Practically Perfect Pumpkin Muffins

Omg. I made these today during a break between meetings and they were wonderful. Warm, soft, moist, fall-spicey, pumpkin pie in a muffin, and obviously I couldn’t decide which picture to post, so you see them with and without a streusel on top. Honestly, these don’t need a streusel, but you can do one if you’d like; otherwise, just sprinkle the top with a little sugar (like, very little, probably less than a teaspoon for a dozen muffins; the recipe makes 17-19 muffins).

In developing this recipe, I took inspiration from a recipe for Scrumptious Blueberry Muffins on the back of a bag of Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour (light blue bag). The problem? I’m not really into blueberries. So I switched out the blueberries, modified quantity of pumpkin, added spices, and accidentally melted my (dairy-free) butter (oops :). The streusel is adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From My Home to Yours. For spices, I referred to Nick Malgieri’s How to Bake from 1995, an excellent cookbook, and one of my first baking cookbooks. When I had modified a pumpkin muffin recipe from there for gluten-free, it was very good, but it was a bit dense. I saw the blueberry one on the 1-to-1 Baking Flour bag and the amount of sugar caught my eye because that was very different from the other recipe. The other ingredients were a bit different as well, but not as much as the sugar. I thought, hmmm, and well, voila.

I’m so happy I didn’t start over when I accidentally melted the butter. Normally you want to cream *softened*, not melted, butter and sugar to incorporate air and build volume so I was worried these were going to be flat as a pancake, but they weren’t! I’ve made the recipe multiple times now and had success with all.

A note on measures. If you’re weighing, don’t worry about being a few grams off with something like flour or pumpkin. My scales measure by 5 g, not by 1 or 2, and a teaspoon or 2 different isn’t going to make that big a difference. If you want to use cup measures, that’ll work, too. Just remember to loosen up the flour before scooping or spoon it in and level it off; don’t pack it down. You’ll get more consistent results with scales tho ๐Ÿ™‚

With pumpkin, I’ve made these with 1 c (240 g) and 1-1/4 c (300 g) of pumpkin. Both work well, but I prefer the results with more pumpkin. The texture and fluffiness of the batter and resulting muffin, as well as the flavor, is better.

This is right after I popped them in the oven. I realized I forgot to take a picture so broke a cardinal rule of temperature maintenance and opened the door ๐Ÿ™‚

Ingredients

  • 2 c (300 g) Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour (blue bag)
  • 2 tsp baking powder (for homemade corn-free, gf substitute see note below)
  • 1/2 tsp fine salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 c (1 stick, 1/4 lb, 115 g) dairy-free butter, melted and cooled (I use soy-free Earth Balance sticks.)
  • 1-1/4 c (250 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 lg eggs
  • 1/2 c (120 g) buttermilk (I use 1 tsp apple cider vinegar + unsweetened almond milk)
  • 1-1/4 c (300 g) canned pumpkin (*not* pumpkin pie mix)
  • streusel or 1.5 tsp sugar (see below for streusel info)

A note on baking powder – It’s been so long since I bought it at the store, I’m not sure if there are corn-free versions available now or not. I make mine and it’s very easy, just 1/2 tsp cream of tartar, 1/4 tsp baking soda, and 1/4 tsp tapioca starch (or potato starch or arrowroot) is equal to 1 tsp baking powder. The starch isn’t even technically needed; it’s just there to make the equivalent of 1 tsp baking powder in recipes and to keep it from clumping if you make it in larger quantities. I make it in 1/4 c. batches so I have it on hand – 2 Tbsp cream of tartar; 1 Tbsp baking soda; 1 Tbsp starch

Streusel: If you’d like to top your muffins with a streusel, mix 1/4 c. flour, 1/4 c. light brown sugar, and cut in a couple tablespoons of non-dairy butter. (Cut in the butter; don’t blend ’til smooth.)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Line muffin cups with foil liners; I used 18 liners, using 1 12-muffin pan and half of another 12-muffin pan.
  3. If you haven’t already, melt a stick of dairy-free butter in a small bowl in the microwave and let cool to room temperature while you prep the rest.
  4. Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Set aside.
  5. Put butter in mixer bowl and add sugar. Mix a couple of minutes ’til fluffier (I used the flat beater.), scraping down with a rubber spatula a couple of times.
  6. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.
  7. Add pumpkin, mix well.
  8. Add buttermilk and flour 1/2 at a time, alternatively, mixing after each addition and ending with flour.
  9. Spoon batter into muffin cups.
  10. Sprinkle with sugar or streusel.
  11. Bake 20 min. Muffins should be golden brown and tops should bounce back back if you push down lightly with your finger.
  12. Enjoy!

Author: thebakingbooth

I love to bake and teach; seems like a great combo for a food blog :)

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