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Cranberry Oatmeal Sourdough Muffins

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Orange and dried cranberries come together with just a hint of spice in these cranberry oatmeal sourdough muffins. They are a perfect grab and go breakfast or fun healthier brunch treat. 

hand holding half of a cranberry oatmeal sourdough muffin.

Muffins are a great grab and go breakfast for busy mornings. They are also a quick and easy way to serve something tasty to overnight guests. 

These muffins feature the classic flavor combination of orange and cranberry. They are a perfect way to use your sourdough discard to make quick and easy muffins that is healthier than most. 

Are you looking for another great way to use your sourdough discard? Then you are in the right place! 

stack of cranberry sourdough muffins on plate.

Instead of throwing away extra starter, you can use it to make flavorful baked goods. This recipe takes discard or unfed starter straight from the refrigerator and turns it into muffins in almost no time at all. 

They have the goodness of yogurt and oatmeal baked inside. You can use white whole wheat flour as well to really boost the whole grain goodness, though all purpose flour also works great.

The orange juice and dried cranberries combine to make the right amount of fruity zing. Together it all adds up to a delicious and fairly nutritious breakfast that still tastes like a treat.

bowl of muffin batter

Tips for Making Muffins with Sourdough Discard

This batter can be whipped up and baked in a matter of a few minutes, so it can certainly be made the morning of. However you can also make the batter the night ahead of time and bake it in the morning. 

Just cover the bowl of batter and refrigerate it until morning. Then scoop it into your muffin tin and bake like normal. 

When mixing muffin batter, or most any batter, stir until just combined. Over mixing causes the gluten to start to develop and results in tougher baked goods. 

tin of cranberry oatmeal muffins tilted over on their sides.

Possible Substitutions

Readers have had great success with substitutions in this recipe. Some have used honey in place of the brown sugar.

Others have said applesauce works well in place of the oil. I have used vanilla yogurt instead of plain several times and that works great.

You can add orange zest if you would like to add more citrus zing. Or toss in a handful of chopped nuts to get added crunch like that in the orange pistachio muffins

Cranberry oat muffins cooling on wire rack.

Storing Muffins

These muffins can be stored in an airtight container on the counter for several days. For longer storage, place them in a freezer bag and freeze for up to three months. 

When you are ready, just microwave a frozen muffin for about thirty seconds. It will come out warm and delicious like it was just baked.

If your muffins start to dry out before you eat or freeze them, don’t despair. You can cut them into cubes and make croutons for a salad or turn them into bread pudding. 

plate of muffins showing the soft inside of one with cranberries.

More Recipes That Use Sourdough Discard

Sourdough pizza crust is a perfect use for discard. If you feed your starter once a week, you can time it for pizza night and everyone will be happy!

Sourdough sandwich bread is a fabulous cross between traditional bread and sourdough. It is perfect for sandwiches or for toasting and spreading with butter, jelly or honey. 

Sourdough oatmeal raisin muffins was the sourdough muffin recipe that started it all. The muffins are tender, lightly sweet and full of good for you stuff!

Chocolate chip sourdough muffins are the most popular of the sourdough muffin series. They taste like a treat but are really pretty wholesome. 

Why use sourdough? 

Sourdough has lower phytate levels, making it easier to digest. It also contains prebiotics that are good for gut health.

To get the most sourdough benefit, make the batter the night before baking the muffins. 

What kind of starter should I use?

Use your discard or unfed starter straight from the refrigerator. No advanced planning or feeding needed!

hand holding half of a cranberry oatmeal sourdough muffin

Orange Cranberry Sourdough Muffins

Servings: 12 Muffins
Author: Carlee
Orange and cranberries come together with just a hint of spice in these oatmeal sourdough muffins. They are a perfect grab and go breakfast or fun healthier brunch treat. 
4.80 from 10 ratings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes


  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup sourdough starter*
  • cup brown sugar
  • cup oil
  • 1 large egg
  • cups all purpose flour
  • teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • dash of nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt


  • Stir together oats, orange juice, yogurt and dried cranberries right away and let sit while you gather up the rest of the ingredients and get ready. You want the oats and cranberries to have a chance to soften up a bit.
    1 cup rolled oats, ½ cup orange juice, ½ cup plain yogurt, ½ cup dried cranberries
  • Preheat the oven to 400°F and grease a 12 cup muffin tin.
  • Stir sourdough starter and brown sugar into oats.
    ½ cup sourdough starter*, ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • Stir oil and egg into oat mixture.
    ⅓ cup oil, 1 large egg
  • In a small bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
    1½ cups all purpose flour, 1½ teaspoons baking powder, ¼ teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, dash of nutmeg, ½ teaspoon salt
  • Stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients until just mixed.
  • Spoon into prepared muffin tin.
  • Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from muffin tin and cool on wire rack.


You can use sourdough starter fresh from the fridge or sourdough discard for this recipe. It does not need to be fed starter.
Try using a mix of all purpose flour and whole wheat flour if you would like.



Serving: 1ServingCalories: 212kcalCarbohydrates: 33gProtein: 4gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 16mgSodium: 191mgFiber: 2gSugar: 11g

Nutritional Disclaimer

“Cooking With Carlee” is not a dietitian or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

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Recipe Rating


Saturday 23rd of December 2023

Could you use frozen or fresh cranberries? If so, any changes to the other ingredients?


Saturday 23rd of December 2023

Sure, that would be tasty! I would probably add a little extra sugar or honey because the fresh/frozen berries are more tart than craisins. Otherwise, they should work great.


Tuesday 24th of May 2022

I want to make the cranberry orange muffins, but unsure about what type of oatmeal to use. Old Fashioned or Quick?


Tuesday 24th of May 2022

This recipe is very forgiving, so either works. I usually use old fashioned.

Jill Fisher

Saturday 28th of November 2020

Instead of brown sugar I used 1/4 cup honey, 1 tsp. molasses, Saigon cinnamon, 50/50 whole wheat flour and all purpose flour, and these muffins came out wonderful! Very fluffy texture and oats disappeared like magic! I would love more orange flavor so will try using more concentrated orange juice next time. Thanks for all your amazing sourdough muffin recipes, this was sixth one I've tried!


Friday 4th of December 2020

That makes me so happy! I love the honey substitution. I am going to have to do that next time. We love using honey!


Monday 28th of November 2016

Love sourdough, love cranberries, love oats!


Tuesday 29th of November 2016


Liz @ Books n' Cooks

Wednesday 23rd of November 2016

Love that there's oatmeal in these muffins!


Thursday 24th of November 2016

Thank you! The oatmeal kind of melts away in this recipe and it just leaves you with a great texture and plenty of nutrition!