Sour Cherry Muffins

Next time you’re in search of a delicious sour cherry recipe look no further than these sour cherry muffins. Perfect for breakfast, these muffins will having you loving cherry season!

Sour cherry muffin recipe, tart cherry recipe, muffins with cherriesSour cherries, or tart cherries are absolutely amazing – have you ever tried them? They’re a cherry that is closely related to the sweet cherry, but is more tart – or sour – hence it’s name. They also have tons of nutritional benefits, like being high in antioxidants, they can help regulate sleep because of their high melatonin content, and they can be anti-inflammatory.

sour cherries, fresh tart cherriesWhen they’re not in season fresh, they can be found in the freezer section at your local grocery store (the frozen ones usually have the name ‘tart cherries’ on the bag).

I’ve been making these cherry muffins for years, and have had so many readers tell me how much they love them, so I updated the pictures a little and am excited to re-share this recipe with you.

Sour cherry muffins recipe, cherry muffins, muffins made with cherriesSour cherries have a wonderful tart flavor that is second to none. One could use fresh or frozen cherries for this recipe (I’ve used both with the same great results.) I like topping the muffins with a little sanding sugar (I like to use a sanding sugar like this one) because it makes for a delicious sweet and slightly crunchy finish. I also like using a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop (like this one) to scoop the batter into the muffin liners, it makes for perfectly even muffins!

Sour cherries muffins recipe, muffins made with tart cherriesThe muffins are marbled throughout with cherries and make such a great breakfast. So the next time you’re looking for a sour cherry recipe, I’d definitely recommend making these sour cherry muffins πŸ™‚

Sour Cherry Muffins
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 18
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup reduced fat buttermilk
  • ¼ cup water
  • ⅔ cup canola oil
  • 1 large egg
  • zest of 1 lemon, about 1 heaping tablespoon
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 cups sour cherries (fresh or frozen, make sure the cherries are pitted. 2 cups is about 12 oz cherries)
  • 2 Tbs Sanding Sugar for topping (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 and line muffin pan(s) with liners (the batter makes 18 muffins).
  2. In a bowl mix together buttermilk, water, canola oil and egg. Mix well.
  3. Next add the lemon zest, flour, sugar, and baking powder and stir until well incorporated.
  4. Lastly fold in the cherries and stir until just combined.
  5. Using a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop (or just using a spoon), scoop batter into muffins cups so that each muffin cup is about ¾ full. Sprinkle a little sanding sugar on top of the muffin batter, and then bake for 25 minutes, or until a tooth pick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  6. Let rest for a few minutes, and then transfer to a wire cooling wrack and allow to cool for 10 minutes before enjoying.
Notes
These muffins freeze/defrost really well. To freeze the muffins allow them to cool completely, then put them in a freezer storage bag or container and freeze. When ready to enjoy, simply remove from the freezer and allow to come to room temperature on the counter, or microwave for a few seconds to speed up the process.

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Showing 39 comments
  • diaryofamadmama
    Reply

    These look delicious! I’m attempting to make them right now, but what temperature should I preheat the oven to? Thanks!
    ~Jen

    http://diaryofamadmama.wordpress.com

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      Thanks for the comment, I can’t believe I forgot to write 350 degrees!! Thanks for pointing that out! Oven should be preheated to 350.

  • The MadMama
    Reply

    Oh, no problem! I’m glad that I happened to cook them at 350! πŸ˜‰ They turned out amazingly well! I did 6 of them as – is, 6 of them I added shaved chocolate to the batter and the other 6 I added walnuts and chocolate and they are all delicious! πŸ™‚

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      Wow, those combinations you did sound amazing! I’ll have to do that next time I make these – which will be soon- because they are just so yummy! Thanks for letting me know how it all went!

      • diaryofamadmama
        Reply

        You’re very welcome! πŸ™‚ Thanks again for sharing such a yummy recipe! I found it on Pinterest. I had a bag of frozen cherries that wasn’t full enough for a cherry pie and I thought muffins sounded good, so I searched “cherry muffins” and scrolled through until I saw your pin. Your picture looked much yummier than all the other ones on there, so that’s how I found your blog! πŸ˜‰
        Don’t you just love Pinterest?

  • Shel
    Reply

    Can you use regular milk instead of buttermilk, and butter instead of oil?

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      I use milk with a dash of lemon juice in place of buttermilk. I have also used butter instead of oil, they may come out a little denser with butter instead of oil, but still delicious πŸ™‚

  • Tammy
    Reply

    These were the best sour cherry muffins ever! Thank you so much for an absolutely delicious recipe. Your recipe was very easy to follow and the muffins turned out awesome! I am looking forward to trying some of your other recipes as well. Thank you! Tammy

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      Tammy! THANK YOU for that super sweet comment, totally made my day! So glad you like these – they’re definitely a favorite in my house too πŸ˜‰ But thank you from the bottom of my heart for that sweet comment!

    • Lisa
      Reply

      My husband and mom LOVED these muffins. Made a batch last Friday…making another one today. I added slivered almonds to mine. Thank you for the recipe. We have two beautiful sour cherry trees in our new backyard so I have a great recipe for them now. For my kids I think I will have to leave out the cherries and I know they will love the taste. great muffins

      • Sweetphi
        Reply

        Your comment totally made my day Lisa! I love hearing feedback, so thank you for coming back and sharing how these turned out for you. I love that you added slivered almonds! I love almond flavors and have occasionally added a few drops of almond extract (it goes really well with the cherries) and so I can see adding slivered almonds having a similarly amazing taste in the muffins, I’m definitely going to try adding them next time I made these! Thanks again for your comment!

        • Lisa
          Reply

          And….making yet another batch today!! πŸ™‚

          • Sweetphi

            Awe, thank you SO MUCH for coming back and letting me know, truly appreciate that and glad you like the recipe!

  • Eileen
    Reply

    Just made these. They were SUPERB!!

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      YAY! So glad you loved them, thank you SO much for coming back and telling me how you liked them!

  • Nancy
    Reply

    Are you sure about the 2/3 cups oil and only 1 tsp of baking pwd?

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      I just made a batch of these last week and they came out great! If you’re used to adding more or would like to, feel free to add a little more baking powder πŸ™‚

  • Gwenn
    Reply

    Could I substitute plain Greek yogurt with a splash of vanilla instead of the vanilla yogurt? These look so good, chocolate with tart cherries is a favorite combination of mine.

    • Gwenn
      Reply

      Darn it, I meant to post this question under the chocolate cherry muffin recipe.

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      You could certainly try that substitution, but the flavors would be different, I think they would end up being more tart and dense because of the Greek yogurt. Let me know how they turn out for you πŸ™‚

  • Thommi
    Reply

    Hi there. I was wondering where you find sour cherries? I have not been able tidied them in the Milwaukee area and I really want to try these. I also have a recipe that calls for dried sour cherries and have had no luck finding them either. Any help would be GREATLY appreciated Thanks so much!!

  • Mary
    Reply

    Would I be able to make this in a loaf pan, rather than muffin tins? If so what size pan would you suggest?

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      I have not tried it in a loaf pan, but I totally think it would work πŸ™‚ I think a standard loaf pan would work πŸ™‚

  • Judy
    Reply

    I’m so glad someone else likes cherries! I have whole frozen cherries that I love on yogurt but I’m going to try making your Sour Chery Muffins because
    They look so good. I just hope the frozen cherries don’t color the batter…I like the look of your muffins just the way they are. I love quick breads because they stay fresher longer than muffins so I may try baking mine in a loaf pan. Thanks for a cherry recipe though…they are hard to find:)

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      I looooove cherries, and am so glad you found my recipe πŸ™‚ And even if your batter colored, it would be a pretty pink, right πŸ™‚ Hope you love these muffins as much as I do.

  • Janet Lopez
    Reply

    I love cherries & your muffins look delicious. I have two questions. My local grocery stores get yummy bing cherries in the spring but not sour cherries. My preference is to use fresh ingredients whenever possible. Not knowing how sweet or tart your muffins are I’m not sure how to adjust the amount of sugar that should be used. Do you have a suggestion?

    Next, I would like to know why you use water? As Alton Brown has frequently said “water doesn’t bring any flavor to the party.” Please know that I ask the question in the pursuit of knowledge not as a criticism. My instinct would be to use 1 cup of buttermilk rather than 3/4 cup buttermilk & 1/4 cup water. I assume you have a reason & would appreciate you enlightening me.

    Thank you
    Janet L.

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      Hi Janet,
      You could definitely use fresh bing cherries, no adjustments needed. In case you want to try it with sour cherries, they do sell them in the frozen fruit aisle at the grocery store.
      In terms of the water, I find it gives the muffins a little lighter and fluffier texture, but definitely feel free to use all buttermilk instead if you’re more comfortable with that πŸ™‚
      Thank you for your comment,
      Phi

  • Sparkey
    Reply

    My muffin pan only holds 12 muffins

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      You could either use 2 muffin pans or make a batch and then when the 12 are cooling make the remaining 6

  • Little Cooking Tips
    Reply

    Amazing recipe! We love sour cherries here in Greece. We usually serve them as a “spoon dessert” with a glass of ice-cold water on the side or make a thick syrup called “vyssinada” that’s diluted with ice cold water and served as a beverage in the summer afternoons. So having said these, you realize how much we LOVED your recipe as well and how eager we are to try it out!:):):) THANK YOU sweetie!
    Muah!
    Mirella and Panos

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      I’ve never even heard of a “spoon dessert” – how cool!! And Vyssinada sounds delicious. Thank you for your lovely comment πŸ™‚

  • Jess
    Reply

    I love a good muffin recipe, thank you for sharing this! They look amazing πŸ™‚ hope you’re feeling well these days my friend. My daughters bday is next week and I remembered you were due around the same time so I hope things are going well, you’re in the homestretch!

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      Thank you so much for your lovely comment! Muffins are so great because after making a batch you can enjoy them for a few days! I am due mid June, so time is ticking – I cannot believe that JUNE is coming up so fast!!! I hop you have a wonderful birthday for your daughter πŸ™‚

  • Shawnna Griffin
    Reply

    hey girl- these muffins look so yummy!

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      Thank you so much!! Muffins are one of my favorite breakfasts because they’re so easy to have as a ‘grab and go’ breakfast πŸ™‚

  • angela
    Reply

    tried these sour cherry muffins this morning and i make several kinds of muffins but these didn’t work for me…the batter was thin and they hardly raised. i followed the recipe to the letter…what is my problem?

    • Sweetphi
      Reply

      Hi Angela, so sorry to hear that these muffins didn’t turn out for you. I’d love to help you trouble shoot, because I’ve made these over a dozen times and they are truly so amazing and definitely not thin or anything like that, as you can read, others raved about them in the comments. OK, so first question – what kind of sour cherries did you use? Did you use fresh or frozen? Were they drained enough? If not, I could see that as one reason your batter was thinner than normal. Also, did you by chance measure too much water and not enough oil? It’s only a 1/4 of a cup of water, and 2/3 cup oil. As for the not rising, my only suggestion would be to check the expiration date on your baking powder…sometimes if the baking powder is old it could lose its potency. Hopefully this helps

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