What better way to kick off your morning than with a muffin that’s healthy, containing gut-friendly kombucha plus everyone’s early morning fave, coffee. Spread some coffee-infused butter on these Whole Wheat Coffee muffins for an extra infusion of your morning joe!
This whole wheat muffin recipe is small-batch, too, making six perfect muffins for a week of delicious, nutritious breakfasts.
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Whole Wheat Muffins made using Kombucha
Recently, I came across a recipe by Jerrelle Guy in her cookbook Black Girl Baking that inspired me to create this recipe. In it, Jerrelle uses kombucha to give beautiful rise to her muffins while keeping them super healthy and flavorful.
If you're not familiar with kombucha, it's a fermented drink made with tea, sugar, yeast, and bacteria. It's characterized by its effervence and claims of many health benefits.
In this recipe, I recommend using plain kombucha versus flavored kombucha. If you have a difficult time finding kombucha (it's sold in most supermarkets and online), feel free to substitute with plain seltzer or sparkling water.
The effervesce of these drinks is what's most important for these muffins, as that's what gives them beautiful rise and lightness. Instead of using baking powder to help the muffins rise, the kombucha helps play this role.
The kombucha does add also health benefits such as probiotics and claims that it helps digestion, among other benefits.
Easy Healthy Muffins
This easy muffin recipe comes together very quickly. No electric mixer or stand mixer is required to make this favorite recipe. And there's no room temperature ingredients required either. So, no waiting around for your butter to soften or your eggs to reach room temperature in this recipe.
Please note this is not a classic coffee cake recipe with a crumb topping or crumble topping. If you are looking for such a recipe, you gotta try my Double Crumb Crumb Cake!
How to Get the Coffee Flavor to Pop
One of my favorite things is coffee in the morning! For some reason though, when incorporated into baked goods, the coffee flavor can easily get lost. So, to make it pop, it's used in a few different ways in this whole wheat muffin recipe.
In the muffin batter, there is espresso powder plus strongly brewed coffee as well as cinnamon, which brings out the coffee flavor while creating a warm flavor in the muffins.
To highlight the coffee flavor even more, make coffee butter. This is simply melted butter that's infused with coffee.
Once you melt the butter, add whole coffee or espresso beans and allow it to steep for at least 15 minutes or longer, whatever your personal preference. Strain the coffee beans out of the butter and discard. Then, allow the coffee to solidify in the fridge so it's perfectly spreadable on your baked muffins.
This step is optional, but I highly recommend it!
Ingredients Needed to Make Whole Wheat Coffee Muffins
See the recipe card below for ingredient amounts.
- Unsalted butter or Ghee (optional): does not need to be room temperature, since you'll be melting it
- Coffee or Espresso Beans (optional)
- Whole Wheat Flour: whole wheat flour gives these muffins a heartier, more earthy flavor. Feel free to substitute in equal amounts for all-purpose flour. I have not tried using gluten-free flour or almond flour.
- Baking soda
- Kosher Salt: I prefer to use kosher salt in my baking, however, you can use whatever kind you have. Salts have varying levels of saltiness, so start out by adding just a little bit then adding more if you need to. You may want to add more or less than is called for in the recipe based on your preferences
- Ground Cinnamon: the cinnamon helps bring out the coffee flavor and creates a warmth in these muffins
- Espresso powder: this helps to boost the coffee flavor in this delicious muffin recipe. May be substituted with coffee granules or ground coffee
- Greek Yogurt: use plain, full-fat Greek yogurt or substitute in equal amounts with sour cream
- Honey: adds a touch of sweetness to balance out the bitterness of the coffee in this recipe
- Coffee: the stronger the better! The flavor can get lost when the muffins are baked, so don't be afraid to go strong when brewing the actual coffee
- Kombucha: use plain, not flavored. May be substituted with plain seltzer or sparkling water.
Unlike many muffin recipes, there is no whole milk or vegetable oil in this recipe. Simple ingredients that pack a flavorful punch!
Looking for a fun flavor variation? Try adding ½ cup chocolate chips to the muffin batter.
How to make Coffee Muffins
Preparing these homemade muffins with coffee is super easy. The only thing is you'll want to work rather quickly, since the kombucha (or sparkling water or seltzer) will be most effective at helping the muffins rise as soon as you pour it into the batter.
So no dillydallying while you're preparing the batter. Once all the ingredients are mixed together, scoop the batter into the muffin tin and pop them into the oven.
Make the coffee butter: This step is optional. In a small microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter or ghee. Immediately add the coffee beans and cover. Set aside to steep while you prepare the muffin batter.
To make mini muffins, grease a mini muffin pan and set aside.
I prefer to spray the muffin tins instead of using paper liners. I find the paper liners peel too much of the muffin away when removing them. Use whichever method you prefer!
In a medium bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients (Greek yogurt, honey, and brewed coffee) until well incorporated. Add wet mixture to the flour mixture then pour in kombucha, mixing until just combined. Do not over mix.
Scoop the muffin mixture into the prepared muffin tin.
Bake at 425°F (220ºC) for 5 minutes then lower oven temperature to 375°F (190°C) for another 8-10 minutes. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of the muffins. Toothpick should come out clean or with just a few crumbs stuck to it.
If making mini muffins, start checking for doneness after 12 minutes of baking time. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin.
Meanwhile, strain the coffee beans from the melted butter, pressing on the beans with a spoon or back of a spatula to extract all
the butter that you can. Place butter in the fridge until solidified. Spread on top of the baked muffins and enjoy your buttery muffins with your morning coffee! If you prefer cream cheese on your muffins, that works well here too.
How to store coffee muffins
Wrap cooled muffins in plastic wrap and store at room temperature for 2 days or in the fridge for up to one week. Freeze individually wrapped muffins for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature or warm gently in the microwave or toaster.
Store butter in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one month.
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- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter or ghee
- 2 tablespoons whole coffee or espresso beans (not ground)
- 1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons espresso powder
- ¼ cup Greek yogurt
- ⅓ cup honey
- ¼ cup strongly brewed coffee
- 6 ounces plain kombucha or plain seltzer / sparkling water
Make Coffee Butter
- In a small microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter or ghee.8 tablespoons unsalted butter or ghee
- Immediately add the coffee beans and cover.2 tablespoons whole coffee or espresso beans (not ground)
- Set aside to steep while you prepare the muffin batter.
- Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°F). Grease a 6-cup muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and espresso powder. Set aside.1 ½ cups whole wheat flour, 2 teaspoons baking soda, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, 2 tablespoons espresso powder
- In a separate small bowl, whisk together the Greek yogurt, honey, and brewed coffee until well incorporated.¼ cup Greek yogurt, ⅓ cup honey, ¼ cup strongly brewed coffee
- Add mixture to the dry ingredients then pour in kombucha, mixing until just combined. Do not over mix.6 ounces plain kombucha
- Scoop the muffin mixture into the prepared muffin tin.
- Bake at 425°F (220ºC) for 5 minutes then lower oven temperature to 375°F (190°C) for another 8-10 minutes. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of muffin. Toothpick should come out clean or with just a few crumbs stuck to it.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin.
- Meanwhile, strain the coffee beans from the melted butter, pressing on the beans with a spoon or back of a spatula to extract all the butter that you can.
- Place butter in the fridge until solidified. Spread on muffins and enjoy!
- Wrap cooled muffins in plastic wrap and store at room temperature for 2 days or in the fridge for up to one week. Freeze individually wrapped muffins for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature or warm gently in the microwave or toaster
- Store butter in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one month
- Recipe inspired by and adapted from Black Girl Baking
- Nutrition information based on muffin only made with plain kombucha; does not include calorie count for coffee butter