Cranberry Buttermilk Cake

This cake was gorgeous.  It just might be the perfect treat for Christmas morning.  The cranberries are bright bursts of tart juice, the batter is full of sweet orange flavor, and the cake is light and fluffy.  With the cranberries, this isn’t a very sweet cake, so it’s great for brunch or tea.  This is a great winter spin on the Blueberry Buttermilk Breakfast Cake I made for Mother’s day in the spring.  If this seems like too much cake for you, you can halve the recipe and bake it in an 8×8″ square pan.

Cranberry Buttermilk CakeCranberry Buttermilk Cake (A Seat at the Table)

Serves 12-16

Adapted from Alexandra Cooks

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 large orange, zested
  • 2 cups granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 4 cups fresh cranberries

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line a 9×13″ pan with parchment paper and spray with non-stick spray.

Cream butter with orange zest and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs one at a time and then add the vanilla, beating well after each addition.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.  Add flour mixture to the batter a little at a time, alternating with the buttermilk.  Leave a couple of Tbsp of flour to toss the cranberries in (this keeps the berries from sinking to the bottom), then fold the cranberries into the batter.

Scoop batter into the prepared pan and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.  Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

Apple Crisp Muffins

These were delicious.  The perfect taste of fall flavors.  Dad said they were the best muffins he’s ever had.  My only complaint is that the recipe only made 10!  Next time I’ll definitely be (at least) doubling the recipe!

These are super moist due to the combination of butter, oil and applesauce.  The fresh apple pieces get tender (but not mushy) and the oatmeal crisp topping adds a little extra sweetness and the perfect amount of chewy crunchiness.  You’ll definitely want to make these this fall.  They’re great fresh from the oven or at room temperature.  But if you think they’re going to last more than a couple of days, make sure you refrigerate them in a ziploc bag, since they’re so moist they won’t last long on the counter.

Apple Crisp MuffinsApple Crisp Muffins (A Seat at the Table)

Makes about 20 muffins

Adapted from Iowa Girl Eats

  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce (2 snack pack applesauces)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 cups peeled and chopped apple (about 4)

Crisp topping:

  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt

In a large bowl, mix together butter, oil, applesauce, and sugars until well mixed (the mixture might look curdled).  Add egg and vanilla and beat to combine.

In a separate bowl, sift together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Add half the dry ingredients to the wet, and mix until just combined.  Add half of the remaining flour and mix again until just combined.  Toss the apple pieces with the remaining flour, then carefully fold the apples into the batter.

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line 2 muffin trays with muffin cup papers or grease muffin tin generously with cooking spray.

Reusing the dry ingredient bowl, mix crisp topping ingredients together until well mixed and crumbly (I find using my hands is easiest).

Scoop batter into prepared muffin tins, should be about 3/4 full (a 4oz cookie scoop is the perfect size).  Top with about 1 Tbsp of crisp topping, then bake for about 15-17 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Let muffins cool in tin for about 10 minutes before removing and letting cool completely on a wire rack.

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Lemon poppy seed is my favorite muffin flavor.  It’s been ages since I’ve had one, so I decided it was time to make a batch.  These were very yummy.  The glaze adds quite a bit of sweetness with a balance of tart lemon zest.  The poppy seeds give a nice little crunch to the delicate crumb.  This are great for breakfast or a snack since they aren’t too sweet.  The lemon adds a bright burst of flavor and most of the sweetness comes from the glaze on top.

Lemon Poppy Seed MuffinsLemon Poppy Seed Muffins (A Seat at the Table)

Makes about 15 muffins (I doubled the recipe and got about 32)

Adapted from Annie’s Eats

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp poppy seeds
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 1/2 lemons, zested
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plain yogurt


  • 1/2 lemon, zested
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line a muffin tin with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, poppy seeds, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In a large bowl, beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in the eggs one at a time, then add lemon zest and vanilla extract.  Slowly beat in the dry ingredients, alternating with the yogurt, in three batches.  Mix until just combined.

Scoop batter into prepared muffin tin (I used a 4oz cookie scoop).  Bake for 16-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Let cool for about 5 minutes in the pan and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

While the muffins are cooking, whisk together all the ingredients for the glaze.

Once you’ve transfered the muffins to the wire rack, add about 3/4 tsp glaze to each muffin while they’re still warm.

Strawberry Banana Baked Oatmeal

It’s finally happened.  After about a year of eating pretty much the same thing every day, I’m finally ready to find a new breakfast.  As much as I adore fruit, yogurt and granola, and I’m sure it will come back in rotation, but I think this oatmeal might be my new go-to.  This oatmeal is lightly sweet, a little crunchy on top, and baking the banana and strawberry gives it a rich caramelized flavor that’s just awesome.  I went ahead and made a double batch of this and baked it in two pans (I didn’t want to have to extend the bake time for a 9×13″ because I was hungry!)  I’m so glad I did so I’ll have leftovers for a few days!  This is super yummy, goes great with some fresh strawberries on top, and a drizzle of half and half makes it a strawberries and cream dream breakfast.  There’s a subtle cinnamon flavor that goes remarkably well with the strawberries.

Strawberry Banana Baked OatmealStrawberry Banana Baked Oatmeal (A Seat at the Table)

Serves 2-4

Adapted from How Sweet It Is

  • 2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup milk (I used unsweetened almond since I had some on hand)
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt (could also use half and half or Greek yogurt)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 medium ripe banana, mashed
  • 3/4 cup sliced strawberries

Preheat oven to 375°F.  Grease a 8×8″ baking pan or a pie dish with cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, mix together oats, sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.  In a large measuring cup, measure out the milk, then mix in the egg, yogurt and vanilla.  Stir wet ingredients into the dry, then add in the mashed bananas and sliced strawberries.  Pour into your prepared baking dish and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until set and beginning to turn golden on top.Strawberry Banana Baked Oatmeal with Strawberries and Cream (A Seat at the Table)

Serve with freshly sliced strawberries and a drizzle of half and half.  If you let the oatmeal sit for about 10 minutes it firms up and you can serve as squares for a more portable breakfast (or snack).

Blueberry Buttermilk Breakfast Cake

Happy Mother’s Day!!

Sister came down early to celebrate Mother’s Day, so we had our Mother’s Day brunch a day early.  When we were growing up Sister and I would make breakfast in bed for Mom.  So breakfast foods are our traditional celebration.  This year Mom requested this herbed ricotta tart, and something fruity for dessert (because it’s brunch you totally get a brunch dessert, right?)  So after a bit of Pinterest browsing we settled on this recipe.  It’s a great recipe!  This is the perfect amount of sweet and tart, with a great crumb and a slightly sweet crust.  The blueberries, burst with purple deliciousness and balance wonderfully with the lemon zest that gives this cake a fresh, vibrant taste.

Thanks, Mom for all that you do.  You’re absolutely amazing.  And you have excellent taste in cake 🙂

Blueberry Buttermilk Breakfast CakeBlueberry Buttermilk Breakfast Cake slice (A Seat at the Table)

Serves 4-6

Adapted from Alexandra’s Kitchen

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 large lemon, zested
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar (plus a Tbsp for sprinkling on top)
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (1/4 reserved for tossing with blueberries)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease an 8×8″ pan with cooking spray and set aside.

Cream butter with lemon zest until light, add sugar and continuing beating until fluffy.  Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined.Blueberry Buttermilk Breakfast Cake (A Seat at the Table)

Toss blueberries with 1/4 cup flour (this keeps the berries from sinking).  Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.  Alternate adding in the flour and the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour.  Be careful to only mix until just combined after each addition.  Fold in the blueberries.

Pour batter into the prepared baking dish and sprinkle with a little sugar.  Bake for about 35-40 minutes, or until golden on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Serve and enjoy!

Banana Bread Baked Oatmeal

These are a few of my favorite things.  Baked oatmeals are a favorite go-to breakfast for something a little extra special for company or for making ahead.  And of course you can’t go wrong with banana bread!  So this combo definitely caught my eye.  The bananas in this caramelize and add a deep richness that will definitely have you going back for more.  Add some nuts for a sweet toasty flavor and oats for fiber and texture.  This is very mildly sweet, so if you like a sweeter breakfast feel free to add more sugar, or you can serve this with a drizzle of maple syrup.

Banana Bread Baked OatmealBanana Bread Baked Oatmeal (A Seat at the Table)

Serves 8-10

Adapted from Budget Bytes

  • 4 large bananas, mashed (about 2 1/2 cups)
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3 cups milk
  • 3 3/4 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease a large baking dish (at least 2 quart size) with cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, mash the bananas, then add brown sugar, eggs, salt, vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Slowly whisk in the milk, then stir in the oats and nuts.

Pour mixture into prepared baking dish and cover with foil and bake for about 40 minutes.  Remove foil and bake for an additional 15 minutes until golden and the center is set.

Serve with milk and/or maple syrup, or just enjoy as is!

Blueberry Pancakes with Blueberry Sauce

So blueberries are back in the stores!  Yippee!  I adore fresh blueberries, and couldn’t resist the temptation to buy some on a whim when I saw them last week.  So glad I did.  They’re fresh and bright, sweet and delicious, and the perfect taste of spring to keep me going through these ridiculously cold weeks we’ve been having.

In addition to eating them fresh from the carton, I whipped up a batch of blueberry pancakes, to really indulge with this fruity delight.

I also made a blueberry sauce with frozen berries to serve on top.

Blueberry Pancakes with Blueberry SauceBlueberry Pancakes

Serves 4-6

Adapted from Crepes of Wrath

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 2 1/2 cups milk
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 cup (or more) fresh blueberries
  • 1 Tbsp flour, for the blueberries

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl and set aside.  Separate the eggs, placing egg whites in a medium bowl, and egg yolks in a large bowl.  Add milk, vanilla, olive oil, and lemon zest to the bowl with the egg yolks, and whisk until well mixed.  Mix into the dry ingredients until just combined.  Then beat the egg whites with an electric whisk until stiff peaks form (it’ll look like whipped cream).  In a small bowl, toss blueberries with flour and fold into the batter.  Carefully fold the egg whites into the batter, leaving it kind of chunky from the egg whites, which will make super soft and fluffy pancakes.

Preheat griddle to 350°, or heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Lightly grease with cooking spray.  Scoop batter (about 1/3 cup each) onto hot griddle.  When bubble start to form on top, flip the pancakes and allow to cook for another minute or two.  Remove from pan and add next batch.  Serve with blueberry sauce and/or maple syrup.

Blueberry SauceBlueberry Pancakes with Blueberry Sauce

  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup sugar (or more to taste)
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen blueberries

In a small saucepan, bring water and cornstarch to a simmer, mixing well until cornstarch dissolves.  Add sugar and blueberries and bring to a boil.  Press blueberries against the side of the pot with a spatula to help them burst as they heat up.  Let simmer for 10-15 minutes, until thickened.

Hearty Spiced Oatcakes

These oatcakes are dense and hearty and filled with oat-y goodness.  I wasn’t sure what I thought of these at first, but they definitely grew on me.  They aren’t muffins, they’re way too dense and substantial to be muffins.  But that makes them a great breakfast or snack, they have serious staying power.  These are excellent with a cup of coffee or some Earl Grey.

Hearty Spiced OatcakesHearty Spiced Oatcakes

Makes 1 dozen

Adapted from In Jennie’s Kitchen

  • 3 cups old fashioned rolled oats
  • 2 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup  ground flaxseeds (or wheat germ might work too)
  • 1/4 cup chopped toasted walnuts (optional)
  • 1/3 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 325°F.  Grease muffin tin with cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine oats, flour, baking powder, salt, spices, flaxseeds, and walnuts.

Add coconut oil, butter, syrup and sugar to a small pot and heat over medium-low heat until the sugar has dissolved and the butter has melted.  Pour over the dry ingredients and use a fork to mix together.  Add eggs and continue to mix until fully incorporated.

Divide the dough into the prepared muffin tin.  Bake for 22-25 minutes until golden and set.  Let cool on a wire rack and store in an airtight container for up to a week.

Overnight Baked French Toast

This is the perfect recipe for a crowd.  It’s easy to make the night before, it doesn’t take forever to bake, and you don’t have to be standing in the kitchen flipping French Toast when you’d rather be spending time with your guests.

I made this with a cinnamon swirl bread from Great Harvest Bread.  It’s delicious and decadent, but using challah or brioche would also be great choices.  Since I used cinnamon bread I didn’t add any extra cinnamon, but I’ll include it below in case your bread doesn’t include cinnamon.

Overnight Baked French ToastOvernight Baked French Toast

Serves 6-8

Adapted from Cook Like A Champion

  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 loaf (about 1 1/4 lbs) good bread (cinnamon swirl, brioche, challah), in 1″ slices
  • 3 egg whites
  • 5 whole eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (more or less to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 cup chopped pecans (or walnuts)

Combine melted butter and brown sugar in a non-stick 9×13″ pan.  Arrange bread slices in the dish (these will overlap).  In a large bowl, whisk together egg whites, eggs, milk, vanilla, cinnamon and ginger.  Pour mixture evenly over the bread.  Top with pecans and cover dish with plastic wrap.  Refrigerate overnight.Overnight Baked French Toast

In the morning, bring baking dish to room temperature for about 20 minutes while you preheat the oven to 350°F.  Bake until golden and set, about 30-35 minutes.  Serve with syrup, powdered sugar, fresh fruit, or just enjoy it plain.

Apple Pie Baked Oatmeal

This might be my new favorite breakfast!  It’s nice and chewy, the toasted nuts are delicious, the apples stay firm, the spices are subtle but warm.  This didn’t really hold its shape, but I’m not concerned with looks as long as it tastes good!  Next time I’ll probably just make this in a 9×9″ baking dish instead of a pie pan…or maybe double it and make it in a 9×13.  Will definitely be making this again!  It came together quickly and while it takes a while to cook it just encouraged me to get my workout in early in the day–it’s a win-win!

Apple Pie Baked Oatmeal

Serves 6

Adapted from Nutritious Eats

  • 2 apples, peeled and chopped (I used granny smith)
  • 2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 375°F.  Grease a 9 1/2″ pie dish with cooking spray and set aside.

In a large bowl, mix together apples, oats, baking powder, pecans, spices and salt.  In a separate bowl, whisk together milk, eggs, oil, maple syrup and vanilla.  Stir wet ingredients into the dry until just combined.  Carefully pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes.  Cover with foil during the last 5 minutes if the top gets brown quickly.  Let stand for about 10 minutes before serving.