I'm so glad I finally got around to making these, because they're totally one of those treats that nearly everyone will enjoy - whether they're vegan or not. These muffins are fragrant with cinnamon and nutmeg, studded with dark chocolate and little oily bursts of walnut and are the colour of sunshine, thanks to the pumpkin puree. They're nice warm or at room temperature and they're super moist, without being wet (there's nothing I hate more than a stale, cakey, dry muffin: blerg).
I've made a couple of changes to the original recipe. I upped the cinnamon, swapped the flax seeds for chia (super energy!) and I also dialed back the sugar. I didn't want anything too sweet and I thought they were perfect this way, but increase it back to the original 1 cup if your sweet tooth's calling out. And yes, I "made my own pumpkin puree": down under, I don't think there's much of a choice! If you're wondering what the best way to do this is, visit The Pioneer Woman for an excellent guide.
Vegan pumpkin & chocolate muffinsAdapted from Caroline's recipe at Whipped
1 cup pureed pumpkin
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup mild-flavoured vegetable oil (grapeseed etc)
2 tsp chia seeds
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 cup wholemeal flour
2/3 cup unbleached white flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
100g dark chocolate, chopped into small pieces
1/3 cup walnuts, chopped roughly
3 teaspoons raw sugar (optional)
1. Heat your oven to 180/350.
2. In a large bowl, whisk pumpkin, water, oil, chia seeds and vanilla until thoroughly blended.
3. In another bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg.
4. Add dry ingredients to pumpkin mixture and mix with a wooden spoon to combine. If the mixture seems too dry, add a tiny splash of water. When your consistency is right, add the chopped chocolate and nuts.
5. Spoon into a 12 capacity nonstick muffin tin and top each with raw sugar if you're using it.
6. Bake 30 minutes. Let the muffins cool in tin for at least ten minutes, then turn out onto a rack.