These bakery style orange muffins are bursting with citrus flavor! These moist muffins use fresh orange juice and orange zest for big orange flavor.
Omg! These are the best orange muffins , I have ever had! They are so moist and delicious. Definitely one that I will make again and again. Going to try the lemon muffins next!-Liz
These orange muffins will quickly become a favorite in your house for breakfast or a snack option on the go! Bake these with our lemon muffins for a double citrus explosion!
Why these are the best orange muffins
- Packed with orange flavor (fresh orange juice and orange zest!)
- Made with everyday ingredients & prepped in 10 minutes
- Moist, soft muffins with tender crumb
- Tall and domed muffin tops (bakery style!)
What You’ll Need for Orange Muffins
These simple ingredients make the best lemon poppy seed muffins! Keep scrolling to get the full measurements and instructions in the recipe card below.
- all purpose flour: flour is necessary to build structure
- granulated sugar: adds sweetness and flavor
- baking powder and baking soda: helps to leaven and lift the batter
- salt: just a pinch to balance the sweetness and enhances the other flavors
- eggs: binds the batter together by providing structure
- buttermilk: adds fat, moisture and flavor
- vegetable oil: adds fat and moisture
- orange zest and orange juice: the star of orange muffins
How to Make Orange Muffins
These easy fresh orange muffins look like they came from a bakery, but are so easy to make! Get the entire recipe in the recipe card below.
- Combine dry ingredients. In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir with a spoon to combine and set aside.
- Combine wet ingredients. In a larger mixing bowl combine the eggs, buttermilk, vegetable oil, orange zest and orange juice. Stir to combine with a fork or spatula for 30 seconds.
- Combine all ingredients. Gradually mix in the dry ingredients, mixing by hand just until combined. The batter will be very thick!
- Let batter rest. Cover the bowl with a towel and allow the batter to rest for 15 minutes on the counter. During this time, preheat the oven to 425ºF.
- Add batter to muffin tin. For bakery style muffin tops, line a 12 count muffin pan with 6 muffins liners, meaning you’ll only fill every other muffin well with batter. Filling every other well allows the muffins to spread and dome without running into each other.
- Fill liners. Fill the paper liners super duper full with batter. My muffins probably had about 6-8 heaping tablespoons of batter in each muffin liner. Use a butter knife to smooth the tops of the muffins if lumpy. Sprinkle with sanding sugar.
- Bake. Place one pan in the center of the oven and bake for 7 minutes at 425ºF, then keep the muffins in the oven, and turn the temperature down to 350ºF and bake for 13-16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Cool. Allow the muffins to cool in the pan for 15 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. Repeat with the remaining batter, making sure to bump the temperature back up to 425ºF.
How to Properly Measure Flour
The most accurate way to measure flour is to use a kitchen scale, weighing it in grams.
If you don’t have a kitchen scale, follow this method.
- Aerate the flour with a whisk or spoon. Flour becomes heavy and compact as it sits. Aerating is the same as fluffing the flour, but not the same as sifting it. Do not sift the flour unless the recipe specifically calls for it.
- Use a spoon to sprinkle the flour into the measuring cup. Do not tap the cup against the counter, as this will compact the flour.
- Use the back of a butter knife to level off the excess.
Total time required
- 10 minutes to prep the batter
- 15 minute rest (this helps produce domed tops!)
- Bake for 7 minutes at 425ºF
- Bake for 13-16 minutes at 350ºF
- 20-30 minutes to cool
How to Create Bakery Style Muffins
Bakery style muffins are known for their domed tops. Plus who doesn’t love them? I used a few techniques to help “lift” these muffins so they would have large, domed tops!
1. THE REST PERIOD
Let the batter rest for 15 minutes after it’s mixed and before you scoop it into the muffin pan. During the resting period, starch molecules in the flour are absorbing the liquid in the batter, causing them to swell and giving the batter a thicker consistency (ref the kitchen whisper). Our 15 minute rest is just a quick rest.
2. FILL EVERY OTHER MUFFIN CUP
This tip has been a game changer! For bakery style muffin tops, line a 12 count muffin pan with 6 muffin liners, meaning you’ll only fill every other muffin well with batter. Filling every other cup allows the muffins to spread and dome without running into each other. This technique also encourages the muffins to brown, creating a golden muffin top.
3. FILL THEM TO THE TOP
Fill your muffin liners to the top with batter. Yes, this goes against everything you’re heard but it’s important in helping the muffin gain that height.
4. BAKE AT HIGH TEMPERATURE INITIALLY
Bake the muffins at a high temperature (425ºF) initially, then lower to 350ºF. Starting the muffins off at a higher temperature causes the batter to rise rapidly, setting the outer surface of the muffin, producing a dome shape.
Substitutions & Variations
- Poppy Seeds or Chia seeds: Add poppy seeds or chia seeds for a little crunch.
- Gluten Free Orange Muffins: Instead of all-purpose flour, you can use a gluten-free flour blend. I recommend King Arthur’s Gluten Free Measure for Measure Flour. Use it as a one for one substitute for regular flour.
- Simple Orange Glaze. Add a simple sweet orange glaze to make these moist muffins even more decadent.
- Orange Blueberry Muffins. Make these into orange blueberry muffins just by adding 2 cups of fresh blueberries.
Storing & Freezing Muffins
If you’ll be eating the muffins within 24 hours of baking, you can leave them uncovered on the counter. The muffins will not dry out while left at room temperature for 1 day.
In fact, muffins are so moist they can become soggy and those crunchy, sugary tops can disappear when stored in an airtight container.
But I have a trick to help that – paper towels.
For longer storage, 2-4 days, line the bottom of an airtight container with paper towels. Place the muffins in a single layer in the container then cover the muffins with any additional layer of paper towels. The paper towels will act like a sponge, absorbing the moisture they release while they are stored.
If the paper towels become too moist around day 2 or day 3, replace them with fresh paper towels.
HOW TO FREEZE MUFFINS
Individually wrap each muffin in plastic wrap. Then place them in a ziploc bag or airtight container and place in the freezer for up to 3 months.
To thaw, leave them at room temperature until defrosted, about 1 hour. Or unwrap them and microwave at 20 second intervals until defrosted.
Orange Muffin Recipe
- 3 cups all purpose flour, 360 grams, measured properly
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
- 3 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 large eggs
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- zest of 3 oranges
- ¼ cup fresh squeezed orange juice
- 1 ⅓ cup powdered sugar
- 3 tbsp fresh squeezed orange juice
- In a mixing bowl combine the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir with a spoon to combine and set aside.
- In a larger mixing bowl combine the eggs, buttermilk, vegetable oil, orange zest and orange juice. Stir to combine with a spatula for 30 seconds.
- Gradually mix in the dry ingredients, mixing by hand just until combined. The batter will be very thick!
- Cover the bowl with a towel and allow the batter to rest for 15 minutes. During this time, preheat the oven to 425ºF.
- For bakery style muffin tops, line a 12 count muffin pan with 6 muffins liners, meaning you’ll only fill every other muffin well with batter. Filling every other well allows the muffins to spread and dome without running into each other.
- Fill the liners to the top with batter. Yes – to the top! You might think there is no way to fit all the batter in 12 liners, but keep dividing the batter among the cups and fill the liners FULL! Use a butter knife to smooth the tops of the muffins if lumpy.
- Top the muffins with sanding sugar if desired.
- Bake for 7 minutes at 425ºF, then keeping the muffins in the oven, turn the temperature down to 350ºF and bake for 13-16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the muffins to cool in the pan. Repeat with the remaining batter, making sure to bump the temperature back up to 425ºF.
- Mix the powdered sugar and orange juice together with a spoon. You may possibly need more orange juice, it just depends on how thin or thick you like your glaze. You can dip the tops of the muffins into the glaze or use a spoon to spread the glaze over them.
- Measure the flour using the spoon and level method.
- I’ve made these muffins with both regular and gluten free flour with awesome results on multiple occasions. I recommend King Arthur’s Gluten Free Measure for Measure Flour. Use it as a one for one substitute for regular flour.
- For orange blueberry muffins add 2 cups of fresh or frozen blueberries to the batter.
- For orange poppy seed muffins add 2 tablespoons of poppy seeds to the batter.