Most of the time, when I make someone else’s recipe, it’s because I just happen to have most of the ingredients readily available in my kitchen. I browse through a cookbook hoping for something to do with what I have on hand, then find the recipe that aligns with my pantry, and the rest is history. That did not happen with these buns.
Here is the order of events, without embellishment: I saw this recipe (and the delectable picture in the Magnolia Bakery Cookbook), and instantly went to the grocery store for cream cheese and more unsalted butter. Next, I stopped at Marshall’s and found some fancy raspberry preserves…and actually bought a jumbo muffin tin. That’s right, I didn’t even have the proper utensils. I spent all that money, all for this one recipe. Usually, I can’t justify spending that much for a one-time thing (that makes about 6-8 so-horrible-for-you-it’s-beyond-delicious buns). I will tell you this, though—I have never regretted it. I have made these, time and time again. And I have shared them with friends all over the place.
It saddens me that, of all the things I have concocted myself and bestowed to my loved ones, they only remember this particular recipe. What’s worse, is that when they refer to these buns, they use the possessive pronoun “your,” indicating that they think that I came up with these. I did not. And try as I might, I can’t even think of a way to improve them, to make them a bit more “mine.” What’s more is that this isn’t even a particularly challenging recipe that I have mastered at replicating. No, no—these are, quite simply, some of the most delicious, easy-to-make things I have ever encountered. I’d venture to say they are impossible to screw up.
But! I will share a few helpful tips for those of you seeking to make the absolute best version of these you can imagine:
1) Find yourself some Black Raspberry Preserves and use them for the raspberry swirl in this recipe. It’s a great investment.
2) Cooking spray doesn’t work quite as well as plain ol’ butter when greasing the jumbo muffin pan.
3) If you fill these more than 2/3 of the way full, they will overflow. They will still taste awesome, but it will be miserable to clean up.
4) I like to use whole milk for this recipe, but 2% works, as well. I really wouldn’t do skim here. These are already rich, and there’s no going back. It’s only a quarter of a cup of the stuff, so it won’t make a huge difference. I’d cut calories elsewhere (i.e., nowhere near this recipe).
I have been to Magnolia Bakery several times while visiting New York City, and I have never tried these there. I haven’t even bothered looking for them, either. It is partially because I am a vanilla cupcake kind of gal, but also because I never feel as though I have to. This recipe is so good that I don’t even care to try the originals from the bakery itself, because I can’t imagine them getting any better. Also, my head might pop if they were, and we all know I need my mind intact so I can continue sharing recipes with you.
Raspberry Cream Cheese Breakfast Buns
Magnolia recipe can be found here
1¾ all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
½ pound (one 8 oz package) cream cheese, softened
½ cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
¼ cup milk
½ tsp vanilla extract
½ cup raspberry preserves (again, black raspberry is best, but it’s at least preferable that the preserves are seedless)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and lightly flour bun pan or large muffin cups. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, beat together the cream cheese, butter, and sugar until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs and beat well. Add the dry ingredients in two parts, alternating with the milk and vanilla. Spoon the batter into the bun pan or muffin cups, filling them about 2/3 full. Drop 3 small dollops (about a teaspoonful each) of preserves onto the top of each bun and, using the tip of a sharp knife, swirl the preserves into the batter, forming a decorative pattern. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of the bun comes out clean. Allow the buns to cool for about 30 min before sprinkling with confectioners’ sugar and serving.