Pumpkin Spice Maple Muffins

I know pumpkin spice season hasn’t officially started (just a few short days left!), but I developed a recipe for pumpkin muffins over summer break and I just couldn’t wait any longer to share it.

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I’ve been getting requests for this recipe since I baked it a few weeks ago for a brunch for my roommate’s birthday. Except I made it in the form of a cake. I felt that was more fitting for the occasion (or maybe I just didn’t have muffin tins…the truth will be forever unknown 😉 ). Also, my cake may or may not have been missing ground cloves that Sunday, which is definitely a key ingredient in this recipe. And by key I mean essential; cloves in this recipe put the “spice” in “pumpkin spice” (Oops. Sorry friends, you totally missed out on the real version of this!).
IMG_0051Anyways, I tried to be all professional. I do admit, I was pretty annoying for a few weeks, refusing to give out this recipe until it was posted on the blog, which, of course, wouldn’t be before late September, as that’s obviously the start of pumpkin season, with fall and all. But of course, plans change. Especially when those plans involve food and college.

Truth be told, if you knew how good these muffins are, you’d be pretty grateful for my lack of professionalism (hey, I am just a college student). Who could say no to pumpkin muffins ever?
Definitely not me.
I’m well into pumpkin-spice-mode already, which was confirmed by my recent purchase of pumpkin spice flavored Nature Valley bars (the things only I would return with from CVS…).

I think I’ve made it pretty obvious that these muffins should be on your to-bake list (embarrassing but expected confession: I actually have one of those. But like an actual, written list, not just a casual Pinterest folder :/ ). Sweetened with maple syrup, the flavors of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg combine in this muffin to bring out all the best spices of fall (errr mid September?). Eat them for breakfast, as a snack, or both! You’ll be baking more pretty soon, guaranteed.
IMG_0043How am I supposed to eat all of these muffins? You may ask.
Well, this recipe yields between 12 and 15 muffins. Which – given you like the muffins you’re baking – really isn’t all that much (I mean, really, do I seriously need to provide instructions on how to finish muffins? haha).
Also, no one said you have to eat them all yourself! At least in my experiences, good food definitely makes for good roommates 😉 (shoutout to my awesome apartment-mates!).
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But seriously, if you feel like keeping these muffins all to yourself (and honestly, I wouldn’t judge you if that’s the case), a great option is to freeze your muffins to make sure they don’t spoil before you finish them.

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Frozen muffins wrapped individually in saran wrap.

After your muffins cool completely, place a few in a container and freeze the rest. When it’s time to access your freezer-stash, defrost muffins as you need them in a microwave and then place in a toaster oven. Muffins are 1,000x better when they’re toasted (one of my secret tricks 😉 ), so why not spend the few extra minutes to enjoy your food that much more?

This freeze-and-go idea is especially perfect for mornings. I’m always running somewhere (not on principle, just by default haha), and I love how this trick allows me to win in both the speed and nutrition categories.

My favorite way to enjoy these muffins is toasted with natural almond butter, though they’re delicious by themselves as well. These muffins are perfect to eat between classes (or in the middle of classes… #tootrue), and they provide that mid-afternoon energy boost that is always needed!  

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I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I did. Feel free to comment any thoughts, questions or suggestions! 🙂

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Pumpkin Spice Maple Muffins
A. Ingredients:
– 1/2 cup maple syrup (for dessert muffins, use 3/4 cup maple syrup)
– 1/2 cup Earth Balance vegan buttery sticks, softened
– 2 eggs
– Half a can of unsweetened pumpkin puree (about 8 oz)
– 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
– 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
– 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
– 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
– 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
– 1/2 teaspoon cloves
– 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
– 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon + more for sprinkling on top (optional)

B. Directions:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Using a mixer (or spatula if you’re in college and don’t have one handy), blend the maple syrup, vegan butter, vanilla extract and eggs together in a large bowl. Beat in the pumpkin puree, mixing until everything is well combined. 

In a separate medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Add this mixture to the pumpkin slowly, in several additions, beating (or stirring) after each addition. The batter will be thick. 
Using a small ladle, spoon the batter into lined muffin tins, filling each muffin 3/4 of the way with batter (they will rise in the oven). If you’d like, sprinkle muffins with cinnamon before baking. Bake for 20-25 minutes, rotating the pan midway through the baking process. Muffins will be crisp on top when ready. An inserted toothpick or fork should come out clean. 

*PS- Want to stay healthy in college? Subscribe to The Artsy Palate by entering your email address below so you can keep up with my latest recipes and tips! 

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6 thoughts on “Pumpkin Spice Maple Muffins

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