Bakers making yogurt muffins use yogurt in place of other ingredients in order to make a healthier muffin. In addition to changing the nutritional value of the muffins, yogurt also alters the texture and taste in subtle ways. Each baker has his or her own recipe for yogurt muffins depending on personal preference. Many yogurt muffins are actually common variations of other muffin flavors, simply altered by adding yogurt.
Muffin recipes using yogurt often substitute it in place of other, less healthy ingredients. Some bakers replace one quarter or more of the milk called for in a muffin recipe with yogurt. Vigorously stirring the yogurt before adding it to the rest of the ingredients sometimes helps the batter maintain the necessary moisture content. Other bakers use a bit of yogurt in place of one half the amount of vegetable oil called for in a muffin recipe. Replacing all of the oil with yogurt would nearly eliminate the fat content completely, however, and would change too much of the chemistry behind the recipe for it to work properly.
Since most bakers add yogurt to a muffin recipe by replacing ingredients high in fat, the resulting product is usually lower in fat than its counterpart. Yogurt muffins also have a larger amount of protein and calcium than muffins made without yogurt, especially in cases where the yogurt replaces vegetable oil. The texture of a muffin also changes from the yogurt. Muffins made with yogurt often have a moist, smooth texture, as compared to the dry and crumbly texture of most other muffins.
Regardless of the specific flavor, nearly all yogurt muffin recipes include flour, sugar, egg, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Most also include small amounts of milk and oil, but some bakers do find ways to completely substitute one or both of these ingredients out of the recipe. Plain vanilla yogurt appears most often in these recipes, but a flavored muffin might include a matching flavor of yogurt in the ingredient list.
Typically, when making yogurt muffins, bakers first mix all the dry ingredients and all moist ingredients separately. The moist ingredients are slowly added to the dry ingredients and mixed until just barely combined. This batter is then poured into prepared muffin cups and baked for a designated amount of time. Individual bakers have their own preferences, however, and may use slightly different processes.
Most yogurt muffins are named for the additional flavors included in the muffin. Oftentimes, the same variety of flavors one might expect to see in non-yogurt muffins can be found in yogurt muffin counterparts. An individual can likely find recipes for blueberry-yogurt, apple-yogurt, and chocolate-yogurt muffins, among other common flavors. Some bakers may also include health food varieties, such as an oatmeal-yogurt muffin. A broad range of possibilities exists due to the versatility of yogurt as an ingredient within muffin recipes.