These healthy whole wheat cranberry orange cornmeal muffins are great for snacking! At only 127 calories apiece, they are practically guilt-free.
Kamikazes, quick bread and corn muffins...oh my! And they all involve cranberries!
As soon as the fresh cranberries hit the stores, I stock my fridge and freezer. I can tell you're thinking, "But what the heck do you do with all of those cranberries?"
In my world, there's no such thing as "too much cranberry sauce". If you have ever tasted homemade cranberry sauce, you know what I mean.
What?! You haven't had homemade cranberry sauce? Stop everything you're doing and scratch that canned cranberry sauce off of your Thanksgiving shopping list. The homemade kind takes about 15 minutes to make and tastes 15,000 times better than the canned stuff. This one and this one are two of my favorite recipes.
But once the holidays have passed and you've served cranberry sauce every which way you can possibly imagine...well, then what? That's where those kamikazes and quick breads come in. And those lead to corn muffins. Going through winter without several batches of corn muffins somehow seems wrong.
Eat them for breakfast, serve them with soup and chili or eat them at midnight, hiding in your closet. A little privacy is sometimes necessary to properly enjoy a really good muffin.
It seems that the proper sweetness of corn muffins and cornbread can be a fairly polarizing topic, so let me get this out there right now. These are NOT really sweet. In fact, there's a hint of tartness from the fresh cranberries. If you prefer something a little sweeter, drizzle a little honey or agave nectar over the muffin after splitting it in half. It's a "personalize your sweetness" kind of thing.
A Helping of Healthy
Every fresh fruit and vegetable out there seems to have a long list of health benefits, and fresh cranberries are no exception.
- You've probably heard that cranberries can help decrease the risk or urinary tract infections, but do you know the reason for that? I know that I didn't until I came across this article from Runner's World. It seems that cranberries are packed with certain photochecmicals, known as proanthocyanidins (PACs). These PACs stop bacteria from sticking to the urinary tract, which greatly reduces the risk of urinary tract infections. That's a little Cliff Clavin fact to wow your friends with.
- Cranberries are a good source of Vitamin C, fiber and Vitamin E.
- Cranberries have anti-inflammatory properties, which can reduce the risk of inflammation in blood vessel linings (that means a healthier cardiovascular system) and in the colon and large intestine (leading to a healthier digestive system.)
- Cranberries help to prevent the risk of cancer, particularly prostate, liver, breast, ovarian and colon cancers.
All of these are fantastic reasons to work more cranberries in our diets!
Other recipes with fresh cranberries:
Cookin' Canuck's 3-Ingredient Brie & Cranberry Phyllo Turnovers
Cookin' Canuck's Crockpot Apple & Cranberry Sauce with Orange & Crystallized Ginger
Little Broken's Asparagus with Cranberry Honey Vinaigrette
This Gal Cooks' Cranberry Pumpkin Pancakes
Healthy Cranberry Orange Cornmeal Muffins
- 1 cup + 1 tablespoon cornmeal
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons grated orange zest
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup low-fat buttermilk well-shaken
- ¼ cup non-fat plain Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup fresh cranberries chopped
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat a 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the 1 cup cornmeal, whole wheat flour, sugar, orange zest, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, yogurt and oil.
- Stir the buttermilk mixture into the cornmeal mixture just until combined.
- In a small bowl, toss the berries with 1 tablespoon cornmeal. Stir the cranberries into the muffin batter.
- Using a ¼ cup measure, divide the batter evenly between the muffin tins.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean, about 12 minutes.
- Cool the muffins in the tin for 10 minutes, then remove from the tin and cool completely on a wire rack. Serve or store in an airtight container.
I love these muffins. Such gorgeous photos. Every time I see your photos I just smile, they are always so pretty and instantly put me in a good mood.
I'm a cranberry hoarder. Um, *cough* I mean I stock a lot of cranberries, mostly for jam. My son would go crazy for these. I love the use of orang zest with cranberries. Such a delicious pairing.
Aly ~ Cooking In Stilettos
Fabulous recipe! I tend to stockpile fresh cranberries for the freezer - and homemade cranberry sauce is a must at the holidays - and these muffins are perfect for breakfast the next day!
Cornmeal, orange and cranberry? Yes please!
Anything with cranberries is right my alley, this looks fabulous!
What a great recipe. I know I'm going to love these.
Heather | girlichef
I can totally pictures these alongside my morning cuppa! I stock up on cranberries like they're going out of style, too. And yeah, homemade cranberry sauce is the only way to go. I have to make a triple batch since my daughter seriously tries to eat a single batch in one day (and I have to have leftovers!).
I agree about cranberries and I am going to make BOTH of your cranberry sauces. I also like to put fruit in my cornbread (sometimes nuts) and you made it into muffins. Really looks great!
Love using orange zest with cranberries! These look awesome!
Lana @ Never Enough Thyme
Cranberry and orange is one of the most perfect flavor combinations ever. Love that you've incorporated them in a corn muffin. And healthy, too! Bravo.
Can't wait to try this one - I love cranberries and tend to hoard bags of them in my freezer to use throughout the year. I also like the size of these muffins - no need for those monster muffins loaded with fat, too much sugar and extra calories.
I only have dried cranberries 🙁
would i have to soak them if i were to substitute it?
Ashley @ Wishes & Dishes
I just bought a bunch of cranberries yesterday! Perfect timing!
Liz @ The Lemon Bowl
These look so good - beautiful photos Dara!
I love your photos! and these muffins are just to die for!
Yes please to any cornmeal muffin adding cranberry orange to them is divine. '
P.S.: Cranberries are so yummy - I love them too
Those cranberries look beautiful
I just LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE fresh cranberries in everything!
I can never get enough fresh cranberries, too! When I see them in the store, it's like hitting the jackpot! I'll definitely need to whip up a big batch of these!
Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness
I don't know why I am telling you this, but I don't like cranberry sauce. I but ketchup on my turkey.
BECAUSE I am 5.
But I adore cranberries in muffins, and I am SO all over the idea to use cornmeal! Pinned!