Happiness Project #33: Strawberry Cream Cheese Muffins!

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Okay, I have a confession to make. Even though I LOVE (LOVE!) all things chocolate, you know what I love just as much? Strawberries. Plump, juicy, sweet strawberries. I can very easily settle down with a entire bowl of this fruit and eat them all. Every. Single. One. Without feeling a single twinge of shame. It’s a strawberry, for heavens sake! Natures all-natural, guilt free form of dessert indulgence! Right? Right! And please don’t delude yourself into thinking that you’re above consuming an entire bowl of these lovely, ripe beauties. Because we all know the honest truth. *wink wink*

Fortunately, even though it’s technically winter here in California (all of my California friends know why I’m laughing at the word “technically”), there are still a few hole-in-the-wall type markets who just so happen to carry (unusually ripe) baskets of this lovely fruit. Hallelujah, I say! A kitchen without strawberries is just as sad as a kitchen without chocolate or coffee. Terrifying thought, I know. So after quite joyfully picking up all of the supplies I needed for muffin making, you know what transpired shortly thereafter? Not only did my Baby Girl fall (very) sick (enough so that it was scary to me), but I, too, very quickly followed suit. To the point where even though I’m on 3 different prescriptions, I’m still mostly-in-bed a-sick after 6 days. No. Fun. My Baby Girl though is feeling much, much better and already frolicking around in her usual contagiously joyful manner. Which, to me, makes EVERYTHING better. Anyhow, to make a long story short, right up until today, those happy-go-lucky strawberries sat very quietly in my fridge, waiting to be freed. Hence, these pretty little muffins. With cream cheese spread. And my (rather) simple version of heart shaped strawberries. Want? Here you go…

For the Muffins:

3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 cup salted butter, softened at room temperature

1-1/4 cups granulated sugar, plus 3-4 tablespoons for tossing

3 eggs

1 large egg white

1 cup whole milk

1-1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1-1/2 cups finely chopped strawberries

Firstly, finely chop or slice up the strawberries (after removing their green heads) and gently toss them in your reserved 3-4 tablespoons of granulated sugar. Otherwise, they will taste somewhat wet & slimy within the actual baked muffin. Set aside.

Preheat your oven to 350F. Fill up two cupcake pans with paper baking liners.

In a separate large bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder until well mixed. Set aside.

In a bowl on your stand mixer, cream together the butter and 1-1/4 cups sugar until smooth and fluffy. Add all 3 eggs, plus the egg white, and vanilla extract and beat until well combined. After dropping your mixture speed to a lower setting, slowing add in the flour mixture to the butter mixture, alternating with the 1 cup of whole milk, always starting with and ending with the flour mixture. Once gently but fully combined, grab a spatula and mix in the chopped & sugar tossed strawberries.

Using a large spoon, scoop strawberry batter into each paper liner, filling to the top edges. Pop the two pans into the oven and bake for 22-25 minutes, until the muffin top edges are a very light golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack, while you’re preparing the cream cheese spread.

For the cream cheese spread, you’ll need:

1 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature

1 (8oz) package of cream cheese, softened at room temperature

2-3 cups powdered sugar

1-2 tablespoons whole milk (optional)

In a large, clean bowl on a stand mixture (or by hand held) cream together the butter and cream cheese until nicely blended and smooth. To avoid any clumping, scrap down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Drop your mixer to a slower speed and add in the 2-3 cups powdered sugar, mixing until well combined. For a silkier texture, add in up to 2 tablespoons of whole milk.

Spread or frost your strawberries to your hearts contentment! Or if you’re not keen on cream cheese, you can also sift some powdered sugar onto each muffin instead!

Bam! Fruity Muffin Happiness! For everyone!

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Comments

  1. Such a lovely muffin recipe! Cream cheese always makes everything taste better!

  2. Happiness is a nice, warm, Strawberry cream cheese muffin! Thanks.

  3. Love this!! It’s amazing what inspires us in the kitchen! Hope your little one is feeling better and gobbling these muffins up!

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