One of my family’s favorite snack foods started out as a very basic pumpkin muffin. I then created these kid-friendly, nutritional powerhouse muffins out of pure desperation during a period when both of my toddlers were asserting their independence at the dinner table (how’s that for a nice way of saying they were driving me crazy with their ever increasing pickiness?). I couldn’t imagine how their little bodies would ever grow up to be big and strong when they insisted on eating only yogurt and mashed potatoes for weeks on end. This healthy pumpkin muffin recipe helped me to get lots of good fruit and veggies into what became their favorite snack food!
Healthy Pumpkin Muffins
As a parent, you can likely empathize with my frustrating tale of feeding fussy eaters. If you are currently living through this trying time, please take heart in knowing that picky eating is just another phase. Hang in there, your precious little one will eventually grow out of it. And before you know it, the kid who once refused to eat any green food will request fresh asparagus, lightly sautéed with minced garlic in olive oil.
In the meantime, bake a few batches of these vitamin and protein-packed healthy pumpkin muffins which are both tasty and nutritionally sound. You can easily customize this recipe to your child’s current taste preferences. For example, my son went through a phase during which he refused to eat the ‘chunks’ in these muffins. No raisins, apple, carrot, nuts…. No problem–I just tossed the chunky stuff into a blender along with the orange juice and pureed it. Mom wins!
If you are wondering what this healthy pumpkin muffin recipe tastes like, well it tastes very good! Kind of like carrot cake, kind of like pumpkin bread, kind of like Morning Glory muffins. Very moist, nutritious enough to be satisfying, and sweet enough to make you want another! It seems like you are putting everything but the kitchen sink into these muffins but it is worth it. They taste great!
Please note that these muffins are not overly sweet. So, if you need to entice your child with a little extra sugar, try adding a ½ cup to the dry ingredients. Desperate times require desperate measures. You can even sprinkle a little on the top for looks.
Happy baking and most importantly, happy eating!
Everything But The Kitchen Sink Healthy Pumpkin Muffins
Yield: 24 muffins
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- ½ cup chopped nuts or seeds (such as walnuts, pecans, or raw sunflower seeds)
- ½ cup ground flax
- ½ cup wheat germ
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon cloves
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 15-ounce can pumpkin
- 1 cup honey
- 4 large eggs
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- ½ cup orange juice
- ½ cup grated sweet potato or carrot
- ½ cup finely chopped, unpeeled apple or well-drained crushed pineapple
- ½ cup raisins
- ½ cup coconut
How To Make Healthy Muffins
Combine the first eleven ingredients (flour-salt) in a large bowl.
Combine the remaining ingredients (pumpkin-coconut) in a separate bowl and stir or whisk until blended.
Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture; stir just until moistened.
Spoon batter into paper lined or greased muffin tins. Optional-dust with sugar.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.
Cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes then remove to racks to cool completely.
Serve and enjoy your kids eating something healthy without even knowing it!
Printable Healthy Pumpkin Muffin Recipe
Guest post by Jacqueline Cole who has the pleasure of cooking for her growing family, all of whom enjoy eating a wide variety of healthful foods. Even tomatoes and broccoli. She also enjoys posting outstanding yeast bread recipes at her soon-to-be-world-famous website, http://breadbabe.com.