Muffins in a Jar

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Muffins are delicious, but sometimes you’re just not up to making them in the morning. And there’s no shame in that! We don’t judge you for whatever you were doing last night that made you so tired this morning. Or maybe you’re just a night owl and the idea of waking up early to measure ingredients is your personal idea of purgatory. If that’s the case, you might want to take a look at these muffins. You make the bulk of the recipe days or weeks or months in advance so that once you drag your sleepy self out of bed, you can have these out of the oven in about 25 minutes total.

A 1-liter glass bottle and bowl Bertolli brand...

Extra virgin olive oil. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


The recipe we’re using here uses olive oil as a base, but you can jar-ify any muffin recipe. Recipes that use melted butter or oil mean less work for you the morning of your baking, however, and that’s why we’ve chosen these quick and easy muffins.


Olive Oil and Cranberry Muffins (adapted from Giada DeLaurentis)


For jar:

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar


For assembly:

  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 4 tablespoons buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2/3 cup dried cranberries
  • Powdered sugar, for sifting


Clean and dry a quart-sized Mason jar or canning jar. Be sure that you’ve removed every possible bit of moisture from the jar, since we want the dried ingredients to stay dry while in there. Make sure the lid is as close to air-tight as possible.


Pour flour into jar. Shake jar slightly to even out flour level. Slowly pour sugar on top of flour. Pour salt and baking powder on top of sugar. Finally, top with the dried cranberries and close the jar. If you are making this as a gift (it makes an excellent house-warming gift, by the way), pour powdered sugar into a small ziplock baggie and place on top of cranberries before sealing the jar.


Print out the “Assembly” ingredients and the following instructions and tape them to the jar.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place paper liners in a 12-cup muffin tin or use a silicone muffin pan.

Beat the eggs, zest, buttermilk and oil in a large bowl. Pour contents of jar (except baggie of powdered sugar) into liquid mixture and stir until everything is blended. Pour batter into prepared muffin tin. Bake until golden and a tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out with moist crumbs attached, probably 20. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes. Sift powdered sugar over the muffins and serve.

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