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Oat Bran Muffins:

1 cup (115 grams) oat bran

1/2 cup (65 grams) whole wheat flour

1/2 cup (65 grams) all purpose flour

1/2 cup (100 grams) light brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons (6 grams) baking powder

1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) baking soda

1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons freshly grated orange zest (outer skin of orange)

1/2 cup (75 grams) raisins (golden or dark)

1 large egg (50 grams), at room temperature

1/4 cup (60 ml/85 grams) unsulphured molasses

1 teaspoon (4 grams) pure vanilla extract (optional)

2 tablespoons (25 grams) flavorless oil (vegetable, corn, canola, safflower, or a light olive oil)

3/4 cup (180 ml) buttermilk, at room temperature

1/2 cup (120 ml) milk, at room temperature

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Oat Bran Muffins: Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) and place the oven rack in the center of the oven. Line a 12 cup muffin pan with paper liners or you can butter or spray the muffin cups with a nonstick vegetable spray.

In a large bowl, stir or whisk together the oat bran, flours, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon, and orange zest. Stir in the raisins.

In another bowl, whisk the egg, and then stir in the molasses, vanilla extract, oil, buttermilk, and milk.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and stir just until combined. Do not overmix.

Evenly fill the muffin cups with the batter. If desired, sprinkle the tops of the muffins with rolled oats. Bake for about 15 to 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.

Makes about 12 standard-sized muffins.


I like Bran Muffins. Sometimes I make them using wheat bran, but for this recipe I'm using oat bran. Both types of bran are high in fiber and minerals so they are very satisfying and give you that wonderful "full" feeling. Besides the nutty flavor of oat bran, these muffins contain whole wheat flour, molasses, cinnamon, vanilla, and orange zest.

A few notes on ingredients. First, there are two types of bran, wheat and oat. Both come from the outer casing of a grain. Only wheat bran comes from the wheat berry, and oat bran is from the oat. When buying oat bran, make sure it is labeled "100% oat bran" with no other ingredients added. It is now readily available in most grocery stores, often located either on the cereal isle, along with the rolled oats, or in the organic food section. Another place you can find it is in health food stores.

Besides oat bran, these muffins contain all purpose and whole wheat flour. Whole wheat flour is flour that is milled from the entire whole wheat berry, so it still contains its bran (fiber) and its germ (rich in oil, protein, iron and vitamins). This makes it rich in fiber and it also has a nutty toasted flavor. I also added some molasses, which is used in baked goods to add color, moistness and flavor. Molasses is usually labeled as "sulphured" or "unsulphured" depending on whether sulphur was used in the processing. I like to use unsulphured molasses which is lighter in color and I prefer its mild flavor. Lastly, we do add some buttermilk, along with some milk, which adds a wonderful tangy flavor and moist texture.You can make a good substitute for commerical buttermilk by stirring 3/4 tablespoon of white distilled vinegar, cider vinegar, or lemon juice into 3/4 cup (180 ml) of milk. Let stand 5 to 10 minutes at room temperature before using.