To be perfectly fair, I didn’t intend to make these but then this dear daughter of mine requested we spend this Saturday putting up Fall decorations. Waking up way earlier than I intended to, I thought the kids would enjoy waking to fresh, homemade muffins but me, being the health food freak that I am could not settle for just any ole muffin. So, I busted out my phone and proceeded to run with a “healthy vegan muffin recipe” that sounded good to start. Please, do not ask me why but I have this thing where I often start with recipes that sound great and seldom follow them to the letter. I have some sort of weird compulsion to make them my own, tweaking ingredients on the fly as I go. Sometimes, this works out well and sometimes not so much, and sometimes, don’t ask me how, it flat nails it. My daughter would say this one did just that.
While we don’t typically place muffins in the general category of “health foods” we also believe there’s a way to upgrade just about anything. There comes a time for us all when the pumpkin spice must come out as we celebrate cooler days, our favorite hoodies and all that is sacred of Fall.
My original intent was to simply upgrade a fall favorite nutritionally. What we ended up with was a delectably moist, power packed muffin that stands like a super hero among civilians in the world of muffins. Enjoy!
Power Plant Pumpkin Spiced Muffins
1 cup Organic Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
1 cup Organic Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
¾ – 1 cup Organic Light Brown Sugar
2 Scoops Garden of Life Vanilla Raw Meal (or Vanilla Plant Protein of choice)
1 tbsp + 1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice (or 1 tbsp Cinnamon + 1 tsp Ginger Powder; more if you like a more intense spice flavor)
1 tbsp + ¼ tsp Aluminum-Free Baking Powder
½ tsp Sea Salt
1¼ cup Organic Pumpkin Purée
1- 1¼ cup Original Unsweetened Almond Milk, or Milk of choice
½ cup Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, melted
¼ cup Organic Unsulphured Molasses
Optional: ½ cup Walnuts or Pecans, chopped, to top
*The Virgin Coconut Oil is a rich source of Medium Chain Fatty Acids which the body can metabolize quickly for energy. Still, if you’re looking to reduce the overall fat/calorie content of the muffins, simply replace ¼ cup of the coconut oil with extra pumpkin purée.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Combine all dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and mix thoroughly.
Stir together all wet ingredients in a measuring cup then mix into your dry to evenly incorporate.
Line a muffin tin and divide mixture evenly between them (each should hold a couple rounded tablespoons). If desired, top with your nuts of choice.
Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. If your nuts begin to get a little too toasty, cover lightly with aluminum foil.
Remove and let cool 5 minutes and serve.
Notes on Nutrition:
Calories: 319, Protein: 7.5g, Carbs 37.4, Fat: 15g
These are especially rich Vitamins A, D, E, K and B Vitamins, including B12, as well as Chromium, Calcium, Copper, Manganese, Magnesium, Zinc, Phosphorous, Omega 3’s and more.
While most baked goods use general all purpose flours and refined white sugar, you can totally get away with making a few swaps in your baking to totally elevate them. Subbing with whole wheat pastry flour boosts the fiber, protein, EFA, vitamin and mineral content.
Using the molasses and light brown sugar instead of refined white sugar not only adds a depth and richness of flavor that pairs well in a spot-on way with the pumpkin but also adds to the mineral content of the food and supports a healthier metabolism of the sugars in it.
Using plain nuts as opposed to a more traditional muffin crumble topping gives you the crunch along with a rich source of omega-3’s, proteins and more.
*Nutritional stats based on calculations from cronometer.com