Cranberry Masa Muffins

My answer to classic cornbread, these muffins make use of masa.   Masa is traditionally used to make corn tortillas and tamales; however, it can be used in place of cornmeal for an added nutritional punch.   Masa is produced through a process called nixtamalization.   In this traditional process, corn is treated with limewater which contributes added calcium to the end product while also rendering the corn’s inherent niacin nutritionally available. These are cheap and inexpensive to make and are fantastic served with lentil soups and, of course, chilies.   Recipe yields approximately 24 mini-muffins. To make Cranberry Masa Muffins, you’ll need the following:

cranberry masa muffins

By Jenny Published: May 13, 2009

    My answer to classic cornbread, these muffins make use of masa.   Masa is traditionally used to make corn tortillas and tamales; …


    • 1 Cup Sprouted Grain Flour
    • 1 Cup Masa Harina
    • ¼ Cup Honey
    • 1 Teaspoon Corn- and Aluminum-free Baking Powder
    • 2 Eggs from Pastured Hens
    • 1 ½ Cups Milk
    • 1 Cup Fresh or Frozen Cranberries, Chopped
    • Coconut oil for greasing your muffin tin


    1. Preheat the oven to 375 ° F (remember: I live at 10,ooo feet so you may want to reduce temperature slightly for your elevation)
    2. Grease the muffin tin.
    3. Mix masa, sprouted flour, baking powder and salt together.
    4. Add eggs, milk and honey.
    5. Mix wet and dry ingredients together thoroughly adding more flour or milk as needed.
    6. Fold in the chopped cranberries.
    7. Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until the muffins are golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

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    What people are saying

    1. ~M says

      I’m curious why you insist on a corn-free baking powder when there is masa (corn) in this muffin…thanks!

    2. Jenny says

      ~M – That is a really good question. At first glance, it might seem contradictory; however, the reasoning is sound. Masa is made from sweet varietals of corn which are not genetically modified (as of the time of this writing); however, the corn that baking powder sometimes contains is usually made from a different varietal that is often genetically modified. So, in keeping with our efforts to avoid GMO foods, I insist on corn-free baking powder.

    3. Jenny says

      Annie – I usually make my own from cream of tartar, baking soda and arrowroot powder (I ought to post that recipe here!), but, in a pinch Rumford Baking Powder is a great alternative. It does contain cornstarch; however, it is from GMO-free corn.

    4. Jenny says

      Can masa be used in recipes to substitute for regular cornmeal? and…what differences between the regular and the masa cornmeal have you observed in your baking?

      I appreciate your help…

    5. says

      Just found this recipe and am excited to try it. I have been soaking my cornmeal in lime water to get the same effects, but found masa last week. I have to say, especially during the summer months when I run a ‘Nana Daycare’ for my 4 grandchildren, I am VERY interested in pushing the ‘EASY BUTTON’ as often as possible! We often eat cornbread of some type w/fish and I’m planning fish tonight. I don’t have sprouted flour, but do grind my own. I thought if I soak the same amount of flour in your recipe, using the (raw) milk, that should suffice instead of the sprouted flour? Which I don’t have and haven’t sourced yet.) I am going to go ahead and start it since I don’t know when you’ll get to answer, but I’m still interested in your thoughts about this.

    6. Jessica says

      These are delicious and so fast and easy. Only problem is that they don’t have any salt in them and that makes them taste a little bland. I would add 1/2 tsp of salt next time.

    7. Mary Himmer says

      I also was wondering about making these gluten free. What kind of lime do we buy and where to make our own masa harina?

      Corn free Baking Powder, my son used to be highly allergic to corn, so I make my own and it is so easy.
      2 parts cream of tartar
      1 part baking soda
      1 part either arrowroot, potato starch, or organic cornstarch

      A part can be anything–teaspoon, tablespoon, cup, quart, depending on how much you want to make. I store in glass jars with a tight lid.

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