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This city is flooded with blueberry muffins. Plain ones, sugar-dusted numbers, big ones, itty bitty ones, and others still, paired with everything from bran to corn. We loved some, hated others, and passed on a few. Our conclusion? There's one we can honestly call "the best" and many others which are simply great and worth a detour. In the end, blueberry muffins, like most sweets, are totally subjective. Taste is personalized, so we've made sure to included seriously delicious muffins on all ends of the spectrum.
Where to begin? See the list after the jump for our picks for the city's finest blueberry muffins.
The Best of the Best
We've tasted high and low, so let's begin with what is undoubtedly the best blueberry muffin in the city. Say hello to Locanda Verde's blueberry-polenta muffin. This is a gorgeous number, and I am head-over-heels obsessed with the pairing of blueberry and polenta in a plush, sweet muffin. The surface is lightly dotted with sugar crystals, the blueberries are aplenty, and the polenta brings about this moist, near nutty crunch. It is insane. Size-wise, it was one of the smaller, and it was also the most expensive ($3.75) muffin. But aside from that, what is there not to love? 377 Greenwich Street, New York NY 10013 (b/n North Moore Street and Franklin Street; map); 212-925-3797; greenwichhotelny.com
Best with a Crumb Topping
The blueberry muffin at Trois Pommes Patisserie ($2.50) in Park Slope is baked in a tin cup, and outfitted in a cinnamon-sugar crumb topping. Super tender with a fine crumb, and containing more than just a handful blueberries, this is a classic you could easily start with for breakfast everyday of the week. 260 Fifth Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11215 (b/n Carroll Street and Garfield Street; map); 718-230-3119; troispommespatisserie.com
Best with a Sugar-Dusted Topping
We're suckers for sugar-dusted tops, especially for the one found at Blue Sky Bakery ($1.95), bearing a tall, crackly, golden dome. Plenty of blueberries had clearly exploded in the baking process, streaking the innards an attractive hue. This muffin was less sweet that most others included in our list—if that's a big plus for you, mark this down. 53 5th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11217 (b/n Bergen Street and St. Mark's Avenue; map); 718-783-4123
Best in Mini Form
At Blue Ribbon Bakery Market, mini two-bite blueberry muffins are sold in a basket for just 75¢ apiece. They're tucked away next to the cash register, alongside cinnamon-sugar muffins, the only other muffin offered at the bakery. Powdery light and simple, we detected a haunting note of cinnamon and nutmeg, a swell pairing with blueberries. 14 Bedford Street, New York NY 10014 (near Downing Street; map); 212-647-0408; blueribbonrestaurants.com
Best Greasy in a Good Way
You how sometimes things can be greasy in a good way? Yes. Those would be the blueberry muffins from Little Miss Muffin ($2). This muffin leaves a touch more of an oily stain in the brown paper bag than its competitors, but the flavor is so genuine and satisfying—an absolutely innocent and honest muffin. 174 Park Place, Brooklyn NY 11238 (near Carlton Avenue; map); 718-857-4963
Best Usage of Corn
The blueberry-corn muffin at City Bakery ($3) is a well-known sweet and justly so. The wide and flat topped muffin is surely a unique one with its super crunchy exterior and dense, cornmeal and blueberry outfitted. If this blueberry-corn combo is your sort of thing, head to Sarabeth's ($2.25) for a mini version that's more akin to blueberry-studded cornbread, as opposed to corn-studded blueberry muffin. There's a big difference between the two. City Bakery: 3 W 18th Street, New York NY 10011; 212-366-1414; thecitybakery.com. Sarabeth's: Chelsea Market, 75 9th Avenue, New York NY 10011 (at 15th Street; map); 212-989-2424; other locations at sarabeth.com
Best Usage of Bran
At The Grey Dog's Coffee ($2.70), the blueberry-bran muffins are huge, dense and very satisfying in that whole oat-y manner. There were fewer berries than we would have liked given the size of the muffin, but this was a hearty, muffin-can-make-a-meal find. 90 University Place, New York NY 10003 (near 12th Street; map); 212-414-4739; thegreydog.com; also in the West Village.
Best Asian Influence
Over at The Adore, a Japanese bakery/restaurant/tea house, the muffin is of an eggy sort with blueberries not mixed in the batter, but rather dotted across the top surface. This is perhaps as far as one can deviate from a traditional classic blueberry muffin, for it is but a touch sweet and reminiscent of Chinese sponge cake, only with a bit more body. 17 East 13th Street; New York NY 10003( b/n University Place and 5th Avenue; map); 212-243-8742
Best Straightforward Blueberry
The classic all-American muffin sits right in the bakery section at Friend of a Farmer's ($2.70) right off Union Square. Come in the morning around 9 a.m. and you might be lucky enough to find them still sitting in the muffin pans with steam billowing out the tops, waiting to cool down. These are straightforward muffins, no corn or polenta combo, no sugar-speckled top. Just a blueberry muffin some might call too sweet, and others, just dandy. 77 Irving Place, New York NY 10003 (at 19th Street; map); 212-477-2188; friendofafarmernyc.com
A similar muffin, though with a slightly tougher exterior but more blueberries can be found at Cranberry's ($1.50) in Brooklyn Heights, a gourmet food store known for their house-baked sweets. 48 Henry Street, Brooklyn NY 11201 (at Cranberry Street; map); 718-624-3500