Brown Butter Sour Cream Spice Muffins

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A celebration of your favorite spices!


  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 12 pecan halves, for garnish
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons turbinado sugar or other coarse sugar, for garnish


  1. Place the butter in a medium saucepan or skillet. Cook over medium heat until the butter melts and begins to foam.
  2. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until brown specks begin to form at the bottom of the pan and the butter has a nutty aroma. Set aside to cool slightly.
  3. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line or grease 12 standard muffin cups.
  4. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, ginger, cardamom, and allspice. Stir in the sugar and brown sugar. Make a well in the center of the mixture.
  5. Place the eggs in a small bowl and beat lightly. Add the cooled butter, sour cream, and vanilla, and stir to combine.
  6. Add the egg mixture to the well in the flour mixture. Stir just until combined.
  7. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan, using about 3 tablespoons of batter to fill each cup about 3/4 full. (I like to use a 3-tablespoon scoop for easy portioning.)
  8. Top each muffin with a pecan half and sprinkle with a pinch of turbinado sugar.
  9. Bake 14 to 16 minutes, or until a pick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.


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