Don't you love a good muffin in the morning? Especially with a cup of coffee? Or in the car driving kids to school, like I do almost every morning. I'm always so thankful I made these pumpkin muffins without the extra sugar when I'm making the mad rush out the door and my stomach is growling at me. (Yes, it growls AT me.)
I really enjoy finding sugar substitutes in my baking. I am unwilling to give up baked goods entirely, even when I realized how insane my kids get when they have sugar. So I started researching and made almost a complete switch in all our sweet baked goods to alternative sugars.
I prefer the natural ones (as opposed to processed sugar substitutes like Equal). Coconut sugar, honey and maple syrup are my three go-to substitutes. And let me tell you, after reducing our refined sugar I no longer prefer overly sweet desserts. My kids are just as insane, but I feel better knowing they're getting less of the gunky stuff.
Gluten Free Muffin Option
If you'd like to try making your pumpkin muffins gluten free, use Cup 4 Cup. It tastes the most similar to regular ol' gluten full flour. And Amazon (link above) has a really good price. I keep this on hand all the time for myself and for my gluten free family and friends.
Alternative Sugars Explained (a little)
Coconut Sugar has a low glycemic index, and is not processed like white sugar. Your body absorbs it similar to fruit sugars. No sugar spike and crash, which I love! It's my go-to for baking, since it can be replaced 1:1 for white sugar or brown sugar. So you get a very close consistency end product with just as much sweetness, but no refined sugar. My favorite is this one found at Target. I like it because it has the best price and convenience.
Honey and Maple Syrup can be a little harder to substitute in recipes, but it can be done with a little experimenting. I like to match the flavor to what I'm baking, too. Pumpkin muffins and maple syrup just go together. Just like my banana muffins and honey go well together. In some recipes, I combine one of these natural sweeteners with others, like applesauce or bananas. Give it a try! You'll find you don't even miss the refined sugar anymore!
How to make perfect pumpkin muffins
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Spray muffin tin with non stick spray and set aside.
Combine the wet ingredients in a large bowl (pumpkin purée, maple syrup, coconut oil and egg) and mix well.
Next, add coconut sugar and mix again. If you don't have coconut sugar, feel free to use regular sugar or just omit altogether to keep it healthier.
In a separate bowl, mix together the all purpose flour (or gluten free substitute), baking soda, baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice.
Gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet. Once there are no more flour streaks, scoop the batter into a muffin tin using a large cookie scoop (its the perfect size for muffins or cupcakes).
Mix up the streusel by combining the dry ingredients, then add the cold butter and mix together with your fingers until it is small crumbs. Evenly sprinkle the streusel on top of the muffins before baking.
Bake at 425°F for 5 minutes, then reduce the heat to 375°F and bake for an additional 15-18 minutes until completely set. The initial high temperature will give you muffins a great rise and those pretty domes tops.
Everyday Pumpkin Muffins - No Refined Sugar
- 1 15 oz can of pumpkin purée not pumpkin pie purée
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- ⅓ cup coconut oil melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg room temp
- ¾ cup coconut sugar
- 2 cups all purpose flour or GF alternative
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- ½ cup all purpose flour or GF substitute
- ⅓ cup coconut sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 5 tablespoons butter cold
- ½ cup chopped pecans optional
If you don't have pumpkin pie spice substitute with:
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- Preheat oven to 425°. Spray 12 cup muffin tin with nonstick spray, set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, maple syrup, melted coconut oil, and egg. Once fully combined, mix in coconut sugar.
- In a separate bowl, fully mix dry ingredients. Add dry ingredients to wet and mix just until combined, do not over mix.
- To make the streusel, combine dry ingredients, then add butter in small pads. Using your fingers mix the butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles coarse meal. Add pecans, if using.
- Spoon batter into prepared muffin tins until about ¾ full. It should use the entire recipe to make 12.
- Evenly spoon streusel on top of muffins.
- Place on center rack of oven. Bake at 425° for 5 minutes. Then reduce the heat to 375° and bake for another 15-20 minutes until muffins are fully baked and tops spring back when touched.
These were SO GOOD! Thank you.
So glad you liked them Helen!
When you say one can of pumpkin purée That is a whole 796 ml?
Thank you Kim for that clarifying question! It is 1 small can that is 15 ounces. I will update the recipe to make sure this is clear.
I'm always looking to reduce refined sugar, had a pumpkin that needed to be cooked, and I'm coeliac. These were gorgeous and worked beautifully with the GF flour I had in the cupboard. I'll definitely be making them again.
Thanks for this! I just made it and it came out delicious and perfect. I’ve never made streusel and it was much easier than I expected. I didn’t have coconut oil so I used canola and it worked a charm.
Do I have to use the salt?
Salt can always be omitted or changed based on your preference. It should not effect the bake quality, just the taste.