recipe image

These muffins deliver the flavor of sweet and lemony cheesecake in a quick and easy breakfast sweet.

Why this recipe works:

  • Softening the butter before combining it with other ingredients allows for easier mixing when you’re forming a batter by hand.
  • We spoon cheesecake filling into the center of the raw batter directly in the muffin tins before baking; The cream cheese filling bakes right in.
  • The recipe is designed to be made in stages, all in a single bowl, in order to minimize cleanup.

Notes: To spoon the cheese filling into batter, follow these steps: Fill a tablespoon with cheese filling. Dip the tablespoon into the batter and, using another spoon, scrape the filling as deep into the batter as possible. (Note: much of the filling will stay towards the top). There is no need to wash bowl throughout this recipe. If some of the batters combine, that is fine. If there is more than a tablespoon of cheese filling leftover, discard before mixing streusel.

For Muffins:

  • 8 tablespoons (4 ounces) unsalted butter, softened

  • 1 cup (7 ounces) granulated sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 2 teaspoons zest from 2 lemons

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1/2 cup milk

  • 1 2/3 cup (8 1/3 ounces) all-purpose flour

  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

For Cheese Filling:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened

  • 1/3 cup (2 1/3 ounces) granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon juice from 1 lemon

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 large egg yolk

For Streusel:

  • 1/2 cup (2 1/2 ounces) plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

  • 1/4 cup (1 3/4 ounces) packed light brown sugar

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

  • 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, softened

  1. Muffin batter: Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and preheat to 375°F. Line 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners. Stir butter, sugar, salt, and zest in large bowl until creamy and light. Whisk in eggs, one at a time, until completely combined. Whisk in vanilla and milk. Add flour and baking powder to bowl, then whisk until just combined. Spoon batter into cups.

  2. Make cheese filling: In same unwashed bowl, stir cream cheese and sugar until creamy. Whisk in lemon juice, vanilla, and yolk until completely combined. Spoon tablespoon sized portions of cheese filling into batter (see note).

  3. Make streusel: In the same unwashed bowl (see note), toss flour, brown sugar, salt, and butter until mixture forms moist crumbs. Press onto top of muffins.

  4. Bake until golden and center is just set, about 18 to 21 minutes. Let muffins cool in pan 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack to cool. Serve warm or room temperature. Store leftovers in refrigerator.

Special equipment

12-cup muffin pan, paper liners

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
392 Calories
20g Fat
48g Carbs
6g Protein

Show Full Nutrition Label
Hide Full Nutrition Label


Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12
Amount per serving
Calories 392
% Daily Value*
20g 26%
Saturated Fat 12g 58%
112mg 37%
297mg 13%
48g 17%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 27g
Vitamin C 1mg 3%
Calcium 107mg 8%
Iron 2mg 9%
Potassium 97mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Read More