Monday, December 1, 2014

Orange & Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

Fresh citrus combined with chocolate chips in a soaked oatmeal whole grain muffin.

Do you associate oranges with the holidays? 

I do. We got tangerines in the toes of our stockings even before I'd read of Almanzo Wilder having one in his in the Little House series (Amazon affiliate link). Unwrapping a slice of orange-flavored chocolate from the orange shaped ball is something we look forward to each year. [However, I really did not care for scooping up the sticky Mandarin Chocolate Sherbet at Baskin Robbins. I don't recall anyone other than my mom eating it, but boy was that stuff gooey, and not in a good way, when it had been sitting in the case a while.]

Now that I've got kids in activities I associate oranges with fundraisers, which in my experience result in cases of citrus appearing in my house between Thanksgiving and Christmas. [Do you know how messy it is to deliver a case of fruit in a wheelchair when the sidewalks are slushy? I do, and it's as messy as you'd imagine.] We're luckier than Almanzo, however, and can enjoy fresh citrus year round. I admit that once we've eaten the Band Fruit Fundraiser order that arrives next weekend, I'll have had my fill of citrus for many months.

These muffins came about after my success with Orange Oatmeal Secret Ingredient Chocolate Chip Cookies. I wanted to combine those flavors into a muffin. I had tangelos on hand, but oranges or tangerines will all work here. Remember when making a soaked oat muffin to start them at least an hour in advance (or up to 5 days, if you'd care to refrigerate the buttermilk/oat combo.

If you'd like other orange recipes, including last year's round up of 156 Recipes featuring Fall and Winter Fruits, please see my Orange Recipes Collection, part of my Visual Recipe Index.

Orange & Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

1 cup oats
1 cup buttermilk
1 egg
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
½ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup brown sugar
zest from 1 tangelo or orange
flesh from 1 tangelo or orange (I pureed my peeled tangelo in my Vitamix, but finely chopped is OK)
1 cup (4 ounces by weight) whole wheat flour + 1 Tablespoon
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt (I use kosher)
¼ cup chocolate chips (mini works best if you have 'em)

Combine oats and buttermilk in a large bowl and set aside for at least an hour (or combine in a lidded container and refrigerate for up to 5 days).  When you're ready to bake, preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and spray a 12 hole muffin tin with oil spray or line with paper liners.  Add the rest of the wet ingredients (egg though tangelo) to the oats and thoroughly combine.  Dump dry (flour through salt) ingredients on top of wet mixture and gently combine, adding the chocolate chips towards the end of mixing. Scoop** into a prepared muffin pan and bake for 16 to 18 minutes, until light brown. Cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then transfer to a rack to finish cooling. Good warm or cold.

**My scoop holds 3 Tablespoons (1 ½ ounces) by volume, though the muffin batter is mounded in the scoop so I'm pretty sure I'm putting a good 3 ½ to 4 Tablespoons into each muffin well.  The muffin wells in my regular muffin pans each hold 3 ounces by volume.

This post is shared on Tasty Tuesdays


  1. Muffin season is upon us, which makes me happy since it's gives me another reason to bust out my glorious muffin pan. Go Polish Pottery.

    We get an orange every year in our stockings. It's tradition now.

    1. Meghan,
      Still, I remain envious of your Polish Pottery muffin pan. I'd probably break it if I had one, but I'd love to take the photos. I wonder if I can cram mini muffins into my Polish Pottery deviled egg plate for photos?
      That would be weird.