Blueberry cheesecake muffins with a moist yet fluffy texture, sky-high muffin tops, and plenty of fresh blueberries! Serve these irresistible muffins with brunch or as a quick on-the-go breakfast.
Why you’ll love this recipe:
In a sea of blueberry muffin recipes, all claiming to be the best, this one is truly a knockout!
You’ll love the soft, buttery crumb and a silky smooth cream cheese swirl with a hint of orange zest. Plus, that glaze studded with fresh nutmeg gives the muffins a delicate caramelization!
- Bursting with fresh blueberries
- Light & airy with a cream cheese filling
- Bakery-style blueberry muffins
This’s the only blueberry muffin recipe you’ll ever need!
Key Ingredient Notes:
These blueberry cream cheese muffins call for simple ingredients!
- Cream cheese – I recommend full-fat cream cheese for the silkiest texture and best flavor. It is a cream cheese muffin, after all!
- Orange zest – Citrus zest has a bright, fragrant flavor and gives the cheesecake filling that something extra! Lemon zest is a perfect swap, if necessary. Avoid the white pith since it’s bland and bitter.
- All-purpose flour – All-purpose flour has a moderate protein content, which translates to a sturdy but delicate muffin!
- Baking powder – A crucial ingredient that causes the muffins to rise. Don’t use old baking powder! If you haven’t touched your baking powder in over a year, check to see if it’s still active. Drop a teaspoon of it into a cup of hot water to see if it bubbles. No bubbles = no good!
- Unsalted butter – Butter is responsible for the light and tender texture of the muffins. As a baker, I always buy unsalted to control the amount and quality of salt in the muffins. If you only have salted butter, it’s okay to use it but omit the salt from the recipe.
- Blueberries – Whenever possible, use fresh blueberries! Frozen blueberries release a ton of liquid, which creates a denser muffin.
How to make this recipe:
Before you start, preheat your oven to 400°F, then grease your muffin tin or line it with cupcake liners.
1. Make the glaze
Combine the sugar, vanilla extract, water and nutmeg in a small bowl. I highly recommend grating a whole nutmeg as it gives the most flavor.
2. Make the cheesecake filling
Stir the softened cream cheese, 1/3 cup of sugar, and orange zest in a medium bowl with a sturdy but flexible spatula until nice and smooth.
Don’t use cold cream cheese, or this easy process will be messy and frustrating.
3. Make the batter:
- Whisk the dry ingredients in a medium bowl to ensure the salt and baking powder are evenly distributed.
- Beat the butter and remaining sugar until light and fluffy.
- Then add the eggs and vanilla extract and beat for another 2 minutes, or until it’s nice and fluffy. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl after each addition.
- Now add half of the flour mixture and mix until just combined.
- And mix in the milk, followed by the rest of the flour mixture.
- Beating the butter with sugar traps air inside of it, which expands in the oven for a lighter-textured muffin.
- Don’t over-mix the batter after adding flour mixture, or the muffins will be dense.
4. Add the blueberries and cream cheese mixture
- Separate 1/4 cup of the blueberries, and roll the rest in two tablespoons of flour.
- Gently fold the floured blueberries into the batter. The flour sticks to the batter so the blueberries won’t sink to the bottom.
- Gently fold in the cheesecake mixture, but don’t fully mix it in. Alternatively, you can scoop the cream cheese mixture into the batter and swirl it in the muffin cups.
5. Glaze and bake
- Divide the muffin batter between a 12-hole muffin tin lined with cupcake liners. Top each muffin with the reserved blueberries, if desired.
- Then carefully brush on some glaze over each muffin.
- Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
- Let the muffins cool on a wire rack inside the pan for 15 minutes before removing from the pan.
Tips for Success:
- Don’t overmix the batter! Doing so deflates the tiny air bubbles created from whipping the butter, thus yielding a denser muffin.
- Only use softened butter and cream cheese. If you forget to leave it out to soften, just zap it unwrapped in the microwave in 5-second intervals. Don’t accidentally melt it!
- If you don’t like cheesecake swirls, no problem! Simply fold the cheesecake mixture all the way into the batter for pillowy-light & soft muffins.
- Avoid frozen blueberries. Frozen blueberries release more liquid than fresh, weighing down the muffin batter.
- Baking at high temperature ensures that tall muffin top! Be sure to preheat your oven well for at least 30 minutes.
- Don’t remove the muffins from the pan right out of the oven. I know they look & smell amazing, but hot muffins fall apart! Ask me how I know.
Make-Ahead & Storing Tips
- Wait until the blueberry orange muffins are completely cool before you store them. If you zip a warm muffin in a baggie, it will create moisture. Nobody likes a soggy muffin!
- Store the muffins in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Serve at room temperature.
- For longer storage, freeze the blueberry muffins! Place the cooled muffins on a plate or small sheet pan, & transfer to the freezer. This prevents them from getting smooshed. Once the muffins are frozen, transfer to a large ziplock bag or container.
- For best results, enjoy within 3 months of freezing them.
It’s crucial to use a leavening agent like baking powder to create tiny air bubbles that expand in the oven and cause the batter to rise.
Yes, while both can be used, fresh blueberries are better because they release less water into the batter. Too much liquid can cause the muffins to get gummy or dense.
Yes, it’s best to refrigerate them since cream cheese is high in moisture and perishable unless refrigerated.
Yes! Cream cheese filled muffins are well suited for the freezer. It won’t change the quality or texture of the muffins. Wait until they are completely cool before freezing, and for best results, enjoy within 3 months. Let the muffins thaw at room temperature or microwave in 10-second increments until slightly warm. Do not overheat.
Blueberry Cheesecake Muffins
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon water
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg Note 1
- 4 oz (110g) cream cheese softened
- 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar divided
- 1 tablespoon orange zest Note 2
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon table salt
- 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour plus 2 tablespoons for blueberries
- ½ cup (115g) unsalted butter at room temperature
- 2 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ cup (120ml) milk at room temperature Note 3
- 2 cups fresh blueberries washed and dried Note 4
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Grease muffin pan, or line with paper liners.
To make the glaze:
- Combine sugar, vanilla extract, water and ground nutmeg in a small bowl. Set aside.
To make the cheesecake filling:
- Mix together cream cheese, 1/3 cup of sugar and orange zest with a rubber spatula in a medium bowl until smooth. Set aside.
To make the muffin batter:
- Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl with paddle attachment, beat butter and remaining 2/3 cup of sugar until fluffy, about 2 minutes.
- Add the eggs and vanilla extract and beat for another 2 minutes, or until nice and fluffy. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula half way.
- Add half of the flour mixture and mix until just combined.
- Then stir in the milk, followed by the remaining flour mixture. Don’t overmix.
- Set aside 1/4 cup of blueberries. Roll the remaining blueberries in 2 tablespoons of flour. This will prevent the blueberries from sinking.
- Fold in floured blueberries into the batter.
- Then gently swirl in cheesecake mixture into the batter.
- Divide the batter into 12 muffin cups. The muffin cups will be pretty full, and that's totally ok!
- Top with reserved blueberries.
- Brush on the prepared glaze over each muffin.
- Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until the inserted toothpick comes out clean.
- Cool the muffins completely in the muffin pan before taking them out.
Tips & Notes:
– Wait until the blueberry orange muffins are completely cool before you store them.
– Store the muffins in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Serve at room temperature.
– For longer storage, freeze the blueberry muffins! Place the cooled muffins on a plate or small sheet pan, & transfer to the freezer. This prevents them from getting smooshed. Once the muffins are frozen, transfer to a large ziplock bag or container.
– For best results, use within 3 months of freezing.
This recipe was originally published on September 10th, 2013.