idea of it being a dessert but also staying true to what I think makes a perfect muffin, and that is the difference in the crumb of the baked good. A good muffin will have either a boatload of yogurt or sour cream or buttermilk to offset too much sweetness and give a slight tang but also lend to somewhat of a squidgy crumb. That’s what we’re doing here. A whole cup of yogurt helps give tenderness but also a slight tang and a crumb that is moist without being wet or feeling too decadent. It’s a great alternative for your next breakfast or brunch and completely customizable, and just to send the message to everyone at the table, there’s streusel: the livelihood of a good muffin.

The combo of this is blueberry and lime ( I think a worthy/better opponent of the classic lemon pairing) but you could really switch out the berries for anything else fruit wise and swap the zest and juice of the lime with whatever other citrus pairs best with the fruit, think orange and raspberries, grapefruit and peaches, the possibilities are really endless. I’ve already got a mulled cider sort of vibe with spices and apples and orange floating around in my head.

The Muffin Cake
Serves 6-8

3 tablespoons white granulated sugar
1/2 cup (65 g) unbleached all-purpose flour
pinch of salt
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

2 cups (260 g) unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt or 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt/morton’s kosher salt
11/2 cups (300 g) white granulated sugar
Zest from whatever citrus you’re using for the juice, just zest before you slice and juice!
5 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup (236 g) plain whole milk yogurt
3 tablespoons neutral oil, like vegetable or avocado
1/4 cup citrus juice, from 2-3 lemons or 1 large grapefruit or orange.
2 large eggs
2 cups (300 g/10 oz) fresh or frozen blueberries (if using fresh, wash berries, drying them off mostly, leaving just a tiniest touch of water on them, this is a good alternative for having to toss in flour*)

*If you want to use another fruit or berry, dice into a smaller size for like a peach or apple or plum, if using something like a raspberry just leave whole, the only berry that really needs the help with sinking, along with a chocolate chip in the cake is the blueberry because of the smooth sides, everything else can just be washed and thoroughly dried and added as is

Start by preheating the oven to 350ºF and spraying a 9″ springform or cake pan with nonstick spray and placing a round of parchment on the bottom. A springform will help with releasing the cake from the sides and cooling a little faster but either option will require you to carefully flip the cake out to remove the parchment and plate.

First things first, the streusel: Combine the 3 tablespoons sugar, 1/2 cup (65 g) flour, and pinch of salt in a bowl then stir in the butter with a fork until mostly combined then use your fingertips to sort of massage it all together until a streusel forms. Set the bowl aside while you make the cake and just reuse the same vessel you melted this butter in for the remaining butter (the rest of the stick!) for the cake

In a large bowl, whisk together the 2 cups (260 g) flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Set aside.

In another large bowl, combine the 1 1/2 cups (300 g) sugar and the citrus zest. Use your fingertips to massage it together until fragrant then add the 5 tablespoons melted butter, 1 cup (236 g) yogurt, 3 tablespoons oil, 1/4 cup citrus juice, and 2 large eggs. Whisk until fully combined then add to the dry ingredients and mix with a silicone spatula just until combined.

Add whatever prepared fruit you’re using and fold it together just until combined.

Add the batter to the prepared pan and smooth out, then sprinkle the streusel evenly over the cake, breaking up any massive pieces as you transfer. Bake in the preheated oven for 55-65 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean, starting to check at the 55 minute mark, some fruits like peaches might take closer to the 65 minute mark but check at 55 minutes just to be safe and not over-bake.

Once the cake has baked, remove it from the oven and set aside to cool. If using a springform pan, remove the outer ring after about 20 minutes and let it cool completely. If using a regular cake pan, let the cake cool for about an hour (or completely) before flipping the cake out carefully onto a plate, removing the parchment if stuck to the cake, and then inverting the cake bake onto a serving plate. If using a springform you can try sliding it off the insert of the springform pan but might also have to carefully do the double flip method to get it full removed. This might seem intimidating but go into with all the confidence and you’ll be fine!

Serve the cake and store leftovers at room temperature for up to 3 days.

You Might Also Like