These delicious vanilla muffins are so moist, light, and fluffy that they will practically melt in your mouth! This easy vanilla muffins recipe uses butter and oil to ensure they stay moist days after baking them. The combination of sugar and pure vanilla extract gives it a sweet, natural flavor that is not overwhelming and that you can enjoy any time of day. By following the detailed steps in this simple muffin recipe, you will have a delectable treat the whole family will love!
🌟 Why this is the best recipe
- It is a very easy vanilla muffin recipe - No fancy ingredients or equipment are required to make these simple vanilla muffins. You likely already have everything you need at home. It also does not take much time. With just eight minutes of prep time and 22 minutes of baking time, these delicious muffins are ready to eat in just half an hour!
- It is the most delicious - I use the highest quality ingredients to give these muffins the most delightful sweet vanilla flavor and texture.
- It is versatile - This is the perfect base muffin recipe for other delicious muffins. At the end of this recipe, I provide several topping and filling variations to customize the muffins to your unique taste.
- It is great for batch cooking - These vanilla muffins are easy to store and perfect for making in advance.
- It is the best vanilla muffin recipe you will try - Other muffin recipes use only oil or butter. However, this is a vanilla muffin recipe with oil and butter combined to make the most moist and fluffy vanilla muffins. I also use a simple baking hack that makes them so spongy and soft that they will almost melt in your mouth!
📝 Ingredient notes
- Sugar - I use regular white granulated sugar to sweeten the batter. See my sugar guide to learn more about the different types of sugar and how to use them in baking.
- Butter - Always use unsalted butter when baking to control the amount of salt in the recipe completely. The butter needs to be at room temperature. Do not use melted butter.
- Oil - Oil helps to keep the muffins moist and fluffy. Use a neutral oil without flavor, such as vegetable oil, for the best results.
- Egg - The egg needs to be at room temperature to emulsify properly.
- Vanilla extract - For the best results and taste, use pure vanilla extract. Avoid using imitation vanilla extract or any artificial vanilla. You can also use vanilla bean paste or make a delicious DIY vanilla extract at home!
- Flour - I use all purpose flour to help give these vanilla muffins structure. For more information about the different types of flour in baking, be sure to check out my flour guide.
- Baking powder - Baking powder helps the muffins rise. You can use a baking powder substitute if you do not have baking powder on hand.
- Salt - Salt is an essential ingredient that helps balance the sweetness. Do not skip it!
- Milk - Whole milk with high-fat content will give the muffins the best taste and texture. I use whole milk with 3% fat in all of my recipes. Like the butter and egg, the milk must be at room temperature to emulsify properly.
- Baking soda and vinegar - A teaspoon of baking soda and white vinegar intensifies the sponginess of the muffins and makes them incredibly moist! Do not skip these ingredients.
🛒 You’ll find detailed measurements for all ingredients in the printable version of the Recipe Card at the bottom of this post
👩🍳 How to make this recipe
1. How to make vanilla muffins
- First, preheat oven to 175C / 347F (no fan). Meanwhile, lightly grease your muffin tin with butter or prepare it with muffin liners.
- Add the room-temperature butter and sugar to a large bowl and use an electric hand mixer to whip for a few minutes until light and fluffy. Slowly mix in each egg one at a time. Then, add the vanilla extract.
- While continuing to whip the mixture, slowly pour in the oil. Then, slowly pour in the room-temperature milk. Continue to whip the batter.
- Sift in the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, and salt). Using a rubber spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the batter until just combined.
- Combine the vinegar and baking soda in a small bowl. It will be very bubbly. Immediately fold the mixture into the muffin batter only until just combined.
💡 Top Tip: Whisk the dry ingredients together in a small bowl before adding them to the batter. Doing so will ensure the even distribution of each of its components.
2. How to bake
- Pour the muffin batter in equal amounts into the muffin tin cavities until they are about ¾ full.
- Bake for approximately 20-22 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick in the center, and it comes out clean. Refrain from overbaking, as they can result in dry muffins.
- Serve fresh, or store the muffins in an airtight container for 2-3 days.
💡 Top Tip: Use a small cookie scoop or a piping bag for a mess-free and even distribution of the batter in the muffin tin cavities.
✨ Flavor variations and substitutions
The best part about this easy muffin recipe is its versatility! Customize your muffins to your taste by trying one of these many flavor variations:
- Chocolate muffins – Mix cocoa powder in the batter for decadent chocolate muffins as I do in my brownie muffins.
- With chocolate chips - For another layer of chocolate, add some chocolate chips to the batter for delicious vanilla chocolate chip muffins. You can also use butterscotch chocolate chips.
- With fruit – Add in fresh blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, mashed bananas, or cranberries for fruity muffins that are great for breakfast.
- With citrus zest – Add some citrusy flavor to the muffins by mixing in orange or lemon zest.
- With nuts – Add some texture to the muffins by mixing in crushed pecans or walnuts.
- With spices – Enhance and warm up the flavor with a dash of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, pumpkin pie spice, or apple pie spice. See my cinnamon streusel muffin recipe for more inspiration!
- With toppings – Add a sweet crunch by sprinkling on streusel crumbs or decorating sugar. You can also top it with vanilla glaze (or a chocolate glaze, as I do in my chocolate donuts)!
- With filling - Fill the center of your muffins with pastry cream or my homemade lemon curd.
- With another extract – Swap out the vanilla extract with orange or almond extract for a different flavor profile and aroma.
- Egg-free muffins – Have an egg allergy? Try one of these many egg substitutions.
- Gluten-free muffins – You can easily make this recipe gluten-free by using one of the gluten-free flours in my flour guide.
🎓 Expert tips
- The butter, eggs, and milk must always be at room temperature. Otherwise, the batter will break.
- If you do not have much time to wait for the eggs to come to room temperature, set them in a bowl of warm water for five minutes.
- To avoid overmixing the batter, only use the equipment noted in the instructions (e.g., only use the electric hand mixer for whipping the wet ingredients and a rubber spatula to fold the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients).
- When whipping in the eggs, oil, and milk, do so very slowly. Pouring them in too quickly can break the batter and cause it to curdle.
- When checking for doneness, it is best to focus on texture versus the amount of time in the oven. The muffins are done if a toothpick comes out clean after you insert it into the center. Overbaking the muffins will result in a dry texture.
🥣 Equipment notes
Baking is a science and requires precision and accuracy for the best outcome. Always use a digital scale for the most accurate and consistent baking results. Likewise, a digital oven thermometer will ensure that your muffins are baked at the proper temperature, as some oven models can vary.
You will need an electric hand mixer to whip together the sugar with the wet ingredients. A rubber spatula is necessary to gently fold the wet and dry ingredients together without accidentally overmixing them. Once you prepare the batter, you will need a 12-cup muffin pan for baking.
These muffins are best when served the same day they are made. However, you can store leftovers at room temperature in an airtight container or under a cake stand with a lid for 2-3 days. You can also store them in the refrigerator for up to seven days, but make sure they have completely cooled first. See my guide on how to store muffins for more tips on keeping them fresh.
To freeze, make sure the muffins are completely cool. Then, individually wrap them in plastic food wrap and aluminum foil. Then, place the wrapped muffins in a plastic freezer bag and freeze them for up to three months. Let the frozen muffins thoroughly defrost at room temperature before eating.
Place the muffins in an airtight container or plastic bag in a single layer lined with paper towels on all sides to soak up the excess moisture.
🧁 More Breakfast Recipes
US customary cup measurement is an indicative figure only. Measure the ingredients with a digital scale by weight (gram). Baking is art but also science which requires precision and accuracy.
- Prepare your muffin tin with muffin liners and pre-heat oven to 175C / 347F (no fan).
- In a large bowl, cream room temperature butter and sugar with an electric hand mixer for a few minutes until light and fluffy, then whip in the egg one by one slowly, then the vanilla extract.
- After, slowly pour in the oil while continuing to whip the mixture. Then, in the same way, slowly pour in the room temperature milk and keep whipping the batter.
- Sift in the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, salt) then switch to a rubber spatula and fold the dry ingredients in. Do not overmix at this point.
- In a small bowl, mix vinegar with baking soda. It will be super bubbly. Immediately fold the vinegar mixture into the muffin batter just until combined.
- Pipe or spoon and muffin batter into the cavities of your muffin tin equally until about ¾ full each.
- Bake the muffins for about 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Do not overbake the muffins as they can dry out.
- Serve the muffins fresh or store them at room temperature for 2-3 days in an air-tight container.
- All ingredients must be at room temperature to properly emulsify: eggs, butter, and milk.
- The baking soda and vinegar mixture is my signature baking hack to make muffins and cupcakes super moist and fluffy, do not skip it.
- You might be able to make more or less muffins with this recipe, depending on the size of the muffin cavities.
- A digital scale is required for a consistent, happy baking experience.
- Do not overwork the muffin batter. After the wet ingredients are whipped up, switch to a rubber spatula to incorporate the dry ingredients.
- Always preheat your oven and consider using a digital oven thermometer for the best results.
- When whipping in the eggs, oil, and milk, make sure they are all at room temperature. Otherwise, the batter will break.
- Also, make sure that you whip in the eggs, oil, and milk slowly. Do not pour these wet ingredients in all at once as that can also break the muffin batter and it can curdle.
- Baking these muffins takes 22 minutes in my oven however focus on the texture, not the time. Apply the toothpick check (it should come out clean) to avoid overbaked muffins. However, do not overbake them, as that would result in a dry texture.