Recipe courtesy of Judy's Kitchen (
Adapted from Pillsbury 
Rating:  9 out of 10


1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries

1/4 cup apple brandy

1 Tbsp. water

1 cup + 1 Tbsp. bread flour (or 1 cup + 2 Tbsp. unbleached all-purpose flour) 
1 tsp.. baking soda

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. each:  Diamond kosher salt, freshly grated nutmeg, powdered cloves

1/4 cup toasted chopped pecans (or other nut of choice)

1/4 cup butter, melted + 1/4 cup extra-virgin unrefined coconut oil

   (or use 1/2 cup butter, if preferred) 
1/2 cup sugar (I used 1/4 cup sugar + 1 Tbsp.  NuNaturals Stevia) 
1 large egg

3/4 cup thick applesauce

6 Tbsp. milk

In small saucepan, combine cranberries, brandy and water.  Bring to a full boil over high heat; boil 2 minutes; cover pot.  Steep 1/2 hour, till liquids are absorbed and mixture cools to warm.  In the meantime, set out a 12-cup muffin tin.  Spray with nonstick cooking spray, or line with paper baking cups.  (Spray paper cups with nonstick cooking spray for easier release.)  Set out remaining muffin ingredients to bring to room temperature.  Heat oven to 350F.

In small bowl, whisk together flour, soda, spices, salt and nuts.  In medium bowl, whisk together butter and sugar till combined and almost smooth.  (Depending on room temperature, the coconut oil, if using, may not be totally smooth.)  Whisk in egg, applesauce and milk and beat till well combined.  Pour liquids and cranberries over dry ingredients and mix with spoon or spatula lightly and briefly just till barely combined.  Do not overmix or muffins will be tough.

Fill muffin cups with scant 1/4 cup batter.  Bake 15-18 minutes, or till toothpick inserted near center returns with just a few crumbs.  Cool on wire racks.  Garnish tops with powdered sugar.  Yield:  12 muffins