Fluffy Orange-Cranberry-Pear Muffins with Orange Curd Icing

Makes 8 Muffins

These tender muffins have such a bright, fresh, and tangy flavor — perfect for Spring or Summer! They can be eaten as a breakfast or snack, but are still sweet enough for dessert. Plus, they're a great way to sneak in a serving of fruit and some omega-3s (chia+flax)!







1 tbsp whole flax seeds


1 tbsp chia seeds


5 tbsp water


3 tbsp oil


¼ cup dark brown sugar


¼ cup white sugar


3 tbsp fresh orange juice


3 tbsp pear juice


1 tbsp molasses


1 tsp vanilla


2 cups white flour


1 ½ tsp baking powder


⅛ tsp salt


¼ tsp baking soda


¼ - ½ cup cranberries (depending on how many you like)


¼ cup fresh orange zest (about 1 large orange fully zested)


¼ cup pear, chopped

Orange Curd (Optional):


3 cups powdered sugar


1 tbsp orange zest


5 tbsp orange juice


½ stick cold vegan butter (¼ cup), cubed



Start by soaking your cranberries in a bowl filled with warm water, set aside. 

Next, preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and grease or line 1 standard 12-cup muffin tray.

Make the "egg" by combining flax and chia seeds in a small bowl with 3 tbsp warm water. Set aside for a couple minutes to thicken.

In a large bowl, whisk together the oil and sugars. Whisk in orange juice, pear juice, molasses, and vanilla. Mix in the "egg" and last 2 tbsp of water.

In a medium bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients and gradually sift them into the wet mixture. Batter should be airy and thick!

Then, using a standard ice cream scoop or 2 spoons, transfer batter to muffin trays. Fill each cup about ¾ full, but be careful not to overfill them. If desired, top each with a sprinkle of white sugar and orange zest, as well as a couple cranberries and pieces of chopped pear!

Bake for 20 - 30 minutes, or until muffins have puffed up, are golden brown, and a toothpick inserted into one's center comes out clean.

Let muffins cool for at least 15 minutes in trays before transferring to a cooling rack.

Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days or freeze for up to a month. To thaw frozen muffins, warm them quickly in oven or microwave, or leave at room temp until soft throughout.

Now for the curd: In a small pot, whisk together sugar, zest, and juice. 

Place on stove over a medium - low heat and stir frequently until mixture has thickened quite a bit, 5-10 minutes. 

Let cool for about 5 minutes before adding in butter. Stir the curd until smooth and jelly-like. 

Let it chill/set for about 25 minutes in fridge before spooning desired amount onto cooled muffins. I topped each with a sprinkle of candied orange peel. 

Once the curd sets and cools fully on the muffins, it will resemble more of a thick icing.


Feel free to sub in ground flax meal for the whole flax seeds in a 1:1 ratio.

I use canola oil, but olive oil or grapeseed oil are fine. 

I use canned pears and their juice.

Try This Recipe? Rate It!