Melomakarona muffins: Orange, walnut flavoured muffins with a melomakarona streusel topping
Melomakarona muffins are the easiest and most delicious way to upcycle any leftover melomakarona you may have. We know, leftover melomakarona sounds like an oxymoron, but it does happen! The great thing about this recipe is that you actually only need a few (7 should do it) leftover cookies to make these melomakarona muffins. It’s totally worth putting those cookies to the side because you can then enjoy the flavour of melomakarona for breakfast without the guilt of starting your day with cookies (Ha! Who are we kidding? There’s no guilt there!).
If you know us (get to know us), you know that our parents (get to know them too) instilled in us the value of waste nothing. It is this philosophy that drives us to make sure that everything is used to its fullest potential, and that has us getting creative in the kitchen. Although it is no struggle to keep eating melomakarona just as they are, we love using leftovers in original, fun and delicious ways. Over the years we have shared our incredible recipe for melomakarona cheesecake (a true fan favourite) and last year we were thrilled with the way that our melomakarona ice cream cake turned out! Both of those recipes require a fair bit of leftover melomakarona, and a bit of time. They are totally worth it, but, if you have fewer cookies to spare, and less time to devote in the kitchen, these melomakarona muffins are for you!
What are melomakarona?
Melomakarona are a traditional Greek cookie that are typically made during periods of lent because they are dairy and egg free. These are spiced cookies that once baked are dipped in a honey syrup. If you want to keep them purely vegan you can also dip them in a simple sugar syrup. Our recipe for melomakarona is pretty amazing (honestly, it’s that good!) and you can check it out here! Make sure you save a few of your cookies to make our melomakarona muffins!
Can you freeze melomakarona muffins?
Yes, like most muffins, these melomakarona muffins can be frozen after they are baked. Simply wrap them well with plastic wrap (individually) and then place in a freezer bag. To serve, just thaw at room temperature. You can freeze the muffins even with the streusel topping (although some of it might fall off with manipulation of wrapping and unwrapping.
Can you make melomakarona muffins without the melomakarona?
Ha! What a silly question! And the even sillier answer is that yes, actually, you can! The muffins themselves are amazing even without the addition of the chopped up melomakarona. The flavour from the honey, the orange juice, the spices and the walnuts is very much the flavour you will find in melomakarona. The muffins will be a success even without the coarsely chopped cookies in the batter.
The streusel topping also contains melomakarona. If you don’t have the cookies either omit the streusel topping or replace the melomakarona with oats. The flavour will be different, but still lovely.
How can you tell when your muffins are cooked?
We rely on the toothpick test! After the baking time indicated in the recipe we test our melomakarona muffins by inserting a toothpick into the center. If it comes out clean (or with a few dry crumbs attached to the toothpick) then the muffins are ready. If wet batter clings to the toothpick, they need a little longer in the oven. We also like to rotate our pan midway through the baking time.
Looking for more amazing muffin recipes? Check these out:
- fine grater or citrus zester
- Muffin pan
- Stand mixer or hand held mixer optional
- 12 - 14 paper muffin liners optional, but recommended
- 1 orange use the orange zest for streusel topping
- 1 egg, large
- ½ cup honey
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- ½ cup orange juice
- ½ cup chopped melomakarona cookies
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- 1½ cup all purpose flour
- 1½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp salt
For the melomakarona streusel topping
- 4 melomakarona cookies
- ¼ cup walnuts finely chopped
- 4 tbsp melted butter
- 2 tbsp flour
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp orange zest
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350 °F
- Wash your orange and use a fine grater or a citrus zester to grate 1 tablespoon orange zest. Set aside.1 orange
- Chop your orange into chunks and puree it (including what is left of the peel, but removing any seeds) in a blender or food processor. Ensure that there are no chunks of orange peel left.
- In the bowl of your mixer combine the pureed orange, egg and honey. Beat for 5 minutes using the paddle attachment of your mixer. Add in the oil and beat for an additional 2 minutes.1 egg, large, ½ cup honey, ½ cup vegetable oil
- In another bowl combine all of your dry ingredients and whisk together. Add half the dry ingredients to your mixer bowl and beat at low speed until combined. With the mixer speed on low, slowly pour in the orange juice and then add the remaining flour. Next stir in the chopped melomakarona and walnuts and mix until just combined.½ cup orange juice, ½ cup chopped melomakarona cookies, 1½ cup all purpose flour, 1½ tsp baking powder, ½ tsp baking soda, ½ tsp cinnamon, ½ tsp salt, ½ cup chopped walnuts
Prepare the melomakarona streusel topping
- Add your melomakarona to your blender or food processor and process until you have made a coarse crumb.4 melomakarona cookies
- Combine all of the topping ingredients together and use a fork to mix them well.¼ cup walnuts, 4 tbsp melted butter, 2 tbsp flour, 1 tbsp honey, 1 tbsp orange zest, ½ tsp cinnamon
Assemble your muffins
- Line the muffin tray with paper liners. Divide the muffin batter evenly, and then top with the melomakarona streusel topping, dividing that evenly as well.
- Bake in middle rack of your oven for 18 - 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Allow to cool, and enjoy!