Spice Cake Muffins

I figured I should add some recipes on this blog, because crafters and non-crafters alike require sustenance to keep going sometimes. And sometimes that sustenance is in the form of baked goods. So here’s my first contribution to your crafting fuel:

Spice Cake Muffins (or, how I made friends with baked goods)

I found a spice cake recipe in a vegetarian cookbook. But as you’ll soon find out (because I’m about to tell you), I much prefer things in muffin sizes. Almost all cake, brownie, or tart recipes I try out I use a muffin tin.


See? Look at that cute little muffin tin.

I’ve always been like this. Bigger portions just don’t do it for me (because if I’m never going to finish the slice of cake why try? Well of course I try, but it’s so much more satisfying to finish the dang thing than to leave a mangled piece of cake on a plate that no one wants to eat and will sit in the fridge with plastic wrap over it and you’ll see it every day and think I should eat that, but it’s not very appetizing, because it’s not pretty because you were only able to eat some of it.)

I made these spice cake muffins because I was bored one day. And the next day I brought them into lab (which is not one of those labs with all the dangerous things in them so you can’t bring food even remotely near them) and shared with my fellow research students, and we rejoiced (until break was over and we had to go back to behavioral training with rats).

The moral of the story is, if you bake delicious things and give them to others, you are more likely to make friends with those people than if you had given them, say, a knuckle sandwich or a third degree burn (who out there does these things to make friends? I don’t know. But I know you’re out there. So heed my advice and bake delicious food instead.)


Anyway. Here’s the recipe. Which I changed a bit because I didn’t have enough oil or any molasses (apparently you can substitute honey for molasses. Who knew?) But it’s still good. It ends up being more of a muffin than the intended cupcake, but I like muffins. Makes me feel like I can eat it for breakfast and it’s somehow healthy. Which this probably isn’t. But it’s more healthy than, say, a tub of lard or just one girl scout cookie (even though we all know you can never eat just one.) They can actually be vegan if you use molasses instead of honey and oil instead of butter. So that’s kinda cool.


  • 1/2 cup plain, unflavored soy milk
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 6 tablespoons honey
  • 6 tablespoons canola oil or melted, unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons ground ginger
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Pinch (I’m not kidding, the book uses this word) black pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F (I didn’t 375, but I’m at high altitude and my mom always told me to add flour, add liquid, subtract leavening, and bake at a higher temperature, and I go by that). I used cupcake liners, but you can also just grease the muffin tin and dust it with flour
  2. In a relatively large bowl (it says medium, but I always end up needing a bigger one. Probably because I tend to double recipes. So I have no gauge of what baking in small quantities is like. Don’t listen to me when it comes to such things) whisk soy milk, maple syrup, honey, oil/butter, vanilla, and vinegar.
  3. In separate bowl, sift flours, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cloves, nutmeg, and (just a pinch!) pepper. I just mix it all up because I don’t have a fancy shmancy sifter (maybe some day).
  4. Fold dry ingredients into wet ingredients with a rubber spatula, and try not to overmix, even though I have no idea what it would look or feel like to overmix. I just do it until it feels right. Which I realize it no help whatsoever, especially if you have no real intuition.
  5. Pour into muffin tin, filling about 2/3 of the way, and bake somewhere between 15 and 25 minutes. I know this is a big range. That’s because I baked at a higher temperature. And because I really have no recollection of how long I truly baked these muffins for. I’m already a horrible blogger. Bloggess? Eh. Bake it until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Enjoy! Maybe let it cool down just a little. I didn’t. I burned my mouth and it was absolutely worth it. Then maybe share. Maybe.

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