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This muffin recipe comes out moist, fluffy and lightly sweet! It’s perfect plain or for adding mix-ins of your choice.

Muffin recipe
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Looking for a great batch of muffins? Try this basic muffin recipe: it’s moist, fluffy, and perfect for any occasion! The template recipe is customizable for just about anything. On its own, it makes a deliciously light and fluffy vanilla-scented muffin. But add mix-ins and it’s even more fun: try it with blueberries, pecans, walnuts, cranberries: the sky’s the limit! Here’s how to bake it up, and a few ideas for fun variations.

Ingredients in this muffin recipe

This muffin recipe is a basic template that creates a moist and fluffy muffin with a sweet, vanilla-scented flavor. It uses ingredients you’ll likely already have on hand in your pantry and refrigerator. Here’s what you’ll need for these simple muffins:

  • All-purpose flour: This basic muffin recipe uses all purpose flour. You can substitute up to half with whole wheat flour.
  • Granulated sugar: Granulated sugar sweetens just enough. Substitute up to 100% of the sugar with brown sugar.
  • Cinnamon, nutmeg and salt: Spices bring a warm, cozy body to the muffin.
  • Baking powder: This muffin recipe uses 1 tablespoon of baking powder (yes, that’s correct!) for an extra tall and fluffy muffin
  • Eggs: Eggs hold together this muffin (for diet variations, see below).
  • Sour cream or yogurt: Sour cream adds cohesion to the muffin texture. Any type of yogurt also works, like plain, Greek or vanilla.
  • Vegetable oil: Oil brings moisture and a sturdy texture to a muffin versus butter (we’re team oil when it comes to muffins).
  • Milk: Milk adds moisture so the dough comes together.
  • Vanilla extract: Vanilla brings just the right nuance to the flavor.
  • Turbinado sugar, for topping: Adding chunky sugar on top of the muffins caramelizes the top; feel free to substitute granulated sugar here. (We prefer a glossy looking top, versus matte without sugar.)
Muffin Recipe

Tips for baking muffins

This muffin recipe comes together quickly and simply like any other muffin: mix the dry ingredients, mix the wet ingredients, and combine the two! Here are a few things to note about this muffin recipe:

  • Resist the urge to overmix. Overmixing muffin batter causes holes in the crumb and a denser texture. Mix just until the streaks of flour disappear.
  • The muffin cups will be full to the brim. This makes for a hefty muffin with a generous muffin top.
  • Baking at 400 degrees makes a taller muffin. This temperature makes a taller muffin and it’s quicker to bake, versus 350 which is standard.
Muffin recipe

Mix-in ideas and variations

The sky is the limit with this muffin recipe! Here are a few ideas for mix-ins, along with notes about approximate quantities:

  • Blueberry muffins: Add 1 cup blueberries to the batter. For lemon blueberry, add 1 ½ tablespoons lemon zest. Press extra blueberries into the tops of the muffins.
  • Pecan or walnut muffins: Add ¾ cup chopped pecans or walnuts, plus more to top. For an even nuttier flavor, toast the nuts for 3 to 4 minutes in a dry skillet until golden and fragrant before adding.
  • Chocolate chip muffins: Add 1 cup regular or mini chocolate chips to the batter, plus more to top.
  • Cranberry orange muffins: Use 1 cup sugar in the batter (instead of ¾ cup). Add 2 tablespoons orange zest and 1 cup fresh cranberries, plus more to top.

What other types of mix-ins would you use? Let us know in the comments below!

Muffin recipe

Gluten free and vegan muffins

Want a gluten free or vegan muffin recipe? This base recipe is not conducive to either, but here are a few other recommendations:

Storage info for this muffins recipe

The best part about this muffins recipe? It’s even better after storage. Store them at room temperature overnight, and they become even more moist and delicious. Here’s how to store basic muffins:

  • At room temperature: Store up to 4 days in a sealed container at room temperature: they become even more moist over time. (The tops become softer and less crunchy after storage.
  • Refrigerated: Store refrigerated up to 1 week or more. Make sure to allow to come to room temperature before serving, otherwise the muffins taste very dense.
  • Frozen: Freeze the muffins in a sealed container for up to 3 months.

More muffin recipes

Want more muffin recipe ideas? Here are a few more favorites:

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Muffin recipe

Basic Muffin Recipe

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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x


This muffin recipe comes out moist, fluffy and lightly sweet! It’s perfect plain or for adding mix-ins of your choice.


  • 2 cups [280 g] all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup* [150 g] granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup sour cream (or yogurt)
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Turbinado sugar, for topping (or substitute more granulated sugar)
  • For the mix-ins: 1 cup blueberries,
    ¾ cup pecan pieces, etc


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a standard 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray or add muffin cup papers.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the all-purpose flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, and salt. If using mix ins, stir them into the dry ingredients with a spatula.
  3. In a separate medium bowl, whisk the eggs, then whisk in the sour cream or yogurt, vegetable oil, milk, and vanilla extract until smooth. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients with a spatula until a thick, smooth batter forms.
  4. Scoop the batter evenly into the muffin cups: the cups will be full to the top. Sprinkle the tops with turbinado sugar.
  5. Bake the muffins for 18 to 20 minutes, until puffed and golden and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then transfer to a rack to cool fully, about 1 hour. Eat immediately or they taste even better the next day after storage in a sealed container at room temperature. Store up to 4 days in a sealed container at room temperature, refrigerated up to 1 week or more (allow to come to room temperature before serving), or frozen up to 3 months.


*¾ cup sugar makes for a lightly sweet muffin. You can use up to 1 cup sugar for a sweeter muffin.

  • Category: Muffin
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Muffin
  • Diet: Vegetarian

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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