The Happy Home Cook: Calamansi-Lemon Muffins

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Calamansi-Lemon Muffins (Photo by Elizabeth Ann Quirino)

Calamansi-Lemon Muffins (Photo by Elizabeth Ann Quirino)

I was told there are calamansi muffins much sought after at a café-restaurant in Boracay, a favorite beach destination in the Philippines. Many have written to ask me if I knew the secret recipe. I heard that customers line up in the morning for these calamansi muffins, place their order and then come back for them in the afternoon. Or if one is late, those famous muffins are sold out. I can understand the longing for a delicious treat. But since I cannot fly off to that resort cafe right now, I bake these instead. My version of this recipe was inspired by the sites and and makes about 12 muffins.

all purpose flour - 1 and 1/2 cups
baking powder - 1 teaspoon
salt - 1/4 teaspoon
fresh calamansi juice - 1/4 cup, or use frozen concentrate (from Asian markets)
whole milk - 1/4 cup
butter (unsalted) - 1/2 cup or 1 stick, softened
granulated sugar - 1 cup
eggs - 2 large
lemon juice - 1/8 cup, for sprinkling on muffins after baking


  • Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients flour, baking powder and salt. Sift together by using a wire whisk and blending it around the bowl. Set aside.

  • In a small bowl, combine the calamansi or lemon juice and the milk. Mix and set aside.

  • Using a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar till fluffy for about 2 minutes.

  • Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Beat for 2 to 3 minutes.

  • Pour the calamansi-milk mixture.

  • Lastly, add the dry ingredients and blend the batter well by beating for 2 to 3 minutes till smooth. Do not overbeat the batter.

  • Line a cupcake or muffin pan with paper liners. Fill each cup with 3/4 of the calamansi batter. Divide equally to yield 12 pieces. Bake at 350 F for 20 to 22 minutes. Test if done by piercing the middle of one muffin with the tip of a small sharp knife. If tip comes clean, muffin is done.

  • Take out of the oven and cool on the counter for 2 to 3 minutes. Using a teaspoon, sprinkle a few drops  lemon juice over the newly baked, still warm muffin for an additional citrusy flavor.

  • Remove the muffins from the cupcake pans. Cool on cake racks for 30-40 minutes.

Elizabeth Ann Quirino

Elizabeth Ann Quirino

Elizabeth Ann Quirino, based in New Jersey, is a journalist, food writer and member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP). She blogs about Filipino home cooking and culinary travels to the Philippines on her site

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