Loaded with three kinds of chocolate, these moist triple chocolate muffins are the perfect breakfast or afternoon treat. Cocoa powder, bittersweet melted chocolate and chocolate chips fill these fluffy muffins. They are so simple to make and don't even require a mixer!
This is a typical muffin recipe where you mix the dry ingredients together, mix the wet ingredients together and then combine the two. Here are a few notes on the ingredients.
- Natural Unsweetened Cocoa Powder- The cocoa powder reacts with the brown sugar and leaveners to help the muffins rise. It's best to stick with natural cocoa powder instead of dutch processed cocoa powder or the muffins won't rise as much.
- Leaveners: baking soda and baking powder- Both leaveners are used in these triple chocolate muffins for the tallest muffins. The baking soda helps the rise by reacting with teh acids in the recipe (sour cream, cocoa and brown sugar). The baking powder gives the muffins extra oomphf and allows us to rest the batter slightly before baking for the tallest muffin tops (more on that below!).
- Sour Cream- Sour cream thickens the batter, adds extra structure and fat for a tender, slightly dense muffin that is super moist!
- Vegetable Oil- Oil keeps these muffins really moist. You can use canola oil if you don't have vegetable oil.
- Instant Espresso Powder- This may seem like a weird ingredient but chocolate is enhanced by espresso powder. You'll see many chocolate cake recipes with coffee added to the batter, like in my chocolate sheet cake with salted caramel buttercream for this very reason. Espresso powder works the same way. The chocolate flavor is enhanced without leaving any coffee flavor behind. This is my favorite brand of instant espresso powder- Medaglia D'Oro. If you don't have any, you can skip it without negatively affecting the recipe but it really will intensify the chocolate flavor.
- Chocolate- Bittersweet chocolate is melted and used in the muffin batter while chocolate chips are folded in at the end for some more texture and deep chocolate flavor. I tested these triple chocolate muffins with semisweet chocolate chips and also milk chocolate chips. The choice is yours! Milk chocolate will make a bit sweeter muffin.
Tips for the best muffins
- Measure Flour Correctly!-Often repeated here, this is one of the most fundamental baking tips. Do not scoop flour from the bag or canister with your measuring cup. This is result in too much flour and dry baked goods. If you don't have a food scale (I have this affordable scale from Amazon) then use the spoon and level technique to measure flour. Lightly spoon the flour into the measuring cup and then use a knife to level the top off.
- Room Temperature Ingredients- When eggs and sour cream are room temperature it helps the batter mix evenly and reduces the chance of overmixing. I put my eggs in a bowl of warm water and microwave sour cream for a few seconds.
- Avoid Overmixing- Another oft mentioned baking tip, overmixing the batter will overdevelop the gluten in the flour and make for dry and tough baked goods. When the dry ingredients are mixed in with some flour still visible, fold the chocolate chips in and stop just when the flour disappers and the chocolate chips are evenly distributed.
How to get tall muffin tops
To achieve tall muffin tops, I utilize two different techniques in these muffins.
- Two oven temperatures- Start with a high oven temperature for a few minutes before reducing the temperature for the rest of the baking time. We start with an oven temp of 425 for 5 minutes and then reduce it to 350 for the rest of the time. The high heat creates immediate lift in the muffins and then the reduced temperature prevents the muffins from burning.
- Resting the batter for 30 minutes before baking. You can do this in recipes using double acting baking powder (most baking powder sold in the US is double acting). Resting the batter allows the flour to be better absorbed, creating a thicker batter. You only want to rest batter with double acting baking powder because it will react with air bubbles when it's mixed with a liquid but also when it hits heat. Recipes with only baking soda will not rise as much with this technique because it acts when mixed with liquid and will lose effectiveness with more time. Some recipes state overnight refrigeration of the batter is best, but I found 30 minutes at room temperature was enough to create a pretty domed top.
How to evenly divide muffin batter
The best and easiest way to scoop muffin batter into the muffin tin is to use a large cookie scoop or ice cream scoop. I use this cookie scoop.
Scoop a full scoop of batter using the cookie scoop into each muffin liner, filling it to the top. If using a 3 tablespoon scoop, this should fill each to the top. This way, each muffin will be the same size and it's a mess-free way of scooping batter.
How to store the muffins
The muffins are best warm from the oven. If they've cooled, serve them after heating for 10-15 seconds in the microwave.
They will keep covered at room temperature for about 2 days.
For best results, use unsweetened natural cocoa powder. It will contribute to the muffins rising.
Yes, you can substitute greek yogurt for the sour cream. Be sure to use full fat greek yogurt for the best results!
Muffins freeze really well. Place them in a zip top bag or sealed container and freeze for up to 3 months. To defrost them, just put them in the refrigerator overnight and they will be ready the next day. Heat them up in the microwave for 10-15 seconds before enjoying.
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Tag me on Instagram @themarblekitchenblog if you make this and leave a star rating and comment below! Thank you and enjoy!
Triple Chocolate Muffins
- 4 oz bittersweet chocolate finely chopped
- 1 ¾ cups (210 grams) all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup (35 grams) natural unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ brown sugar packed
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt use half the amount if using table salt
- 2 teaspoon instant espresso powder optional but highly recommended!
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup sour cream room temperature
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 1 cup semisweet or milk chocolate chips plus additional for the tops
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Prepare 2 muffinn tins with 14 paper liners.
- In a medium microwave safe bowl, melt the chocolate in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring after each one until completely melted. Let the chocolate cool for at least 10 minutes.
- In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder,brown and white sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and espresso powder.
- Once the chocolate has cooled, whisk in the eggs, oil and sour cream until combined.
- Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, stirring until almost all of the flour is stirred in.
- Add the chocolate chips and stir until they are just evenly combined and avoid overmixing.
- Divide the mix between the muffin cups, filling to the top. Top with additional chocolate chips if desired.
- Bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 425 degrees and then turn down the temperature to 350 and continue to bake for 11-12 minutes more until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
- Let cool for a couple minutes in the pan before enjoying!