Banana Chocolate Espresso Swirl Muffins

Banana Chocolate Muffins
Photography by Stephen DeVries

We’re not sure if these muffins are breakfast or dessert, but we promise not to judge if you eat one (okay, three) of them hot out of the oven. (They’re THAT good).  

5.0 from 3 reviews
Banana Chocolate Espresso Swirl Muffins
Makes 8
  • 1 cup (170 grams) semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1½ tablespoons (27 grams) espresso powder
  • 2¼ cups (281 grams) all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup (150 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon (1.5 grams) kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon (2 grams) ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon (1 gram) grated fresh nutmeg
  • 1½ cups mashed banana
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup (112 grams) vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup whole buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon unsulphered molasses
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 8 jumbo muffin cups with parchment or paper liners, or spray with cooking spray.
  2. In the top of a double boiler, melt chocolate with espresso powder over simmering water. Remove from heat, and let cool. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Make a well in the center of mixture. In a medium bowl, whisk together mashed banana, eggs, oil, buttermilk, molasses, and vanilla. Add to dry ingredients, stirring just until moistened. Spoon 1½ cups (330 grams) batter into a separate bowl, and stir in chocolate-espresso mixture.
  3. Spoon banana batter into prepared muffin cups, filling two-thirds full. Using the back of a spoon, make a shallow trench in the middle of each muffin cup. Spoon in chocolate-espresso batter, and swirl with a wooden pick. Bake until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool in pans for 5 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.


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  1. These are fantastic. Although there is an error that I caught, simply a typo on the gram weight for the espresso powder- I weigh my ingredients so I caught it right away, 27 grams of espresso powder is half of a 2 oz (57g) jar, and WAY more than 1.5 tablespoons. I’m guessing it was supposed to read 7g, as that is much closer to how much a tablespoon and a half of the powder actually weighs. Using 7g (1.5 tbsp) of espresso powder, my muffins turned out just fine.

    • Baking soda is the leavening agent as long as there is an acid-buttermilk in this case.

      These were so good! Brought to a ladies brunch and were a hit!

    • Hey Deb,

      That recipe original comes from our Bake from Scratch Winter 2016 issue. As Hoffman media is our publisher, they compiled a number of our bread recipes into one giant collection. So the recipes are one and the same and all owned by Hoffman! Hope this helps.

  2. I don’t keep molasses in my pantry so I am wondering if I omit it will it make a big difference in the recipe? Is there something else I can substitute in its place?

    • Hi Becca,

      thank you for reaching out! Although we have not tested this recipe with anything other than molasses, you can substitute the molasses for honey, maple syrup, or dark corn syrup with the same amount of molasses that the recipe calls for. Happy Baking!

    • Hey Karina,

      Try using instant coffee in place of the espresso powder. Adding extra liquid to the batter will change the consistency so we suggest using another powdered ingredient. In a pinch, you can also use coffee grounds, though that will be less fine than espresso powder.

  3. These tasted excellent, but I have comments about the recipe. It says it makes 8 muffins. I filled 12 of my large muffin tins and it used about half of the batter so it makes a LOT more than it says. Also, it says to make a well in the batter to put the chocolate into, but my batter was far too wet to make a hole. Also, it says to cool the chocolate after melting. As it cools, it gets more solid so even though mine was still slightly warm, it was a firm glob of mud sitting in a ball in a liquid muffin. It wasn’t possible to swirl with a toothpick. I managed to just break pieces off of the center blob to push around into the batter instead of swirls.

    Despite all of the above, they baked beautifully, and had a fantastic texture and flavor and I will be making these again!

    • I have a new batch in the oven because I loved these so much that I wanted to make them again. I discovered I missed an entire step the first time I made them before. I didn’t notice that we were supposed to mix part of the banana batter with the chocolate mixture. The first time I made these, I used the chocolate/espresso mixture alone as the middle dollops and that was awesome. We’ll see how that compares to new batch where I did the mix correctly.


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