Crunchy-Top Chocolate Chip Muffins

Store bought muffins always look twice the size of homemade muffins, with ballooning tops of crusty goodness. Why is that?

I figured out the deep dark secret they’re not telling you.

How does one get muffins twice the size?

Use twice the batter.

No really, I’m serious.

The crunchy part does have to do with the batter, but that big impressive top? You just don’t have enough batter in the muffin tin. Instead of filling tins 3/4 the way full, fill it more like this:

Fill it like you’re mimicking the size muffins usually are when they come out of the oven. By doing this, they will have huge, epically indulgent sized muffin tops.

They will merge together a little as a result of this muffin top party, but a simple butter knife will fix that. Also, make sure you spray the top of your pan, even if you use liners. The mufin top overflow can stick to your pan, which causes you to pull the top off without the rest of the muffin. I learned this the hard way. It’s cool though if you make my mistake, just do what I do. Eat it before anyone notices. :)

Don’t just take my batter doubling tip, take the recipe below too! Because it’s one thing to have big muffin tops and it’s a whole other to have CRUNCHY muffin tops. I sprinkled a little raw sugar on top, but it’s not even needed to keep these babies crunchy.

And the soft, fluffy, chocolatey stump ain’t nothing to scoff at either. I may be a muffin top gal, but no one else gets to eat my stump!

Try it, love it, report back if you have similar successes!

Crunchy-Top Chocolate Chip Muffins

Adapted from Crumbs and Cookies


  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1/3 cup milk or buttermilk
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks
  • raw sugar (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 400F. Lightly spray around the tops of 6 cups of a standard muffin tin with baking or oil spray. Line them with six paper liners or spray the cups as well.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Whisk the egg and sugar until pale and fluffy, a.k.a the “ribbon stage” (When the egg/sugar mixture drips in thick ribbons off the whisk). Pour in the oil and milk/buttermilk and whisk to combine.
  4. Stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture with a rubber spatula until just combined. Mix in the chocolate chunks. The batter should be thick and lumpy.
  5. Divide the batter among the paper liners such that they are overfilled in a dome as shown above. Sprinkle with raw sugar if desired. Let batter sit in pan for 5 minutes.
  6. Bake in preheated oven for about 15-20 minutes, or until a tester inserted into into the center of a muffin comes out clean (Watch out, a wet tester may just be due to melted chocolate!). Let cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then finish cooling on a wire rack. (Or eat warm after the first 10 minutes!)

31 thoughts on “Crunchy-Top Chocolate Chip Muffins

  1. OMG! these look so-so good, I love your muffin tops, they look irresistible. I want to make them right now.

    Thanks for sharing, and have a great day!

  2. I just made these and they are fantastic! They’re so crunchy (on top and on the bottom) and fluffy on the inside. I doubled the recipe but kept the same quantity of choc chip. It didn’t need any more choc chips. I added a little extra baking powder and oiled the muffin tin. Great recipe. Thanks :)

  3. Hey, I haven’t tried these yet, but I want to. Only problem is… I tried following some other ladies chocolate chip recipe, and the muffins came out hard on top and tasted bland.

    Ingredients i remember using were:

    2 cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 cup sugar , Olive Oil (1/3 cup) , 1 egg, 1/2 cup milk,

    I mixed olive oil with the milk, and then the egg (like she told me to) and then I mixed it into the flour and baking soda and sugar and chocolate and kept mixing, i even noticed that the batter was a bit dry….

    put them in, and they looked like porcupines on the top and were hard and bland and tasteless…

    which was weird , because I followed another recipe for Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins, which had no milk (only butter) and no olive oil or any type of oil . and it turned out awesome.

    Anyways, any idea where i screwed up, and what is the warranty that your muffin recipe will work??????


    • Also, I tried your ingredients, but it only was enough for 9 of the muffin slots. Hmmm…. any suggestions on what I should double to get 12 slots or even 24 ?


      • Hi Mohamed

        So your issues sound like they’re about ratios of wet to dry ingredients and not necessarily about using butter vs. oil vs. milk. These three products will have different results on flavour and texture, but ultimately it’s about how much these products vs. dry ingredients (like flour) you use. So the fact that the second recipe just used butter wasn’t an issue because it also had bananas to help with the amount of wet ingredients in the mix.

        I can’t guarantee anything with the muffin recipe as there’s lots of difference that can happen between your kitchen and mine (ovens heat at different temperatures, dry vs. moist climates, amount of mixing of the batter) I can only share what my personal experience was, and help you with yours if you need it. :)

        The recipe is actually for only SIX muffins, not even 9 because of the nature of overloading the muffin tin for a large muffin-top. If you want more muffins, a simple doubling of the entire recipe while following the same steps should work fine.

  4. I baked this lovely creatures this morning! I was out of milk so I replaced cream instead with little bit of mashed banana. It ended up baking for 30~35 minutes because my batter was cookie dough-like due to my substitution, but over all, they were very crunch-soft-at the same time. Very much like Einstein bro bagels’s streusel cupcake! Thanks for sharing the recipe! yumm

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  6. These tasted great and came out fine except that the underneath part of the tops were all burned. I did spray the pans with spray. Did I just leave them in too long? I did check with a toothpick and the middle wasn’t done so I just left them for 2 more minutes.

  7. I made these and the cinnamon bun muffins this morning to send with my husband to his army base.. The guys over there really love me! Thanks for such delicious and BEAUTIFUL recipes! Every single one looked flawless!
    Have a good week!

  8. They are so YUMMY! Just made them then and they are sooooooo good! Thx for the recipe! Been looking for Hardtop Muffins forever!

  9. Hi

    I tried the recipe but the outcome was not as expected :/ My muffin took a longer time to cook and the texture was quite tough. I filled the batter to the brim hoping to get that effect you had, but the top was burnt before the middle was even cooked. && I did not get the nice crust top like yours :( My batter looks stickier and thicker than yours.

    Any suggestions on what possibly made me fail? Let me know. Thanks!

    • This happens to me. 400 F seems too high for the whole time so i would turn the temp down to 350F after 5 min and bake them that way.
      If you have a strong/too hot oven they will burn before the middle cooks fully.

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  11. Thanks. I’ve been trying to find a way I get the crunchy top. I’ve tried sugar, but it didn’t work (on its own). Will try the bigger muffin approach.

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  13. Where have these muffins been all of my life? I just took these out of the oven and they are perfect! I used mini chocolate chips because that’s what I had and I did have to bake them about 30 minutes. The crunchy top is a dream come true and the stump is moist and delish! Thanks for my new “go-to” muffin recipe!

  14. Just made these and they turned out nice. I baked them at 400F for a few min to get the lift for the muffin top then turned it down to 350F for 20 min.

    Few things: for some reason I seemed to have less batter. I made 6 muffins and they had nice tops but not as big as yours. They only stuck together a tiny bit
    (Not the nice square shape you had). Maybe ill try another pan next wondering if my muffin cups are too big.

    Also.. i found them to be waaaay too sweet and i put fewer choc chips so next time i will try with 1/2 c sugar.

  15. Just tried these and they were goood!! Although because I reduced the sugar maybe that resulted in less batter, so I ended up having 5 muffins instead of 6. And not as big tops as I’d like, but they were still crunchy nonetheless! :) I think my muffin cups were too big maybe. Thanks for the recipe! :)

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  17. Hi! I tried these a few months ago, really loved them! They were a little under-done in the middle but I’m going to assume it was because I was using a toaster oven. SO! Question – do you think this would work with other little fillers like blueberries, some lemon juice and cranberries, pieces of cherry, etc…? Thanks!

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