top of page

Italian Panettone Muffins for Christmas, New Years, or 12th Night

Updated: Dec 28, 2022

If you want to have a soft, rich, and absolutely delicious muffin to continue on with the last bit of the Christmas season, then drop everything and scroll down. These are easy to make and such a delight on a cool evening with a small cup of coffee or tea and a good book... and a Pomeranian.

Panettone is an Italian sweet bread, a small loaf cake, that originated in Milan and is usually enjoyed for Christmas and/or New Years, however, you could also make it for Twelfth Night! Traditionally this is a dome-shaped cake with a light & airy texture, but a rich taste. This used to be a major celebration as the last of the 12 days and the eve of Epiphany. At the start of the evening, “Twelfth Night” cake was eaten, which is a rich cake made with fruit, butter, nuts, & spices. Panettone (Italian Christmas Cake) is the closest thing we have to Twelfth Night cake and goes wonderfully with the season. You should be warned in advance that you will need the proper mold for traditional Panettone. I did not get this in enough time so I adapted and made Panettone Muffins. It is essentially the same thing without the rising process needed to make the bread cake.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Dried Fruit Soak Time: 1 hour

Bake Time: 18-20 minutes

Yields: 12 Muffins


  • 1 1/2 cups diced (or whole) dried fruit *We chose raisins, cherries, & cranberries.* I have seen others that do apricots, pineapple, dates, your choice!

  • 1/4 cup mixture of juice of your choice & whiskey *Rum can also be used be we are more whiskey people.

  • 1/4 cup butter

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 2 tablespoons cake enhancer **OPTIONAL**

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 2 1/4 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

  • 2/3 cup milk

  • 2 tablespoons course white sparkling sugar, for topping

and this...

and this...

That's all I promise, this is what happens when I bake hungry, I forget to take a picture of the entire cast and crew together.


Measure out 1 1/2 cups dried fruit of your choice, dice or keep whole.



and Cranberries, oh my!

Measure 1/4 cup juice and whiskey mixture.