Preheat oven to 350°.
Place 3 tablespoons cheese in a small bowl; set aside. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, remaining cheese, sugar, and next 4 ingredients (through pepper) in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Make a well in center of mixture. Combine milk, oil, and egg; add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist.
Spoon batter into 15 muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle evenly with reserved 3 tablespoons cheese. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Remove muffins from pans immediately; place on a wire rack.