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Cranberry Pecan Muffins

February 5, 2019

So these are absolutely delicious.   Sweet and tart at the same time.  Yum!

This recipe is from America’s Test Kitchen, which as you may or may not know, you need a subscription to their site to get their recipes.  Not all.  Some you can get on Instagram if you follow them.  But they are only available for a short period of time.  Anyway I can’t link you to the recipe because…….you need a subscription.

Also they are somewhat tedious to make for muffins.  This was my sink after making them:

These are muffins.  My sink looks like I made a 3 layer cake, with filling, frosting and then I decorated it!  Not my idea of a sink for muffins.  In my eyes, muffins are a one bowl deal and no more than 30 minutes of prep.  So be prepared to give yourself some time for these muffins but they are definitely worth it and worth the extra dishes.

And there are many steps to this muffin AND you have to wait 30 minutes for the dough to absorb before adding the cranberries and moving on to the very important part of putting them in the muffin tins.

You also need a Food Processor for this recipe.  If you don’t have one, borrow one.  This recipe is not possible without one.

The only thing I did to change this recipe was to decrease the cooking temperature.  425 degrees which the recipe states, to me is not a muffin temperature.  I fooled around quite a bit with the temperature on top of trying to make the recipe easier to make.  The only success I had was the temperature.  Because it is an America’s Test Kitchen recipe, the steps need to be followed.

Maybe it would be better to treat these muffins as a 3 layer cake with all the fixings.  They are worth it because they are that delicious.  Just make sure to give yourself plenty of time to make them.  😉

CRANBERRY PECAN MUFFINS from America’s Test Kitchen

Streusal Topping

3 tablespoons flour

4 teaspoons sugar

1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar

2 tablespoons butter, cut up

pinch of slat

1/2 cup (60 grams) pecan halves or pieces (I think the pieces are cheaper, that’s fine because they get chopped up anyway)


1-1/3 cups (6-2/3 ounces) flour

1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 teaspoon salt


1-1/4 cups (150 grams) pecan halves or pieces, toasted (bake pecans in 350 degree oven for 5 minutes)

1 cup plus 1 tablespoon (7-1/2 ounces) granulated sugar


2 large eggs

6 tablespoons butter, melted (microwave in microwave safe bowl for 30 seconds, stir and then add 10-15 seconds if needed)

1/2 cup milk, whole, 2%, whatever you have


2 cups (200 grams) cranberries, these can be fresh or frozen.  You can only get fresh in the Fall.  Buy them in the Fall and freeze.

1 tablespoon confectioners sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt


For the Streusel:

Process flour, sugar, brown sugar, butter and salt in food processor until mixture resembles coarse sand.  Just keep pulsing until this is achieved.  Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.

For the Muffins:

Spray a 12 cup muffin tin with baking spray with flour (like Pam with Flour).

Whisk flour, baking powder, 3/4 teaspoon salt together in a medium bowl and set aside.

Place toasted pecans and sugar in food processor and pulse until mixture resembles coarse sand.  Just keep pulsing until this is achieved.  Transfer mixture to a large bowl and then whisk in eggs, butter and milk until combine.  Whisk flour mixture into egg mixture until just moistened and no streaks of flour remain.  Set batter aside for 30 minutes to thicken.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Pulse cranberries, confectioner sugar and 1/4 teaspoon salt in food processor until cranberries are chopped up in smallish sizes.  Using rubber spatula, fold cranberries into batter.  Using an ice cream scoop, divide batter equally among muffin cups.  Sprinkle the streusel topping evenly over the muffins and gently press streusel into batter to make sure it has adhered.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until muffins when inserted with a toothpick, comes out clean and muffins are firm to the touch.  (mine took about 27 minutes but each oven is different.  Start to test at 25 minutes.  They should start ever so slightly browning on the edges).  Cool muffins on wire cooling rack for 10 minutes and then very gently remove muffins from muffin tin.  Let cool completely before serving.

I put mine in the refrigerator, into 2 large plastic containers with lids.  They are still good after 1 week and I only have 3 left.  Freezing might change the texture of the muffins and streusel topping.


Finished streusel, set aside:

Prep muffin tin:

Flour mixture:

Toasted pecans: I love parchment paper 🙂

Toasted pecans and sugar:

Add eggs, butter, milk:

Add flour mixture:

Let sit 30 minutes:

Processing cranberries with confectioner sugar and salt:

Add to batter:

Measure batter into muffin tins and sprinkle with streusel topping:

Press streusel topping onto batter:

Out of the oven and cooling:







2 Comments leave one →
  1. Vicki Dunning permalink
    February 5, 2019 11:36 am

    Oh but Sue, look at those wonderful tops. The crumb looks amazing and totally delicious! I totally wished I lived closer to be a taste tester and even an observer to your wonderful creations. Keep them coming!!!
    P.S. Gonna see you at knitting tonight???

    • February 5, 2019 2:54 pm

      Thanks Vicki 🙂 You are welcome anytime for baking and testing. I’ll let you know when I do something different. Sorry I won’t see you tonight.

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