Mexican Muffins
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Ole! Mexican Muffins

Mexican Muffins from



You've got about 1/2 cup of cooked chicken left over from last night's dinner. What are you going to do with it?

Sure you could mix it up with some other goodies to make chicken salad for the next day's lunch, whip up some chicken and stars for your toddler, or even make a batch of summer rolls, but why not try making something totally new which you can serve for lunch just as easily as you can for dinner?

I try hard to keep things fresh and offer my little ones new recipes as often as possible, but they're just like every other kid out there. Left to their own devices it would likely be mac and cheese every night -- butter, cheese, pasta and bread reign supreme for them. But by switching up my menu day-to-day, Kenya and Chloe learn to expand their culinary comfort zones and frequently surprise themselves by discovering a new favorite. I find it so inspiring to watch a kid discovers on her own that she enjoys a new food or in fact loves the one you've repeatedly been trying to get her to eat for months...even years. Even these savory muffins packed with mexican spices, sweet corn and a touch of cheese and all in one small package, were a surprise to the kids. But as soon as I offered them one with a squeeze of ketchup to dip in they were psyched.

So the next time you have some leftover chicken and are tired of the same old recipes, try something new like these Mexican Muffins and you just might find a new favorite too!

Photo by Maren Caruso

Mexican Muffins  (serves 4)

  • Prep Time: 10 mins,
  • Cook Time: 15 mins,
  • Rating:
    Rate this recipe
You've got about 1/2 cup of cooked chicken left over from last night's dinner. What are you going to do with it? Sure you could mix it up with some other goodies to make chicken salad for the next day's lunch, whip up some chicken and stars for your...


  • 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 large egg, whisked
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon honey
  • 1/3 cup mexican cheese blend (mozzarella, cheddar, monterrey jack)
  • 1/4 cup corn kernels, frozen or fresh
  • 1/2 cup cooked chicken, diced


  1. 1. Heat oven to 375°F.
  2. 2. In a large bowl, whisk together the first 7 ingredients.
  3. 3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, milk, tomato paste, honey, cheese, and corn.
  4. 4. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until just combined.
  5. 5. Gently fold in the chicken.
  6. 6. Pour batter into a well-greased muffin tin.
  7. 7. Bake for 15 minutes, or until lightly brown.
  8. 8. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Accompaniments: ketchup

Mexican Muffins

Nutrition Information

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  1. jerilampert

    December 1, 2016 at 12:31 pm

    These are so good! I always whip up a double batch, because I need MORE!

    • C. McCord

      December 5, 2016 at 10:25 pm

      So glad they’re a hit!

  2. Theresa

    August 10, 2016 at 7:51 am

    Hello! I was going to make these muffins that I found in your cookbook, however I stumped as to the safest way to send them in a lunchbox to school since they contain meat. Chilled with an ice pack? Warmed in a thermos? Thanks for the advice!

    • C. McCord

      August 11, 2016 at 8:44 am

      I always send lunch with an ice pack to keep everything at a safe temperature until lunch time!

      • Theresa

        August 11, 2016 at 8:01 pm

        Thank you! :)

  3. Jaclyn

    August 1, 2016 at 5:05 pm

    This feels like a stupid question, but, do you cook the corn before using it?? Thank you!!!

    • C. McCord

      August 3, 2016 at 8:51 am

      I don’t cook them. If you use frozen, they have already been cooked!

  4. Kaley

    March 21, 2015 at 1:58 pm

    Can I replace the milk with something else? These look great!

    • C. McCord

      March 23, 2015 at 11:35 am

      An alternative milk should work just fine!

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  6. Kate

    August 5, 2014 at 4:23 pm

    What if I want to refrigerate them? Just a few seconds in the microwave to heat up? Eat cold? Would they thaw from the freezer by lunchtime for a packed lunch?

    • Catherine McCord

      August 6, 2014 at 7:03 am

      I like to pull them out of the freezer the night before, and you can heat them in microwave or in a toasted oven for a few minutes!

  7. Kate

    April 1, 2014 at 9:52 am

    How many muffins does this make? It says 4 servings. Is a serving 1 muffin? Thanks!

  8. Jody

    February 18, 2014 at 12:56 am

    I made these this evening. My 2 1/2 didn’t like it too much but my 18-month ate it. I had the late night munchies and ate the last of it!

  9. imariec

    October 27, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    Just made these and mistakenly added 1/2 tsp of garlic powder instead of 1/4, but I’m glad to report the flavor was perfect. I’ll definitely add the right amount next time, but I ran out of baking powder and couldn’t start over tonight. Great and fun recipe.

    I wonder if they could also be maze w peas and carrots, instead of just corn. :-)

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  11. Laura

    August 18, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    I just made these – they were great – but I doubled the recipe and made them in mini muffin pans. (I’m 30 weeks pregnant and have a 12 month old i’m trying to stock food up for). I should have asked this question first, but what is the best way to freeze and reheat these and the best way to store the ones I don’t freeze?

    • Leah

      October 5, 2013 at 4:30 pm

      I’ve had success freezing 1 to 2 of the full size ones per ziplock freezer bag then putting them in an outer bag (double protection). Then I take out the wanted quantity and thaw in the fridge during the day for that evening’s dinner. Then I either microwave or warm in the over (wrapped in foil at 350),

  12. tanya

    July 17, 2013 at 12:15 pm

    the batter came out extremely thick, like when you make chocolate chip cookies. Is that correct?

    • catherine

      July 17, 2013 at 1:16 pm

      Yes, it is a thick batter due to all the yummy ingredients in there!

  13. Sheri

    May 14, 2013 at 11:25 am

    I wanted to try these today for my all of sudden picky 17 month old. Is there anything I can sub for tom. paste, since I don’t have any on hand? Ketchup?

    • imariec

      October 27, 2013 at 7:57 pm

      For the same situation in the future, you can make tomato paste by just simmering tomato sauce for about 7min.

    • catherine

      May 14, 2013 at 12:23 pm

      You could use tomato sauce (or tomato puree) instead so that you still get a similar flavor! Use 1/2 tablespoon since it is thinner than paste. You could also simmer tomato sauce for about 5 minutes to thicken it and get it closer to the consistency of tomato paste!

  14. Karen

    April 6, 2013 at 10:16 am

    My son is pretty picky. So I have to come up with ways to give him something that is good for him constantly. For example, if I give him only bananas he will throw them on the floor, but, if I give him banana cake, he gobbles them right up! Same with corn, I gave him some the other day and he spit them up, so, I’m hoping these muffins he’ll love since they have corn in them.

  15. MadduxMommy

    January 31, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    I just made these for my 18 month old, and he LOVES them! I just subbed the chicken for black beans (he is obsessed) and it’s a big hit!

    • Kellie

      April 23, 2013 at 12:15 pm

      that’s a great idea. I’m a vegetarian and was wondering what I could sub out.

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  17. Ashley

    November 6, 2012 at 3:23 pm

    Had to give these a try since we’re Mexican food fanatics and all about muffins too. Decided to add 1/2 cup of grated zucchini and 2 tablespoons of a thinner consistency (not chunky) mild salsa to ensure they were extra moist – Awesome! Great flavor and my 3 year old ate and entire muffin without protest!

  18. missmelanie

    October 23, 2012 at 10:21 pm

    Just made with 2 hardboiled eggs instead of chicken (we’re veggie)–turned out great. Hoping my little one scarfs them down with the gusto I just did:)

  19. sridevi

    October 3, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    Thank you for the wonderful recipes

  20. Shannon

    August 26, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    Wonderful idea, but unfortunately neither of my boys liked them. On the bright side, both my husband and I thought they were quite good.

  21. Stacy

    August 25, 2012 at 9:09 am

    Can you use beans in place of chicken?

    • catherine

      August 27, 2012 at 11:36 am

      Yes! You can really substitute any of the add-ins with ingredients of your preference!

  22. Deysi Hurd

    August 21, 2012 at 1:50 pm

    These looks yummy! I’m going to try them tonight. Can these be frozen?

    • catherine

      August 21, 2012 at 1:57 pm

      Yes! I freeze them after baking. I have some in the freezer right now. Maybe I’ll take a few out for lunch…

  23. Amanda

    August 6, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    So, if I’m using fresh corn off the cob, do I need to cook/blanch the corn first?

    • catherine

      August 7, 2012 at 11:49 am

      Yes, I would blanch the corn first!

  24. Malorie

    August 3, 2012 at 6:25 pm

    These look great! They are in the oven now 😀 My 15 month old (and my husband) thanks you for all your great recipes!!

  25. Adam

    August 3, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    Great use for that leftover chicken that you never quite know what to do with.

  26. Christin

    August 2, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    I made these as 8 mini muffins and cooked them for about 13 minutes. They turned out fantastic and were a big hit at our play date today. The house also smelled fantastic when they were baking!

  27. Kate

    August 2, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    What a great idea. These would be perfect for Mom’s group potluck too!

  28. Catherine

    August 2, 2012 at 12:06 pm

    I LOVE this recipe!!! Thanks!

  29. ajasaitis

    August 1, 2012 at 2:02 pm

    You say this recipe serves 4 — would this work just the same in a mini-muffin pan or a regular muffin pan?

    • catherine

      August 1, 2012 at 3:06 pm

      You could do these as mini muffins, just reduce the cooking time by about 5 minutes!

  30. Ashley

    August 1, 2012 at 11:49 am

    Is there a way to use corn meal instead of flour? I’m pregnant and craving cornbread!

  31. Soshanna

    August 1, 2012 at 10:18 am

    Can I put green veggies there to substitute the corn ?

    • catherine

      August 1, 2012 at 11:02 am

      You could replace the corn with something else that is sturdy. Like peas or zucchini. Make sure to chop the substitute to about the size of a corn kernel!

  32. Lindsey

    August 1, 2012 at 10:16 am

    Thank you for this recipe! Sounds great and I can’t wait to try it.

  33. Janelle Weems

    August 1, 2012 at 10:02 am

    These look great ! Can’t wait to try! Can they be frozen?

    • catherine

      August 1, 2012 at 11:01 am

      Yes! Freeze after baking and they’ll keep for about 3 months.

  34. Julie

    August 1, 2012 at 9:28 am

    These look like something perfect to get my toddler to eat some meat! And very happy your newly designed website allows your recipes to be saved to my Paprika app!