If muffins are basically the breakfast equivalent of cupcakes, then the crumble is more or less the frosting. I feel like all muffins should have a crumble. Can we make this an official rule? No shirt, no shoes, no service. No cupcake without frosting. No muffin sans crumble.

Dried Papaya Muffins with Cashew Crumble

It’s all about the crumble, baby

Dried Papaya  Muffins with Cashew Crumble (36 of 750)

Adapted from  750 Best Muffin Recipes by Camilla Saulsbury

Makes 46 mini muffins


  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped roasted cashews
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted


  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped dried papaya
  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Crumble: In a small bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, and cashews. Drizzle with butter, tossing with a fork until crumbly. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Muffins: In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, allspice, baking soda, and salt.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together brown sugar, eggs, milk, butter, and vanilla until well blended.
  5. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir until just blended. Gently fold in chopped papaya.
  6. Divide the batter equally among prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle with crumble and gently press into batter.
  7. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until tops are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then transfer to the rack to cool.

I had half a mind to bake the crumble by itself and eat it straight, but as tempting as that may sound, it really does belong on the muffins. The combination of the lightly spiced muffin batter with the sweet papaya chunks and the buttery cashews is heavenly.

I made a “healthy” version of these muffins with a gluten-free flour mix and coconut oil instead of butter and they turned out just as amazing as their white-flour and butter-filled counterparts. The recipe in the book originally called for 3 tbsp of butter, but I cut it down to 2. If you’re using coconut oil, I might even cut that down to 1 1/2 as the mixture was just a tad too runny.

Gluten-free or not, these muffins are such a great breakfast treat. They’re not just delicious, they have such an interesting combination of flavors that really wake up your tastebuds.

Dried papaya chunks coated in flour look surprisingly similar to candy

Cashew crumble with coconut oil

With 2 tbsp of coconut oil, the crumble was a bit too runny, and then solidified a bit too much in the fridge, so it ended up coming off more in chunks than crumbles

Cashew crumble with butter

2 tbsp of butter is just the right amount

Gluten-Free Dried Papaya Muffins with Cashew Crumble

Fluffy, airy gluten-free muffins

Dried papaya muffins with cashew crumble

Dried papaya muffins with cashew crumble