I originally intended this post to be a savory dish to give you a break from all the sweetness around here lately. I was going to post a lovely spring pasta, but when I made it I forgot to add any vegetables whatsoever. So it was just like, pasta. I just forgot to put anything else in. When I took a bite, I instantly remembered and audibly groaned. Where is my brain lately?
So that pasta will have to wait until another time. I’m pretty sure everyone likes the sweet stuff better anyway, right? Here’s another treat inspired by the Back in the Day Bakery cookbook, but per usual, I made some modifications to healthify it. The result was perfectly fluffy cake doughnuts in the form of mini-muffins, dipped in cinnamon-sugar and absolutely irresistible. I honestly didn’t think these would be anything special since they’re so simple, but dang, were they good. We couldn’t stop eating them!
Preheat your oven to 350º. Start by combining your dry ingredients: flours, sugar, salt, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg, and cardamom.
Cream together your butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time.
Add in your dry ingredients in thirds, alternating with your buttermilk, and mix until just combined.
Using a cookie scoop, portion out your batter into 40 mini muffin cups and bake for 15 minutes or until the tops spring back to the touch and a toothpick comes out clean.
In the meantime, mix together your cinnamon sugar topping: 1/3 cup sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon.
Melt 1 1/2 Tablespoons of butter in a small dish. Using a pastry brush, brush just enough butter over the top of each muffin to cover the surface. Then immediately dip in the cinnamon-sugar. Repeat with the remaining muffins.
Then…eat! I can’t stand how good these are. They’re perfectly tender, light, and fluffy—the perfect cross between a good cake doughnut and a muffin. The cake base is buttery and just slightly sweet; it’s a great base for trying out other toppings or fillings too.
The hint of nutmeg and cardamom in the cake base complement the cinnamon-sugar topping beautifully. And they’re not too sweet, so you can totally have one for breakfast. Or three. Hey, they’re mini, right? In all seriousness, they’re only 70 calories a pop. Not too shabby! Enjoy!
Cinnamon-Sugar Doughnut Hole Muffins
Adapted from The Back in the Day Bakery Cookbook
Makes 40 mini-muffins
For the muffins
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 cup lowfat buttermilk
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
For the topping
1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup sugar mixed with 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spray 40 mini muffin cups with baking or cooking spray.
Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and cardamom. In a separate large mixing bowl, cream the butter for 2 to 3 minutes. Turn the speed to low and gradually add the sugar. Continue to mix until the mixture lightens in color. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until just combined. Add the dry ingredients in thirds, alternating with the buttermilk, mixing until just combined.
With a cookie scoop or tablespoon, scoop the batter into the 40 prepared mini-muffin cups. Bake for 15 minutes until the tops spring back to the touch and a toothpick comes out clean.
Let the muffins cool in the pans for 3-5 minutes. Using a pastry brush, brush each muffin top with just enough butter to coat the surface. Then, immediately dip in the cinnamon-sugar topping until coated.
Per mini-muffin (40 total)