Strawberry Cheesecake Muffins

Soft strawberry studded muffins layered with a light cheesecake filling and topped with brown sugar streusel. A necessary indulgence any morning of the week.

stack of strawberry cheesecake muffins on a blue plate

I’ve been craving strawberries like nobody’s business lately. I’m probably just craving fresh fruit in general since I’m constantly surrounded by this. Not that I’m complaining. I made a strawberry smoothie 3 days in a row and when Sunday morning rolled around, these strawberry cheesecake muffins came to life.

They’re bright and cheery, packed with berries, help beat the winter blues, and the best part? There’s a cheesecake surprise inside.

I firmly believe there should be a cheesecake surprise inside all muffins.

strawberry cheesecake muffins with one cut in half showing the inside on a blue plate

Today’s strawberry muffins are a mix of my favorite fall muffins and these blueberry streusel muffins. Two personal and reader favorites. The recipe idea came to me not only from my strawberry craving but for the abundance of cream cheese in my refrigerator. At one time, I counted 12 packs of cream cheese. Yes, it’s ridiculous. I’ve been testing a candy bar cheesecake recipe for my next cookbook. Back to muffins. There are three parts:

Buttery strawberry muffins
 Cheesecake filling
Easy brown sugar streusel

Let me begin with the muffins themselves.

The muffin batter is almost identical to my blueberry muffin batter. It begins with creamed butter and sugar which gives the muffins a soft, cake-like texture similar to cupcakes. So, you’ll be eating strawberries ‘n cream cupcakes for breakfast. I love that about this muffin recipe.

The eggs provide structure and richness. Lately, I’ve been baking with Eggland’s Best eggs exclusively. Sure, I baked with them before whenever I saw them on sale but once I learned about their superior nutrition (more omega-3’s!), they are all I use. The yogurt packs some serious moisture into each muffin. I like to use nonfat plain Greek yogurt, but vanilla or strawberry flavored would be just as tasty here. Also lending to the muffin’s moist texture? The plethora of strawberries. Strawberries are so juicy that I leave out the milk entirely from the muffin batter. Typically, milk is used to lighten up muffin batter; these muffins are a little dense without it. However, the wet strawberries give off enough liquid that adding milk would just be overkill to the fragile batter.

overhead image of strawberry cheesecake muffins on a blue plate

Next up? The cheesecake filling. It’s so, so good. You only need 4 ingredients. Make sure you don’t leave out the egg yolk. The egg yolk is what makes the filling resemble light and fluffy cheesecake. Without it, these would just be cream cheese filled muffins. Which is fine if that’s what you prefer. In my opinion, the cheesecake filling is tastier.

Just like my pumpkin version, you’ll layer the muffin batter and the cheesecake filling into the muffin liners. 1 layer muffin batter, 1 layer cheesecake, 1 layer muffin batter. It’s ok if some of your cheesecake filling is visible on the top or on the sides. In fact, I always make sure there is some filling peeking out. That’s how you get pretty cheesecake swirls on top and showing on the sides. Muffin prettiness is important to this baker.

2 images of strawberry cheesecake muffin batter in a muffin pan without and with streusel topping before baking

Finally? The streusel. The streusel is simple: brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and cold butter that you will cut into the rest of the streusel ingredients. Sprinkle this onto the tops of the muffins before baking.

My number #1 streusel tip: gently press streusel down into the batter so it won’t fall off the sides as the muffins are rising. A lot of perfectly tasty streusel is wasted that way!

Like I do for most of my muffin recipes, you’ll bake the muffins for 5 minutes at a very hot temperature. Then, keeping the muffins in the oven, switch to a lower temperature for the remaining bake time. If you’re new around here, let me explain why I do this. This initial high temperature will quickly lift the muffin tops, then the centers will bake during the lower temperature bake time. Please note that because of the heavy cheesecake filling, these muffins won’t be as sky-high as most of my muffin recipes.

strawberry cheesecake muffins

Let’s not forget what I said above about these muffins. Totally worth repeating. It’s like eating strawberries ‘n cream cupcakes for breakfast. 

It looks like a ton of ingredients. But good news: most of them are repeated throughout each layer. Start baking!

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

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stack of strawberry cheesecake muffins on a blue plate

Strawberry Cheesecake Muffins

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 24 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 14 muffins
  • Category: Muffins
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Soft strawberry studded muffins layered with a light cheesecake filling and topped with brown sugar streusel. A necessary indulgence any morning of the week.


Ingredients

Streusel

  • 1/4 cup (50g) light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (63g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (60g) unsalted butter, cold

Muffins

  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (120g) yogurt*
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 and 3/4 cups (219g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/4 cups (250g) fresh or frozen (do not thaw) chopped strawberries

Cheesecake Filling

  • 6 ounces (168g) cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 Tablespoons (36g) granulated sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C). Spray two 12-count muffin pans with nonstick spray or line with cupcake liners (this recipe makes 14 muffins, so there will be two batches). Set aside.
  2. Make the streusel: In a small bowl, toss together the brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Cut in the butter in very small pieces using a pastry knife or mix with a fork until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside.
  3. Make the muffins: In a medium bowl using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 1 minute. Add the granulated and brown sugars and beat on high until creamed, about 2 full minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the eggs, yogurt, and vanilla extract. Beat on medium speed for 1 minute, then turn up to high speed until the mixture is combined and uniform in texture. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
  4. In a large bowl, toss together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and slowly mix until combined and little lumps remain. Fold in the strawberries with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. Don’t worry if the berries bleed a little – my batter was pink-ish in some spots; it looks pretty when baked.
  5. Make the cheesecake filling: In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese with an electric handheld or stand mixer on medium-high speed until creamy. Add the egg yolk, vanilla extract, and sugar. Beat until combined.
  6. Spoon 1 Tablespoon of strawberry muffin batter into the muffin cups. Layer with about 1 spoonful (not quite a full Tablespoon) of cheesecake filling, then another Tablespoon of muffin batter (or however much batter is needed to fill the cups all the way to the top). Yes, you will fill the muffin cups to the very top. Some cheesecake filling may poke out of the top or on the sides. Sprinkle each muffin evenly with streusel topping and gently press the streusel down into the muffin so it sticks.
  7. Bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 425°F (218°C). Keeping the muffins in the oven, lower the temperature down to 350°F (177°C) and bake for an additional 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. The total times these muffins take in the oven is about 23-24 minutes, give or take. Allow the muffins to cool for 10 minutes in the muffin sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to cool until ready to eat. They are very moist from the cheesecake filling.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Muffins stay soft, fresh, and moist covered tightly in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Muffins freeze well for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and warm to your liking.
  2. Yogurt: Use your favorite yogurt; I prefer nonfat plain Greek yogurt but regular (not Greek) would be just fine. Try with strawberry flavored, vanilla, low fat, or full fat. Sour cream works as well.

Keywords: strawberry cheesecake muffins, cheesecake muffins

68 Comments

  1. First timer here 🙂 Overall this was an easy recipe, although there are 3 parts. I do not have a muffin pan, only silicone muffin cups. I filled my first few cups to the very top and ended up not having enough to fill the rest; however, the ones that weren’t filled ended up looking the best! I’ll adjust next time. Also, mine took longer to bake than the suggested time in the recipe, I wonder if it’s because of the silicone? I baked them for another 10 minutes. Ones that were filled to the very top, spilled over since they’ve risen, I had to keep them in the oven for a total of 20 minutes in addition to the suggested time.

    (I did use a toothpick to check the first time and it came out clean; however, the middle was still wet. I’m not sure what I did wrong…)

  2. These muffins are INCREDIBLE! They’ve been so popular with my family that I’ve made them three times for my family since quarantine started. Thanks for the recipe!!

  3. Hey Sally, looking to make these muffins as I have some strawberries that I need to use up. I do have a question first, my muffin pans are a dark metal. Do you think I need to lower the oven temp slightly from the temp you used? Thanks!

    1. Hi Sarah, you should be fine baking the muffins exactly as written, but just to be safe– you can reduce both oven temperatures down by 25 degrees F.

  4. Hi there! These look so delicious! Just wondering if I can make these and omit the strawberries… I’m not really a “fruit in dessert” person, so I’m wondering if I made them without strawberries, would I have to adjust any of the other ingredients? Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi Lanny, no need to adjust any other ingredients. Simply leave out the strawberries.

  5. Made these for a “bake-off” with some friends and won 1st place!! They were delicious and a huge hit! Thanks so much for the recipe, will definitely make these again.

  6. Firstly, I love all your recipes and anytime I bake, I go to you for a recipe first! Is this better thicker than your other recipes? I have used your master muffin mix, and know it’s a thick batter but this seemed thicker (before adding the strawberries ) I kinda panicked and added an extra tablespoon of sour cream last minute, then realized the juice from the strawberries helped to loosen it. Then they sunk slightly (from the extra sour cream I assume?) Still amazing and delicious and will make again!!

  7. Very good… will definitely make them again… will even try them with blueberries when that season comes around!

  8. Does the yogurt need to be at room temp, or can it be cold?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Lyssa, All of the ingredients should be at room temperature, here’s why!

      1. I didn’t read this before trying to make the muffins and my yoghurt was cold and now it’s curdled 🙁

  9. Could this be used to make bread instead of muffins?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Bonnie, You can use the recipe for Strawberries ‘n’ Cream Crumb Cake for a cake. Or you can try baking these in a 9X5 loaf pan. I’m unsure of the exact bake time needed but you can use Blueberry Muffin Bread as a guide. Let us know if you try it!

      1. Angelique Kile says:

        Tried this recipe! WOOT, success! Results: super moist with that nice cinnamon strudel crumb topping. They’re really tasty. Not too sweet. It’s not strawberry cake. It’s a true coffee cake. Loving the tease of cream cheese.

        They’re coffee shop worthy. I’d pay for these.

        I definitely read the reviews before diving in. Took note of adding 2 tablespoons of AP Flour and patted dry my strawberries before adding them. I did make jumbo muffins. Other than the 2 notes mentioned above, I didn’t change a thing. So yummy! And beautiful. Thanks, Sally!

  10. Hi,
    These look amazing! Can I use freeze dried strawberries instead of fresh or frozen?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Carla! We haven’t tested this recipe with freeze dried strawberries but fear they would dry out this batter too much.

  11. I made these twice. First time came out absolutely perfect and delicious! Because they were so great I decided to make again. Something went wrong. I cooked them the same as the first time (according to the directions) and they burned! Came out dry and burned bottoms and sides. Not sure why. I did everything the same as the first time (I think) lol. Will have to try again.

  12. Sally’s is my go to for muffin recipes. I have made so many with great success. I double recipe and make jumbo muffins for church and gifts to friends. The strawberry is fantastic. I experimented and made a Graham cracker streusel for the top and it was amazing. The cheesecake theme was my inspiration .

  13. This is really tasty! I made this twice and the first time didn’t work because I was stupid and thought, “this batter looks too thick, I’ll add some milk,” despite your VERY clear explanation of why you didn’t put milk in this batter! Lesson learned. 🙂 Second time I followed your directions and it was absolutely perfect.

    I wonder if it could be baked in a pan like a coffee cake instead of as muffins?

  14. Did every exactly as suggested. Measured, floured berries, check with tooth pick. Looked beautiful, fell five minutes later. Cut open, raw inside. I’ve baked 45 years, something went wrong. What a waste.

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Laura, sounds like they could use a few more minutes in the oven next time. Thank you for giving these muffins a try!

  15. Allison Yu says:

    These turned out great! Tasted and looked like they were straight from a bakery!

  16. Hi Sally! This muffin does not require any milk compared to other muffins. Is it because of the cheesecake filling? Cheers!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Joe! Strawberries are so juicy that we leave out the milk entirely from this muffin batter. Typically, milk is used to lighten up muffin batter; these muffins are a little dense without it. However, the wet strawberries give off enough liquid that adding milk would just be overkill to the fragile batter.

      1. Thanks heaps ^^!

  17. Hi Sally, I’m having some trouble with these. I tried twice and both times when I added the eggs and yoghurt the mixture curdled and got all lumpy. Everything was room temperature, the only difference is that I have a hand mixer with whisk attachments instead of a paddle. Could this be the problem?
    Thanks

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Grace! Some curdling is normal, since it’e very difficult to get all your ingredients the EXACT same temperature. Did you turn up the mixing speed as directed in step 3 to help even out the texture? As long as the batter comes together when you add the dry ingredients you won’t have any problems!

      1. I think maybe some of my ingredients were still too cold.. I ended up just starting over and made your blueberry muffins with streusel topping and ate 3 of them hehe (ingredients were all proper temp by the time I messed up two batches!)

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