Pumpkin, Oat, and Date Muffins

fall-pumpkins-chs-2Now that fall has really arrived in Southern California, I thought it was time to do some fall baking. I think of pumpkins as really being the ultimate symbol of the season. I had some canned pumpkin on hand and thought a muffin recipe would be a good choice for seasonal baking. I started with a base recipe from King Arthur Flour to develop this variation. These came out with perfect texture and just the right amount of sweetness. To boost the nutritional value and fiber content I used some of King Arthur’s White Whole Wheat  and whole rolled oats. I had considered using my Vitamix to make oat flour, but that extra step really was not necessary.

Note that the base recipe (Pumpkin Leaf Muffins) I jumped off from called for 100% all purpose flour, which always 3311_12_16_2013__15_00_26_700makes me feel guilty so I substituted 1/3 white whole wheat for the all-purpose. I like the milder taste that you get from white whole wheat – it isn’t as obvious in terms of the taste or texture. According to the King Arthur website,

“All the goodness of grains in a lighter, milder-tasting flour. 

Our unbleached white whole wheat flour is milled from hard white winter wheat – a lighter-colored grain than traditional red wheat – which yields milder-tasting baked goods. Substituting this flour for up to a third of the white flour in your favorite recipes gives you all of the nutrition and fiber of whole grains without compromising flavor.”

I’ve been using this flour for several years now with good success. If I happen to be out when I’m placing an order with King Arthur then I will order it directly from them. Otherwise, I am usually able to find it at local specialty grocers and will pick up a bag as I need it. If you haven’t tried it, and if you aren’t a fan of regular whole wheat flour, do give it a try.

Here are the ingredients that you need which will yield 12 generously sized muffins.  By my calculations, each muffin comes in at roughly 221 calories with 2.45 grams of fiber and 4.82 grams of protein.  The fat content as written was 33%, but you can substitute reduced fat (2%) milk without any negative effect on the taste or texture.

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (about 1/2 of a 15 ounce can)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil – I used grapeseed oil
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice*
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 cup King Arthur Premium Whole Wheat or White Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped dates (add 1-2teaspoons of flour if you are using a food processor to minimize sticking)
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

*If you don’t have pumpkin pie spice, substitute 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves, 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, and 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preparation Steps:

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a 12-well muffin pan with papers.
  • In a large bowl whisk together the pumpkin, eggs, brown sugar, oil, molasses, salt, spices, and milk.
  • In a separate bowl whisk the flour, baking powder, and baking soda together.
  • In a third bowl assemble the oats, nuts, and dates
  • Add the flour mixture all at once to the wet ingredients and mix until all ingredients are well combined.
  • Stir in the oats, nuts, and dates.
  • Distribute the batter evenly into the wells of the prepared muffin pan.
  • Bake until firm to the touch, about 18 to 20 minutes.

Store baked muffins well-wrapped, for 3 days at room temperature, or freeze for up to a month.

Eat and enjoy!

 

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