I love making muffins – it was probably one of my favourite things to make for Rosalie when she was first weaning (sugar-free and salt-free of course).

But actually nothing beats a really sweet breakfast muffin, especially at the holidays and these cranberry muffins are really evocative of that quintessential Christmas scent – make these on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning and it will set you up for an amazing Christmas and fill the house with the most deliciously festive smells.

There is the subtle hint of warming cinnamon and nutmeg from the mixed spice as well as the citrusy sweet fragrance of clementine from the zest and juice and the sharp fruit flavour from the cranberries – which balances the sweetness of the warmly scented vanilla sponge, making it perfect for breakfast.

Though, truth be told, I love them for afternoon tea as well or after dinner as an evening snack with hot chocolate.

If you prefer, you can substitute the cranberries with blueberries or raspberries for slightly different flavours. Enjoy!

Cranberry breakfast muffins (dairy-free and refined sugar-free)

(Makes 12 muffins)

Ingredients:

225g spelt white flour

Fine pinch pink Himalayan salt

125g xylitol (or 175g caster sugar)

1 tbsp maple syrup

75g raw organic coconut oil

50g vegan butter or spread

2 large free-range eggs

2 tsp baking powder

½ tsp mixed spice

1 tsp vanilla extract

120ml sugar-free plant-based milk (I used oat milk but you could use almond milk or rice milk if you prefer)

Zest of 1 clementine

15ml (1 tbsp) clementine juice

225g fresh cranberries (you could use blueberries or raspberries if you prefer)

Method:

Preheat the oven to 190ºC and line a 12 muffin cup tray with muffin cases – either paper or silicone work well.

Gently melt the coconut oil and vegan spread in a saucepan over a gentle heat and allow it to cool for a few minutes or so whilst you prep the other ingredients.

Sieve the flour, baking powder, salt, xylitol and mixed spice into a large mixing bowl and stir together.

In a large measuring jug, mix together the eggs, zest and juice of one clementine, vanilla extract, oat milk, maple syrup and finally whisk in the melted and cooled coconut oil and vegan butter.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients to create a wet muffin batter.

Add the cranberries and gently turn the berries around in the batter, being careful not to mash them to much. Do not over mix the muffins; try to turn the mixture together very minimally to ensure that the batter stays moist and light.

Spoon ice-cream scoop sized dollops of batter into the muffin cases and try to ensure that the batter is evenly distributed.

Bake in the oven for around 18 to 22 minutes or so until an inserted cake tester or skewer comes out clean.

Serve a little warm with a mug of hot tea or hot cacao – so delicious and festive!

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