Making Pumpkin Spice baked goods or beverages reminds me of the US, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Autumn weather in California – not too warm but just cool enough to start wearing a light sweater…. It also reminds me of Starbucks, drinking Frappuccino’s with my best friend then getting our nails done on a shopping day at the mall. There’s just something comforting about those memories that makes me feel warm inside. 🙂
These muffins are Vegan and GF. I’m not Vegan, it’s not about that for me. What interests me in the Vegan way of cooking is the powerful ingredients used as substitutes to certain foods that can be hard to digest. Since I’ve started looking into superfoods and healthier ways of cooking my body is digesting meals better, the bloating has stopped, and I feel better all together. As soon as I make an exception to my daily diet, and eat for example a Pizza or fast-food, my body reacts twice as much as it did before.
I have been detoxing for almost a year now and I can finally see the changes on the long term, meaning going back to processed foods, junk food or binge eating comes with consequences now. But no regrets because eating healthy doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy food and have treats – such as these yummy muffins !
So I guess I would say, if you decide to go down this road, do it for the right reasons. Don’t do it because everyone’s talking about it these days, or because all of your friends are doing it. Do it only if your body needs it and if it makes you feel good. Everyone is different, every body is different, do what is best for you!
So in Vegan recipes eggs are replaced by other ingredients, and this recipe calls for Flax eggs instead of classic eggs (How to make a Flax egg ) .
Flax eggs are made with ground Flaxseeds, another one of my favorite superfoods because it’s very good for digestion. Full of fiber (8g of Fiber in 3 Tbsp), if I can substitute ingredients for one full of fiber I won’t hesitate. It works just like a normal egg and brings fiber to your baked goods, pancakes, cookies, breads etc…
If you want to learn more about Flaxseeds and their benefits here is an article that sums it up well: 10 Flaxseed benefits
Then there’s the gluten free part. Just so you know, this recipe works with normal flour so just disregard the GF flour if you don’t need/want it. But they turn out nice a fluffy and airy even if GF which is not always the case.
Concerning the Pumpkin purée, I prefer making my own, instead of using canned purée. It’s not hard to make, it can be done in 4 easy steps:
1. Cut the pumpkin in chunks, leaving the skin but removing the seeds
2. Boil in water for 10-15 min or until tender
3. Peal off the skin once cooled down
4. Mix in blender until smooth or simply mash with a fork or whisk
For this kind of purée no need to add milk or sugar, the rest of the ingredients will suffice to add taste to the batter. Even if the purée is a bit chunky it will still work as you will have small chunks in the muffin once cooked which is tasty.
This works with Pumpkin, butternut squash, carrots or even sweet potatoes according to the seasonality of produce.
INGREDIENTS (serves 12 muffins):
○ 2 tablespoon ground flax seeds
○ 6 tablespoon water
○ 1 3/4 cups gluten free flour blend OR all-purpose flour
○ 1 teaspoon baking powder
○ 1 teaspoon baking soda
○ 1/2 teaspoon salt
○ 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
○ 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
○ 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
○ 1/2 cup melted coconut oil (plus extra for greasing muffin tin)
○ 1 teaspoon vanilla
○ 3/4 cup coconut sugar
○ 1 cup unsweetened pumpkin puree
○ 3/4 cup chocolate chips OR raisins OR nuts (chopped walnuts or pecans work well)
1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
2. Prepare your flax eggs by whisking together ground flax seeds and water. Set aside to thicken.
3. Line a muffin tin with liners or generously grease the inside of each cup with coconut oil.
4. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.
5. In a large bowl, mix the coconut oil, vanilla, and flax eggs together. Stir in coconut sugar and pumpkin puree until blended.
6. Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet mixture and stir until combined. Fold in chocolate chips or raisins.
7. Using a spoon or a large scoop, divide batter into the 12 muffin cups.
8. Bake for 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle of the largest muffin comes out clean.