My Love Affair with Michaels English Muffins

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Finding My Go-To Breakfast in an Unlikely Place

As an avid foodie and breakfast enthusiast, I’m always on the hunt for that perfect morning meal – something that ticks all the boxes for taste, nutrition, and convenience. For years, I bounced around trying trendy avocado toasts, chia puddings, and artisanal granolas. But nothing really stuck until I discovered Michaels English muffins. These humble little muffins completely won me over, becoming a staple I just can’t live without.

I first stumbled upon Michaels English muffins during a quick pitstop at my local mini-mart. I was making a beeline for the checkout when a display of their whole wheat English muffins caught my eye. I’m not usually swayed by in-store promotions, but the packaging boasted they were “baked with real wholesome ingredients” – I decided to take a chance. At just $3.49 for a pack of six, it was a relatively low-risk gamble.

That very next morning, I popped one into the toaster and within minutes was blown away by the muffin’s perfect balance ofchew and tenderness. Unlike some English muffins thatcan lean dry or too spongy, the texture was just right. And the subtly nutty whole wheat flavor really shone. I sliced my toasted muffin in half, slathered on some peanut butter, and knew I had found my new go-to breakfast.

Over time Michaels English muffins havebecome nearly an everyday staple. I’ve incorporated them into all sorts of meals and snacks – sandwiches, pizzas, egg muffins, you name it. And I’ve come to truly appreciate what sets these muffins apart from the rest. Keep reading for my full review of Michaels English muffins and why they win my seal of approval.

Where to Buy for Maximum Freshness

You can find Michaels English muffins at most major grocery stores in the bakery section, often near other breads and breakfast items. I usually pick up a 6-pack at my local Safeway for around $4. But for optimum freshness, I recommend stopping by one of their factory outlet stores.

Michaels operates over 30 outlets nationwide where you can getEnglish muffins straight from the source. The closest one to me has the benefit of being near their California bakery, so the muffins are incredibly fresh. You can really taste the difference! I stock up on multiple packs anytime I’m in the area.

The outlets offer more variety too, carrying flavors you won’t find at regular grocers. My favorites are the cinnamon raisin, honey wheat, and blueberry – perfect for a change of pace when I want something a bit different. The packages are often marked down at the outlets too, making them an even better deal.

Old-World Artisan Quality

What really makes Michaels English muffins stand out is their meticulous old-world style baking process. They still mix their dough in small batches and employ real sourdough fermentation. This gives the muffins a rich, yeasty flavor that simply can’t be replicated artificially.

According to their website, each batch ferments for nearly 8 hours before being hand-formed into those signature nooks and crannies. The muffins are cooked on cast iron griddles for optimum crisping. It’s this careful attention to detail that makes them taste like they came straight from a European bakery, not a factory assembly line.

You can really taste the artisan quality with every bite. The muffins have a wholesome wheaty flavor with hints of tangy sourdough. And that chewy, honeycombed texture comes from proper proofing and pan-baking. Michaels has truly perfected the English muffin over their 100+ years in business.

Healthier Than Your Average Bread

Don’t be fooled by their small size – Michaels English muffins pack a solid nutritional punch. A standard plain muffin clocks in around 134 calories with 4 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber. Ditching bleached white flour for hearty whole grains gives them a lower glycemic load. I find I don’t experience the same mid-morning energy crash like I do with other refined carbs.

They’re also remarkably low in added sugars. A single muffin has just 1 gram of sugar thanks to clean, straightforward ingredients. You won’t find any high fructose corn syrup or artificial flavors that often lurk in other brands. And with only 140mg of sodium per muffin, they’re less salty than many commercial breads.

I feel good about starting my day with a wholesome whole grain muffin. The fiber keeps me full and satisfied for hours, meaning I’m less tempted to snack on junk before lunchtime rolls around. Nutritionally speaking, Michaels English muffins are far superior to waffles, pastries, or drive-thru sandwiches.

Freezer Friendly for Meal Prepping

Like most breads, Michaels English muffins freeze remarkably well. I often stock up when they go on sale and throw a pack straight into the freezer. They defrost quickly at room temp or in the toaster.

Freezing has been a gamechanger for my meal prepping. Now I can whip up big batches muffin sandwiches or breakfast casseroles and freeze them for busy mornings. Some favorite make-ahead meals include:

  • Egg, bacon, and cheese muffin sandwiches – Just scramble up some eggs with bacon, spoon into halved and toasted muffins, sprinkle with shredded cheese and freeze. Microwave or toast to reheat.
  • Sausage, potato and egg muffin cups – Line muffin tins with Michaels English muffins. Fill with potatoes, sausage, beaten eggs and bake. Freeze once cooled and reheated as needed.
  • Berry yogurt parfaits – Layer yogurt, berries, and granola in split muffins for a grab-and-go breakfast. Enjoy thawed.

No matter what I’m making, the muffins retain that freshly baked taste and texture. Freezing ensures I always have a quick, nourishing breakfast ready to grab even during my busiest weeks.

Topping Ideas for Any Time of Day

An English muffin is a canvas ready to be topped sweet or savory any time of day. For breakfast, I love slathers of almond butter or smashed avocado. Lunchtime brings endless sandwich options – my favorites are turkey and Swiss or ham and melty brie.

When dinnertime rolls around, English muffin pizzas always satisfy. They’re perfect for using up leftovers – pile on roasted veggies, chicken, or black beans for a quick meal. Top with marinara or pesto and mozzarella and bake until bubbly.

And no one will complain about muffins as an afternoon snack or dessert either. Sweet toppings like Greek yogurt with cinnamon and honey or peanut butter with banana slices make a filling end to the day.

Baking Up at Home from Scratch

After falling so deeply for Michaels English muffins, I had to try my hand at baking them from scratch at home. It took a few tries to get the chewy, nooked texture just right. But now I have the technique down pat.

When I have time to prepare them fresh, here is my go-to homemade English muffin recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm milk
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • Cornmeal for dusting

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine the flour, salt, sugar and yeast. Create a well in the center and pour in the warm milk and melted butter. Mix with wooden spoon until combined.
  2. On a floured surface, knead the dough for 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. Place in greased bowl, cover and let rise 1 hour.
  3. Punch down dough and divide into 12 equal pieces. Shape each into a round and let rest 10 minutes.
  4. Heat cast iron skillet or griddle to medium. Dust with cornmeal. Use fingers to shape each dough ball into the classic English muffin shape, flattening and poking holes with your thumbs.
  5. Cook muffins in batches 3-5 minutes per side until golden brown. Allow to cool before splitting with a fork.

Home baked, these come incredibly close to my beloved Michaels! While the original still can’t be beat for convenience, this from-scratch recipe lets me control the ingredients. I can swap in whole grain flours or mix in my favorite add-ins like raisins or spices.

Why Michaels Have My Unwavering Loyalty

While newfangled breakfast trends will come and go, Michaels English muffins remain my tried and true morning staple. Their wholesome, artisan quality provides the perfect base for a well-balanced breakfast, no matter what toppings I’m in the mood for that day. I truly appreciate their commitment to old-world baking methods and simple, natural ingredients.

So if you’re looking for a new breakfast routine, take a cue from me. Grab a pack of Michaels English muffins and prepare to fall in love! Their melt-in-your-mouth texture and belly-filling nutrition will have you joining the fan club in no time. Whatever you choose to spoon, smear, or stack between their nooks and crannies, you really can’t go wrong.

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