The more I drink beer, the more I pick up on flavors hidden within the layers of hops, grains, and yeast.
Those flavors get me thinking, “What would this beer tastes like with chicken? How would it marinade a steak? What happens if I substitute beer for the liquid in baking?”
Bringing a beer into your baked good ingredients list is a fast way to increase the maltiness and complexity of your recipe. Beer is a leavener and a liquid ingredient built into one, but make sure you’re not solely trading in beer as a one-to-one replacement. That is, if the recipe calls for a cup of milk or something that has fat, you still need to add the fat back in.
The RD in me says to add it back with an avocado or canola oil, both packing in some healthier fats. I learned from “The Beeroness” that you need at least two tablespoons of oil added to a one cup measuring cup, then fill the rest with your beer.
Cooking or baking with beer (as we’ve mentioned in previous posts) can be challenging and exciting. It’s like one big experiment. This time, I ignored the fat to beer ratio guideline and started random additions and substitutions. I ended up with a pretty good product. It’s a start at least!
Today’s experiment? Chocolate pumpkin porter muffins.
Oh yeah. We went there. What better time of the year to break out the holiday porters, creamy sweet stouts, and baking tins? As for the pumpkin, it’s fall, so that means I add some amount of pumpkin to about every recipe I make.
For these muffins, I grabbed a Liquid Aloha brew from Kona brewing company. If I had a porter brewed at home on hand, I’d suggest using that. As long as it is something dark, semi-sweet and sounds good to you, try it out!
Chocolate Pumpkin Porter Muffin Recipe
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup dark brown sugar (lightly packed)
- ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- ⅓ cup pumpkin puree
- ⅛ cup canola oil
- 1 cup (8oz) beer of choice
Set your oven to 350 degrees. Add all dry ingredients to a medium sized bowl. After mixing and blending all dry ingredients, add in the wet ingredients. When you pour in the beer, do so slowly. I used a mixer to make the batter but you could easily use a fork as well or a hand held mixer. As soon as your ingredients are blended, pour the batter into a cupcake tin one quarter of the way full. Mix should make 12 muffins. Bake for 20 minutes and enjoy!
If you’re looking to make the muffin sweeter try mixing in some chocolate chips or peanut butter chips. These muffins are meant to be healthier than your traditional sweet muffins loaded with extra butter and sugar, even if there’s beer added in. The idea is to enjoy a muffin that has notes of a beer so when you enjoy them together, it’s a perfect match.