These irresistible Pistachio Muffins are the perfect balance of nuttiness and sweetness which makes them a great choice for breakfast, brunch, or any time you're craving a delicious treat.
Made with basic pantry ingredients plus decadent pistachios, these muffins are simple to prepare. In just 30 minutes, you'll have warm homemade Pistachio muffins ready to serve!
If you love bakery style pistachio muffins, then you love these made from scratch muffins. You get the same fluffy, light crumb and the crunchy, sweet baked-on topping. But what you don't have is the artificial sugars, colors and flavors.
These Pistachio Muffins without pudding mix use lots of real pistachio nuts for a unique nutty flavor and tender crumb. Making these muffins from scratch doesn’t take any longer and you know exactly what you’re giving to your family.
You’ll love this recipe because:-
- Just like my Nutella Muffin recipe, this is a really easy recipe to make which is perfect if you’re a beginner baker or if you’re short on time.
- The subtle, nutty flavor of pistachio nuts is perfectly complemented with almond and vanilla extract offering a unique twist on the well known classic muffins.
- Pistachio nuts are loaded with nutrients and have been touted as an antioxidant powerhouse.
- The oils in the nuts keep these Pistachio Muffins soft and tender longer than regular muffins. That means that these muffins are still good the day after baking.
For complete ingredient quantities and full instructions, please scroll to the printable recipe card bottom of the page.
- Cake flour - you’ll find this in the baking aisle of the supermarket. Cake flour has a lower protein content and is milled more finely than all purpose flour making your muffins soft and tender.
- Granulated sugar - just white granulated sugar is fine.
- Baking powder - remember to check that you baking powder is fresh by putting ½ teaspoon into a glass of hot water. If it’s fresh, the baking powder will bubble in the hot water.
- Vegetable oil - use any vegetable oil that you have. You can also use sunflower or canola oil.
- Milk - Use whatever milk you prefer to use. Full fat will give best results.
- Pistachio nuts - this is the key ingredient and it isn’t inexpensive so buy the freshest and best you can. In this recipe, the nuts aren’t toasted but you can toast them if you prefer. Avoid the salted pistachio nuts.
- Eggs - I use large or extra large eggs.
- Almond extract - this is optional though I highly recommend adding it. Some people don’t like almond extract and if that’s you, leave it out - the recipe will still be delicious. I think it complements the pistachios perfectly.
- Vanilla extract - easily available at the supermarket but make certain to buy extract and not essence. Real vanilla extract is wonderful in this recipe. If you omit the almond extract, be sure to double the vanilla extract.
- Salt - use fine salt so that it disperses easily through the muffin batter.
See recipe card for quantities.
Preheat the oven to 400°F/200°C and line a 12 hole muffin pan with muffin liners.
Using a small food processor, process the pistachio nuts until finely ground but still with a few larger pieces.
In a large bowl, whisk together finely chopped pistachio nuts, cake flour, granulated sugar, baking powder and salt.
In a jug, whisk together milk, vegetable oil, eggs, almond extract and vanilla extract.
Combine wet and dry ingredients until just mixed. Divide the batter evenly amongst the muffin cups. Sprinkle chopped pistachio nuts and sugar on top.
Bake in the preheated oven until well risen and cooked through. Cool for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
Hint: Be sure to combine the dry ingredients thoroughly so that when the wet ingredients are added you don't have to mix too much. It's ok if the batter is a bit lumpy.
- Cake Flour - use all purpose plain flour instead
- Cake Flour + Baking Powder - substitute with equal quantities of self rising flour if that’s all you have. Remember to omit the baking powder if you use this substitution!
- Milk - I prefer whole dairy milk however you can use a plant based milk or low fat dairy milk if that’s what you have.
- Pistachio and White Chocolate Chip Muffins - add ½ cup of white chocolate chips to the batter then bake as in the recipe.
- Sicilian - include the finely grated zest of a lemon for a distinct Sicilian flavor.
- Spicy - omit the almond extract and add 1 teaspoon of ground ginger for a spicy variation.
To make this recipe, you'll require a muffin pan with 12 cups. Muffin pans aren’t expensive and are readily available and you'll find yourself using it frequently because this recipe is worth making more than once!
I prefer to use muffin cups or paper liners, which can be easily found in grocery stores. These paper liners make it effortless to take the muffins out of the pan to cool. Additionally, cleaning up is so easy!
Pistachio Muffins, like Nutella Muffins, are best on the day of baking. However, the oils in the pistachio nuts means that these muffins remain more moist than most muffin recipes.
All muffins freeze really well. I like to wrap each individually in plastic wrap to guard against freezer burn and then place the wrapped muffins in a sealed container. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw on the counter or zap for a few seconds in the microwave for warm, fresh tasting Pistachio Muffins.
This recipe for Pistachio Muffins uses chopped pistachios nuts. The easiest way to do this is in a small food processor. Process until most of the nuts are chopped finely but there are still some larger chunks of nuts.
If you don’t have a food process, chop the pistachio nuts finely with a sharp knife. The nuts may not be as fine as with a food process but the recipe will still work.
To achieve a light and fluffy texture in your muffins, it's essential to follow the golden rule of not overmixing the batter. Once the ingredients are combined and there are no streaks of dry ingredients, stop mixing. Overmixed batter will lead to dense, tough muffins.
After baking Pistachio Muffins, let them cool for a few minutes before carefully removing them from the pan and placing them on a rack. Allowing them to cool in the pan can lead to overcooking as the hot pan continues to cook the muffins.
Many green Pistachio Muffins include instant pistachio pudding mix or green food coloring in the muffin batter. However this recipe for Pistachio Muffins uses real pistachio nuts which vary in color ranging from green to brownish so they won’t be artificially green.
Pistachio Muffins taste lightly sweet and nutty. This recipe uses the extra flavor of almond and vanilla extract to enhance the subtle, mild pistachio taste.
Muffin batter can vary in consistency depending on the recipe. Generally muffin batter should be thicker than pancake batter but not as thick as cookie dough.
Pistachio Muffins are ideal for breakfast or brunch served with a delicious Italian hot chocolate. But these muffins are also perfect when you’re craving a sweet treat after a light lunch of frittata with ham and cheese or pastina chicken soup.
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Pistachio Muffins Recipe
- 2 cups cake flour (260 grams)
- ¾ cup granulated sugar (150 grams)
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ cup vegetable oil (120 mls)
- ⅔ cup whole milk (160 mls)
- 1 ¼ cups pistachio nuts (165 grams)
- 2 eggs at room temperature
- ½ - 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon salt
- extra chopped pistachio nuts and coarse sugar for topping
- Preheat oven to 400°F/200°C.
- Line 12 hole muffin pan with muffins liners.
- Using a small food processor, process the pistachio nuts until finely ground but still with a few larger pieces. If you don’t have a food processor, use a sharp knife to chop the pistachio nuts as finely as possible.
- In a large bowl, whisk together finely chopped pistachio nuts, cake flour, granulated sugar, baking powder and salt.
- In a jug, whisk together milk, vegetable oil, eggs, almond extract and vanilla extract.
- Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir with a whisk until no dry ingredients can be seen. Don’t overbeat.
- Divide the batter evenly amongst the muffin cups.
- Sprinkle the tops with extra chopped pistachio nuts and sugar.
- Bake immediately for 18-20 minutes until well risen, golden and cooked through. You can stick a skewer into the muffins to check if they are cooked - if the skewer comes out clean, they’re done.
- Remove from the oven and cool for 2-3 minutes in the muffin pan before removing to a wire rack to cool.
- Chopped the pistachio nuts in a food processor until fine but with some larger chunks.
- If you don’t have a food processor, use a knife to chop the nuts as finely as you can.
- Don't over mix the batter. A bit lumpy is fine.
- When baked remove from the muffin pan to cool on a wire rack.
Nutritional Information Per Serving
Nutritional information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. For accurate results, it is recommended that the nutritional information be calculated based on the ingredients and brands you use.
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