Tuscan Lemon Muffins

Tuscan Lemon Muffins. The name alone evokes images of green hills, blue sky and the taste of Italy. But for someone like me, a chronic sufferer of Meniere’s Disease who can’t travel the US, let alone Europe, it’s far more. These muffins transport my tastebuds thousands of miles, to a place I cannot otherwise go. They are a feast for the senses. Light and airy, thanks to the Ricotta cheese, flecked with grated lemon zest, with the crunch of raw sugar on top. Each moist, subtly sweet bite is heightened with the flavor of extra virgin olive oil. If I could choose just one muffin to eat the rest of my life, this would be it. Happy weekend, everyone!!

Recipe adapted from Cooking Light magazine.

Yields 12 muffins.

SODIUM CONTENT: 20 mg per muffin


1 3/4 c. flour
3/4 c. sugar
2 1/2 t. Featherweight sodium free baking powder
3/4 c. ricotta cheese (look for the lowest sodium possible)
1/2 c. water
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
1 large egg
1 T. grated lemon rind (rind of 1 lemon)
2 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice (juice of 1 lemon)
Cooking spray
2 T. turbinado sugar


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Get out a standard size 12-muffin tin and line with paper cups; set aside.

Measure the flour, sugar and baking powder into a large mixing bowl and whisk well to combine.  In another mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, water, olive oil, egg, lemon rind and juice; whisk well. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture, stirring just until moist.

Spray the muffin cups lightly with vegetable spray, then divide batter evenly among muffin cups. Sprinkle turbinado sugar over batter. Place pan on middle rack in oven and bake 16 minutes. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from tin and serve.

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12 Responses to Tuscan Lemon Muffins

  1. This is (without a doubt) the most interesting photograph of a muffin I have ever seen! So cool, Dishy – you are wicked creative!
    And I hope your family has a wonderful weekend as well!

  2. YUMMMMMM! Can’t wait to make these gems, Christy! And I love your description and text here!

  3. Christy says:

    Thanks so much Inky! But as pretty as these muffins are, they TASTE even better!

    Thanks much too Cindy — hope you enjoy them as much as we did (and I ate 4 of the dozen before NOON) health food, I tells ya. XO

  4. feed me that immediately. seriously. ant asked me to make these…how can i say no? damn you for adding to my list of chores this week. and i still have something else of yours to make–a crumb cake or something–that ant was dying to taste. i’m the worst wife ever…

  5. Diane says:

    Good luck with the contest, You deserve to win with all of your efforts!

  6. Christy says:

    Sorry Nat!! (ps: you will love them!)

    Thanks so much, Diane! I am waiting with nervous anticipation for the announcement – by 3 pm EST today!! Trying so hard not to get my hopes up, but I am ALL AFLUTTERRRRR!! AHHHHHH!!

  7. Regina says:

    yummy im goin to make them for my mom on mothers day!

  8. glug glug glug. That was the sound of me choking on my own drool. I looooooove lemon. I loooooove sugar. I loooooove photographing muffins out on the town.

  9. Pingback: On Baking and Boys (Recipe: Tuscan Lemon Muffins) | Food & Life

  10. Christy says:

    Regina — these are perfect for Mother’s Day; please give your mom an extra big squeezy hug from us all!! XO

    Katie – you made me laugh! The idea of muffin liberation.. The backyard photos did come out nicely though — when the sun shines in Maine, it’s pure heaven. XO

  11. Jen K says:

    We have made these dozens of times, converted the recipe for a poppyseed cake that is better then even my grandmothers (double batch in a 9×13). We have added this recipe to our handwritten recipe book (reserved for only the most worthy of recipes). Thank you for sharing!

  12. Danielle says:

    I made a double recipe of these which yielded more than 50 mini-muffins. They were delicious and very well received. I can tell because they all disappeared in a couple of hours. Thanks!

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