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Vanilla Berry Breakfast Muffins

Vanilla Bean Berry Breakfast Muffins:

You can find some pretty awesome things at TJ Maxx or Home Goods…

They have a beautiful selection of dishware, and I’ve even seen Artisana coconut butter on their shelves for as low a $6 a jar! A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon another great find at the Home Goods in Georgetown:

vanilla bean paste

Pure vanilla bean paste—usually retailing for around $13.99—well within its expiration date and yet on sale for the shockingly low price of just five dollars.

Whenever you bring home a new toy, the first thing you want to do is play, right??

Healthy Vanilla Berry Breakfast Muffins:

That was me with the vanilla bean paste. I threw my keys down and immediately set to work, simultaneously making Homemade Vanilla Bean Ice Cream and the beautiful blackberry muffin recipe you will find below. It’s blackberry season, so now is a great time to indulge.

I know this recipe won’t get anywhere near as popular of a reception as a chocolate or peanut butter recipe (usually the most-popular-flavored recipes I post), but it’s definitely just as blogworthy! And if you can’t find vanilla bean paste at Marshalls, TJ Maxx, or Home Goods (or Williams Sonoma, Whole Foods, or online at full price), you can substitute pure vanilla extract. The flavor will change, but both options are fine.

Blackberry Muffins

Vanilla Bean Blackberry Muffins

(adapted from healthy blueberry muffins)

  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar or white vinegar (15g)
  • 1 cup milk of choice (240g)
  • 2 tsp vanilla bean paste (pure vanilla extract will also work)
  • 3 tbsp vegetable or coconut oil (30g)
  • 2 cups spelt, white, or Bob’s gf flour flour (250g)
  • 1/2 tsp plus 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar of choice or xylitol (100g)
  • only if using Bob’s, add 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • pinch pure stevia, or 2 more tbsp sugar of choice
    • 1 cup fresh blackberries, crushed (150g)
    • optional 1/2 cup shredded coconut

    Preheat your oven to 350 F. Line a muffin tin with muffin liners. In a mixing bowl, whisk together first 4 ingredients. In a separate bowl, stir together all other ingredients except blackberries. Pour wet into dry, stir until just evenly mixed, then add the blackberries. Gently stir, but only until evenly mixed. It’s very important to not over-stir. Pour batter evenly into the muffin tins and bake 19 minutes. Muffins should look domed when you take them out of the oven. Allow to sit 10 minutes before removing from the tins (and 20-30 minutes if you wish to remove the liners without sticking). Optional, ice muffins with Healthy Glaze Icing. Makes 14-15 muffins.

    View Blackberry Muffins Nutrition Facts


    Blackberry Vanilla Muffins

    Question of the Day:

    Do you ever shop at Home Goods or TJ Maxx or Marshalls?

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    Published on September 21, 2014

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    1. Judy says

      I shop at Marshalls and TJMaxx all the time. I am always finding wonderful gourmet foods there. I love the Tazo Chocolate rounds that I chop up and make the best hot chocolate on the planet. I also find Charmbars, a protein bar, gluten free with no GMOs , etc. You never know what you will find, but perhaps that is part of the fun of it.

    2. Rachel says

      Ha, I go to those stores solely to find vanilla bean paste. Generally, when my dad or I find it we buy every jar on the shelves. That and dutch processed cocoa powder.

    3. EVA says

      As much as I salivate at the thought of chocolate or peanut butter, vanilla is actually my favorite flavor. Berry things, ehhh….but these look so damn good that I might have to take the plunge! I’m sure the delicious vanilla will cancel out the sweetness of the berries for a perfect balance.

      I used to get all of my clothing from TJ Maxx and Marshall’s, but I feel like they’ve went WAY downhill in the past year and a half. Such a shame; I finally have my own apartment and NOW HomeGoods decides to suck?!

    4. Malin says

      These seam amazing!! I will need to make them soon..

      I have a wish about a blog post that I would love to see. I find it very interesting how you come up with your recipes. What do you change in non-vegan recipes to make them vegan?

      I sometimes change the applesauce in your recipes for oil for example. Is that ok to do? What does the apple cider vinager bring to the recipe? Is it to get the acidness for the baking soda to work, or is it for some other reason? How do you chose what kind of sweetener to use for what recipe?


    5. Lauren | Kale and Cookie Dough says

      Those muffins look delicious! I am going to have to give that recipe a try. I shop at Marshalls and TJ Maxx from time to time and have found some great finds there and at home goods. I got two cute dogs beds for under $20, I’ve also found some unique food and kitchen items. But I always find that they are hit or miss!

    6. Joanna says

      I love TJ Maxx! Or TK Maxx- in the UK. When I was in the Usa about ago, surely I had to ‘visit’ that shop…! Ma other half is very impatient when I start browsing…yup, take a while! ooops! P.S. Delicious baking over there!

    7. Tasha says

      I would choose these over peanut butter or chocolate any day! (Peanut butter really isn’t much of a thing here in the UK, we have all different kinds but it’s definitely not as popular as in the US)

      I’m planning to stop at the shops on the way home from work to pick up some blackberries! I’d love to pick some but, alas, all my nearest bushes are on busy roads with lots of traffic and I don’t fancy petroleum infused berries!

    8. Jules @ WolfItDown says

      Ah, here in the UK it’s called TK Maxx, I remember being confused by that when I went to New Jersey in March and saw they had awapped the K with a J, I wonder why that is? 😛

      Anywhoooo I love those shops and sometimes they do have really fancy foods for cheap there! I came across some amazing gluten-free funky coloured pasta there not long ago as well.
      I have yet to get to experiment with vanilla bean paste, but this recipe definitely looks like a legit excuse, delicious 😀 And those pictures – wonderful! x

    9. margo says

      I am obsessed with TJ Maxx, Marshall’s and Home Goods but unfortunately I’ve lived abroad for the last 8 years and only had access to TK Maxx for the couple of years that I lived in London. My annual trip back to the States always includes several stops at those stores. Amazing what you can find and at such good prices.

      Great blog! Thanks 🙂

    10. Pam says

      These look very yummy! Yes, I shop at Home Goods all the time. I love that store! I have bought everything from kitchen items: glass jars, towels, mugs, organic coconut sugar and cacao nibs to furniture items: large wall mirror, entertainment console table, and large floor rug. Love the selections and prices!

    11. Lauren says

      HomeGoods is one of the best resources for fun inexpensive food finds. I cannot believe how much gluten free flour I’ve bought there at a fraction of the price. Now to see if mine has vanilla bean paste 🙂

    12. Lisa H says

      I absolutely LOVE vanilla bean paste and substitute it anywhere vanilla extract is called for in a recipe. One of these days I am going to make my own, as my husband brought back vanilla beans from Madagascar. Maybe you can come up with a recipe for us?

    13. Teresa says

      These look amazing; thanks so much for this recipe. I love berry muffins. These will definitely go on my list of things to make soon. I’ll probably use a bit less sugar because with most of my fruit muffins I use 1/4 cup brown sugar and they are plenty sweet.

    14. Amy says

      Where I live in Canada we don’t have Marshalls or TJ MAXX but we have Winners. One day I found a bag of chia seeds there for $9!!!! The gourmet section is now my favorite aside from the active wear. Sometimes it takes a bit of searching but there are usually some awesome deals there.

      This recipe looks amazing. I might sub blueberries for the blackberries since I don’t have any right now. 🙂

    15. Heather @ Shards of Lavender says

      I bought that exact vanilla bean paste on Amazon a few weeks ago for more than double the price you paid… I really should spend time at TJ Maxx or Homegoods more often! I love how much flavor it gives my recipes compared to extract and the aroma is just so warm and fuzzy! Great recipe again, Katie; I pinned it to try later. Thanks for sharing!

    16. Michelle says

      Mmmm…looking good, as always! That vanilla bean paste makes an enormous difference…it is so so so expensive, though 🙁

      We dont have “TJ Maxx” or “Home Goods”…we DO however, have “TK Maxx” and “Homestore and More”, and i love both for the same reasons – amazing bargains and deals, just like TJ Maxx it seems!

      PS: Saw the picture for your book on amazon – looks great! I cant wait to get it, it’s nice to give a little something back to the girl who’s worked so hard! Ive only started my blog (a gluten free blog thing) this month and im only barely beginning to understand how to use it…and its tough!
      You should be so so so proud of yourself!!


    17. Linda @ the Fitty says

      Where can I find Vanilla bean paste? That is especially hard to find–so hard I’ve never heard of it until now, and I’m very familiar with the baking aisle at all my local grocers!

    18. PottedFern says

      Hi hi Katie! I’m not sure if you take requests… so if you don’t, ignore this.
      But I was wondering if it was possible to make a chocolate cake… with avocado in it? You know, to replace the oil and other wet ingredients… I would try it myself, but I don’t know if I’d mess it up 🙁
      These muffins look amazingly delish~~ I want to make them! Will they work with any berry?

    19. Lindy says

      Yes, yes, YES! I love TJ Maxx. It is my go-to store. I can always find what I need, and, oh so much more. The merchandise is much more original and unique than anything else I can find in my town. And you have to love the prices.

    20. Jen says

      Wow! Just made these with raspberries and blueberries instead of blackberries, since that was what I had on hand. Best. Muffins. Ever. So, so good! Thank you!

    21. Casey says

      I’ve never thought about TJ Maxx and Marshalls as a kitchen place. How have I missed so many treasures??

      Question: If I use a mini muffin tin should I alter the cook time or temperature?

    22. De says

      These are AMAZING! I made them in mini-muffins for my work breakfast potluck this morning. I used a whole vanilla bean, and about a teaspoon of vanilla extract. They are so amazingly rich. I feel like it tastes almost like cheesecake. I might make them again this weekend!

    23. Sarah says

      I am a CCK fanboy and live nearly nightly off of CCK cookie dough dip and brownie batter. But this is my first comment on a recipe. I thought these were absolutely WONDERFUL. I’m sad you don’t think these will draw the same applause as a chocolate or peanut butter recipe, Kaite. They deserve it. Moist, bursting with flavor, perfect density, and love the differentiation in texture that coconut adds. These rock. We killed the whole batch in two days. I just texted “I miss you” to my husband, and he texted back “I miss those blackberry muffins you made two days ago”. You’ve done it again, Katie. Oh, and I used vanilla extract because that’s all I had. Now I’m on a mission to track down the vanilla bean paste!

    24. Lisa says

      Do you think it would be possible to make those with coconut flour? Does it behave in any way similar to regular flour? *clueless* I’m asking bevause I have coconut flour here and don’t really know what to do with it, and from flavour point of view I could very well imagine it 🙂

    25. Carole Valentine says

      These look delicious but you really should warn people when you list Xylitol in the recipe (or any recipe) that it is extremely toxic to dogs even in very small amounts. Personally, I would like to see the stuff banned. Too darned easy for a pup pup o grab something containing it, or be fed some of it by an unknowing human.

      • Jason Sanford says

        Unfortunately that’s true about a lot of foods, including chocolate, raisins, and avocados. Not a good idea to give dogs people food in general without consulting a vet first!

    26. Rory says

      Hi, I made these because I had blackberries left over from something else I was making and didn’t want to waste them.
      I didn’t have white vinegar or apple cider vinegar. I only had white wine vinegar. I was really worried that it was gonna ruin the whole batch but luckily it didn’t. They turned really well. Very mild taste, it really made the blackberries and coconut stand out. I will thoroughly enjoy these with a nice cup of tea.
      I will be writing down this recipe and adding it to my cookbox of yummies, I will be making these again. Absolutely loved them.

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