Homemade English Muffins – Huckleberry Cafe English Muffins

Homemade English Muffins, an easy, freezer-friendly recipe, inspired by Jennifer Garner’s recreation of the English muffins from Huckleberry Cafe in Santa Monica. Soft, chewy, and complete with “nooks and crannies” -these homemade English muffins are way better than store-bought.

huckleberry english muffin with jam and coffee and a tray of muffins in the background

I tuned into an episode of Jennifer Garner’s Fake Cooking Show, and she was making homemade English muffins from the Huckleberry cookbook. I had that book sitting on my bookshelf yet somehow missed this awesome recipe. Ava had also mentioned she was craving an English muffin, so I knew I had to give this recipe a go.

A friend of mine brought me something similar to an English muffin from the UK. Do they call them English muffins in the UK or just muffins? I toasted it, slathered it in French butter and jam and it was the highlight of my week. Sometimes the simplest things bring the most joy.


This recipe works like a charm. It takes a little planning, but I promise it’s worth it. There is truly nothing better than freshly baked bread in the morning. Anything you can make ahead for breakfast is a plus in my book.

ingredients for huckleberry english muffins

Ingredients //

  • Buttermilk – brings a bit of tang to the muffins and helps tenderize the dough.
  • Active Dry Yeast – helps breads rise.
  • Butter (room temperature) – helps achieve a lighter, crispier crust on the muffins.
  • Honey – adds a subtle sweetness and golden color.
  • Bread Flour – has a higher gluten content than all-purpose flour and helps the dough rise.
  • Sugar – further activates the yeast and adds flavor.
  • Salt – flavors and helps the dough hold its structure.
  • Cornmeal – ensures the dough is manageable once it’s ready to be browned.

How to Make // The Steps

collage of steps for making huckleberry english muffins
  • Step 1. Prepare the buttermilk. In the microwave or on the stovetop, heat 1 1/2 cups of buttermilk to 105 degrees. In a standing mixer fitted with the dough hook, add remaining cold buttermilk. In the standing mixer with the cold buttermilk, pour in the warm buttermilk followed by butter, honey, bread flour, sugar, and salt.
  • Step 2. Mix dough. Mix ingredients on low for 1 minute, then increase speed and continue mixing for another 2 minutes until a sticky but smooth dough forms.
  • Step 3. Let dough rise in the fridge. Put the dough in a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for one hour.
  • Step 4. Prepare baking sheets and work surfaces. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper, sprinkle 1/4 cup of the cornmeal, and set aside. Sprinkle half of the remaining cornmeal on a sanitized work surface.
  • Step 5. Shape dough. After an hour, remove dough from the fridge and place it on a clean work surface. Turn the dough and sprinkle the top with remaining cornmeal. Press the dough out to about a 1-inch thickness. Use a 3-inch round cutter to cut out the rounds, cutting out as many as possible (dough can not be pressed back out).
  • Step 6. Let dough rise again. Place the muffins on the sheet pan, 1″ apart, cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for one hour.
  • Step 7. Bake homemade English muffins. Preheat oven to 350°. Once preheated, heat a griddle or cast-iron skillet on medium-high heat. Place the muffins in the hot pan. Cook muffins, one minute per side, until golden brown. Arrange the par-cooked muffins on the sheet pans and bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Depending on the size of your skillet, you may need to work through this step in batches.
huckleberry english muffin dough on a griddle to be baked

Tips & Tricks //

  • You can mix by hand if you need to. Just be careful not to overwork the dough or over-flour. The dough will be very sticky but able to form into a smooth bowl.
  • If you don’t have a 3-inch cutter, you can fold a sheet of foil a couple of times and round it into a circle.
  • The dough will fall flat if pressed out more than once. That said, you want to cut out the rounds as close as possible to make as many muffins as possible.
  • To save yourself time in the morning, the dough can be mixed and cut the night before, stored in the fridge overnight, and then removed from the fridge to rise at room temperature an hour before going into the oven.
  • I start these the night before, cut them out, and place them on semolina lined baking sheet, cover, refrigerate and griddle the next morning
  • Whatever you do, do NOT cut these with a knife. It will ruin all of the “nooks and crannies”. Fork split only.

Ways to Use English Muffins //

  • Using a fork (as not to disturb the “nooks and crannies”), split English muffins open, toast, and serve warm smeared with butter, jelly, jam, nut butter, etc.
  • Use them in your favorite Eggs Benedict recipes.
  • Load them up breakfast sandwich style with sausage or bacon, egg, cheese, etc (PS: breakfast sandwiches like this freeze and reheat in the microwave really well).
  • Stuf English muffins with your favorite cold cuts and sliced cheeses.
  • Use English muffins as the “crust” and make mini-pizzas!
huckleberry english muffins on a plate with jam and dish of muffins and coffee in the background

Why are Homemade English Muffins So Good?

  • Making English muffins from scratch is easier than you think and so much better than store-bought.
  • Freezer-friendly. Make a batch and stash it in the freezer.
  • Versatile breakfast bread. Great served toasted with butter or jam, as a breakfast sandwich or with eggs Benedict.
  • Made with simple ingredients and basic pantry items.
huckleberry english muffins fresh from the oven

FAQ //

What makes English muffins different from “quick bread”?

The main difference is English muffins are yeast-activated while “quick breads” (cornbread, biscuits, muffins, etc.) are activated by baking soda and baking powder.

What do they call English muffins in England?

I had to look it up. They’re simply called muffins and they’re most similar to “crumpets.”

Will it still work if I chill the dough for 3 to 4 hours instead of overnight?

The long time in the fridge develops flavor. I think that you can shorten this step, but I’ve never done it shorter than overnight, I can’t promise an outcome.

dish of huckleberry english muffins with jam and coffee

How to Store //

This recipe makes about 12 English muffins (I made the cutest baby ones with extra dough). If you have leftovers, you can keep them in an airtight container or freeze them.Store English muffins in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Make-Ahead and Freezer Options //

I sometimes make a double batch and freeze them in a single layer before putting them into a resealable freezer bag to grab whenever.

They keep in the freezer for one month. From frozen, give them a couple of seconds in the microwave to thaw and then toast them.

huckleberry english muffins on a plate with jam and dish of muffins and coffee in the background

More Brunch Recipes //

Nutella Swirl Banana Bread

Swedish Cardamom Buns

Streusel French Toast Casserole

Easy Buttermilk Biscuits

huckleberry english muffin with jam on a plate with jam and coffee and a tray of muffins in the background

Homemade English Muffins - Huckleberry Cafe English Muffins

Yield: 12 English Muffins
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 12 seconds
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes 12 seconds

Homemade English Muffin recipe - From Jennifer Garner's Fake Cooking Show. Homemade English Muffins from the Huckleberry Cafe in Santa Monica.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups buttermilk
  • 2 Tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 3 Tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • 3 Tablespoons honey
  • 6 cups bread flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup cornmeal

Instructions

Warm 1 1/2 cups buttermilk until warm. (I use a thermometer and warm it until it gets to 105°.)

Add the other 1 1/2 cups cold buttermilk to the bowl of a mixer fitted with the dough hook. Add yeast and stir to combine.

Add the warm buttermilk to the cold buttermilk. Add butter, honey, bread flour, sugar, and salt. Mix on low for a minute, then increase speed and mix for another two minutes. The dough will be very sticky, but smooth.

Put the dough in a greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in the fridge for one hour.

Line two sheet pans with parchment paper, sprinkle 1/4 cup cornmeal, and set aside.

After an hour, sprinkle half of the cornmeal on a clean work surface. Turn the dough. Sprinkle the top with the last 1/4 cup cornmeal. Press the dough out to about a 1-inch thickness.

Use a 3-inch round cutter to cut out the rounds. This dough cannot be re-rolled, so cut as closely as possible to get as many muffins as you can.

Place the muffins on the sheet pan, an inch apart, cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for one hour. Or, keep in the fridge overnight and let rise for an hour in the morning.

Preheat oven to 350°. When the oven is preheated, heat a griddle or cast iron skillet to medium-high heat.

Place the muffins in the hot pan, cook for a minute or until golden brown, flip and cool the other side.

Place the grilled muffins on the sheet pans and bake for 8 to 10 minutes. If you are working with a small pan or griddle, do this in batches.

Notes

This recipe makes about 12 English muffins. I made the cutest baby ones with extra dough. If you have leftovers, freeze for one month, or wrapped tightly for three days.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 373Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 938mgCarbohydrates: 70gFiber: 3gSugar: 12gProtein: 12g

Did you make this recipe?

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Oh hey there!

Well, hello there! I’m Bree Hester, the Boston-based blogger and food photographer here at Baked Bree. Here you can get lots of weeknight meal inspiration, eat more plant-based meals, and still indulge in a decadent sweet treat. Baked Bree is a place where you will find great recipes and inspiration for your next family adventure.

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This Post Has 22 Comments

  1. Colby

    Where is the butter used in the recipe? Is it just for greasing the bowl? I’ve reread a few times and I am not seeing it. Thanks!

    1. Bree Hester

      With the honey, flour, sugar, and salt. Sorry, I’ll fix the recipe card, thanks for catching it!

  2. Terry Bright

    If the dough is in the fridge for the first rising, is it really going to do much? I would think the cold temp would retard it’s growth. Also, you do not mention anything in the skillet – I would normally use clarified butter?

    1. Bree Hester

      Yes it does, it does exactly what it needs to do. They cook in a dry skillet.

  3. Brooks

    HI. Im going to make these today. Have you tried adding blueberries or cinnamon?

    1. Bree Hester

      No, I haven’t, but give it a shot.

  4. Brooks

    Another question…
    I don’t see directions to kneed the dough. My dough was so sticky! I made it work and was able to press it out and cut the rounds. But I was wondering if it needs kneeling with a little added flour… thx

    1. Bree Hester

      It is a really sticky dough. It doesn’t, unless you want a tough English muffin. This recipe came from Zoe Nathan and I trust her.

  5. Kyla

    Hi! I’m about to try making this for the first time but I don’t have a mixer so I’ll be mixing by hand — if you have any tips for making this without a mixer please let me know! I just read your comment about not needing to knead the dough so I’m worried I’ll overwork it but I’m giving it a shot anyway. Thanks!!

    1. Bree Hester

      I don’t think that you will over work it, it really just needs to come together into a smooth ball. But it will be VERY STICKY. So my tip is to make sure to not over-flour.

  6. Cheryl

    This is literally the worst recipe ever. It isn’t clear and it isn’t even correct. DO NOT MAKE THIS RECIPE! Waste of your time

    1. Bree Hester

      Sorry that you didn’t have success. I’ve made it many times and been very successful. It actually came from a pretty famous cookbook and I shared a video that showed you how to make with and what it was supposed to look like.

  7. Lydia

    I have made these English muffins several times after watching Jennifer Garner’s pretend cooking show. The muffins came out great. Thanks for the tip about only opening up the muffins with a fork, and not with a knife to preserve the nooks and crannies.

    1. Bree Hester

      I am so glad! Some of the commenters have had trouble with this recipe and made me doubt it, but I know that it works! And yes, FORK ONLY!!!

  8. Laurel

    Success! These are really great. Yes it doesn’t SEEEEM like it is going to work (sticky dough, fridge rise etc.) but it did and I have a very happy fam! Your website is beautiful.

    1. Bree Hester

      It doesn’t, you are so right, but it does! And thank you so much!

  9. Leslie Ung

    Yay!!! My english muffins came out perfectly!!! Thanks so much for an amazing recipie!! Everyone raved about it!!!

    1. Bree Hester

      Aren’t they amazing? It seems like they aren’t going to work, but they end up perfect! SO glad you loved them.

  10. Johanna Fitz

    Hi! I am OBSESSED with these English muffins and are adding them to my Christmas treat baskets for some friends. I have one question:

    I find that they work better if left in the fridge overnight. This is my first time making them in bulk. Is there a set amount of time they must be in the fridge for that to work? Usually they are in for about 7-8 hours before I take them out, but I would like to try and speed up the process a little. Would it still work if I only put them in the fridge for 3-4 hours? Thank you!

    1. Bree Hester

      The long time in the fridge develops flavor. I think that you can shorten this step, but I’ve never done it shorter than the overnight, so I can’t promise an outcome.

  11. Kelly

    Can you please verify the dough hook? A total of 3 mins doesn’t seem like it’s even enough time to even combine all of the ingredients using just the hook. I noticed JG used the paddle…

    1. Bree Hester

      Then use the paddle. Or mix it longer.

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