Claim Jumper is a California Gold Rush themed restaurant known for large portions and “signature desserts”. Or at least that’s what Wikipedia says. I’ve never been to a Claim Jumper, but the name kept coming up during my search for a dark, moist bran muffin recipe. This one’s called “Claim Jumper Dark Honey Bran Muffins”, which is a funny name considering the recipe has no honey.
Claim Jumper’s bran muffins probably do contain honey, but this clone gets its dark color and sweetness come from dark brown sugar, molasses, dark corn syrup and pureed raisins. Despite the missing honey, I thought the recipe sounded interesting, so I made a batch for the family muffin monster.
Below is what the clone recipe looks like and you can find it pretty easily by Googling. If you dare try the part about rubbing the muffin cup with glaze, let me know. I just chickened out. It seemed sticky.
Update: I’ve been told these are also similar to Mimi’s, though I’ve never tried theirs.
2021 Recipe Update!
This recipe has been here for 15 years and since then no one has sent me a picture of a Claim Jumper bran muffin. When I google and try to find one, pictures of my daughter (who is now in college) appear. One of these days I’ll make it to Claim Jumper, at which point they probably won’t even have these muffins (if they exist), so I made some today.
The first time I made them I skipped the glaze. This time I did not, and it really does make a difference. I used parchment cupcake liners, sprayed the liners with a little cooking spray to be safe, and used butter in place of the shortening. They are really good! You serve them upside down (as in the picture above) and they have kind of a chewy, sticky shell.
Claim Jumper Bran Muffins
- 1 cup all purpose or white whole wheat flour (130 grams)
- 1 cup wheat bran (50 grams)
- 4 tsp dry milk powder
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/3 cup dark brown sugar packed (70 grams)
- 1/4 cup dark corn syrup (75 grams)
- 2 Tbsp molasses (40 grams)
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 large egg
- 1/3 cup raisins
- 1/4 tsp grated orange zest
- 1/2 cup water
- 3 Tbsp shortening (or butter!) melted
- 3 Tbsp sugar
- 3 Tbsp dark brown sugar packed
- 2 Tbsp corn syrup
- 2 tsp water
- If you skip the glaze, just spray the muffin tins with cooking spray or line with paper liners.
- Combine flour, bran, milk powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir well and set aside.
- Mix together brown sugar, dark corn syrup, molasses, oil and egg in separate bowl until well blended.
- Puree raisins and orange zest with water in blender or food processor. Add to liquid ingredients.
- Stir liquid ingredients into dry ingredients until just moistened.
- To make the glaze, melt the butter or shortening in a small bowl and stir in the sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup. and water. Spray 12 parchment muffin liners with cooking spray (or skip the liners) and use a pastry brush to brush the glaze over the bottom and up sides of the liners (or cups).
- Fill muffin tins 2/3 full (Do not overfill!) and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. You may need to go up to 25 minutes.
- Immediately invert onto foil or wax paper to cool.
Thanks for leaving a comment! These muffins are good, though I don’t make them often enough. I never got to try the original Claim Jumper muffins, but I recall having some somewhere (don’t remember) that were upside down but square shaped. You are right about the glaze.
if I can remember the original claim jumpers bran muffins, these are very close in taste and texture. definitely use the glaze, this recipe is good without the glaze but the glaze adds that little something special. even my friends who didn’t like bran muffins, like these.
Thanks for the review, Deb!
these are really good! I also skipped the glaze and I used dates instead of raisins, they are good both ways, dates or raisins. thanks for posting!
p.s. Anna…Thank you so much for posting this recipe. You’ve made some people very happy 🙂
I found this recipe recently while searching for a recipe for Claim Jumpers bran muffins because the last time I went there to eat they told me they don’t sell then anymore. I’ve since read that Sam’s Club or Costco (not sure which) doesn’t sell them anymore either. I’m not sure if they were the same recipe but I’m wondering if the supplier for the mix is no longer offering it?
Well besides that…this recipe is pretty darn close to them. I’d say 99% because we will never know the exact recipe hehe. I shared the recipe with oldest daughter who wanted her sister to bring some back with her while visiting California. She was so sad that they didn’t make them anymore…well she’s not sad anymore now that she can make her own.
I did use the glaze and loved how they turned out. I didn’t use corn syrup though I used 1/3 cup molasses and 2 TBS honey..I also used milk instead of the dry milk and water. I used a tad more orange rind but will drop it down to the 1/4 tsp I probably used 1/2 and although it does taste good, it might be just a bit too much…I used regular cupcake pans and made 12 but for the question regarding the pan claim jumper used i believe it might have been a mini bundt pan…
Since using the glaze they don’t form muffin tops…they stay flat on top and sit on the plate nice when served upside-down. I might invest in the mini bundt pans just for making these :o)
Maybe you should try a different recipe.
I tried this version without the glaze. Did not turn out like I expected. It was okay. Next time, I am going to replace dark corn syrup with honey.
What do you think???
Kim, thanks so much for trying it and reporting back! I don’t use oat bran very often so I’m not sure how much it weighs or how it works in muffins. I guess it’s pretty much the same as wheat bran? At any rate, it’s good to know it works — at least half & half. The recipe I want to try next calls for half oat & half wheat bran as well.
It sounds like you were okay with the strong molasses flavor, but maybe next time we could try 1/3 cup of mixed molasses and honey just to cut the molasses flavor and get some honey flavor in there.
P.S. I skipped the glaze part, too.
I asked the other day if you thought oat bran would work in place of wheat bran. I had to give it a try but did not want to run to the store, so I modified things a bit with things on hand. I used 1 WHOLE WHEAT flour and 1 cup OAT bran, I used light brown sugar in place of dark brown sugar, and for the dark corn syrup and molasses, I used 1/3 cup molasses. I had no orange zest either… and I threw a couple of handfuls of raisins into the batter. The muffins are moist. Initially, when I ate one warm last night, I thought maybe the molasses flavor was too strong, but this morning it seemed the flavor had mellowed a bit. Great with my coffee! I bet these will freeze well. I’ve never heard of “Claim Jumper” before this… Have you been to “Famous Dave’s BBQ”? They have delicious, HUGE sweet corn muffins.
Those Claim Jumper muffins are very good. I look forward to trying your recipe at home. I always eat way too much when I go there, so anything to keep me out of their restaurant is good! When you do go to Claim Jumper, be sure to save room for their chocolate chip calzone.
Thanks! I always looking for healthy and appetizing snacks for a 4 year old boy. 🙂
Amy, I did make those! I saw that recipe after I tried this one and made a batch yesterday. I put my results in David’s comment section. Mine had flatter tops than yours and were almost too moist. Not sure what I did wrong, but I’m going to try that one again. I have another one ahead of it, though. An old one from Marcy Goldman and CI….
Laura, thanks for the visual– especially the ninja 😉 In my mind, that’s about how I pictured the Claim Jumper muffins. Making them super big like that is another way to keep the insides moist. There’s less surface area to try out. I like making jumbo size muffins for that same reason.
I must make these for work, to honor the memory of some wonderful meals at Claim Jumper in San Diego. 🙂 Their carrot cake was always a special treat, and it could easily make three or four eaters happy. 🙂 Off-topic, I think I’ll try making “skookies” (skillet-baked cookies). It sounds fun. 😉
Anna, on David Lebovitz’s blog a while back he posted Nancy Silverton’s recipe for bran muffins. They have pureed raisins in them, and they’re not overly sweet. In fact, I think it’s one of my favorites.
when I made them
tia @ buttercreambarbie
ooh! I must try these. They look great!
Used to live in CA and went to Claim Jumper for special occasions and everything is huge portions. Hubby and I used to share a meal it was so big. Love their mud pie dessert the best! Muffins are huge but tasty.
I have not heard of Claim Jumper’s? These muffins look soooo good. I have wheat bran in the freezer and I am going to make them. Thanks, very yummy looking!
I’ll have to look for the Mimi’s Cafe muffin.
Jennifer, I kept some of the muffins at room temperature for a day and they were fine on Day 2. The rest of them were put into the freezer in individual zipper bags.
How are these keeping? You maybe ate through the whole batch but I have a family of three and I always worry this type of muffin will get moldy quick.
pureed raisins? now that’s clever, have to remember that one.
i don’t know if i would like the glaze–never used shortening in a glaze, i bet there might be an aftertaste? no?
i love those kinds of breakfast joints…cali has some good ones (and NJ)
Ooh, these look like my kinda thing. I don’t know if I’ll be able to make them soon though because I don’t have 3-4 of the ingredients. But we’ll see because I do have a big thing of bran in the freezer.
Kevin went to Claim Jumper once with a friend, they spent over $100 on two steak dinners and were shocked how big everything was.
I’ve been there once, too, with some girlfriends. I can’t remember what I had there–pizza? We went to another place for dessert and had skookies (I think that’s what they were called) The cookies baked in about a 6 inch round pan and not cooked all the way and served with ice cream.
But Mimi’s Cafe bran muffins are one of my favorites and do look similar. I would love the gooey glaze. Albertson’s Grocery store used to sell these upside down chewy gooey bran muffins that my mom and I loved. Bran-healthy, those muffins-not so much! You could almost suck the buttery, sugary glaze out of them.
Martha in KS
The pureed raisins probably serve the same purpose as putting baby food prunes in baked goods, to replace fat. I have a box of prunes – do you think I could use them instead of the raisins? Thanks, Anna.
You probably lost half of the calories by not coating the muffin tins with the glaze. And where are the Texas muffin tins?
They must use jumbo-jumbo muffin cups- I’ve seen them and they’re huge.
I like the idea of the pureed raisins!
I’ve only been to Claim Jumper once. My uncle ordered a chicken-fried steak dinner. There were two pieces of steak, both of which were hanging over both edges of the plate. There was also a biscuit the size of a softball, and a separate large bowl of mashed potatoes with gravy. Crazy!
I guess gold mining takes a lot of calories!
For anybody who has ever tried their bran muffins, do they use jumbo muffin cups? Based on what I’m hearing, these are “mini” compared to Claim Jumper’s muffins.
This recipe looks like similar to the one for Mimi’s bran muffins. It also has the glaze in the bottom of the muffin pans. They are delicious, pop out fine and yes, you do serve them upside down, and they are very sweet. I like the bottom part because it is nice and chewy if you bake them a minute or two more. Just to give you a visual – one piece of their chocolate cake is boxed for take home in a large, rectangular donut box. It is NOT worth buying. It tastes like box cake.
They used to sell coconut macaroons the size of a salad plate.
The funniest thing? They have a huge bowl of apples~as if eating an apple can undo something like this:
Beef Back Ribs from Claim Jumper = 4,301 calories and 7,623 mg of salt
The name definitely comes from the color of the finished muffin. They look great!
Awww, what a cute picture of Fuzz! The pureed raisins sound so interesting – yum!
Heather, next time we’re in California we’re going to go there.
Kim, I don’t know. I don’t use oat bran very often.
I’m making a second batch right now with reduced sugar, honey in place of the corn syrup and more molasses. The batter feels lighter.
I think one of the reasons these muffins have such a dense, moist, texture is all the sugar and syrup. Getting that same texture without getting a too-sweet muffin will take some experimenting.
These look good and hearty! Anna, do you think oat bran would work in place of wheat bran?
Claim Jumper’s portions are insane- I love their biscuits and chocolate cake, though! Pureeing the raisins is a new idea to me, I’ll have to try it sometime!