Let’s talk about all the reasons we love pumpkin: It’s a clean, low-calorie food that can be used in both savory and sweet dishes.
These pumpkin muffins are a surprisingly healthy treat from Autumn Calabrese’s FIXATE cookbook. They make great use of America’s favorite fall squash by using it as the base for scrumptious spiced cakes with a surprise filling of maple-sweetened cream cheese in the center.
This recipe calls for pure maple syrup, which is an important distinction. Many of the pancake and maple-flavored syrups found in grocery stores aren’t maple syrup at all, and can be filled with artificial sweeteners and colors that may be more harmful than helpful.
This recipe also calls for almond flour, which is gluten-free and lower in carbs than wheat flour, and the nutty taste is a perfect complement to this autumnal recipe.
If you’ve got the time to make your own, directions are in the tips below. And for those of you with nut allergies or intolerances, feel free to substitute with coconut flour.
These are a tasty, healthy alternative to sugary donuts; baking a batch for your coworkers will definitely earn you points around the office — not on the scale.
- You can make your own almond flour by processing one cup slivered almonds in food processor (or blender with a strong motor). Make sure to pulse in 20-second intervals to prevent the almonds from turning into almond butter. One cup of slivered almonds yields approximately 1 cup of almond flour.
- If you can’t find almond flour in your store, you can look at club stores or online.
Pumpkin Muffins With Maple Cream Cheese
- 2 oz. cream cheese
- 1 Tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
- 1½ cups almond flour
- ¾ tsp gluten-free baking soda
- 1 dash sea salt (or Himalayan salt)
- 2 Tbsp raw pumpkin seeds
Preheat oven to 350° F.
Prepare nine muffin cups by lining with muffin tin liners or coating with spray. Set aside.
Combine cream cheese and maple syrup in a small bowl; mix well. Set aside.
Combine egg and pumpkin in a medium bowl; mix well. Set aside.
Combine almond flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl; mix well.
Add almond meal mixture to egg mixture; mix until just blended.
Spoon batter into each prepared muffin cup, filling a little less than ½ full.
Spoon about 1 heaping tsp. cream cheese mixture into the center of each muffin. Evenly fill muffin cups ¾ full with remaining batter.
Sprinkle muffins evenly with pumpkin seeds.
Bake 18 to 22 minutes, or until golden brown and toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Transfer muffins to rack; cool.
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