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Sourdough Discard Blueberry Muffins

These moist and tender blueberry muffins are the perfect way to use up sourdough discard. The sourdough starter gives these muffins a slight tanginess that is quite addictive!

There are many benefits of having an active sourdough starter in the fridge.

The first, most obviously, is the ability to make sourdough bread at home. If you haven’t tried it, you must. I know sourdough bread has been all the “rage” this past year, but I’ve been making it for years and let me tell you, there’s nothing like slicing open a crusty loaf of bread you made with your own hands. I love slathering a freshly baked slice with butter, then biting through the crunchy crust and into the fluffy interior. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

The second benefit of having a sourdough starter around? All the wonderful things you can make with the sourdough discard!

I feed my starter twice a week – on Wednesdays and Sundays – which means twice a week I have some discard that needs to be used up. These sourdough discard waffles are a family favorite. And the blueberry muffins you see here are another one of our top sourdough discard recipes.

A sourdough blueberry muffin with a bite taken out next to other muffins.

Why We Love These Muffins

I won’t go into too much detail on how to make these muffins as the process is pretty simple. You mix the dry ingredients in one bowl, mix the wet ingredients in another bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix. Add blueberries. Bake. That’s pretty much all muffins in a nutshell.

There are, however, a few things that make these sourdough muffins particularly worth trying:

  1. This is an EASY sourdough discard recipe. Working with sourdough starter/discard can be a little intimidating, so best to start with simple recipes like these muffins or the waffles I mentioned above. There really is nothing special you have to do. You just treat the discard like any wet ingredient.
  2. I love how moist, tender and fluffy these muffins are! They get a nice dome on top that makes you feel like you’re visiting a coffeeshop. If you want to feel extra fancy, you can sprinkle some pearl sugar on top of the muffin batter just before baking. They add a pretty sparkle since pearl sugar does not melt when you bake the muffins.
  3. The sourdough discard gives these muffins a little tang that adds a whole new depth of flavor. It’s hard to describe, but these muffins have a more complex flavor than a regular blueberry muffin.
Blueberry muffin batter in a glass mixing bowl

A Note About the Batter & Filling Your Tins

Muffin batter is usually thicker than cupcake batter – and this makes sense if you think about what each recipe is. A cupcake, as the name implies, is essentially a mini cake. By contrast, a muffin is a kind of quick bread. I added a photo of what the batter for these muffins should look like. 🙂

Another thing to note about muffins vs. cupcakes is how much batter you add to your muffin tin. For cupcakes, I will only fill each tin about 3/4 full so that the cupcake has room to rise significantly without losing its shape. But muffins like the ones you see here have a thicker batter that holds its shape better so for these I usually fill my muffin tin all the way to the top.

I hope you give these muffins a try and discover a new way to use up extra sourdough discard!

Blueberry muffins baked in a muffin tin

Want to Add a Topping?

A few folks have emailed me wondering if they can add a topping to these muffins. The answer is: yes! I like to use a mixture of crunchy walnuts, brown sugar and ground cinnamon. All you have to do is mix up the topping ingredients in a bowl and then sprinkle over the muffin batter just before baking. You can also use finely chopped pecans or almonds if you like those nuts better.

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Sourdough Discard Blueberry Muffins

A sourdough blueberry muffin with a bite taken out next to other muffins.
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These moist and tender blueberry muffins are the perfect way to use up sourdough discard. The sourdough starter gives these muffins a slight tanginess that is quite addictive!

  • Author: Rustic Family Recipes
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 12 muffins
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup sourdough discard 
  • 3/4 cup yogurt (I prefer whole yogurt)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries (frozen works too)

For the topping (optional)

  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions

Prep your tools. Preheat your oven to 400F and line your muffin tins with paper baking cups.

In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients. This includes the flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Mix well and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the wet ingredients. This includes the sourdough discard, yogurt, vanilla, egg, butter, sugar and lemon zest. Mix well and set aside.

Remove 1 tablespoon of the dry ingredients and set side. We are going to mix this with the blueberries later to prevent them from sinking in the batter.

Slowly add the rest of dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix until there are no traces of dry ingredients visible.

Prep the blueberries. In a medium bowl, combine the blueberries and the 1 tablespoon of dry ingredients that you set aside earlier. This will help prevent the berries from sinking in the muffins.

Add berries to batter and add to the muffin tin. Add the blueberries to the batter and mix until just combined. Spoon batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling each one 3/4 full.

Want to add a topping? In a medium bowl mix up the crumb topping ingredients and sprinkle on the muffin batter just before baking.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. The muffins are done when golden and when the tops spring back when gently pressed with your finger.

Notes

  • You can store these muffins on the counter for 3-4 days. Let them come to room temperature, then store in a ziploc bag or tupperware.
  • You can freeze these muffins for up to 3 months. Let them come to room temperature, then wrap each muffin in saran wrap or plastic wrap. Place the wrapped muffins into a freezer safe container and place in the freezer.

Keywords: sourdough discard recipes, sourdough muffins

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Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. I just made this recipe and it turned out really wonderful! It took less time to bake, as I made the muffins smaller. Also, I had no blueberries so I used fuji apples (as I have a large bag of those) which I peeled and cut into small pieces and added a pinch of cinnamon and ginger powder for flavor to work with the apples. Then tossed in about a third of a cup of chopped pecans. I was worried that I had changed things too much, but these muffins turned out quite well. Thank you for your clear construction of this recipe!

    1. Rustic Family Recipes

      Those sound like some seriously good muffins you made! I’m glad you enjoyed the recipe & thank you for coming back to tell me how the muffins came out. 🙂

  2. I want to make these but have a few questions first.
    #1: I want to make them mini sized for a young children’s Sunday school class so how long would I bake them? The pan I have is a dark non-stick pan if that matters.
    #2: You mentioned how to freeze them but not how to handle them after they’re frozen. Making them mini sized would make way too many to take to this small class all at once so how would I go about thawing and serving them?
    #3: If I use vanilla yogurt (that’s all I keep on hand) would I just omit the vanilla extract and it work the same? Or should I use sour cream instead?

    Thanks in advance!

    1. Rustic Family Recipes

      I haven’t made these as mini muffins, but you certainly could. I would start with a baking time of 18 minutes, then check the muffins by gently pressing your finger on the top of one of the muffins. It will be hot so do it quickly! If your finger leaves an impression in the muffin, then it needs to bake longer. If the muffin springs back, then it is done.

      To defrost the muffins, you can just place them on the counter for a few hours.

      And yes, if you use vanilla yogurt then you can omit the vanilla extract. You could also use sour cream in place of the yogurt. I would probably go the vanilla yogurt route myself. 🙂

  3. I made these this morning and unfortunately they didn’t quite turn out like pictured. My dough was VERY thick- I used fed starter instead of old starter… could that have made a difference?

    1. Rustic Family Recipes

      The batter for these muffins should be quite thick, I added a photo to the post so you can see what it should look like. 🙂 We are not going for a cake or cupcake batter consistency here, but rather a thicker muffin batter that will hold its form when the tins are filled all the way to the top. It’s hard to say whether there were any issues with your starter without seeing it, but it sounds like maybe you were expecting a looser batter similar to a cupcake?

  4. These were fantastic! I had to use some discard so I found your recipe. I used 0% greek yogurt and extra vanilla. So yummy! My kids loved them!!

    1. Rustic Family Recipes

      What a wonderful comment to see first thing in the morning. So glad you and your family enjoyed these muffins!

  5. I made a double recipe that yielded 35 muffins (I used 1/2 rehydrated blueberries and a carton of fresh). I could have piled a little more batter into each cup, but loved how these turned out. They were tall and flavorful like you’d buy in a coffee shop. I’ll definitely be making these again.

  6. Made these twice over the last two weeks and everyone who tries them is obsessed! Such a great recipe

  7. Manuela Fletcher

    Absolutely delicious and so easy to make. I’m definitely saving this recipe.
    Can you use different berries?

    1. Rustic Family Recipes

      Awesome! So glad you liked it. 🙂 Yes, you can use different berries – I’ve used raspberries, black raspberries and blackberries (chopped in half if they are large).

  8. Penny Daniels

    I made this today. It’s a hit! I didn’t have any yogurt so I used sour cream instead. I also didn’t have any blueberries so I used chocolate chips instead. Good heavens! They were delicious. Thank you for sharing your recipe – it gave me a great place to start!

    1. Rustic Family Recipes

      Sour cream is an excellent substitute for yogurt, good call! And using chocolate chips sounds delicious. I may have to try that myself. The tangy sourdough with the sweet chocolate would be tasty!

  9. This is the best sourdough discard muffin recipe. Very pleased with this batter and bake. While I didn’t want or intend to substitute ingredients , I actually was out of blueberries but had fresh raspberries and frozen mango slices in my fridge. I also only had vanilla Ellenos Greek yogurt (in lieu of regular plain yogurt) in my fridge. Given all the extra sugars from the fruit, I halved the sugar content and the recipe still turned out excellently.