Pumpkin Muffins

Prepare to be obsessed with these Pumpkin Muffins that are mega soft and fluffy, super moist and packed with sultry warm Fall spices!

These Pumpkin Muffins will be the best you’ve ever had!  They’re not only tender, flavorful perfection but quick and easy to make with pantry ingredients!  You can top them with sweet, buttery Pecan Streusel and Maple Drizzle or leave them simple and just stir in chocolate chips.  Either way you serve them, your house will fill with their warm, Fall aroma and your bellies will fill with happiness, cozy bite after bite after bite.

up close of a chocolate chip pumpkin muffin

About Pumpkin Muffins

Pumpkin Muffins have been on my “Fall bucket list’ for some time, so I’m thrilled to bring you these warm, comforting beauties!  They are a cross between a breakfast and dessert, or an acceptable dessert for breakfast 😉.

I scaled down my Mom’s Famous Pumpkin Bread recipe to make these Pumpkin Muffins, because that recipe is already perfection in my book (and “famous” for a reason!) and now so are these muffins!

You can enjoy these muffins as Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins or get fancy and flirty and add my Pecan Streusel and Maple Drizzle which creates more of a cross between a coffee cake and a muffin.

The Pecan Streusel is a simple food processor pulsing of pecans, sugar, flour, butter and cinnamon to create a buttery, sweet crumble that adds a decadent crunch to every bite.

The Maple Drizzle is a quick whisking of powdered sugar and pure maple syrup and adds sweet maple goodness that cradles every nook and cranny of the streusel.

So whether you choose to serve this Pumpkin Muffins with Streusel or just chocolate chips, they are destined to become a new Fall favorite and a huge hit with anyone you share them with (or don’t share, no judgement here).

fresh pumpkin muffins stacked together on a plate

How to Make Pumpkin Muffins

These Pumpkin Muffins are super easy to make, you don’t even need a mixer!

  1. Streusel: Add pecans to your food processor and pulse 3 times. Add flour, sugars and cinnamon and pulse a few times to combine.
showing how to make easy pumpkin muffins by adding pecans to a food processor
  1. Sprinkle cold butter over top and pulse until the pecans are chopped and the mixture resembles small pebbles. Refrigerate until ready to use.
showing how to make pumpkin muffins from scratch by making pecan streusel

What If I don’t have a food processor?  No problem!  It will take a few more minutes and a little bit more elbow grease, but is still very simple.   Combine flour, sugars and cinnamon in a medium bowl and whisk to combine.  Cut butter into flour/sugar with a pastry cutter or two knives then stir in chopped pecans.

  1. Wet Ingredients: In a large bowl, add eggs and gently whisk. Mix in sugar, pumpkin and oil.
showing how to make pumpkin muffins from scratch by whisking pumpkin puree, eggs and sugar together in a mixing bowl.
  1. Dry Ingredients:  In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, ground cinnamon, ground cloves and ground nutmeg.
  2. Combine.  Mix the Flour Mixture into the Pumpkin Mixture just until combined, being careful not to overmix.  Fold in chocolate chips.
showing how to make pumpkin chocolate chip muffins by stirring chocolate chips into batter
  1. Muffin Cups. Evenly divide batter between 20-22 cupcake liners so they are ¾ of the way full.   You don’t want to fill them all the way because we are going to be adding streusel and they will plumb when baked.  It is better to use more cupcake liners than to overfill them.
showing how to make fresh pumpkin muffins by adding pumpkin butter to muffin tins
  1. Streusel. Top each muffin with approximately 1 tablespoon streusel and gently pat it into the batter.
showing how to make fresh pumpkin muffins by adding crumb topping to muffin batter
  1. Bake for 22-28 minutes OR until toothpick comes out clean.
  1. Cool.  Let muffins cool for 10 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely before adding maple drizzle.
  1. Maple Drizzle. The Maple Drizzle is optional but adds a wonderful sweet maple flavor.  If you love maple – you will love this tantalizing addition.
Showing how to make fresh pumpkin muffins from scratch by pulling the baked pumpkin muffins out of the oven

TIPS FOR PUMPKIN MUFFINS

  • Prepare the Pecan Streusel first and refrigerate it while you prep the batter. You don’t want your batter to be sitting while you wait to prep the streusel.
  • You can prep the streusel up to 2 days in advance and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  • If you are allergic to nuts, then you can omit them from the streusel and up the flour to 1 ½ cups.
  • You can omit the streusel and maple drizzle and just use chocolate chips.
  • If using the maple drizzle, you can prep it in advance but don’t drizzle over muffins until ready to serve.

How do you make pumpkin muffins with fresh pumpkin?

You are welcome to use your own fresh pumpkin instead of canned pumpkin puree.  My only caution is that you cannot use a carving pumpkin (like the pumpkin you carve for Halloween), but need to use a sugar pumpkin.  Carving pumpkins are raised for their durability and not their taste and have much more moisture than sugar pumpkins and less flavor.

up close of an easy pumpkin muffin on a cooling rack

HOW TO MAKE PUMPKIN PUREE

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Cut the pumpkin in half from the stem to base.
  3. Remove all the seeds and pulp.
  4. Cover the cut side of each pumpkin half with foil.
  5. Bake, foil side up for 1 hour OR until tender.
  6. Scrape out pumpkin flesh and add to a blender
  7. Strain puree through a fine mesh sieve to remove any stringy pieces
  8. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Use Pumpkin Purée, Not Pumpkin Pie Filling

Instead of making my own pumpkin puree, I go for the easy route and stock up on cans of Libby’s 100% pure pumpkin puree at the end of every season, that way I can start making glorious pumpkin everything in August and September, long before the shelves are stocked.

Take care you are using pumpkin puree and NOT pumpkin pie filling because they are not the same thing.  Pumpkin puree is cooked and pureed pumpkin without any added sugar or spices.

Pumpkin Pie filling, however, is sweetened and seasoned with Fall spices.

Both pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie filling can be found in the baking aisle of your grocery store, so make sure you are grabbing the right can!  For this recipe you will need 1 ¾ cups pumpkin puree which is just a little less than a 15 oz. can.

far away view of a pumpkin muffin from scratch with a bite out of it on a cooling rack

Can I use Pumpkin Spice?

Pumpkin anything would taste bland if it wasn’t for the eclectic blend of warm Fall spices.  I always prefer to use my own blend of Pumpkin Spice ingredients so I can control the amounts.  In this Pumpkin Muffin recipe, you will need cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and ground cloves.

If you don’t have them stocked already, then I highly recommend adding them to your pantry!  I use them in all my Pumpkin recipes such as Pumpkin Bars, Pumpkin Cookies, Pumpkin Cheesecake, Pumpkin Pound Cake, etc.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

You can make the Pumpkin Muffin recipe as written with the pecan streusel and maple drizzle or you can make them with just the chocolate chips and streusel or just the chocolate chips.

These Pumpkin Muffins are sweet, fancy and gourmet with all the bells and whistles, but they are divine just with chocolate chips as well.  When they boast just chocolate chips then I feel like the soft, fluffy pumpkin goodness really shines and when they are adorned with pecan streusel and maple drizzle, then it I more of a symphony of Fall.  Both are fantastic, it just depends on your preference and mood!

a half eaten chocolate chip pumpkin muffin in a muffin tin

Can I add Nuts and Raisins to Pumpkin Muffins?

Absolutely!  If you prefer not to add the streusel but instead want a Pumpkin Muffin just with chocolate chips or chock full of add-ins, then this pillowy, flavorful Pumpkin Muffin recipe makes a great base.  Here are some add-in ideas:

  • Chocolate chips: I always add chocolate chips to my Pumpkin Muffins because chocolate and pumpkin belong together. I even add the chocolate chips when I am using the pecan streusel.
  • Walnuts or Pecans: Nuts add a delectable crunch.  The streusel already has pecans so you might not want to add nuts if you are using the streusel, but you still can!
  • Seeds:  You can add seeds such as pepitas (pumpkin seeds) or sunflower seeds directly to the batter and/or sprinkle them on top of the Pumpkin Muffins before baking
  • Dried fruit: Raisins, dried cranberries, dried cherries, dried apricots – whatever your favorite dried fruit is, would be delicious!
  • Coconut: Sweetened, toasted coconut flakes would be delish folded into the batter or added to the streusel.
up close of the best pumpkin muffin with a bite out of it

How to store Pumpkin Muffins

Leftover muffins should be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 4 to 5 days, or refrigerated for up to a week.

How to Freeze Pumpkin Muffins

  1. Cool muffins completely.
  2. Freeze Muffins in the muffin tin until solid, approximately 1-2 hours.
  3. Wrap muffins individually in plastic wrap then place all muffins in a freezer safe container or freezer bag, taking care to remove excess air.
  4. Freeze for up to 3 months.

How to Thaw Pumpkin Muffins

  1. Thaw on Counter: Place Pumpkin Muffins on the counter and thaw overnight. I then like to microwave my muffins for 10 seconds or so because warm muffins are so much better!
  2. Microwave from frozen: Place a frozen Pumpkin Muffin in the microwave and heat at 30 second intervals until warmed.
  3. Bake from frozen: Unwrap muffins and place on baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F for 10-15 minutes.

Looking for More Pumpkin Recipes?

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©Carlsbad Cravings by CarlsbadCravings.com

easy pumpkin muffin with bites taken out of it
up close of the best pumpkin muffin with a bite out of it

Pumpkin Muffins with Chocolate Chips (and Pecan Streusel)

Prepare to be obsessed with these Pumpkin Muffins that are mega soft and fluffy, super moist and packed with sultry warm Fall spices!  They’re not only tender, flavorful perfection but quick and easy to make with pantry ingredients.  You can top them with sweet, buttery Pecan Streusel and Maple Drizzle or leave them simple and just stir in chocolate chips.  Either way you serve them, your house will fill with their warm, Fall aroma and your bellies will fill with happiness, cozy bite after bite after bite.
Servings: 20 22 muffins
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 24 minutes

Ingredients

Wet Ingredients

  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups pure pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup Vegetable oil

Dry Ingredients

ADD LATER

  • 1 ¼ – 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

Pecan Streusel (optional)

  • 2/3 cup raw pecan halves
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 6 tablespoons cold butter cubed

Maple Drizzle (optional)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two muffin tins with cupcake liners (20-22 liners) and lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  • Streusel: Add pecans to your food processor and pulse 3 times. Add flour, sugars and cinnamon and pulse a few times to combine. Sprinkle cold butter over top and pulse until the pecans are chopped and the mixture resembles small pebbles. (You may also combine in a bowl and cut butter in by hand). Set aside in the refrigerator.
  • In a large bowl, add eggs and gently whisk. Mix in sugar, pumpkin and oil.
  • In a separate large bowl, mix together all Dry Ingredients (don’t add chocolate chips).
  • Mix the Flour Mixture into the Pumpkin mixture just until combined, being careful not to overmix. Fold in chocolate chips. Evenly divide batter between 20-22 cupcake liners so they are ¾ of the way full.
  • Evenly divide streusel between muffin cups (approx 1 tablespoon each) and and gently pat it into the batter.
  • Bake at 350 degrees F for 22-28 minutes OR until toothpick comes out clean. Let muffins cool for 10 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely before adding maple drizzle.
  • For the Maple Drizzle, whisk together maple syrup and powdered sugar. Drizzle over muffins.

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14 Comments

  1. Sue says

    The pumpkin muffins look delicious, just the right choice for a cold morning. I love your blog and have enjoyed several of your recipes.

    • Jen says

      Thank you for your kind comment Sue! I love hearing you are enjoying my recipes. I think you will love these Pumpkin Muffins and am so excited for you to try them!

  2. Margaret says

    I just finished making the pumpkin muffins. They are very good. Since I’m not supposed to be baking (hubby likes his food and he’s trying to lose weight), I’ll keep a few out, give some to my neighbor, and freeze the rest. I’ll make them again but I may try cutting some of the sugar and replacing some of the oil with applesauce. Thanks for sharing your recipe.

    • Jen says

      That’s awesome you made the already Margaret, I’m so happy you enjoyed them! I am sure your neighbors will be thrilled with your willingness to share :)!

  3. Sue too! says

    I had a tub of steamed butternut squash in the fridge which needed using so I was super pleased to see this recipe! It was really good! I only had 1 1/2 cup sugar and they were still sweet. And chocolate! Yes! All your recipes are so good!

    • Jen says

      That is awesome you were able to use the butternut squash instead, yum! I’m so pleased you are enjoying my recipes, thanks Sue!

  4. Tiffany Ivie says

    Can you use a neck pumpkin?

    • Jen says

      Hi Tiffany, you will want to stick with a sugar pumpkin or pie pumpkin.

  5. Nicole says

    Hi Jen, I love all of your recipes I’ve made so far! I do love chocolate and pumpkin together but would like to leave them out of this muffin recipe. If I do, do any other changes need to be made? Thank you!

    • Jen says

      Thanks so much Nicole! If you omit the chocolate chips no changes need to be made, enjoy!

  6. Sara Kupchella says

    Delicious! The streusel topping with the maple syrup, sugar drizzle…the bomb! I used the mini milk chocolate chips and did everything according to the recipient. My grand children loved them!

    • Jen says

      Thank you so much Sara! I’m so pleased they were such a hit!

  7. Becky says

    Oh.My.Goodness. ❤️
    Soooo moist.
    Sooo scrumptious.
    Sooo sinfully delicious.

    Forgive me, Lord, for I KNOW what I do.

    • Jen says

      LOL! So worth it! Thanks Becky, I’m thrilled you love them!

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