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post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I am a firm believer in putting ideas out for criticism by my peers so I'm hoping some people could chime in on my plan.
I want to start something up as a little side business. I got the idea after reading a section about a bagel guy in Freakonomics. Basically I have a lot of coporate parks in a 15 mi area near my house. I want to go to these places and offer to bring in fresh muffins in the morning and come back at the end of the day to pick them up. I would like to have some wooden lock boxes and put the muffins in some sort of simple display (basket or rack) a couple days a week or however often the demand calls for without overdoing it. the idea is that it is on the honor system and true not everybody will pay but according to them bagel guy in Freakonomics you can expect about 85% pay rate so if I work that into my cost and expected return than I can make a decent profit on something as cheap to make as muffins. If it goes well enough I can also start offering supplying muffins and/or other baked goods for meetings or for gatherings and maybe work it into something bigger than that. I figure maybe this can be a nice little way to bring in some extra cash while keeping my day job. I've been using my job in engineering lab and office to test out my different muffins and see what people like and don't like. I also figured I could throw some cards together and make up a silly name like Muffin Monkeys.
So let me get into the other part of this I've been trying to come up with some different muffins that are apart from the norm. I was playing yesterday and made a french toast muffin that worked really well, an oreo muffin with marbled choc./reg muffin batter, a strawberries and cream muffin, and a peanut butter cup muffin. Does anybody have any fun and unique muffin ideas that might work. Let's leave out the standards I've already got a blueberry, mixed berry, chocolate, corn, apple cinnamon, banana nut, cranberry, coffee cake, and lemon poppy. Let me know what you guys think and I will try to make them and share some pictures afterwards.

post #2 of 12
Sounds like a good idea to me. I tried it with my husband's office, but they were too inconsistent and since I only did one office, it wasn't worth it for me. They loved the muffins and pastries at first, then wanted smaller portions, low fat options, and finally fat free. I had to give them up since it was such a small part of my business.

One comment. I don't like the name of Muffin Monkeys. It makes me think of someone at home in their kitchen with their 5 little kids' hands in all the muffin bowls.

That said, please accept this recipe as my apology for criticizing your name. ;-)

Pumpkin Streusel Muffins

1 1/2c pecan pieces (1c for batter, 1/2 reserved for topping)
1c veg oil
3c sugar
4 large eggs
15oz pumpkin
1c water
3c ap flour
2t bkg soda
1 1/2t nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, cloves\
1/2t salt

1/2c brown sugar packed
1/4c un-butter melted and slightly cooled
2t cinnamon
1/2c toasted pecan pieces

350* oven
12 large muffin 36 standard

whisk oil and sugar. add eggs, pumpkin, and water- whisk until combined. Stir in dry ings and fold in 1c pecans.

Fill cups almost to top.

Combine topping ings and sprinkle liberally over top ofmuffins before baking. BAke for 30-35 mins. These muffins are moist and like fresh for 2 days.

Now can I have your Peanut Butter cup or Oreo muffin recipes?

I also have a wonderful Zucchini muffin recipe that we use for cupcakes too. So moist that in the summer you have to watch that they don't mold before they dry out. Let me know if you're interested.

Best of luck!
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
First off let me assure you that I never use children's hands in my muffins. Muffin Monkeys firmly believes in using no human parts in any of the baked goods :p. That's pretty interesting that you had tried out the same thing. I have been bringing in muffins once or twice a week at my office for the past month so I could use them as testers. It's funny because everybody wants something different. Some people want regular sized muffins and others want the big muffins, some people want nuts some people hate nuts, some people want them drier some people want them more moist. I think you just can't win on that front.

The whole muffin monkeys thing was just a silly idea at first but I decided to go with it because my wife has a thing for monkeys and I am going for that home kitchen feel. Besides then you can make a monkey muffin which would basically be a banana nut muffin. Or I could go with a tropical feel on some of them like some kind of a coconut muffin.

As far as recipes go that pumpkin one sounds pretty good I will definitely try it out. Honestly the first time I made the oreo muffin and the peanut butter cup muffin was two days ago when I was screwing around trying to come up with some new ideas. The only problem is I didn't do as much measuring so I can only give you a guess.

The basic muffin batter that I use is what follows.
1 1/2 sticks butter (12 Tbl)
1 1/2 cups sugar (I like to use Sugar in the Raw)
3 Eggs, Extra Large
2 Tbl Vanilla Extract
1/4 cup Milk (I use skim because it is what I have at home)
8oz Sour Cream(or 4oz yogurt flavored for muffin type and 4oz Sour Cream)
2 1/2 cups Flour, all purpose
2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Kosher Salt

When I made the oreo one I took some seperate and I mixed in cocoa to taste(maybe 1/4 cup) then I added a little more milk and sugar until the consistency seemed right again and tasted good. The muffins came out a little dry so I would suggest maybe sneaking some oil in there. After making the cocoa batter I folded in crushed oreos, some chocolate chips, and some of the regular batter to get some marbling. For the peanut butter cup muffin I just used the cocoa batter and folded in cut up peanut butter cups. This was a little dry also but less so because of the peanut butter. Then just top the muffins for decoration I used some more crushed oreos and a little bit of sugar in the raw on top and for the PB cup I just put a mini PB Cup on top and let it melt in. I am going to make these again Thursday night for a family gathering friday afternoon so I will add some pictures.

Too bad you don't like the name one of my side things is programming so I already bought the .com domain name for muffinmonkeys it just has a little picture and a brief description of the plan for right now.
post #4 of 12
The name is fine! It's kids in the kitchen that drive me nuts. Glad to hear that you don't use children's hands in the muffins; they're too sweet.

Who cares what I think anyway- I'm sometimes too opinionated.....

Your recipes sound good. I'll give them a try soon. We just did a vegan maple walnut cake that would make good muffins with the addition of a banana or applesauce.
post #5 of 12


I like the idea, but given both yours and Lentil's experience... really think it through. Maybe use a trial office and see how it goes. But remember not to use an uncertified kitchen!

I make a muffin that is a cross between a donut and a muffin - it is baked as a muffin, then dipped in butter and rolled in cin sugar - they are selling like the proverbial hot cake in the bakery I sell them to.

If you are interested, I will send the recipe.

I love the idea of the oreo & pb muffins and the pecan pumpkin, lentil!
post #6 of 12
I think I had that recipe, but haven't seen it around in quite some time. Would you mind posting it for me? I remember that they were really good!

Try the pumpkin struesel when you have time. You'll love it!
post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
I appreciate your concern on being careful with this pgr555. The beauty of this plan is that it is very low risk. If I can work out a deal with one of the local chruches that I have been working with than I will have a certified kitchen. So far the muffins have been moving quite well at my office and my fiance's office so I'm not worried that people will not like them. The cost of doing this is very low and there is only the investment of some more pans and a couple more bowls perhaps. Because this is something that will not start big right from the begining, I don't expect to need more equipment right away. Also if I go to a place and my stuff doesn't sell or people don't pay, I can just stop going there. Also I am not exactly quitting my day job here. This involves myself and if needed my sister in law baking a bunch of muffins at night maybe 3 nights a week and delivering them for 2 hours in the morning before work. I do of course realize that there are 100 things I have not thought of but the only way to learn those is to just dive in with my gaurd up right? The cinnamon and sugar coated muffin sounds pretty tasty. I still have to try and make the pumpkin muffin I think that one will be pretty tasty.
post #8 of 12
My gift to you:

Peanut butter & jelly Muffins

Make a basic peanut butter muffin mix, and halfway through baking pull them out and fill with grape jelly.
I choose grape because it is the smoothest and easy to fill using squeeze bottles.
Just push the tip halfway in and squeeze, slowly withdrawing until you have a nickel sized dollop showing in the center.
After a couple tries you will get a feel for how much jelly each muffin requires, depending on muffin size.

These have been a hit ever since I started making them, it brings out the kid in everyone.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
That sounds like a fantastic idea. You have to use grape jelly anyways because as everybody knows it just isn't pb&j with anything else. Thanks a bunch. Jim consider the French Toast muffin I mentioned above. It is a loose representation of French Toast but by making a nice buttery muffin and adding cinnamon, nutmeg, and maple syrup to the batter you get that familiar taste. I wonder if squeezing a little syrup in the same way that you mentioned the jelly would be nice or just messy. I also folded in some cream cheese mixed with a little cinnamon and sugar to leave pockets of that in the muffin similar to a stuffed french toast. The cream cheese goes over well.
post #10 of 12
I'll have to try the French Toast muffin.
I think the syrup would just expand and make a mess, leaving an empty space with a lot of crystalization.

Another favorite is Peaches & Cream.
Basic mix with a little nutmeg and cinnamon.
Add chopped canned peaches, and fold in sour cream.
You still want small lumps of the cream.

When I describe this, many want to use cream cheese or something else, but the tang of the sour cream goes really well with the peaches.
When I scoop them I just try to make sure every muffin has at least a little sour cream.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
post #11 of 12
Good luck with your new venture. - You've got to give it a go before you know if it's a hit or not eh!
Our range of savoury muffins are very popular at business meetings/training sessions.
Favourites are leek and Stilton / Roast veg (peppers,aubergine,red onion & rosemary ( just a wee bit)) with Feta cheese
The flavourings are added as 3oz cheese and 3oz veg per recipe chopped finely and mixed well together
9oz plain flour (all purpose)
3 tspns baking powder
1/2tspn salt
2 tbspns caster sugar (odd i know, but it works)
8fl oz whole milk
1 med egg
3 fl oz sunflower oil
Lots of black pepper

Sift dry ingredients together
Whisk wet ones
Mix together lightly with flavourings

Makes 13 good size and 18 minis They taste vaguely healthy so i'm told.
"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
post #12 of 12
My baker is out sick for a couple of days. Even though I don't like baking, I just may enjoy making a couple of these recipes tomorrow. Thanks so much!

BTW, a peanut butter muffin is what exactly? Muffin mix with pb added instead of all the oil? Nah, that doesn't sound right.
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