Savory Muffins Will Make You Question Your Usual Breakfast Pastry

August 23, 2015

If the grocery store isn't your favorite place, it should be. We're sleuthing for the best back-of-the-box recipes and every Sunday, Posie Harwood from 600 Acres will share our latest find. 

Today: Falling for savory muffins, one cheesy, herby bite at a time. 

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This week, I had a rather steamy encounter with a savory scone. I walked into Tandem Coffee + Bakery in Portland in search of some wholesome granola and a coffee. Instead, I was seduced by a flaky-looking pastry behind the counter: a buttery scone loaded with kale and Parmesan. Obviously I caved, and after one bite it hit me: Savory baked goods are what's up.

Scones are ideal candidates to play on both the sweet and savory team. Inspired by the Tandem scone, I started thinking about what other kinds of baked good I could fill with greens and cheese. 

I paired this search with my quest for great back of the box recipes, landing on the Indian Head Cornmeal corn muffin recipe as my foundation. Riffing on their basic muffin recipe, I left out some of the sugar and added a few handfuls of fresh herbs and some feta cheese. 

The result was perfect. Savory herbed air wafted through my kitchen, the cheese gave a fantastic saltiness to the corn base, and the tops domed beautifully.

I used parsley, thyme, and rosemary for herbs and feta for cheese, but I encourage you to play around: Parmesan and cheddar would be excellent in place of feta, or you could combine two cheeses. Use any herbs you like, or throw in some chopped greens like kale or Swiss chard. Bacon would be welcomed with open arms. Toss in shallots, onions, or garlic! Throw in some basil with wild abandon! This is just basically a savory muffin free-for-all.

Cheesy Herbed Corn Muffins

Adapted from Wilkins Rogers Mills

Makes 9 muffins

1 cup cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup milk
1/4 cup oil
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/2 cup chopped fresh herbs (I used parsley, thyme, and rosemary)

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

Do you have a favorite back of the box recipe, or have you heard about a great one? Leave any suggestions in the comments, and I'll try them out and share them here!

Photos by Posie Harwood 

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Rebecca Firkser
    Rebecca Firkser
  • Julie C
    Julie C
  • Bella B
    Bella B
I like warm homemade bread slathered with fresh raw milk butter, ice cream in all seasons, the smell of garlic in olive oil, and sugar snap peas fresh off the vine.


Rebecca F. August 24, 2015
SO into savory scones and muffins, particularly for breakfast. Glad to know others feel the same way!
Julie C. August 24, 2015
Ha ha ha! I know what you mean. The cheddar jalapeno scone at Tandem grabbed me last week! Savory baked goods are the best!
Bella B. August 23, 2015
These look just so delicious!