These Herbs and Cheese Muffins are perfect to eat in the morning or snack during the day. These savoury muffins are great for picnics or as an addition to a bread basket. Serve them with some compound butter and smoked salmon for a delicious brunch.
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Over the past few days I’ve been doing some blog spring cleaning. I’ve had this blog for over 10 years now! Going through all my old posts was an interesting experience. Blogging changed so much over the past decade.
At first, when I just started cooking, I was very active on a couple of Russian cooking forums. Back then cooking forums were all the rage.
People formed cliques and groups. There were real friendships and drama and fights. That virtual life was almost as real as, well, real life.
Later on, I started my first blog on a livejournal platform. And a few years later Imagelicious was born. Looking back at those old posts, I reflect on how different it was to actually blog. There was no keyword research, no pinterest, no social media.
My posts consisted of a recipe and one or two paragraphs with my musings. Those recipes sometimes were extensively tested but more often not. My blog was just my space to write down what I cooked.
And now this little blog morphed into something different. Something that allows me to express myself, to write, to photograph, to create. It even led me to write my first cookbook, The Ultimate One-Pan Oven Cookbook. Me! Cookbook! I still cannot believe it.
Going through all those posts momentarily brought me back to my 20s and brought back so many memories. I stumbled upon my old recipe for the Savoury Herbs and Cheese Muffins and I knew right away that I wanted to try them again.
And in the past 5 days I already made them twice. This recipe is definitely a keeper and I don’t know why I stopped making them a few years ago.
These Savoury Muffins are studded with bright and flavourful herbs and spices and filled with melty cheese. They are absolutely perfect for an afternoon snack or a morning coffee.
Delicious and elegant to add to a bread basket during fancy dinner. Or as part of a beautiful brunch if served with some herb compound butter (from My Wife Can Cook site) and smoked salmon.
How to make Herbs and Cheese Muffins
These Savoury Muffins are really easy to make and they require only one bowl and one spoon to mix. No sifting, to creaming.
You just mix some flour, sugar, leavenings, herbs, and spices. Add the grated cheese, buttermilk (I use kefir), egg, oil, and applesauce. Voila.
Divide the savoury muffins batter between muffin tins and bake. These Savoury Muffins are so easy that anyone can make them.
Ingredient substitutions for these Savoury Muffins
- I use cheddar usually just because I always have a big block that I buy at Costco.
- You can use marble cheese, Monterey Jack, Havarti, Edam, or any other favourite melty cheese.
- FUN TIP: try using half your favourite cheese and half smoked cheese, like smoked cheddar, for example. It’ll give these Herbs and Cheese Muffins a very unique and piquant flavour similar to my Cheese Scones with Thyme.
- Fresh herbs:
- If you don’t have fresh herbs, you can use dried herbs instead. Use about 2-3 tablespoons of dried herbs. You don’t need as much dried herbs as fresh as their flavour is more concentrated.
- TIP: If you use dried dill weed, you might need to use less than 2 tablespoons as it’s very pungent.
- Don’t forget to read my mind-blowing trick on How to Store Herbs!
- Use buttermilk or kefir. I use kefir most of the time.
- You can also use plain yogurt (not Balkan nor Greek as they are too thick) diluted with a bit of milk so that it is the consistency of buttermilk.
- If you you only have Greek yogurt then you will need to dilute it with more milk to make it as thin as buttermilk and then measure out the required amount.
- I love using unsweetened applesauce to replace some of the oil. It still adds moisture but reduces calories.
- If you don’t have applesauce, just use extra oil instead of it. So, for 2 tablespoons of applesauce you would need to use 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil.
- Vegetable oil:
- You can use canola oil or even olive oil.
- You can use melted butter instead of vegetable oil if you’d like.
- Chili powder:
- Chili powder is optional and can be omitted but that slight heat is just perfect for these Cheese Muffins.
- You can use cayenne pepper instead.
- Or if you don’t like a little spice, you can use paprika. My baby likes these muffins even with the chili powder.
If you love Savoury Muffins, then try my other savoury cakes:
Tips for Baking Herbs and Cheese Muffins
Using regular paper muffin liners, unfortunately, won’t work. The batter will stick to them and it’ll be a nightmare to get the muffins out. You MUST spray muffins liners with some oil. You can also just spray the muffin tins with cooking oil directly and avoid using any liners.
You can also use special Non-Stick Parchment Paper Liners. Those work really well.
How long will Herbs and Cheese Muffins keep?
They don’t keep long in my household. My daughter (she’s under 2 years old now) can easily eat two of these a day if I let her. Even with all the chili powder in them.
These Cheese Muffins will keep for 2 days if they are just on a plate on the kitchen counter. And they’ll keep for about 3-4 days in an airtight container in the fridge.
Remember, they have very little oil so they won’t be as soft after a few days.
Fun ways to eat Savoury Cheese Muffins
- Plain with a cup of hot coffee in the morning!
- Warmed up and slathered with butter
- At the cottage with a bottle of cold beer
- On a picnic with some grapes
- As a delicious nibble before a fancy dinner
- On a platter for brunch (think Mother’s Day brunch) with smoked salmon or prosciutto
Herbs and Cheese Muffins
- 2 cup flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder (optional)
- 1.5 teaspoons sugar
- 1 cup cheddar cheese (grated)
- 1/2 cup parsley (chopped)
- 1 large egg
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk (or kefir)
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pepper, chili powder (if using), and sugar. Whisk thoroughly.
- Add the grated cheese and chopped parsley to the flour mixture and mix until all incorporated.
- Add the egg, vegetable oil, applesauce, and buttermilk (or kefir) and mix with a spatula just until no flour is visible. Do not overmix.
- Line medium sized muffin pan with muffin liners AND SPRAY WITH COOKING OIL (this is important!)Alternatively: You don't have to line with paper liners, you can just spray the muffin tin with cooking oil directly.
- Evenly divide the batter between 16 cups.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean.
- If you are not using muffin liners, then run a butter knife around the muffins while they are still hot to loosen them from the pan.
(This recipe first appeared on the blog on July 19, 2008… wow, almost exactly 10 years ago… And just for fun, this is the old photo)