How to Make Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffins Like a Pro
Taste of Home's Test Kitchen developed the perfect gluten-free blueberry muffins. Keep this recipe handy!
A freshly baked muffin may be my ideal gluten-free breakfast. This treat is as enjoyable with a leisurely cup of coffee as it is on the go. Sadly, many gluten-free muffins miss the mark. They’re too dense or much too sweet, or they’re so starchy that I’m hungry moments after eating.
This recipe for the perfect gluten-free blueberry muffins cracks the code, yielding golden-brown muffins speckled with burst berries. A dusting of sugar adds a pleasing crunch to the tops, and the bottoms of the muffins are tender and delightfully soft. Here’s how to make them.
Key Ingredients in Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffins
The secret to success for this recipe lies in a handful of crucial ingredients.
All-Purpose Gluten-Free Flour Blend
This recipe calls for an all-purpose gluten-free flour mix, as opposed to a single type of gluten-free flour. All-purpose mixes contain a balance of gluten-free grains and starches designed to mimic the structure and flavor of traditional all-purpose flour. No single gluten-free flour can replace all-purpose flour on its own. Most store-bought gluten-free flour blends will work well in this recipe. You may also use a homemade gluten-free mix, but add a teaspoon of xanthan gum to the mix if your recipe doesn’t already include it.
Gluten is a protein in wheat (and barley and rye). It serves as a “binder” that gives traditional baked goods their structure. Some recipes, like gluten-free cakes and desserts, can be made without worrying about the absence of that binder. Other recipes, like gluten-free breads, definitely benefit from adding a substitute binding agent. Xanthan gum is one of the most popular, reliable and easy-to-find options. These muffins will rise to taller heights thanks to a pinch of xanthan gum.
Butter and Sugar
These muffins include soft butter and sugar, beaten together for several minutes before any other ingredients are added. Creaming butter and sugar together creates a lofty structure for the batter, preempting any risk of a claggy muffin, as The Great British Baking Show would call it. The butter base also adds richness and flavor, making the alternative flour flavor less apparent.
How to Make Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffins
This recipe was developed by the Taste of Home Test Kitchen.
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/2 cup 2% milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups gluten-free baking flour (with xanthan gum)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups fresh or frozen unsweetened blueberries
- Coarse sugar
Step 1: Measure dry ingredients
Get started by preheating the oven to 375°F.
In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
Step 2: Cream the butter and sugar
In a large bowl, cream the butter and cup of sugar until light and fluffy, about 5-7 minutes.
Step 3: Add eggs and liquid ingredients
Add the eggs, 1 egg at a time, beating well after each addition. Then, stir in the milk and vanilla.
Step 4: Mix in the dry ingredients
Now it’s time to add the bowl of dry ingredients. Gently pour the flour mix into the batter bowl. Stir until just moistened.
Step 5: Add berries
Gently fold in the blueberries until evenly distributed.
Editor’s Tip: If you want to be extra certain the berries won’t sink, toss them with a tablespoon of flour mix (or plain cornstarch) before stirring into the batter.
Step 6: Fill muffin tins
Fill paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths of the way full to allow room for rise. Sprinkle the muffin tops with coarse sugar.
Step 7: Bake
Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean, about 20-25 minutes. (They’ll keep cooking a bit after they’re removed from the heat.) Cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack. Serve warm.
How to Store Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffins
Like most of our muffin recipes, these taste best the day they’re made, especially fresh from the oven. However, leftover muffins keep well thanks to the high moisture content in the batter. Allow the muffins to cool completely, then store at room temperature in a tightly covered container or airtight bag.
Leftover muffins also freeze exceptionally well. Wrap in plastic and store for up to three months. Defrost in the fridge overnight or by heating in the microwave.
Tips for Making Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffins
- To measure the batter, use a greased cookie scoop to fill the cupcake pan.
- Cupcake liners make it easy to remove muffins from the pan after baking. If you don’t have any, grease the cupcake pan well before adding the batter.
- For the most even result, bake the muffins on the middle rack of the oven.
Can You Make Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free Blueberry Muffins?
Dairy-free? Replace the butter with a good vegan butter and swap the 2% milk with a plant-based milk alternative.