Pumpkin Muffins, made over and still delicious


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I’ve made these before, but I put a spin on them this time: I wanted to know if I could make them healthier without compromising on deliciousness. And the answer: a resounding yes.

I’ve been looking for a formula for a long time that would cover how to add flax and wheat germ to a recipe without ruining it, and I finally found it. So the first thing I did was look to see how many cups of flour this recipe requires. 2 3/4 cups. I concentrated on the two cups, to keep the formula simple. Before measuring out the flour, I put in a tablespoon each of wheat germ and flax in the bottom of the 1-cup measuring cup.

bottom of measuring cup

I scooped in the flour, using whole wheat pastry flour this time around, and leveled it off. So basically, I had a cup minus two tablespoons, since the wheat germ & flax were at the bottom of the cup. I did the same with the second cup, but left the remaining 3/4 a cup alone.

I dumped that all into a bowl, then added the baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, and pumpkin pie spice. When it was time to add a cup of sugar, I used cane sugar and put in less than 3/4 of a cup. (Next time I think I’ll go lower.)

dry ingredients with spices

I whisked.


In another bowl, I got the rest of the ingredients together: pumpkin, Greek yogurt, 1% milk, canola oil, vanilla, one egg, and one egg white. I whisked that together as well. Once it had a nice even consistency, I poured it into the dry ingredients.



I mixed just until incorporated. The batter was nice and thick.


This recipe makes 18 muffins, so I loaded up a few muffin tins. I sprinkled some turbinado sugar across the top of each one, and then forgot to snap a picture before putting them into the oven.  I took a small liberty, and quickly opened the oven door to grab a shot.

muffins in oven

They were done in about 20 minutes, and looked and smelled great. THey got nice and puffy, too.

muffins in tin, fully baked


And the verdict? Success. You can’t taste the flax or the wheat germ, the  reduced sugar didn’t make a difference, the flavor is strong, the whole wheat pastry flour worked out great. Even Juliet liked these, and there is no greater praise than that.



(serves 18)

2 tablespoons ground flax
2 tablespoons wheat germ
2 3/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour, less 4 tablespoons
3/4 cane sugar (feel free to use less)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup canned pumpkin
3/4 cup Greek yogurt
1/3 cup 1% milk
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1  large egg
1  large egg white
turbinado sugar for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 400°.

Measure the wheat germ and flax into the bottom of your measuring cup. (If using a 1-cup measure, do one tablespoon of each, and repeat with the second cup.) Fill the rest of the cup with flour and level off. Pour into a large bowl.

Add the rest of the dry ingredients: sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. Whisk. Make a well in center of mixture.

Combine pumpkin , yogurt, milk, oil, vanilla, egg and egg white, stirring until smooth. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist. Spoon the batter into 18 muffin cups coated with cooking spray or lined with paper. Sprinkle lightly with turbinado sugar.

Reduce temperature to
375° and bake for 20 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Remove muffins from pans immediately; cool on a wire rack.

They are at their best the morning after baking!

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