A real dessert delight from TikTok’s favourite grandma

Olga Massov

THE WASHINGTON Post – These days, there’s no lack of recipe resources, be it newspapers, blogs, cookbooks, journals, Instagram or TikTok. Numerous assure simple and delightful recipes or seemingly ingenious kitchen area hacks. When I see a easy recipe that guarantees greatness, my default reaction is scepticism. But when that recipe comes from a grandmother determine, I stop and pay attention. Grandmothers are wise. They’re form. They’re inherently no-nonsense.

Consider In Bibi’s Kitchen, my favorite cookbook very last calendar year, with collected recipes from bibis (grandmothers) across several African countries. Or the Pasta Grannies account on Instagram, which documents Italian nonnas producing (normally) pasta dishes with little gear and easy elements.

So, when you discover a recipe for a a few-component blueberry muffin recipe from a woman dubbed TikTok’s favourite grandma, you pay back awareness.

Barbara Costello, or, Babs, as she’s affectionately known to her 160,000 Instagram and approximately 50 percent a million TikTok followers, is a 72-calendar year-previous Connecticut grandmother, who exploded on the social media scene a lot less than 18 months ago in a room wherever she would seem to be an outlier. Social media tends to favour the younger, but Costello is charting her own study course, one short movie at a time.

Her route to TikTok stardom commenced when she moved in with her daughter, lifestyle blogger Liz Ariola. Ariola was decided to break into TikTok and asked her mom to record a couple of movies, so Costello reluctantly posted a recipe for sheet-pan Greek rooster and potatoes.

TikTok star Barbara Costello. Pictures: THE WASHINGTON Publish
3-ingredient blueberry muffins

When the movie acquired extra than 100,000 views, Ariola inspired Costello to post additional, sharing family recipes as nicely as lifestyle and kitchen area knowledge. Along with recipes, Costello’s numerous limited online video segments – these kinds of as Babs’ Hacks, Slice of Peace, Did Your Mom Ever Tell You – are shipped in a clipped and calm way.

When I spied these a few-component blueberry muffins produced with ice cream, I knew I experienced to test them. The concept of using ice cream is sensible it’s primarily your premade foundation: dairy, egg yolks and sugar.

I tracked down the 1982 Southern Living cookbook that was the supply of Costello’s recipe. I’m a tinkerer by character, so I tweaked the proportions for an airier batter and a much more tender crumb. I also included a minor lemon zest and sprinkled the tops of my unbaked muffins with demerara sugar, which technically, manufactured them five-component muffins, but with these two – strictly optional – additions, a quite good muffin turned great. So good, my six-year-aged proclaimed them to be the most effective he’s at any time experienced.

The simplicity of this small muffin recipe is emblematic of Costello’s method to daily life and of her charm. Her recipes might not be your excellent versions of dishes, but they are simple, simple and terrific for harried mother and father or new cooks.


Active time: 10 minutes

Whole time: 40 minutes

Servings: Six

These a few-component blueberry muffins count on ice cream for dampness, richness and sweetness, and are as entertaining to make as they are to try to eat. The addition of lemon zest and turbinado sugar is optional (and technically can make them 5-ingredient muffins), but they elevate the conclude end result. We desired the muffins produced with egg yolk-dependent ice product (aka French custard) – the muffins had a extra tender crumb – but the yolk-free of charge (Philadelphia-type custard) works perfectly if you want to avoid eggs. This recipe would make 6 muffins, but it’s effortlessly doubled.

Storage Notes: The muffins are most effective the day they are designed, but can be saved in an airtight container at home temperature for up to two times. Reheat in a 350-diploma oven until finally heat.

NOTES: Make certain when you soften the ice cream, it is scoopable, but not getting to be ice product soup. Smooshing stable ice product with a wooden spoon will enable obtain the correct regularity.

We experienced results making a gluten-free version of these muffins using Bob’s Purple Mill Gluten-Free-one-to-just one Baking Flour. If creating these muffins gluten-cost-free, increase 15 minutes of baking time and be absolutely sure to enable the muffins interesting for at least two hrs just before serving. (This can help make them much less gummy).

We did not like a vegan variation of these muffins designed with dairy-absolutely free ice cream the crumb fell aside and the texture was disappointing. If you simply cannot locate self-climbing flour, you can make your possess with the related recipe.


Generous one-and-one-third cups vanilla ice product, softened

A single cup self-rising flour

Two teaspoons finely grated lemon zest (optional)

A few-quarter cup new blueberries

Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling (optional)


Placement a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375 levels. Grease a muffin tin with non-adhere cooking spray or line with muffin liners.

In a significant bowl, employing a picket spoon, soften the ice cream right up until it is the regularity of soft serve, then merge it with the flour and lemon zest, if employing, until finally primarily integrated. Gently fold in the blueberries, functioning to distribute them evenly but hoping to not crush them. The batter will be incredibly thick.

Part a scant a single-quarter cup of the batter into every properly of the muffin tin and sprinkle the tops with the turbinado sugar, if making use of. Bake for 30-33 minutes, or until eventually the tops of the muffins are golden and domed and a tester inserted into the centre of the muffin will come out thoroughly clean.

Transfer to a wire rack and enable great to warm or entirely right before unmolding. Eat heat or at room temperature.

Nutrition for each serving, based on 6 | Calories: 193 Full Extra fat: 7g Saturated Unwanted fat: 4g Cholesterol: 32mg Sodium: 300mg Carbohydrates: 27g Nutritional Fibre: 1g Sugar: 10g Protein: 4g


5 minutes

A single serving (can make one cup)

Self-increasing flour is a lower-protein all-goal flour mixed with baking powder and salt. It is popular in lots of Southern baking recipes and can be found in many grocery retailers, especially in the South. If keep-acquired self-rising proves challenging to come across, it is a cinch to make at residence.

Preserve in mind that if applying a larger protein all-objective flour, this sort of as King Arthur Baking brand, your crumb will be a bit harder/sturdier than with the softer flour variety.

Storage: It is greatest to blend self-soaring flour as you will need it, as exposure to air will oxidise the combination and lessen its efficacy. On the other hand, it can be stored in a neat, darkish area for up to two months.


A person cup all-function flour

A single-and-a-50 percent teaspoons baking powder

Just one-quarter teaspoon good sea salt or desk salt


In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt right until thoroughly merged.

Nourishment per serving (a single cup) | Calories: 458 Full Excess fat: 1g Saturated Fats: 0g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 1,066mg Carbohydrates: 97g Nutritional Fibre: 3g Sugar: 0g Protein: 13g

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