Raspberry Lemon Muffins with Cream Cheese Frosting

by Marla on October 21, 2010 · 117 comments

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Healthy muffins with cream cheese frosting.

Can we divert from Fall for a second here? As much as I am LOVING posting all my cool season pumpkin, sweet potato & cinnamon spice recipes I need to de-rail for a moment. I had a special request from my daughter & it needed to be honored. How could I refuse? I know the raspberry lemon combo is a bit summer, but this mix of ingredients was very, very tasty & well worth the diversion.

Homemade muffins with cream cheese frosting.

What defines a muffin? When does that muffin transform into a cupcake? This is a question I asked on Facebook and Twitter a few weeks ago. The responses varied, but we concluded that a muffin is not as sweet as a cupcake. A muffin can be eaten for breakfast with no guilt, a muffin might have some kind of nutrition in it. Cupcakes are small, very sweet cakes with heaps of frosting and are for certain just a treat.

Great news guys, these muffins look like cupcakes. They taste like cupcakes, but they are indeed muffins. They are filled with great for you ingredients. Oh happy day!

Low glycemic, low fat, healthy breakfast muffin recipe.

Tuck one or two of these muffins in your lunchbox and you have a treat that will pick you up and won’t let you down. Enjoy with a shot of espresso or mug of your favorite brewed coffee. Kids will love these with a glass of chilled milk. The balance of the sweetened cream cheese and slightly sweet muffins is so satisfying. You will not miss refined sugar at all.

Low fat Breakfast or brunch muffin recipe.

The raspberry-lemon combo is a match made in heaven. The pinch of lemon zest on the top gives that extra kick of bright citrus flavor.

Homemade muffin recipe for breakfast, brunch or snack.

If you have a minute please check out my guest post Homemade Halloween Treats (Not Tricks) over at Simple Organic.

Raspberry Lemon Muffins with Cream Cheese Frosting

24 mini muffins


  • I used frozen raspberries in these muffins. They were easy to chop & did not get mushy.
  • See the Variations below for some great recipe substitutions and ideas.



  • 1 1/2 plus 1/4 cups Whole Wheat Pastry Flour (set aside 1/4 cup measurement)
  • 1/2 cup Oat Flour (If you don’t have this you can finely grind rolled oats in a food processor)
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons Baking Powder
  • pinch of Salt
  • Vanilla Stevia Drops to taste – I used about 3 full droppers
  • 2 large Eggs
  • 1/2 cup non fat Greek Yogurt
  • 1/2 cup non fat Milk (or your favorite milk choice, dairy free, etc)
  • 1/2 cup light Coconut Milk
  • 3 tablespoons melted unsalted Butter
  • about 1 tablespoon Lemon juice (from about 2 Lemons)
  • zest from 1 Lemon
  • 1 cup frozen Raspberries (see note above)
  • optional: Fresh Raspberries to top each muffin

{Cream Cheese Frosting}

  • 8 ounces light whipped Cream Cheese
  • Vanilla Stevia to taste or your favorite natural sweetener – Maple Syrup, Honey, Sucanat


Preheat oven to 375˚F with rack in the center of the oven. Prepare muffin tins with liners or just grease with butter. Sift together all the dry ingredients – flours, baking powder & salt in a large bowl. Toss frozen raspberries with 1/4 cup of flour. Add wet ingredients to dry and combine thoroughly with a spatula. Add the raspberries last so they don’t break up too much. Fill muffin tins about 3/4 full, tap pan on a counter top to get out any air bubbles. Bake muffins for about 12 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the muffins.

For frosting: stir cream cheese & sweetener of choice together until it is sweetened to your satisfaction. Assembly: Top each muffin with a dollop of frosting, a pinch of lemon zest and a fresh raspberry.

Print This Recipe...


  • Use blueberries or cranberries instead of raspberries or perhaps all three.
  • You can use chopped dried fruit instead of the raspberries or in addition to them. Raisins, apricots, dates would all be tasty.
  • Add some nuts to the batter chopped pecans, walnuts, almonds, etc.

Muffin Recipe Links


{ 116 comments… read them below or add one }

1 chefpandita October 21, 2010 at 6:24 am

I love the ingredients in these muffins! they look delicious :)


2 chefpandita October 21, 2010 at 6:25 am

I follow u on twitter! (thats how I found about this giveaway)


3 chefpandita October 21, 2010 at 6:27 am

I retweeted to my followers:

{NEW recipe & giveaway} Lemon Raspberry Muffins w-Cream Cheese Frosting & *2 copies* {Food Stylists Handbook} http://su.pr/224Yay
7 minutes ago via TweetDeck
Retweeted by you


4 the urban baker October 21, 2010 at 6:29 am

these are so “purty”! i want one!


5 Amanda October 21, 2010 at 6:37 am

I would love this book cause I NEED HELP with stying!!! Alrighty then.


6 Amber October 21, 2010 at 6:39 am

I hope to start a blog myself one day, so this book would help me out! And the muffins look fantastic!


7 Amber October 21, 2010 at 6:40 am

FB follower


8 Heather (Heather's Dish) October 21, 2010 at 7:05 am

these are by far the happiest muffins i’ve ever seen! what a beautiful recipe!


9 Heather @ Get Healthy With Heather October 21, 2010 at 7:20 am

I could totally see these muffins tricking someone into thinking they are cupcakes! I love that you used yogurt and coconut milk in them. Raspberry and lemon is a rock solid combo. Super refreshing and delicious I’m sure :)

What a great giveaway! Lord knows I need some styling help 😉 Your pictures always look amazing, I bet you could write a book on food styling.


10 Jessica @ How Sweet October 21, 2010 at 7:30 am

Oh my these are the CUTEST muffins I have ever seen! Your styling and photography always blows me away. It is AMAZING.


11 Suzanne October 21, 2010 at 8:00 am

You had me a “Greek Yogurt”! I love using this stuff in all kinds of dishes! And I really, really, really need the stylist book. I would love you forever. :)


12 Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking October 21, 2010 at 8:03 am

Wow, these look so moist and delicious! Absolutely beautiful photos, too. You continue to inspire me! Thanks for sharing, Marla!


13 Rosa October 21, 2010 at 8:10 am

Those muffins look gorgeous and so pretty! I bet they taste divine.

I’d love to win that book because I’d really love to learn more about food styling.




14 Paula October 21, 2010 at 8:17 am

OK, so now I need to go to the kitchen and make some muffins :)

have a nice time, Marla!


15 D.liff October 21, 2010 at 8:51 am

Denise has a very cool Culinary Entrepreneurship Program


16 Lisa B. October 21, 2010 at 8:58 am

I love this recipe! I will definitely be trying it this weekend.
Great giveaway- I lack in the food styling category. I would LOVE to have this book for guidance!


17 Lisa B. October 21, 2010 at 9:01 am

I am already a Twitter follow of MarlaMeridth on Twitter. @Berksgirl


18 Lisa B. October 21, 2010 at 9:02 am

I follow FoodChat on Twitter. @Berksgirl


19 Cookin' Canuck October 21, 2010 at 9:05 am

What pretty muffins, Marla! I’m sure your daughter was thrilled.

Great giveaway – I could definitely use some new ideas for food styling.


20 Lisa B. October 21, 2010 at 9:06 am

On Denise’s website, I learned that she has cooked for prestigious guests like George H.W. Bush, Ronald Reagan and Prince Charles.


21 Cookin' Canuck October 21, 2010 at 9:06 am

I follow on Twitter.


22 Cookin' Canuck October 21, 2010 at 9:06 am

I’m a fan of yours on Facebook.


23 Cookin' Canuck October 21, 2010 at 9:07 am

I am now a fan of Denise’s on Facebook.


24 Lisa B. October 21, 2010 at 9:08 am

I hopped over to Food Fanantics and I was so impressed. Offers to much knowledge. They were even the stylists on Food Network’s Unwrapped: Greetings from L.A. Very cool.


25 Lisa Berkery October 21, 2010 at 9:09 am

I am a fan of Family Fresh Cooking on Facebook.


26 Lisa Berkery October 21, 2010 at 9:10 am

I added Denise Vivaldo on Facebook.


27 Angie October 21, 2010 at 10:08 am

These muffins looks so delicious!


28 FoodFitnessFreshair October 21, 2010 at 10:11 am

I’m a huge fan of cream cheese icing, and those muffins look super moist. Looks like a great recipe, with a classic combo of lemon and raspberry.


29 A Canadian Foodie October 21, 2010 at 10:32 am

Marla – I would never miss a post of yours! But, thank you for letting me know they will actually send to Canada. Wonderful, particularly as we are in the midst of organizing a Local Food Celebration here and one of the workshops will be on food styling. This book would be a great addition to that session and the display there. Of course, I would love to use it to do better on my site, myself. Love your recipe, as always. Raspberries win me over every time. I grow my own and they are my favourite fruit flavour of all the zillions of fruit flavours. Hot, cold, or in between they are precious jewels of nature. YUM!


30 A Canadian Foodie October 21, 2010 at 10:34 am

I have become a fan of yours on facebook (would love for you to do the same, when you are by!)


31 Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. October 21, 2010 at 10:42 am

These look great! Fun, awesome giveaway! You’re the best!


32 Vicki October 21, 2010 at 11:20 am

The muffins look awesome and I am trying to eat clean. Thanks for the info you share.


33 Vicki October 21, 2010 at 11:21 am

I went to Denise’s website and it took me to Food Fanatics website.


34 Vicki October 21, 2010 at 11:22 am

I went to the Food Fanatic’s website and I was linked to their blog and read about Tosca’s book of clean eating!


35 Marion October 21, 2010 at 1:10 pm

Thank you for this fruity and no-white flour recipe. Those are usually rare to find. Will definitely try them out!
AND this is the best giveaway. I love books like that!
(Added Family Fresh Cooking to my favorites@FB)


36 Mags October 21, 2010 at 1:45 pm

Those do look like happy muffins. Gorgeous!


37 Lori @ RecipeGirl October 21, 2010 at 2:04 pm

I love your muffin creativity :) I want this book!


38 Julia October 21, 2010 at 2:10 pm

Super cute muffins!!!!! And a muffin with frosting well now, count me in!


39 Anna Johnston October 21, 2010 at 5:22 pm

Always nice to oblige the special requests and well…, do we ever really need an excuse to make super cute muffins.. I think not 😉


40 Maria October 21, 2010 at 7:21 pm

Love the muffins. I love raspberry and lemon anytime of the year!


41 Maria October 21, 2010 at 7:21 pm

I follow you on Twitter and FB!


42 Angie's Recipes October 22, 2010 at 1:33 am

wow the book would be really helpful for any of us! :-))

Raspberry muffins look fantastic!


43 Angie's Recipes October 22, 2010 at 1:34 am

I have been your FB follower since long….and subscribed you through email.


44 Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella October 22, 2010 at 1:57 am

Oh these look divine Marla! Like little bite sized mouthfuls of goodness! 😀


45 Joanne October 22, 2010 at 4:40 am

Your daughter is such a sweetie that I wouldn’t be able to resist honoring her request either. Plus these muffins sound downright amazing. No question about it. Lemon and raspberry are a match made in heaven,

What an awesome giveaway! I’ve been coveting that book.


46 grace October 22, 2010 at 5:44 am

in my mind, these automatically become cupcakes when frosting enters the picture. i like it. :)


47 Faith October 22, 2010 at 7:10 am

Love the muffins, Marla! Isn’t cooking healthy foods for the people you love the best feeling in the world? I bet the kiddos loved these! Thanks for another great giveaway!


48 Faith October 22, 2010 at 7:11 am

I’m a fan of yours on FB! :)


49 Katrina October 22, 2010 at 7:57 am

These muffins look like cupcakes! They’re beautiful!


50 FOODESSA October 22, 2010 at 8:21 am

Marla…your small de-railment has served us well…great healthy ingredients certainly leads to a happier muffin treat ;o)

Flavourful wishes,


51 FOODESSA October 22, 2010 at 8:24 am

With all the Interior design books and cookbooks that grace my shelf…a Food Styling book would certainly complete the path to more creativity in my hosting ;o)

Marla, thanks for making this giveaway for all….much appreciated ;o)

Ciao for now,


52 tasteofbeirut October 22, 2010 at 8:57 am

what care in making these muffins! the results are worth it and I am thinking I need to make these next time, even if i use some sugar for the sake of speed (I cant see myself counting 60 drops )
Beautiful photos!


53 Marla October 22, 2010 at 7:23 pm

Joumana: You are so right I re-read the recipe and swapped out the “60 drops” for roughly 3 full droppers. Not sure what I was thinking there – but I do not think most folks would count 60 drops!

Claudia: I am sure your hosting is all ready spectacular, bet heck we all could use some divine inspiration sometimes. This book makes me realize how much I don’t know, but it helps me learn it with clarity and focus. I had the lovely opportunity of meeting Denise earlier this year & she is a true motivator!

Faith: Yes, cooking REAL food for my loved ones is truly the most rewarding feeling. I love contributing to their overall health and enjoyment of life through food.


54 Carolyn October 22, 2010 at 12:00 pm

Okay, wow, where do I start. First on the beautiful muffins. They look divine and I know kids would gobble them up. Second, the book. I could use some style tips. I could use a LOT of style tips. I am just fumbling my way through food styling and photography, hoping to get a few decent shots that I can post on my website. Your pictures are gorgeous, I’d love to be able to pull that off.


55 Carolyn October 22, 2010 at 12:09 pm

I just became a fan on Facebook!


56 Katie | goodLife {eats} October 22, 2010 at 2:19 pm

These sound & look great! I love berries and citrus together.


57 naomi October 22, 2010 at 2:26 pm

I love the pink little muffin! It’s hard resisting a request from your kids regardless of whether or not it’s seasonal-lucky little girl!


58 Debbie H. October 22, 2010 at 6:58 pm

I love the raspberry/lemon combination. Cream cheese icing added sounds great!


59 Debbie H. October 22, 2010 at 7:03 pm

Am now a facebook fan of Denise!


60 Debbie H. October 22, 2010 at 7:12 pm

Visited Denise’s website …. I may need to get her book on starting your own home based catering business.


61 Teresa October 22, 2010 at 7:40 pm

I went to Denise’s website and I discovered she wrote a book, Do It For Less: Weddings ! My daughter is getting married next year and I went to Amazon and read about this book. I think it’s just what we need!


62 Teresa October 22, 2010 at 7:44 pm

The muffins look amazing. I’ve been craving something lemon, so I will absolutely try this recipe. I love that you included variations because I have bags of frozen blueberries in the freezer which I’ll use to replace the raspberries. Thanks for the recipe and the giveaway.


63 bunkycooks October 23, 2010 at 6:32 am

I am with you on enough of the Fall stuff. I vote to bring back warmer weather and you do it with these muffins! What a great, healthy recipe. By the way, I follow you on Twitter and like you on FB. :)


64 bunkycooks October 23, 2010 at 6:33 am

I also am a fan of Denise on FB and follow her on Twitter. I can always use help with this food styling stuff.


65 Kim October 23, 2010 at 9:54 am

What a great giveaway, because I’ve had my eye on this book and would LOVE a copy! We have not one, but two meyer lemon trees in the yard. And they’re JUST starting to turn yellow now. They’ll be ready in December. Definitely bookmarking this recipe for then!



66 Kim October 23, 2010 at 9:54 am

Oh, and I follow you on Twitter…


67 Kim October 23, 2010 at 9:55 am

And I’m a fan of your page on Facebook… and I’m heading over to Denise’s page to become a fan on hers, too!


68 Kim October 23, 2010 at 9:58 am

Oh, and I actually went to Denise’s website, and ordered not one, not two, but THREE books from Amazon through her page!!! :-) And two of those books were Denise’s, from long, long ago. (How to Start a Home-Based Catering Business, 4th Edition). I had no idea Denise was such a successful caterer!!!

So yep, that’s what I learned when hopping over to her site.



69 Marla October 23, 2010 at 10:05 am

Kim: That is so exciting that you had great luck at Denise’s website. She is such a talented woman & has had sweet success for some time now. I am so thrilled to watch you guys get excited about her books and achievements. Can’t wait to hear about all you will learn from her. Best of luck with those Meyer Lemon trees-these muffins will taste great with fresh squeezes from those lemons :)


70 Christine @ Fresh Local and Best October 23, 2010 at 10:26 am

What a fabulous treat! I’m not sure if I can clearly distinguish a muffin from a cupcake, but I think this raspberry lemon dessert can go either way, it looks so good!


71 Amanda October 23, 2010 at 4:05 pm

These are flippin’ beautiful!


72 Rebecca (Indecisive Baker) October 23, 2010 at 6:14 pm

Those look amazing! Love the use of whole wheat pastry flour!


73 Rebecca (Indecisive Baker) October 23, 2010 at 6:18 pm

Didn’t know Denise has several ‘do it for less’ books! Those are right up my ally!


74 Rebecca (Indecisive Baker) October 23, 2010 at 6:19 pm

Really awesome that Food Fanatics was on Food Network’s UnWrapped:
Greetings from L.A. ! I really love UnWrapped!


75 Bakeolicious October 23, 2010 at 10:34 pm

I love raspberry muffins and these look great!

I’d love for you to submit one of your beautiful photos, and a link to your post, to my new food photo gallery showcasing beautiful baking.


76 Lentil Breakdown October 23, 2010 at 11:27 pm

Absolutely love your photos! Denise was quite a hoot at Camp Blogaway, and I am curious to see if she can write an expletive-free book! : )


77 Cara October 24, 2010 at 7:27 am

Marla, this is a great giveaway. I so need this book! I feel totally lost and I think my blog could be a lot better with the right food styling and lighting setup.


78 Cara October 24, 2010 at 7:28 am

I follow you on twitter!


79 Cara October 24, 2010 at 7:30 am

tweeted for you!


80 Cara October 24, 2010 at 7:32 am

And I am a fan on facebook!


81 Cara October 24, 2010 at 7:34 am

I checked out Denise’s site – and learned that I already own a book by her and didn’t even know it. oops!


82 Laura Flowers October 24, 2010 at 9:08 am

Marla wow!!! I am so impressed how quickly you are evolving as a food blogger. Everything is so beautiful.



83 Shana October 24, 2010 at 3:35 pm

My husband loves raspberries! I could use this book because I do functional not pretty. I cook for a Senior Center, so things are portioned out so I don’t have to present it.


84 Shana October 24, 2010 at 3:36 pm

I liked Family Fresh Cooking on Face book.


85 Shana October 24, 2010 at 3:40 pm

I checked out Food Fanatics. I’ve seen some of that on the Food Network, but it’s a lot more detailed than I thought. I need to take pictures of some of my failures to post!!


86 Marla October 24, 2010 at 4:24 pm

Shana: I know we should all have a day where we post failures. That would for sure get a few giggles. I have some nasty photos in the archives. Thank goodness for delete buttons and photoshop!

Laura: That is such a sweet compliment. Yes, it has been a short while since I started blogging – but I am crazy dedicated to my “third child!”


87 Diane {createdbydiane.blogspot.com} October 24, 2010 at 8:42 pm

I love lemon and raspberry and your muffins sound delicious, they sure LOOK it! Wish I could reach out and take one :)


88 Diane {createdbydiane.blogspot.com} October 24, 2010 at 8:45 pm

I follow you on twitter :)


89 Baking Serendipity October 24, 2010 at 8:45 pm

I love this throw-back to summer. I’ve been pretty bogged down by pumpkin recipes here lately too…I be this is a refreshing change of pace :)


90 Diane {createdbydiane.blogspot.com} October 24, 2010 at 8:46 pm

I’d love to learn tips from Denise’s book :)

I like you facebook page!


91 Diane {createdbydiane.blogspot.com} October 24, 2010 at 8:48 pm
92 Diane {createdbydiane.blogspot.com} October 24, 2010 at 8:50 pm

I follow family food chat on twitter :)


93 sheri October 24, 2010 at 8:55 pm

I would love this book to get tips on photographing my bento!


94 sheri October 24, 2010 at 8:58 pm

And I follow @MarlaMeridith!


95 Barbara @Modern Comfort Food October 25, 2010 at 4:51 am

You’ve really put it all together in these fab muffins, Marla. I love the way you’ve so clearly thought through the ingredients list to keep things as light and healthy as possible while still retaining all that scrumptious flavor. Need to get some raspberries NOW before they disappear for the season!


96 Heather October 25, 2010 at 10:57 am

Marla, these muffins look amazing! Beautiful photo’s! I could use this book too! I need all the help I can on the food styling. :)


97 Amelia from Z Tasty Life October 26, 2010 at 10:47 am

I am very inrtigued by the oat flour in your muffins!!!
As a growing food blogger, food styling is one of the key elements to attract readers. I would LOVE to learn from a pro :)


98 Amelia from Z Tasty life October 26, 2010 at 10:48 am

I am already following @MarlaMeridith on Twitter!!!


99 Amelia from Z Tasty Life October 26, 2010 at 10:51 am

Just Tweeted this giveaway adding @MarlaMeridith to the tweet


100 Amelia from Z Tasty Life October 26, 2010 at 10:52 am

Just Become a fan of Family Fresh Cooking on Facebook


101 Amelia from Z Tasty Life October 26, 2010 at 10:55 am

I visited Denise’s website and learned about her very interesting Culinary Entrepreneurship Program


102 Amelia from Z Tasty Life October 26, 2010 at 10:57 am

I hopped over to check out the Food Fanatics website and learned that they are the Culinary Producers for a Fine Living channel that i LOVE: “NapaStyle”


103 Amelia from Z Tasty Life October 26, 2010 at 10:58 am

I now also follow the new @FamilyFoodChat on Twitter


104 Liz October 26, 2010 at 10:59 am

Marla, any muffin with frosting is bound to be tasty, but these look especially so!


105 Kate @ Savour Fare October 26, 2010 at 11:11 am

OK, darlin, whole wheat flour or no, I say if it has frosting, it’s a cupcake.


106 Kate @ Savour Fare October 26, 2010 at 11:13 am

Also, I follow you on Twitter.


107 Kate @ Savour Fare October 26, 2010 at 11:19 am

Also I “like” you on Facebook. Also, I like you!


108 Marla October 26, 2010 at 11:33 am

Kate: Heck, I like you too! Like your definitive response to the frosted muffin being a CUPCAKE!

Amelia: It is amazing how many amazing projects the Food Fanatics work on. I too would love to attend Denise’s Culinary entrepreneurship program.


109 Carmen October 26, 2010 at 11:35 am

Raspberry and lemon are two of my favorite flavors so I can’t wait to try out this recipe!


110 sippitysup October 26, 2010 at 3:04 pm

Well of course everyone from CampBlogaway wants this book especially me! GREG


111 Mariko October 27, 2010 at 5:11 pm

This is exactly why I like muffins. Because I pretend they are cupcakes!
No harm, right?
(Plus I will probably eat more of them.)


112 Jules September 1, 2011 at 5:04 am

These look absolutely DEElicious! And good for me I think? I have saved the recipe and will definitely be whipping up a batch!! xxx


113 Sharee March 28, 2012 at 1:12 pm

Do you have to use pastry flour? That’s not something I usually have on hand. I do have whole wheat and white whole wheat…

Do they freeze well?



114 Marla March 28, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Hi! WW pastry flour has a lighter & less wheaty flavor then the regular. Also a more delicate crumb. You can try the white WWPF instead. Might have good results.
I did not try freezing them. I bet they would freeze well though. No frosting until defrosting though :)


115 april hamilton July 6, 2012 at 8:00 pm

could you tell me how (if possible) how I could use stevia powder and vanilla extract in place of vanilla stevia liquid drops? I just found this recipe & desperately want to make these for a party tomorrow so I won’t have time to order them on line. thanks!!!


116 Marla July 7, 2012 at 5:34 am

Hi April, sorry for the delayed response. It all depends on what stevia you are using. I use a no-carb blend so a very small amount is used and I can adjust to taste. This is the NuNaturals powder I prefer for baking. Generally it will be about 1 teaspoon in a recipe like this. The vanilla extract about 1 teaspoon as well. I do not recommend using stevia baking blends for this. Good luck!


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