Monday, April 22, 2013

Banana Cream Cheese Muffins with Streusel Topping

Muffins are my favorite. To be fair: I have LOTS of favorites, but muffins rank pretty high on the list--and lately, I've been baking a lot of banana muffins. You see, my mom has a habit of buying tons of bananas at a time; however, my family only eats bananas when they're firm, bright yellow, and just ripe. Once they start to get spotty and brown, my mom buys more fresh ones, leaving the "old" ones sad and lonely, and thus continues the cycle.
Happily, I am in the banana-rescuing business, and I am all too willing to make fabulous treats from any and all orphaned bananas! Today's recipe is adapted from Jen at How To: Simplify.

For the muffins
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 bananas, mashed
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
For the cream cheese filling
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
For the crumb topping
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
Preheat oven to *395 degrees. (No, that's not a typo!)

Grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners. Combine 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

In a separate bowl, mash the bananas and then beat the bananas, sugar, egg, melted butter and vanilla extract together. Combine banana mixture with the flour mixture until just moistened. Be careful not to overmix the batter, or your muffins will be dry, tough, and flat!  Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups (leave a little batter to top the cream cheese filling).

Create the cream cheese filling by mixing all three ingredients together. Pour a tablespoonful onto the batter in the muffin cups, and top the cream cheese with the remaining muffin batter.

Create the topping: use a fork and mix together the brown sugar, 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, cinnamon and butter until crumbly. Sprinkle mixture over the batter.
*Free baking tip: to create tall muffins or cupcakes, put them into a very hot oven initially, then reduce the temperature. Doing so lifts the muffin top quickly and creates a tall crust! (I got that tip from Sally at Sallys Baking Addiction--she's amazing and her blog is gorgeous! Thanks, Sally!)
Bake for exactly 5 minutes at 395, then immediately reduce oven temperature to 365. Bake muffins for another 14-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

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