Food + Wine

It’s March but I don’t care. I’m talking about pumpkin stuff. Because I want to.

Look, there are a lot of muffin recipes out there. I’m sick of seeing them so I know you are. So read this, don’t read this, I’ll never know.
But here’s the thing-they’re really great things to make. Anyone can make a good muffin and they are an excellent vehicle for healthy eating. I’m always making healthy things to have on hand for my family because if I don’t, #1) they will starve and they’re too cute for that to happen and #2) (and this is a little secret, you ready?)-if you have homemade, healthy things easy for everyone to grab, then guess what? Your family will be healthier! (What?!). Yeah… It’s sort of guaranteed. 

So, let’s add this recipe to the million and a half muffin recipes that are already out there, shall we?
What I love about these, is the fact that they’re actually healthy. No really. They are. Not in the sense that they just happen to have some healthy things in them, like a raisin or an oat, but in the sense that they are, in whole, healthy muffins. They’re made with oats, spelt and teff flour- all extremely healthy, whole grains, they’re sweetened with natural maple syrup, so there’s nothing processed or refined in them, the fat comes from coconut oil, which we all know is a great fat for the body to use, and they contain a ton of pumpkin.
Pumpkin is loaded with vitamins and other important nutrients. I love pumpkin. And no, it does not need to be October for one to enjoy pumpkin. I hate that we’re only allowed to make pumpkin stuff in the early Fall. That’s stupid. And wrong. There aren’t a ton of good quality, healthy canned food items I’m willing to endorse out there but canned pumpkin purée is at the top of my endorsement list for sure. Some smart folks might say (and I’m one of those some…) that it’s a better product than the fresh pumpkin. And here’s why- it’s a totally different thing all together. It’s not even pumpkin. So that’s why the texture is better in the canned variety, the flavor is better, the color… because they use a certain type of squash, similar to a butternut, instead of the standard fat pumpkins you find before Halloween. (Libby’s, in fact, has their own squash/pumpkin variety called ‘Libby’s Select’). The only reason why people cook their pumpkins from scratch for their pies is because they think they’re supposed to…for some Farm to Table/Cheffy reason. But I challenge you, next holiday season, to cook a fresh pumpkin at home and purée it (be sure to notice the yellow, stringy and watery mess you have on your hands), then go to your pantry and open a can of ‘pumpkin’. Decide for yourself. 
So be sure to stock up on the canned stuff when it goes on sale in the fall so you can make these whenever you want to!
These muffins pack about 4 grams of fiber and 4 grams of protein per small muffin and chances are you’re gonna eat two anyway so let’s just double that amount, shall we?
*Maple Pumpkin Oatmeal Muffins 
(Makes about 16 muffins)

In a large mixing bowl, add the following:

1 cup spelt flour
1/2 cup teff flour
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
Mix until well combined, then add in the following:
1 (15 oz) can plain pumpkin purée
3 TB coconut oil (heated up slightly til liquified for easy mixing)
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1/4 cup almond milk (mine is sweetened)
2 large eggs
Mix well until the eggs have broken down and all the wet and dry ingredients have  been fully incorporated.
Using a greased, medium sized icecream scoop, scoop out batter into muffin tins lined with papers, then greased.
Fill any empty muffin spaces with a bit of water to ensure even cooking time.
Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 17-20 minutes, or until slightly firm to the touch. 
Allow to cool before eating warm or room temperature. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge and eat within a few days for optimal flavor. 
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