These date muffins are incredibly simple to make and the combination of dates and lemon zest is a winner. The recipe uses only 2 tablespoons each of butter and sugar, along with wholemeal flour. While dates do contain a significant amount of sugar, they are considered low on the glycemic index and offer plenty of nutritional benefits.
The best thing about this date recipe is that it is a true muffin recipe. I get so tired of baking and buying “muffins” that are just cakes shaped like muffins! These cakes masquerading as muffins are just too sweet and too fluffy for my liking. True muffins are something that I can grab on the go for a quick breakfast without feeling too guilty. And this recipe fits that definition. I’ll be popping some in the freezer for that very reason.
I did have to adjust this recipe as the mixture was too dry using the original amount of milk. I added 1/4 cup of extra milk and that was just right. I also thought I’d try a few of the muffins with my own cream cheese icing. If you’d like to make the muffins a bit naughtier, I’ve added the ingredients and method for the icing below, too.
If you enjoy this recipe for date muffins, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.
5 facts about dates
- Dates are one of the oldest cultivated fruits in the world
- The biggest producer of dates is Egypt, followed by Iran, Algeria, Saudia Arabia and Iraq
- The scientific name for the date palm tree is Phoenix dactylifera L
- Australia’s date industry exists but is small, with dates grown commercially in the South Australian Riverland and near Alice Springs in the Northern Territory
- Research suggests “date palm fruits possess high nutritional and therapeutic value with significant antioxidant, antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-proliferative properties.”
This recipe took me back to my travels through Egypt, where date palms grow in abundance along the Nile…
- 30 grams butter (or 2 tablespoons)
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 cup pitted dates, chopped roughly
- 1 lemon
- 1 cup milk
- 2 cups wholemeal SR flour (if using plain wholemeal flour add 4 teaspoons baking powder)
- 1 pinch salt
- 150 grams Philadelphia cream cheese
- 1/4 cup icing sugar
- 2 chopped pitted dates
- handful chopped walnuts
- Cream butter and sugar.
- Sift flour (and baking powder if you're using plain flour). Add any wholemeal husks from the sieve back into the sifted flour.
- Add all other ingredients to the butter and sugar mixture and mix well.
- Spoon into muffin pan (makes 12).
- Bake in a moderate oven for 15-20 minutes.
- Beat cream cheese and icing.
- Pipe (or scoop a small teaspoon) of icing onto top of muffin and decorate with a slice of date and chopped walnuts.