Cast Iron

English Muffins

August 19, 2015
9 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Makes about 15 muffins
Author Notes

I was a straight up English muffin hater until I tried a fresh, homemade one straight out of the oven. Now, you'll find me huddled in a corner of my kitchen at breakfast, slathering batch after batch with salted butter and plenty of jam. —Erin Jeanne McDowell

What You'll Need
  • 5 1/2 cups (27 ounces) bread flour
  • 1 tablespoon (0.35 ounces) instant dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons (0.75 ounces) salt
  • 2 teaspoons (0.25 ounces) sugar
  • 2 1/4 cups (19.25 ounces) room temperature water
  • 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) room temperature butter
  • 1 pinch semolina flour, for dipping
  1. Make the dough the day before you want to make the English muffins. To make the dough, combine the bread flour, yeast, salt, and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook. Mix on low speed for 20 to 30 seconds, just to combine.
  2. Add the water and the butter and mix on low speed for 4 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and scrape the dough away from the hook. Raise the speed to medium and mix for 3 minutes more. The dough should be smooth—if it feels tacky or sticky, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, until it’s smooth and easy to handle.
  3. Transfer the dough to a large, oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Transfer the dough to the refrigerator and let rise overnight.
  4. Bring the dough to room temperature before proceeding (20 to 30 minutes).
  5. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to 1/2-inch thick. Using a bench knife or a pastry wheel, cut the dough into squares that are 2 1/2 by 2 1/2 inches.
  6. Cover the shaped muffins and let rise for 15 to 20 minutes on your work surface. After the muffins have risen, dip each one in semolina flour on both sides.
  7. Preheat the oven to 475° F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  8. Heat a large cast-iron skillet (or griddle) over medium-high heat. When the skillet is nice and hot, add the shaped muffins (as many as you can without crowding—you should be able to easily turn them over). Cook until golden brown, 2 to 4 minutes. Flip the muffin and cook until golden on the other side, another 2 to 4 minutes.
  9. Transfer the muffins to the prepared baking sheets, and bake until a thermometer inserted into the center reads somewhere between 200 and 215° F, 8-10 minutes. The muffins won’t brown much more, but the interior will bake through.
  10. Cool 5 to 10 minutes before serving. If you’ve made the muffins ahead, cool completely and store in an airtight container. Reheat in a low temperature oven or in the toaster before serving.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Christopher Majka
    Christopher Majka
  • Geraldine Sim
    Geraldine Sim
  • Tracie
  • Änneken
  • Shelley Matheis
    Shelley Matheis
I always have three kinds of hot sauce in my purse. I have a soft spot for making people their favorite dessert, especially if it's wrapped in a pastry crust. My newest cookbook, Savory Baking, came out in Fall of 2022 - is full of recipes to translate a love of baking into recipes for breakfast, dinner, and everything in between!

15 Reviews

Christopher M. March 5, 2023
Saving this one to my favorites list. They came out great. No longer need to buy English muffins at the store - this recipe is easy enough. I didn't keep them as long on the cast iron pan as they started to burn. I turned down the temp and let them bake in the oven a bit longer.
Geraldine S. April 19, 2021
They came out great! Followed recipe with 3 exceptions. First, I did have to add flour to the dough to make it smooth, but that’s to be expected given the variation in temperature, humidity and the quality/age of the flour being used. The flavor was delicious. Second, ours were sticky upon shaping and I did not use semolina flour, I used AP flour on the tray only, because we didn’t have any semolina on hand but that didn’t matter. It cooked on the stovetop nicely, got a good brown from the skillet and then went straight into the oven for about 14min in batches of 8 per tray and got the temp of 200F to check for done. They were perfect with plenty of nooks and crannies. We will be making these again and sharing the recipe with friends.We all LOVED the recipe. Fun to make with kid baker!
Lar May 6, 2018
Didn't love these. Flavor was meh. Almost no nooks and crannies. Also as-written the dough was very wet and sticky. I had to add 4 tbsp of flour to get it to a manageable consistency. I'll try Christina Tosi's or Great British Baking Shows recipe next
elyze January 10, 2018
this was my first attempt at english muffins and they came out great. a little denser than i hoped - maybe i over-kneaded? no one else who taste tested my work had any complaint though ;) i think i would start with less liquid next time and add liquid rather than flour to bring the dough to consistency when mixing, to try to get a better rise and lighter texture.
Tracie December 28, 2017
Made them and they were divine! So easy and so delicious, I’m never buying store made again.
Änneken March 22, 2017
I loved making these as the baking time in the oven dramatically cuts down the overall cooking time. In general, I am a big Erin McDowell fan but flavor wise these muffins were just ok. Next time, I'll use Christina Tosi's ingredients list and dough preparation method and Erin's cooking/baking method.
Shelley M. March 16, 2016
Like the extra cooking time in the oven. All the other recipes Ive seen only having you cooking them on a griddle, and they never cook all the way thru before the outsides are nearly burnt.
superlambanana February 27, 2016
Made them, they turned out ok. Cannot say there was much flavour to them. I think the dough needs to rise a little before going to the fridge. They did brown in the oven though. Also it took a lot longer than 20 minutes to warm up in a 22C room.
Suzanne February 5, 2016
Yum! And it looks easy, too!
lsm August 30, 2015
I just made this recipe. The muffins baked up very nicely. I liked the idea of cutting them into squares. Also no egg or milk like another recipe I use. I did end up adding 1/2 cup of extra flour. I also lowered the temp from 475 to 450 be cause my oven bakes 25 degrees hotter. This recipe will be my go to recipe for English muffins. Thank you very much
Smaug September 4, 2015
I can't see exactly what makes these English Muffins- among other things, they won't cook properly without rings, which kind of lets out squares. They usually contain milk because it makes them toast better (or at least darker)- this is the first I remember hearing of eating English Muffins untoasted.
Erika P. August 24, 2015
Agree Suzanne but I just finished my first batch and I think it took 10 minutes. That's with them fresh off the cast iron pan.
Suzanne August 23, 2015
Bake until a thermometer inserted into the center reads 200-215 is not much of a direction. A bit of a time frame would be very helpful.
reneej August 26, 2015
Yes please give an idea as to when to start checking...... they are in the oven now...... not sure what to do
Erin J. August 28, 2015
sorry about that - the time was listed in the article, but not the recipe. It's 8-10 minutes in the oven. I've altered the recipe to include it here!