These vegan cornbread muffins are made extra sweet and flavorful with molasses and classic cornbread ingredients. Easy to make in under 30 minutes & perfect as a side with hearty soup!
Say good-bye to store bought cornbread mix. It's easy to make your own homemade vegan version using traditional ingredients and a few substitutions to make dairy-free and egg-free.
There is an age-old debate between sugar-sweetened and unsweetened cornbread. Let me just say that if you are privy to unsweetened cornbread, this is not the recipe for you.
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These cornbread muffins aren't just made with white sugar, they also have another source of flavor and sweetness:
Have you ever tried molasses sweetened cornbread? It's the best!
Aside from giving the muffins a deep brown color, it also adds an extra level of flavor.
Molasses: Molasses is a dark, thick syrupy biproduct made from boiling sugar cane or sugar beets. In this recipe we will use regular or light molasses, not blackstrap molasses (that is a much more strongly flavored version of molasses).
Cornmeal: In this recipe, we will use whole grain cornmeal. Whole grain cornmeal is simply ground corn, whereas refined or degerminated cornmeal is more finely ground.
Coarse, whole-grain cornmeal yields a more richly flavored and textured muffin. My favorite cornmeal is this kind from Bob's Red Mill, but any package labeled "coarse" will work.
How to make
We will use mostly traditional cornbread ingredients and methods with the addition of a few vegan substitutes.
1. Make a flax egg by combining dry flaxseed with warm water. Let sit for at least 5 minutes. As the flaxseed sits it becomes more viscous and "egg"-like.
2. Make vegan "buttermilk" by combining unsweetened soy milk with apple cider vinegar. Let sit for 10 minutes. The acidic vinegar causes soy milk to curdle and become thicker -- it may not sound appetizing, but it is a great way to take corn muffins to the next level.
*If you don't have apple cider vinegar you can use regular vinegar. If you don't have any vinegar at all, just skip the buttermilk step.
3. Combine all dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.
4. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Whisk until just combined, careful not to overmix. It is okay if some small dry parts still exist.
5. Evenly divide the batter into twelve lightly oiled muffin tins (I use spray for this step, but you can also drizzle oil in the tins and spread it around with a paper towel).
You will use about ~⅓ cup batter per muffin tin. The batter should be about the consistency of pancake batter -- not too watery, but not thick either.
Step six: Bake the muffins at 400 degrees F for 15-18 minutes. Because the molasses makes the muffins darken more than a traditional corn muffin, you will want to check for doneness using a toothpick inserted in the center. The toothpick will come out clean when the corn muffins are baked through.
- Storage: Keep for 3-4 days in a closed container at room temperature and 4-5 days refrigerated.
- Freezing: Freeze in a closed container for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw in the fridge overnight.
- Sugar swaps: If you are in a pinch and don't have molasses you can use an equal amount of honey or maple syrup.