Can something be your hobby if it’s also your job? In my case, that would be cooking — specifically baking. In the not-too-distant past, I loved nothing more than spending hours in the kitchen on a good weekend bake, a showstopper in the words of “The Great British Baking Show.”

But now that I have a toddler I fully enjoy chasing around the house, and because I already spend gobs of time in our Food Lab, complicated baking projects are not usually in the cards. Muffins to the rescue! They’re fast, easy and often one-bowl. Plus, they’re an ideal breakfast or brunch — in other words, the perfect satisfying weekend bake. Here are some recipes from our archives that you can pull warm out of the oven in no time:

Fudgy Zucchini Muffins, above. Even though the aforementioned toddler only deigned to pick out a few chocolate chips, I promise these are a winner. They’re supremely tender, and the diced zucchini is about as innocuous as pieces of apple. I’m sure they’ll pass muster with less finicky kids.


Morning Glory Muffins. Ellie Krieger is at it again — producing great-tasting, good-for-you fare. Her Morning Glory Baked Oatmeal was a huge hit, and these muffins deserve to be, too.


A basic batter is a blank canvas for tender and fluffy muffins. An added bonus—this recipe comes together in one bowl. (Jayne Orenstein/The Washington Post/Photo: Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post)

All-Purpose Muffins. Just as the name indicates, this recipe is the canvas for your own muffin creativity. Add your choice of fruit, nuts, chocolate, citrus zest, extracts . . . you get the idea. No matter what you choose, you’re guaranteed a beautifully fluffy, flavorful result.


Gluten-Free Orange Poppy Seed MuffinsUsually you see lemon and poppy seed together, but this recipe mixes things up with orange, including in an icing that puts the muffins over the top (leave it off if you prefer). They’ll come together even faster if you use a pre-made gluten-free flour blend.


Apple Bran Muffins. Short, dark and handsome, these muffins would be just the thing to welcome out-of-town guests. They pack in the fiber, too, though you don’t have to advertise it.

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