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Bran Muffins Recipe & Video

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Most of us have two types of muffin recipes in our collection; the ones that we make for special occasions and the ones that are constantly in use. Bran Muffins fall into the second category. While they may not be sophisticated looking or contain exotic ingredients, their wholesome flavor makes them an ideal breakfast food. Of course, bran is usually touted more for its carbohydrate, fiber, phosphorous, and calcium content than for its subtle taste, but these muffins are anything but plain.  


The addition of orange zest, vanilla, ground cinnamon, and oats make these Bran Muffins flavor packed. You could also add chopped nuts, raisins, or even dried fruits to the batter with excellent results. To spruce up the look of these muffins I have sprinkled the tops with rolled oats, just before baking. Now, most bran muffin batters, and this one is no exception, keep for a several days in the refrigerator, so you can have fresh muffins on demand. This recipe will give you about 16 standard size muffins. 

As far as the ingredients go, although some bran muffin recipes do use a commercial bran cereal, this recipe uses unprocessed wheat bran which is so much cheaper than commercial bran cereals. You can find it in health food stores and in most grocery stores (on the baking isle or in the organic food section). Adding old fashioned rolled oats gives flavor and texture but also gives you Vitamin B-1, B-2 and E. Molasses is used in baked goods to add color, moistness, and flavor. Molasses is usually labeled as "sulphured" or "unsulphured" depending on whether sulphur was used in the processing. I like to use unsulphured molasses which is lighter in color and I prefer its flavor. Buttermilk, along with milk, provides the liquid part of the recipe and as always, buttermilk adds a wonderful tangy flavor and moist texture. You can use commercially made buttermilk, buttermilk powder, or you can make a good homemade substitute by adding 3/4 tablespoon of white distilled vinegar, cider vinegar, or lemon juice to 3/4 cup (180 ml/grams) of milk. Let stand 5 to 10 minutes at room temperature before using. 

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Bran Muffins: Place the wheat bran in a bowl and stir in the boiling water. Set aside.

In the bowl of your electric stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment (or with a hand mixer), beat the butter until smooth. Add the brown sugar and beat until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down the sides and bottom of your bowl as needed. Add the vanilla and molasses and beat until well blended. Add the wheat bran and beat until combined.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, oats, cinnamon, orange zest, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Stir in the raisins, if using.

Add the flour mixture in three additions, alternately with the wet ingredients (milk and buttermilk), in two additions, to the batter, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Cover and place the batter in the refrigerator until well chilled (several hours or up to about five days). 

When ready to bake the muffins, Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) and place the oven rack in the center of the oven. Line a 12 cup muffin pan with paper liners or else butter or spray the muffin cups with a nonstick vegetable spray.

Fill the muffin cups, using two spoons or an ice cream scoop, about 3/4 full (85 grams) and bake about 17 - 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.

Makes about 16 standard-sized muffins.

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Bran Muffins:

1 1/2 cups (80 grams) unprocessed wheat bran

1/2 cup (120 ml/grams) boiling water

1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup (200 grams) light brown sugar (firmly packed)

2 large (100 grams) eggs, at room temperature

2 tablespoons (40 grams) unsulphured molasses

1 teaspoon (4 grams) pure vanilla extract

1 cup (130 grams) all-purpose flour

1 cup (130 grams) whole wheat flour

2/3 cup (60 grams) old-fashioned rolled oats

1 teaspoon (1 gram) ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon (5 grams) freshly grated orange zest (one large orange)

1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) salt

2 teaspoons (8 grams) baking soda

1 teaspoon (4 grams) baking powder

3/4 cup (100 grams) dark raisins (optional)

3/4 cup (180 ml/grams) milk, at room temperature

3/4 cup (180 ml/grams) buttermilk, at room temperature

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