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Dried Cherry Muffins

From the book The New Basics Cookbook by and
Yield 18 muffins


From the northern woods of Michigan come the most delicious cherries imaginable. In fact, over 75 percent of our nation’s cherries are grown here. Thank goodness they’re now being dried again, as the Indians once did, for they give a most concentrated cherry flavor. We love to sit and snack on them, but buttermilk muffins seem to be the perfect wrapping — served warm, their flavor is at its peak.


1 cup dried cherries, pitted (about 8 ounces with pits)
1 cup buttermilk
cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
~ Pinch of salt
8 Tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten


  1. Combine the cherries and buttermilk in a small bowl, and set aside to soak for 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter 18 muffin cups or line them with paper liners.
  3. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  4. In another bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs and mix thoroughly.
  5. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and spoon the cherries and buttermilk into it. Then add the butter-sugar mixture. Mix until thoroughly blended, but do not overmix.
  6. Fill the cups two-thirds full with the batter, and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer the muffins to a wire rack and allow them to cool.


Culinate editor’s notes: We’ve made these muffins for years — using Oregon cherries, of course. Sometimes we change it up, however. Try substituting 3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour, plus 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour, for the 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour called for in the original recipe. No buttermilk on hand? Mix together 1/2 cup plain yogurt and 1/2 cup milk instead. No butter? Use 1/2 cup vegetable oil. For chocolate-cherry muffins, add 1/2 cup baking cocoa to the dry ingredients.

This content is from the book The New Basics Cookbook by Sheila Lukins and Julee Rosso.

There are 3 comments on this item
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0% recommend this recipe
1. by zahra on Apr 14, 2009 at 9:21 PM PDT

I made it last night, today morning some green dots appear on it. I didnt put it on a refrigerator. I dont know what those are?
tanx for recipe :D

2. by Kim on Apr 15, 2009 at 6:58 AM PDT

zahra, I don’t know what those green dots are either! Better not to eat the muffins I’m afraid. These muffins are best the first day, but I did refrigerate our leftovers; I’m sure they would freeze well too (then thaw an hour before eating). Sorry to hear about the waste.

3. by Stephanie Lewis on Apr 22, 2009 at 12:09 PM PDT

The muffins sound delicious. I don’t have dried cherries and am thinking about substituting with dried apricots. Would it be possible to get the nutrition facts for these muffins? Thanks.

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