Pistachio Cardamom Muffins

Wake up in the morning to the fresh scent of Pistachio Cardamom Muffins, made with real pistachios!  Grab a cup of coffee, a muffin and start your day the right way! 

Pistachio Cardamom Muffins from The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again.  That my friends is the motto of these muffins.

It all goes back many moons again to one noisy afternoon working from home.  Noise in general doesn’t bother me, my husband is a musician and my pug snores so loud you can hear him from your home.  Except this day, something was not clicking with me that day.  We had one downstairs neighbor playing piano, one upstairs neighbor listening to talk radio just a little too loudly and one construction worker banging a little to hardly (is that a word in this context?).

Then there was me, home alone with a snoring pug trying to work.  It wasn’t a cooking day, which meant I was trying to write or email or any other sort of admin work that need to be completed and it just wasn’t happening.  So I packed up my laptop, scratched the pug behind the ears and marched down to the local coffee shop.

Pistachio Cardamom Muffins | girlinthelittleredkitchen.com

We Brooklynites love working at our local coffee shops.  My husband and I affectionally nickname people who sit there and work laptop junkies because they order one cup of coffee and work for hours on end.  I’m not one of those people, I like working from the comfort of my home and plus I don’t drink coffee!  Yes I know you can more than coffee at a coffee shop but isn’t that part of the purpose? To get your latte or cappuccino instead of a boring black coffee?  Back to my point, I joined the club of laptop junkies just that one afternoon but with it came an afternoon snack.  A piece of quick bread and tea.  Little did I know then that the little piece of bread would take me on a recipe testing journey for months on end.

This piece of pistachio cardamom bread was perhaps the best coffee shop treat I had ever tasted.  It was moist, it was packed full of flavor and just perfectly baked.  I needed more and I needed to make it at home for myself.  The next day I got to it and failed.  So I tried again and failed and again and failed.  What was the secret to that bread and why was mine dry as the desert every single time?  Was it pistachio pudding? It didn’t taste like, I swore there were real pieces of pistachio in my bread.

So I put things aside for a long while and got back to the recipe again once the fall weather hit.  You know? Taking a break and a few tweaks was all I needed to get things right.  First off was switching things out from a quick bread to muffins.  Next was making my attempt at pistachio paste – my original ingredient thought to making homemade pistachio flour.  After that it was a simple standard muffin recipe to bring you your new favorite muffin recipe.  These guys are perfect for that grab and go breakfast or quick afternoon pick-me up snack.  Store them in the freezer to keep for awhile and toast up when you’re ready for the next go around.  No coffee houses necessary.

Pistachio Cardamom Muffins | girlinthelittleredkitchen.com

Pistachio Cardamom Muffins
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  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup shelled unsalted pistachios + extra to top
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup cane sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup vegetable or avocado oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Add the pistachios to your food processor and pulse until it reaches a fine powder, you want the consistency of a nut flour.
  2. Add the flour to a medium to large mixing bowl with the all-purpose flour, baking powder, cardamom, baking soda, salt and sugar.
  3. In a small bowl whisk together the buttermilk, oil, eggs and vanilla and pour on top of the dry ingredients. Whisk until combined and the batter is smooth.
  4. Heat your oven to 350 degrees F and line a 12 cup muffin tin with cupcake/muffin liners.
  5. Fill each cavity in the muffin tin to the top with batter for nice large full muffins. Sprinkle extra pistachios on top and bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Let cool completely before serving.
  7. Muffins can be kept at room temperature for 3-4 days or frozen for up to 3 months.
  8. Makes 12 muffins.
Recipe Type: Muffin, Bread

Little Red Kitchen Bake Shop

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