September 25, 2012

Nommy Cottage Cheese Muffins

Solly's is a bakery/deli that we used to frequent when we lived in Vancouver (I still pop in whenever I get the chance). They make unbelievably delicious bagels and knishes, and the chocolate babka loaf is to. die. for. 

One of our favourite Solly's specialties is also one of the simplest. Their cottage cheese muffins are light, hearty, and so satisfying; I suspect that's why they're often sold out by the time I get there. Whenever I've been forced to come home empty handed, I would try to soothe my disappointment by searching the internet for a similar recipe. Sadly, none of them seemed quite right, and were either low-carb (flourless) lumps, or were filled with unwanted embellishments.

I continued to do my research (meaning I consumed many, many muffins; such a hardship), did some tinkering, and after several years and many failed attempts, I think I've got it!!

The muffins are packed with protein, thanks to the eggs and cheeses, so they're a great way to start the day, and are the perfect snack food for hungry teens. Whenever I make them, my kids eat at least two in a sitting, and one of my son's friends polished off four in one go.

Several of the other versions called for sour cream as the liquid, but I've gone with buttermilk here. I think it helps keep them airy, and also brings the fat content down somewhat (I'm not a fan of low fat cooking, but why go overboard the other way if you don't have to?).

Cottage Cheese Muffins:

1/2  cup butter, melted
1     cup cottage cheese
1/2  cup buttermilk
3     large eggs, beaten
1     cup grated cheddar (I prefer old)
1 3/4 cups flour
1/4  finely ground cornmeal
1/2  teaspoon salt
3     tablespoons sugar
1     tablespoon baking powder
1/2  teaspoon baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 12 cup muffin pan (including the top).

Melt butter, and set aside to cool slightly. Combine next four ingredients in large mixing bowl. Stir in butter.

Sift dry ingredients together in a small bowl, then add to cheese/egg mixture. Stir just until combined (the batter will be quite thick). Distribute evenly between 12 standard muffin cups.

Bake until golden, 25 - 30 minutes.

Let the muffins sit in the pan for about 3 minutes (the steam will help them release from the pan).

I find these taste best when they're warm, not smoking hot from the oven, so let them cool for several minutes before serving. They can be warmed slightly in the oven (or microwave) the next day to freshen them up.

The resulting muffins are light and buttery, with just a hint of cornmeal crunch and sweetness. That said, they're definitely savoury, and would be perfect alongside a bowl of soup (though they're special enough to eat all on their own, which is what we usually do).

If you've had the Solly's version, I'd love to hear what you think. Whether they're an exact replica or not, these are definitely worth baking.

I hope you'll give them a try!


Anonymous said...

I definitely must try these for the B&B!

Debbi H. said...

I'm looking forward to sneakily getting my 13-year-old daughter to ingest cottage cheese via your muffins@! Love your blog. I'm the East Coast version ... Debbi H.

Cheryl said...

Debbi - Let me know how it goes! ;)

Sarah said...

these look delicous, looks like another recipe for me to try :-)

I hope you don't mind I have tagged you in an 11 blog tag here x

Anonymous said...

I have been searching for a cottage cheese muffin recipe since I ate one at sollys 2 days ago. This is a must try for me.

Erica said...

I've made them twice in the last week. I followed the recipe to a T and they turned out soooo good! Thank you so much for posting!

Cheryl said...

So glad you're enjoying the recipe, Erica; thanks for letting me know! :)

Anonymous said...

yes! i worked there many moons ago and i loved these. i have been looking for a recipe so that i can make them for a eat-on-the-way-to-school-breakfast for my preschooler. these look pretty much bang on!

Jean said...

These are delicious! I think I like them a bit better than Solly's...
Thanks for sharing the recipe.

Lynn said...

Thank you so much for the recipe. I've really missed these since I moved away from Vancouver. They turned out really great!

Trish said...

We have made these many times now! They never last longer than at our house! Dee-licious!! Thanks for the recipe.

Cheryl said...

I'm so happy to hear you're all enjoying them! I appreciate the feedback!

Azzy said...

Aaaaahh! I've been looking for something to match Solly's! Are you using dry cottage cheese or the regular stuff in whey? I'm excited to try this...!

Cheryl said...

Azzy - Either is fine. The muffins will be slightly drier with the dry curd, but still delicious.

Suzan Zagar said...

I love Solly's muffins, but the first time I had one they were just out of the oven and delicious! The second time they were a bit older and drier and not as good. I will try this recipe!I I have good memories of a cottage cheese pie my Baba used to make!

Dawn Fiander-McCann said...

Your muffins just came out of my oven! Delicious. I was too lazy to go out for buttermilk so I used 2% Greek yoghurt. They were still surprisingly airy. I'd been looking for a high protein treat for my son who is working hard at a construction site for the Summer. Well done! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

The cottage cheese muffins are also my favorite at Sollys! We just made these and they are delicious definitely lighter and less heavy/ oily than Solly muffins which are great when you get them fresh and warm but once they are cold they are still good but the greasiness is kind of obvious.
They are so good they probably rarely get cold...
This a great recipe thanks! Have you ever tried a gluten free version?

Cheryl said...

Thank you for your comments, everyone! Dawn, same here - I usually use yogurt thinned with a little milk/soy milk; I never seem to have buttermilk when I need it! Anonymous - I haven't tried making them gluten free, but would be interested to hear how it goes if you try it! :)


It's a rainy day and baking's just the thing to brighten up the menu after endless salads and cold meals. These are fabulous. I had no cornmeal, so added a handful of oats and mixed grains and flax seed. There was no buttermilk so I used extra cottage cheese and a splash of milk. (If I don't have buttermilk I usually use a bit of milk with vinegar.) Also, I use coconut oil. For easy clean up I use muffin cups from the dollar store, and after the muffins are cool the cups peel off easily. A yummy treat easily made--thank you! :D

Cheryl said...

Googleme: They are the perfect rainy day food! Your comment actually reminded me that I had cottage cheese in the freezer, so we're munching on a fresh batch as we speak. I love hearing that your additions worked well!


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