These Rhubarb Pecan Muffins are a must for spring baking! Tender cinnamon spiced muffins are packed with chunks of tart rhubarb and pecans. Sprinkle them with a crunchy cinnamon sugar topping for a delicious addition to your next breakfast or brunch!
This recipe and photos have been updated since the original post on 5/28/14
Have you been lucky enough to find rhubarb in your grocery store this spring? Spring and rhubarb are synonymous with each other.
Rhubarb season is short and only lasts a couple of months, so get some while you can. There’s many ways to use rhubarb, but baking tends to be the most popular.
Strawberry rhubarb is probably the most classic combination. I can’t resist a slice of strawberry rhubarb pie in the spring.
I love making my Easy Strawberry Rhubarb Jam with Vanilla and Cardamom. It’s perfect spread on toast or you could even spread it onto these rhubarb pecan muffins.
What is Rhubarb?
If you’ve never had rhubarb you might be surprised to find out that it’s actually a vegetable. The edible part of the plant is the stalk, which is bright pink/red in color.
It’s extremely sour and often cooked with lots of sugar added to it. When cooked it’s flavor is still tart, but more like a green apple tart. It has a slight hint of celery flavor as well.
Rhubarb is most commonly paired with strawberries. They both come into season at the same times and the sweetness of the strawberries helps to balance out the tart flavor of the rhubarb.
Rhubarb is primarily used in sweet recipes such as pies, cookies, muffins, and other desserts. However, you can also find it used in cocktails and savory recipes as well.
Ingredients For Rhubarb Pecan Muffins
- White Whole Wheat Flour – I prefer to use whole grain flours in muffins for the nutritional content as well as the nutty flavor. White whole wheat flour is a great way to incorporate whole grains while providing you with a less intense wheat taste and lighter texture. I also recommend whole wheat pastry flour for muffins if you can find it.
- Cinnamon – It’s warm, sweet, and a must for these muffins.
- Ginger – Ginger adds a subtle fresh and spicy flavor
- Nutmeg – I always recommend grating fresh nutmeg if possible. The flavor is superior to pre-ground.
- Baking Powder and Baking Soda – They are both leaveners and will help the muffins rise. Be sure to check them before using to make sure they haven’t expired.
- Plain Greek Yogurt – Yogurt adds moisture and a tartness to the muffins, similar to what buttermilk does.
- Avocado Oil or Melted Coconut Oil – Both of these oils are great for baking. Canola and vegetable oil could also be used, as well as olive oil.
- Maple Syrup – I prefer to use maple syrup as the sweetener in my muffins. However, you can substitute it with honey or brown sugar.
- Vanilla Bean Paste – If you’ve never baked with vanilla bean paste give it a try! The vanilla flavor is more intense and noticeable in whatever you add it to.
- Pecans – Walnuts would be a good substitution. Be sure to toast your nuts for the best flavor.
- Rhubarb – When picking out rhubarb at the grocery store, look for stalks that are crisp, firm, and tender. Avoid wilted, woody, or extra thick stalks. The color of the stalks won’t have much impact on the flavor.
How To Make Rhubarb Pecan Muffins
Preheat your oven and line a standard 12 cup muffin pan with liners. I recommend parchment paper liners because you won’t risk having the muffins stick to the paper.
In a large bowl whisk together the dry ingredients along with the pecans and rhubarb. Mixing the nuts and rhubarb into the dry will get them coated in flour and help them to stay suspended throughout thee muffins rather than sinking to the bottom when they bake.
In a separate bowl whisk together the wet ingredients. If you choose to use melted coconut oil in this recipe, make sure the other wet ingredients are at room temperature. If they aren’t the coconut oil will solidify when it come in contact with the cold ingredients and won’t be evenly distributed in the batter.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir together until you can no longer see streaks of flour. Divide the batter evenly into the muffin pan. You should have 12-14 muffins.
Sprinkle the tops with cinnamon sugar and bake on the middle rack of the oven. The muffins will need between 15-18 minutes to bake, but test them by inserting a toothpick into the center of a muffin. If it comes out clean or with a few crumbs attached then they are ready.
Cool the muffins on a wire rack for a few minutes before serving. Cool them completely if you plan to freeze them.
Storage And Freezing
Storing Leftover Muffins – The muffins can be kept in a single layer in an airtight container on the countertop for 1-2 days. My personal preference is to eat the muffins fresh and freeze the leftovers.
Freezing Muffins – Let the leftover muffins cool completely. Place them in a single layer in an airtight, freezer safe container or freezer bag. If using a freezer bag I recommend doubling up on the bags to ensure the muffins don’t come in contact with air and get freezer burn. Be sure to press the air out of the bags as well.
What To Serve With Muffins
When I bake a batch of muffins I like to serve them with something savory, which usually ends up being some type of egg dish. Below are a few of my favorites.
More Delicious Muffin Recipes
Did you make these Rhubarb Pecan Muffins? I’d love if you’d leave a recipe rating and review below.
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/3 cup toasted pecans, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups diced rhubarb
- 1 cup plain non fat Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup avocado oil or melted coconut oil
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Cinnamon Sugar Topping
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 400° F. and line a muffin pan with parchment paper liners or spray the pan with cooking spray.
- In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, pecans, and rhubarb
- In a second bowl whisk together the yogurt, maple syrup, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and fold together until incorporated and you no longer see streaks of flour.
- Divide the batter evenly into the muffin cups and top with some of the cinnamon sugar. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool the muffins on a wire rack.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 191Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 32mgSodium: 167mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 3gSugar: 9gProtein: 6g
Nutritional information is an estimate. Please consult a registered dietician for the most accurate nutritional information.