Christmas muffins

Make these zesty, spiced muffins ahead of Christmas Day, then begin the festivities by handing them out while everyone opens their gifts under the tree

  • Prep:20 mins
    Cook:30 mins
  • Serves 12
  • Easy

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 342
  • fat 14g
  • saturates 8g
  • carbs 48g
  • sugars 0g
  • fibre 1g
  • protein 5g
  • salt 0.6g


  • 125g unsalted butter
  • 250g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 200g golden caster sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ nutmeg, freshly grated
  • 150g natural yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 150g chocolate (white, milk or dark), chopped
  • 50g dried cranberries
  • 50g icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp pearl sugar (optional)


  1. Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tray with paper muffin cases.

  2. Melt the butter in the microwave or a small pan over a low heat, then set aside to cool for 10 mins. Meanwhile, mix the flour, bicarb, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large bowl with a pinch of salt.

  3. Add the yogurt, vanilla and eggs to the cooled butter and mix well. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients along with the orange zest, chocolate and dried cranberries. Mix well until there are no pockets of flour.

  4. Divide the mixture evenly between the paper cases, then bake for 30 mins until risen and golden. Check they’re cooked by inserting a cocktail stick into the centre of one of the muffins (choose one in the centre of the tray). If any wet cake batter clings to the skewer, return to the oven for 5 mins.

  5. Remove the muffins from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for at least 10 mins. Meanwhile, mix the icing sugar with enough of the orange juice to make a loose icing. Brush the orange glaze over each muffin, then sprinkle with a little pearl sugar, if using. Leave to cool before eating. Will keep in an airtight container for up to five days, or frozen for up to two months.

Suggested recipes from this collection...