With a soft and tender crumb, golden cinnamon streusel tops, and three types of berries, these mixed berry muffins are absolutely bursting with sweet, fruity flavor.
So now I'm branching out to other berries and bringing that same delightfully tender crumb right along with me. These bakery-quality triple berry muffins are quick and easy to make and they're customizable.
If there's one muffin to rule summer, this is it!
Why This Recipe Works
There's a million reasons to love these mixed berry muffins, and here are a few:
- Texture - These muffins are soft and tender with just the right amount of moisture. There's a reason I keep using this muffin base: it just works!
- Flavor - When I tell you these muffins are jam packed with fresh berry flavor... I'm not kidding! A hint of cinnamon and those ever-so-slightly-crispy muffin tops kick things up a notch.
- Customizable - Use three types of berries (like I did) or go all in with your favorite berry. As long as you have 1 ½ cups of berries, you'll be good. And the topping is customizable, too...
- Cinnamon Streusel Topping - Nothing beats the slight crunch and rich cinnamon flavor of streusel-topped muffins. But if you're a sugar-topped muffin person, there's instructions for you, too (just see the recipe notes).
- Make Ahead - Make ahead breakfasty things have become one of my favorite things to bake because they're both easy and rewarding. Whip up the batter in the evening, and in the morning all you'll have to do is scoop the batter into the pan, sprinkle it with streusel, and bake!
Ingredient Notes & Substitutions
Butter - Butter adds fat and flavor to the muffin batter. We'll be melting the butter, so there's no need for mixer for creaming.
Vegetable Oil - Using a bit of oil along with the butter create a more tender muffin. Feel free to substitute another neutral oil, like canola oil.
Sour Cream - Sour cream adds moisture to the muffin batter, and its acidity activates the baking soda. I find full-fat sour cream to be best for baking, though you can substitute low-fat sour cream or even Greek yogurt if you prefer.
Berries - Here's your opportunity to make these muffins your own! Use any ripe berry you like, a mixture of several berries or just one. Keep the berries on the smaller side so they don't create pockets in your muffins. Blueberries, raspberries, and smaller blackberries can be used whole, while strawberries and larger blackberries should be sliced.
I found that peak season strawberries (fully red and juicy) were delicious in these muffins, but out-of-season strawberries (white in the middle and less juicy) didn't add nearly as much flavor as the other berries.
You can also use frozen berries in this recipe. Check out the FAQs below for how to bake muffins with frozen berries.
See recipe card at the bottom of this post for full ingredient list and measurements.
In addition to essential baking equipment (like a mixing bowl and whisk), I recommend some special tools for making this recipe.
- Standard muffin pan, for baking the muffins. You could also use a mini muffin pan to bake 24 mini muffins.
- Paper muffin liners, for ensuring the muffins don't stick to the pan.
- Cookie scoop (1 ½ Tablespoons or 3 Tablespoons size), for portioning the batter into the muffin liners. This tool is optional but helpful.
Step-By-Step Recipe Instructions
Step 1: Whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
Step 2: Whisk together melted butter, vegetable oil, and both sugars. Whisk in eggs. Add sour cream, milk, and vanilla and whisk one more time until the mixture is well blended.
Step 3: Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until blended.
Step 4: Fold the berries into the muffin batter. Chill the batter overnight in the fridge.
Step 5: Make the streusel topping. Whisk together flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Add melted butter and whisk until a crumbly mixture forms. Set aside.
Step 6: Line a standard muffin pan with paper liners. Divide the muffin batter evenly into the paper liners so that they are ¾ full.
Step 7: Crumble the streusel topping evenly over the muffins.
Step 8: Bake the muffins at 425°F for 5 minutes, then turn down the oven temperature to 350°F and continue to bake the muffins for another 20 to 25 minutes.
See recipe card at the bottom of this post for detailed recipe instructions.
For those beautifully domed muffin tops, don't skip chilling the muffin batter before baking. The flour hydrates while the batter chills, which leads to more tender muffins with taller domed tops.
A cookie scoop is the perfect tool for evenly portioning batter into the muffin pan. Two level scoops of batter using a 1 ½ Tablespoon cookie scoop is perfect for each muffin.
To keep the muffins nice and tender, be careful not to over mix the batter. Once the wet ingredients are added to the dry ingredients stir (don't whisk) to combine, and stop stirring just as the ingredients become fully blended.
About 10 to 15 minutes after removing the muffins from the oven, carefully remove the still warm muffins from the muffin pan and transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely. This will help to ensure that the muffin bottoms don’t become soggy.
You may have heard the popular tip of tossing berries with a bit of flour to keep them from sinking to the bottom of muffins or cakes as the batter bakes. This muffin batter is quite thick, so there's no need to worry about your berries sinking. And, in my experience, tossing berries in flour doesn't work all that well anyway. If you're really concerned about keeping the berries afloat, a more effective tip that I learned from Smitten Kitchen is to add 1 Tablespoon of batter to each of the muffin wells before adding the berries to the remaining batter and then filling the muffin wells with the berried batter.
Nope! You can absolutely use frozen berries in this recipe, but don't thaw them. Instead, you'll want to add them to the batter, stir just until well distributed throughout the batter, and bake promptly. If the berries begin to defrost or are stirred too much, they'll release their juices and leave streaks of color in the batter.
Muffins are best on the day they are baked, though leftovers can be stored either at room temperature or in the freezer.
Room Temperature: Muffins are best on the day they are baked, though leftovers can be stored at room temperature for up to 3 days. Keep the muffin loosely covered, since a little bit of airflow will keep the streusel from becoming soggy.
Freezing: Muffins can also be frozen, stored in an airtight container, for up to 1 month. Defrost the muffins at room temperature and toast them lightly to crisp the streusel back up before eating.
More Muffin Recipes
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Mixed Berry Muffins with Cinnamon Streusel Topping
- standard muffin pan
- Paper muffin liners
- Cookie scoop (1 ½ Tablespoons or 3 Tablespoons size), optional
- 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup dark brown sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- ¼ cup sour cream, room temperature
- 6 ounces whole milk, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups fresh or frozen berries, (whole blueberries, whole blackberries, whole, raspberries, or sliced strawberries)
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup dark brown sugar
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Make the Muffin Batter.
- Melt the butter in a large bowl in the microwave or on the stove. Set the melted butter aside to cool slightly while you move on to the next step.
- In a medium bowl, add flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt and whisk to combine. Set aside.
- To the melted butter add vegetable oil and both sugars. Whisk to combine. Add eggs and whisk to combine. Add sour cream, milk, and vanilla and whisk one more time until the mixture is well blended.
- Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until blended. Do not over mix the batter.
- Add the berries to the muffin batter and fold the berries into the batter.
Chill the Batter.
- Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate the batter for at least one hour and up to overnight.
Make the Streusel Topping.
- In a small bowl, add flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt and whisk to combine. Add melted butter and whisk until a crumbly mixture forms. Set aside.
Bake the Muffins.
- When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 425°F (218°C). Line a muffin pan with paper liners.
- Divide the muffin batter evenly into the prepared muffin pan so that the six paper liners are ¾ full. (I love to use a cookie scoop for portioning the batter into the muffin pan and find that two level scoops of batter using my 1 ½ Tablespoon cookie scoop is perfect for each muffin.)
- Use your fingers to crumble the streusel topping evenly over the muffins.
- Bake the muffins at 425°F (218°C) for 5 minutes, then turn down the oven temperature to 350°F (177°C), keeping the muffins in the oven and without opening the oven door. Continue to bake the muffins until the tops are golden and spring back when gently poked, 20 to 25 minutes more.
- Let the muffins cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 to 15 minutes. Then carefully remove the still-warm muffins from the pan and transfer them to the wire rack to cool completely.