Vegan Pumpkin Muffins (with chocolate chips!)

Welcome December! Any other moms feeling just a little overwhelmed? It’s not even shopping for the kids, right? It’s all the other stuff that comes with being a mom and the holidays. Cue: bake sales and craft fairs and field trips and projects and concerts and gingerbread houses and school parties and activity parties and decorating and secret santas and... etc etc. Run-on sentence fully intentional. Whew.

Pumpkin Oat Muffins by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen #vegan

This fall has been particularly busy for our family. Busier than any other year. So, I’m further behind this December than any other year! No decorations up, no lights, no tree, have some of my gifts but overall – not ready. Plus, our 4-year old has had a witch of a cold this past two weeks. Not sure if it was one cold that morphed into some awful beastly secondary life of the first, or two separate viruses. I always found the start of four-year preschool and kindergarten hit our kiddos’ immune systems the hardest. She sure had a tough run these past couple of weeks.

Where was I going with this? Oh, right: overwhelm!

While I know I should probably direct myself to some yoga and meditation to manage stress… instead I bake. And it typically involves chocolate. #nojudging

Pumpkin Oat Muffins by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

I’m still loving pumpkin, and from all the amazing feedback on my last pumpkin recipe, I gather you are too! So, let’s deal with our holiday stress and bake some Pumpkin Muffins with Chocolate Chips. Shall we?

This recipe is originally from LTEV. I’ve posted some pics this week on IG and twitter and know many of you have already tried (and love!) these muffins. Thank you!

I decided to test out an oil-free version for any plant-strong folks reading. There wasn’t much oil in the recipe to begin with, so the substitutions were easy and worked beautifully. The muffins are just as light and tender – and delicious! Below I have posted the original version with the oil-free modification. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Oat Muffins by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

Pumpkin Oat Muffins with Chocolate Chips Recipage link to print/share

Bring the enjoyment of pumpkin pie into delicious whole-grain muffins!

Topping (optional, not included in these photos):

2 tbsp unrefined sugar

1 tsp neutral-flavored oil (omit for oil-free version)

pinch sea salt


1 cup spelt flour

1 cup oat flour

1⁄2 cup rolled oats

2 tsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

1⁄4 tsp sea salt

1⁄2 tsp cinnamon

1⁄4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

1/8 tsp allspice (optional)

3 tbsp coconut sugar or other unrefined sugar

1/4 – 1/3 cup mini non-dairy chocolate chips (optional… but really!)

3 tbsp pure maple syrup

1 tbsp flax meal (or 1/2 tbsp ground white chia seed)

3⁄4 cup plain or vanilla non-dairy milk

1 cup pumpkin pie mix (I use Farmer’s Market Organic brand)

1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract

3 tbsp organic safflower, avocado, or other neutral-tasting oil (omit for oil free version, and add another 2-3 tbsp non-dairy milk and 1 tbsp maple syrup)

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a small bowl, combine the topping ingredients and set aside until batter is ready. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients, sifting in the baking powder and baking soda. Stir until well mixed. In another bowl, first combine the maple syrup with the flax meal, and then add the remaining wet ingredients and stir until well mixed. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture, and gently fold and mix until just combined (do not overmix). Spoon the mixture into a twelve-cup lined muffin pan (filling 12). Sprinkle a little of the topping on each muffin. Bake for 21-24 minutes (around 20-22 minutes for oil-free, they can dry out more quickly), until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven, let cool for a couple of minutes in the pan, and then transfer the muffins to cool on a cooling rack. Makes 12 muffins.

Adult-Minded: Bump up the allspice, add 1⁄8 to 1⁄4 teaspoon of ground ginger for extra spice, and try adding 1⁄4 to 1⁄2 cup of chopped walnuts or pecans.

Do you also stress-bake? Don’t leave me all alone! 😉 Seriously, what things do you do to keep the stress in check during the holidays? Any tips to share? Or favorite stress-baking goodies? 


  1. Amy says

    Yes, I have a Thermomix (very high speed) so I make all my own flowers (rice, chickpea, buckwheat, oats, nuts, seeds etc)bit off topic but a chickpea/walnut batter is really nice for frying eggplant slices…… much cheaper,a good processor will do too

  2. Em says

    I did not have spelt either. I used whole wheat instead, but did have the oat flour. I used the oil since I was afraid the WW would make it dry. Turned out great. Do you just put the buckwheat groats in a food processor?

  3. Amy says

    Thanks, I will puree some pumpkin and add the usual cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg. I think I’ll make some buckwheat flour out of the grouts I have too because I don’t have any spelt :)

  4. Em says

    In the US pumpkin pie mix is canned pumpkin with some spices and sugar. I usually use regular canned pumpkin instead to control the amount of sugar.

  5. Amy says

    These look / sound delicious. What is in a pumpkin mix? We don’t have that kind of thing available in Australia. I’m guessing it’s pureed pumpkin and some spices? (I’ll have to do that bit from scratch cos I don’t want to miss out on these)

  6. Amy says

    These look/sound delicious. What is in a pumpkin pie mix? We don’t have that kind of thing available in Australia. I’m guessing it’s pureed pumpkin and some spices?

  7. says

    Sorry about your little one being sick–NO FUN! I agree, once they get int the mixing pot of preschool & kindergarten, it’s the ultimate snot/germ fest.

    I feel ya–I don’t have quite so much as you on my plate, but being so “great with child” I don’t have my usual energy which makes it a bit harder. Though I did all my Christmas shopping the day after Thanksgiving & we put up our Christmas decorations then too–THANKFULLY!

    These muffins look so plump & hearty, & delicious.

    Hope things settle down & you can get what you need done.

    janae @ bring joy recently posted..peppermint double chocolate browniesMy Profile

  8. Deanne O'Donnell says

    I try to meditate or do yoga when I am stressed. I also cook. I used to stress eat but I’ve been trying to stop that.

    • Dreena says

      Good for you Deanne. Yoga and meditation probably the best things you can do for yourself during stressful times. (I also eat with stress – and it’s usually chocolate or ice cream, not kale)! 😉

  9. Jane says

    Yep, stress bake definitely because when my work is crazy I can always convince myself I have to bake to make sure the whole family gets nutritious treats when times are tough! And it makes me feel useful and productive when work is difficult. And my lovely partner and daughter always give me heaps of accolades, even for something simple, so it bumps up the ‘worth’ of doing it even more. Plus – cakes and muffins are yum. Did I say yum? double yum! Thanks Dreena, you are an inspiration. Just coming into ice cream season here in Australia so expect some out of season feedback from me in the coming weeks! x

    • Dreena says

      Awwww, that’s so lovely. It DOES make it feel even more worthwhile when they appreciate it. My family appreciates the baking too, for as much as I do they still say “ooh and ahh”. I love that! Bring on the ice cream, Jane! Make extra for me!! :)

  10. Anna says

    These look delicious. Do you think they would freeze well? I have to make muffins for a party but I can’t bake them the day of so I will be making them a week ahead of time and freezing them. Any suggestions?
    And as always, thank you for sharing your amazing talents with us!

    • Dreena says

      Anna, yes, they freeze quite well. If you add the topping tho, that’s best fresh – not as good later whether refrigerated or frozen. You can still use it, just will become soft with freezing/thawing. And, my pleasure – thank you. :)

    • Dreena says

      JoAnne, I haven’t tested them with all oat flour, but if you can have that they should be ok. You might need another 1-2 tbsp of oat flour in place of the spelt, and the muffins might be just a little more tacky with all oat (that’s usually my experience and why I tend to mix). But, overall I think they should be fine.

    • Dreena says

      Toooo funny! Andrea, I often bake 2 things one day thinking “I might be busier tomorrow”… but, in the process make myself particularly busy THAT day, hah! Still, I like to be prepared, family always toting snacks on the go. Thanks and enjoy!

  11. Liz says

    I am ALL about stress baking. (And cooking.) Whenever I find myself stressed, tense, sad, angry, bored, overwhelmed, lost, confused, I feel the kitchen pulling me in, like centripetal motion. Experimenting and making things up as I go along is my panacea and cure-all. Creating things soothes me and helps both distract AND focus my crazy thoughts. It’s like getting a shot of valium. LOL Seriously, though. As soon as the bowls come out and I start mixing, I can feel everything starting to wash away. It is without a doubt, the best (and CHEAPEST) form of therapy for me. :) (Exercise and getting in the garden/yard are up there, though, too.) I get ANTSY if I have to go more than a couple of days without being in the kitchen. It’s like a SICKNESS; I feel like I’m going through withdrawal or something. LOL

    • Dreena says

      Liz, I often think I need intervention, lol! I am entirely relating to what you are saying. Some of my busiest days are my most creative! It’s just the mess after I could do without. 😉 We should start a support group!

  12. Eve says

    I am a procrasti-baker! I should be doing something else but I’m going to bake these right now, as I have the ingredients at home (the overflowing pantry!). Strangely enough, I have not made these yet from LTEV, but your oil-free version makes me want to try these right away since I need to get back on the low-oil/no-oil bandwagon. I’ve been slipping! So, here I go . . . watch IG for a photo!

    • Dreena says

      L O L!! Procrasti-baker! My word, that is the best, Eve – and I do it too!!! Which makes me more stressed which… you get the picture. Going to be using that one. :)

  13. Tiffany says

    Happy December, Dreena!

    These are beautiful! I’ve actually made these and loved them!! I didn’t have pumpkin pie mix so I made them using plain pureed pumpkin and the muffins were still delicious!!

    I should try meditation or yoga when I’m stressed but I usually bake and eat chocolate chips instead haha!!

    Hope you have a wonderful holiday season filled with love, happiness, laughs and lots of sweets xoxo

    • Dreena says

      Thanks Tiffany, wishing you a beautiful holiday season as well. Always lovely to hear from you.
      p.s. I keep dark chocolate in my purse… at all times. That just about says it all! 😉

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