Let’s talk about pet peeves; we all have ’em. What are yours? For me I have a laundry list of them:
- People not saying thank you when you hold the door or elevator for them. Really? I’m pretty sure your mother raised you better.
- Public women’s restrooms and the lack of couth. Seriously I HIGHLY doubt you treat your own bathroom that way and if you do, you need help!
- The Kardashians – seriously WHY are they famous?
- …the list goes on and on.
One thing that irks me is when people say cupcakes and muffins are the same thing. No, not they are not. That’s like saying a hamburger and a filet mignon are the same thing because they come from a cow. While the ingredients are rather similar what sets each one apart is how they are made and finished. On today’s Tuesday’s Tip with The Kitchen Whisperer I’m giving you the real scoop on the Cupcake vs Muffin difference.
So let’s look at the basics:
- They both contain sugar, flour, eggs, leavening agents, fat. Depending on the recipe the amounts of sugar and flour can vary. No significant difference really though the amount of sugar can impact the outcome of the crumb and texture
- When the fat, sugar and egg ratio in a recipe reaches double or more, you have reached the cake level.
- Cupcakes are light and airy in texture where muffins are heartier, even a bit denser though still moist. Muffins are heartier as they are meant to act as say breakfast or in place of meal. Again, not a big difference but regardless, still a difference
- Where a good portion of the difference lies in how the batters are put together. Cupcakes require you to cream the butter and sugar together until it’s light and fluffy; no lumps people. You want air incorporated into the batter. Muffins do not. Muffins are generally mixed with a mixing spoon and you don’t want to overmix the batter so lumps are OK.
- Muffins should have a high-top dome on them; cupcakes should just peek over the rims of the liners.
- Cupcakes have frosting/icing something atop them to truly make them into a miniature version of a cake. Muffins are either naked on top, topped with a light glaze or sprinkled with coarse sanding sugar.
- 99.9% of all cupcakes are eaten room temperature or cold. Muffins can either be cold or warmed. Mmmm warm blueberry muffins and a cup of tea sounds awesome right now!
- Cupcakes use a cake batter recipe; muffins well, use a muffin recipe. Don’t believe me? Compare your favorite cupcake recipe next to your favorite muffin recipe. You’ll notice slight variances between the ingredients (amounts) and even in the baking time/temps. Where the true difference is how the batters are put together.
So now you know. Cupcakes are miniature versions of a cake. Muffins are miniature versions of a quick/sweet bread. But the easiest way to tell the difference – try both!
This is a cupcake:
This is a muffin: