Healthy pumpkin muffins

It's pumpkin season again, and this year you are going to do a whole lot more than carve scary faces into this impressive veg. Pumpkins are affordable, versatile and easy to cook with, plus they are an excellent source of vitamin A. Yet we tend to throw away all that delicious and healthy flesh once we’ve perfected our Halloween carvings.

Well not anymore. Pumpkin flesh is easily turned into pumpkin puree, which is amazing in cakes and muffins, adding a naturally sweet and gooey flavour without piling on the calories.

Read our surprisingly healthy recipe for pumpkin muffins, and experiment with your own pumpkin ideas to give this not-so-scary vegetable a new lease of life.

For the pumpkin puree

  1. First, roughly chop your pumpkin with the skin still on. 
  2. Remove the seeds but don’t discard them – rinsed and roasted slightly they will make a nutritious and fibre-rich snack.
  3. Sprinkle a little sea salt over the slices, and lay the pumpkin flesh-down on a baking sheet and roast for around 30 minutes (or until soft).
  4. When cool, remove the skin.
  5. Blitz the roasted pumpkin flesh in a blender for around 3 minutes, until it has pureed.

What you will need

  • 200g of pumpkin puree (see above technique)
  • 100ml vegetable oil
  • 220g of plain flour
  • 1 level teaspoon of baking powder
  • ½ level teaspoon of baking soda
  • 2 tsp spice mix of your choice (blend ground cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves cardamom and/or ginger to taste)
  • 100g soft brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • Splash of whole milk

What to do

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180C.
  2. Whisk together the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Slowly add the remaining wet ingredients.
  4. Sieve dry ingredients into wet ingredients and fold together.
  5. Spoon mixture into muffin cases and bake for 15-17 minutes, until risen and golden on top.

Tip: Finish off your muffins with a swirl of cream cheese frosting to turn them into treat-sized cupcakes.

READ THIS NEXT: 28 Halloween recipes to try this year



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