Vegan pumpkin muffins

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These delicious pumpkin muffins are vegan and gluten free – what more could you ask for? These muffins are easy to make so they are a great option for people without much baking experience. Of course, they are also a fabulous choice for seasoned professionals.

All of the ingredients in this muffin recipe are gluten free, egg free, dairy free, and vegan. The recipe does contain nuts, but you could easily leave them out if you are cooking for someone with a nut allergy!

Gluten free vegan pumpkin muffins

Vegan baking & pumpkin puree

While I do not follow a strict vegan diet, I love vegan baking! Most of the muffins, cupcakes, and cakes I make are vegan. I enjoy being able to taste the batter as I go without worrying about any bacteria associated with raw eggs. I also find that when I am making vegan baked goods the raw batter tastes more similar to the final product. If you are like me and you like to experiment with adding and removing ingredients as you go – try making some vegan baked goods. Start out with these vegan pumpkin muffins!

I find that baking, and especially vegan baking, is easier when I am using a recipe that incorporates fruits or vegetables such as pumpkin. This is especially true when a puree is used. The pumpkin adds some extra moisture that helps prevent baked goods from drying out. This protection against drying out is especially useful when I am making muffins. Muffins have a lot of surface area so they dry out faster than something like a cake. In this case I use pumpkin, but you could also think about incorporating other fruits and vegetables like mashed bananas, zucchini, or carrots into your muffins.

Gluten free vegan pumpkin muffins

How to make fluffy muffins?

One of the questions I get most frequently about baking muffins is how to make muffins light and fluffy. My number one tip for making sure your muffins come out light and fluffy is to make sure you are not over mixing the batter. When you make muffins, you want to mix the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients together separately so that you can make sure that each type of ingredient gets mixed well among itself. However, when it comes to mixing the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients together less is more. It is easy to over mix muffin batter so you do not want to use a whisk when you mix it. It is better to use something like a large spoon or spatula.

Another tip to help you make light and fluffy muffins is to use a muffin tin that heats up fast. Look for muffin tins that are thin and lightweight.

Pumpkin muffins & nut allergies

I use walnuts in this recipe for vegan pumpkin muffins. I love putting nuts in my baked goods. When I make muffins or other baked goods with nuts in them, I like to pop a few extra nuts on the top of the muffins. This is a good habit to get into if you ever bake for your friends, family, or coworkers. It gives foodies with nut allergies a clear signal that there are nuts in the muffins.

Gluten free vegan pumpkin muffins

Pumpkin muffins & cream cheese frosting

I know that muffins are not traditionally topped with frosting, but I just can’t stay away from cream cheese frosting. I included a recipe for a simple cream cheese frosting along with my recipe for pumpkin muffins. You can choose whether or not you want to add the cream cheese frosting – but I recommend adding it if you are not vegan or dairy free. And even if you are, you could alway try making the frosting with vegan cream cheese.

If you are going to go the vegan cream cheese frosting route, I would recommend using store bought cream cheese. I tend to have better luck with store bought cream cheese when I am making vegan cream cheese frosting.

Pumpkin muffins

These delicious pumpkin muffins are both gluten free and vegan. They are easy to make and suitable for people with a wide variety of dietary restrictions.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten Free, Low Lactose, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword: dairy free, egg free, vegan, vegetarian
Servings: 12 muffins

Ingredients

Dry ingredients

  • 2 cups gluten free all purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces

Wet ingredients

  • 15 oz pumpkin puree (this is the standard can size)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp maple extract (optional)

Cream cheese frosting (optional, not vegan)

  • 4 oz cream cheese (half a standard block)
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp maple extract (optional)

Instructions

Vegan pumpkin muffins

  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
  • Mix all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl
  • Mix all of the wet ingredients in a separate bowl
  • Combine the wet and dry ingredients and mix. Be sure not to over mix - it is fine if there are still some bubbles or clumps of dry ingredients left at the end
  • Line a large muffin tray with paper liners and pour the muffin batter into each well until it is about 3/4 of the way full
  • Bake the muffins for 22-25 minutes at 350 degrees

Cream cheese frosting (optional)

  • Mix all of the ingredients for the cream cheese frosting in a medium sized bowl then add to muffins.

Notes

Tips for measuring flour. We recommend measuring flour by spooning the flour into a measuring cup then leveling off the flour with a butter knife. This is the most consistent way to measure flour. If you dip your measuring cup into the bag of flour, it will compress the flour and you will end up with extra flour. 

Substitutions

  • It is okay to swap the almond milk out with a different kind of plant based milk. I have made these muffins with multiple different types of milk. They are not very fussy.
  • If you cannot find unsweetened applesauce or almond milk, it is okay to use the sweetened variety. These muffins do not have a huge amount of sugar in them so they will not be overwhelmingly sweet if you do.
  • Pecan pieces also go great with pumpkin muffins if you cannot find walnut pieces.

Other gluten free & vegan muffin recipes


Five fully cooked gluten free apple muffins on a marble countertop. The gluten free apple muffins are pictured from above.

Are you looking for another easy gluten free and vegan muffin recipe? Check out this recipe for gluten free apple muffins! These tasty apple muffins are flavored with nutmeg, cinnamon, and of course lots of sweet red apple!


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