Pumpkin Spice Muffins

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by Amy on October 26, 2010 · 22 comments

Wanna know what’s in my fridge right now? Let’s see… I have mini whole wheat bagels, 1% cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, strawberries, hummus, lettuce, mustard, and a Tupperware container of, um, something that needs to be thrown out.

Wanna know what I wish was in my fridge? Let’s see… mayonnaise, white bread, Gruyère cheese, whipping cream, salami, and blackberry jam. Among other things.

But I do have pumpkin puree. Loads of it, naturally. It’s October. Who doesn’t?

This little treasure comes Insanity guilt-free, at only 155 calories each (ya, I figured it out – the strenuous exercise has now effected my brain.)

Think a muffin can’t be moist and delicious without oil, butter, or eggs? Think again! These are insanely good, and done in a flash. Four ingredients, one bowl, and ten minutes of prep. It’s like a gift.

I’m not feeling so bad about the mini whole wheat bagels and mustard anymore. See, as long as you have canned pumpkin puree in your pantry, good things will happen.

Pumpkin Spice Muffins
Makes 20 muffins
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes

• 1 box (18.25 ounce) spice cake mix
• 1 can (15 ounce) pumpkin puree
• 1/2 cup water
• 1/3 cup cinnamon chips
• 1/3 cup chopped pecans
• 20 cupcake wrappers
• Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line muffin tins with wrappers, lightly coat with cooking spray; set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the spice cake mix, pumpkin, and water. Then fold in the cinnamon chips and pecans.

Fill each muffin slot 3/4 of the way. Bake for about 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

(adapted from The Cutting Edge of Ordinary)

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Sandra November 1, 2010 at 9:29 pm

I made these yesterday (couldn’t find the cinnamon chips so I used semi sweet) – they were fabulous and SO easy like you said. Wish I could have given them out to the trick or treaters. Thanks for the great recipe!


Jen October 30, 2010 at 8:42 pm

I made these last night. I don’t think I’ve EVER made anything this easy and SO yummy! I couldn’t find the cinnamon chips at Target or at Raley’s, so I used white chocolate chips, which worked out great. Also, I ran out of large muffin tins, so I used my mini-muffin tin.

Oy, the little ones…DANGER! I kept popping them in my mouth like it was nothing…until a little voice inside my head (yeah, yeah, it talks to me sometimes) screamed, “WALK AWAY FROM THE MUFFINS!” Then I had a “regular” sized one for breakfast this morning before my 18 mile run. :o) YUM.


Amy October 28, 2010 at 12:48 pm

Pam – Exactly!

Denise – I know, right? The first bite did not disappoint…I was practically giddy.

Rachel – I don’t loathe apple sauce in baked goods like you, but I’m not a real fan. I totally agree that they make the texture seem spongy. I’d rather eat something high cal/fat, but less of it, if that’s my choice. But luckily, these muffins don’t have either problem. I bet chocolate cake mix would be awesome!


Rachel October 28, 2010 at 10:17 am

I actually did have canned pumpkin with chocolate cake mix when I was on Weight Watchers, so I don’t doubt that these are thebomb.com.

I like applesauce, but I HATE HATE HATE using it in baked goods. The texture is spongy, and it’s usually tasteless…usually low-fat baked goods are not worth the time and energy. But the cake mix/pumpkin IS good. I totally believe you!

How is insanity going? Do you have a six pack now??


Denise Michaels - Adventurous Foodie October 27, 2010 at 5:35 pm

Mmm-mm good. Love the idea of something with pumpkin that’s actually reasonably healthy. What a concept! *wink*


pam October 27, 2010 at 4:45 pm

Oh, I am soooooo going to make these!!!! How could I not?!


Amy October 27, 2010 at 10:15 am

Daphne – look for the canned pumpkin puree in the same section with the canned fruit (peaches, pears…maybe even where the canned beans are) or ask someone! Australia is savvy, surely they have this!

Mom – These are great in the morning with a little fruit, or a great afternoon snack to take to school with you. Warn Dad, just because they’re 155 cal/each doesn’t mean it’s okay to eat 10 of them!

Jen – No cinnamon chips? I wonder if a lot of people will run into that problem? Waaaa. Both the Nugget AND Target near me had them. Can’t go wrong with the semi-sweet or white chocolate chips, though. I mean, hello. It’s chocolate. Makes everything better.

J – Lol. But, J…it’s in a can! It’s not like you have to make it from scratch. Seriously, these are ridiculously easy. 30 minutes start to finish, and only one bowl. Even a non-baker can handle these. YOU can do it!!


j October 27, 2010 at 9:42 am

C’mon, Amy. You KNOW who doesn’t have any pumpkin puree. (There’s such a thing as pumpkin puree?) These look good, though. And I can sometimes handle baking because you focus on only one thing. (Not like dinners. Let’s not even go there.) I’m going to try these. Stay tuned.


Jen October 27, 2010 at 8:54 am

I picked up all of the ingredients last night and will be making a double batch! Unfortunately, my market did *not* have the cinnamon chips. :o( I was thinking of trying white chocolate chips instead.

Oh, and maybe I’ll make it by to pick some up from this new batch you made…you know…purely for taste testing purposes. :o)


Mom October 27, 2010 at 8:16 am

I was ready to make these after reading the blog but only have pumpkin puree and water. So it’s a trip to the grocery store for me. If I can’t find cinnamon chips, I’ll use the chocolate chips, too. This looks like a real treat at 155 calories.


daphne October 27, 2010 at 12:53 am

oh man, i should find some of those canned pumpkin in aus..surely they have them?! I am so tempted by all the pies, muffins and tarts that I have been seeing!!


Amy October 26, 2010 at 8:50 pm

Rachel – Ya, I suppose most low cal/no oil muffins usually have applesauce in them, huh? Nope. Not these. Try them. Betcha a million dollars you will enjoy them. Why doesn’t anyone believe me??? Waaaaaaa.


Rachel October 26, 2010 at 6:22 pm

And these are not made with applesauce! HOORAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Amy October 26, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Debbi – My market always has the cinnamon chips, which definitely added to the Fall smell and flavor, but Lisa used semi-sweet chips and said they were fantastic. I don’t doubt it.

Stephanie – Trust me, they don’t taste like crap either. I seriously did not miss the oil or butter. They didn’t need it. Make a batch…you’ll see. Pinky promise.


Stephanie @ Per l'Amore del Cibo October 26, 2010 at 3:21 pm

It’s shocking that there’s no oil, butter or eggs in these. And they actually don’t look like crap! It’s a food miracle. You’ll have to remedy that after Insanity though, just so you know. ;)


Debbi Does Dinner Healthy October 26, 2010 at 12:06 pm

These look awesome, I’ve made similar but i love the addition of the cinnamon chips! Only problem is I’ve never been able to find them! Maybe this time of year they will have them! Thanks!


Amy October 26, 2010 at 9:58 am

Lisa – I just love these kinds of recipes. And your blog…you have a very similar cooking style (and taste) to my own. Your name is mentioned so much around here, that Paul no longer questions who “Lisa” is ;-)

Jen – Yes! Cinnamon chips are with the other baking chips (e.g. semi-sweet, milk, butterscotch, white chocolate, etc.) I made another batch this morning, btw. Just sayin’.

Joanne – It is amazing how pumpkin can be immediately transformed by sprinkling a little brown sugar. The crescent rolls I make, with the pecans/brown sugar/pumpkin are a staple in my house. Why wait until Fall or Thanksgiving?…and I feel ya on the cream cheese frosting.


Joanne October 26, 2010 at 9:31 am

The only way I can get through not having dessert is by having pumpkin or kabocha squash around. That stuff drizzled with just a tiny bit of brown sugar is basically a dessert in itself…and totally guilt free.

These muffins look glorious Amy! Is it wrong that I still kind of want to smother them in cream cheese frosting?


Jen October 26, 2010 at 8:50 am

Since I missed my chance at picking up some of this yummy goodness from your house, I will just have to make them myself!

I’ve never even heard of cinnamon chips. Are they with all of the others? In any grocery store?


Lisa@The Cutting Edge of Ordinary October 26, 2010 at 7:59 am

Love the addition of the cinnamon chips and pecans! People never think that this recipe will work, but it does. I just made it with chocolate cake mix and the kids LOVED it! Thanks for posting this so more people can try it!


Amy October 26, 2010 at 6:57 am

Lo – :D I know, right? I swear I didn’t make these based on that! But the end result was shocking almost. I couldn’t believe how moist they were…all from simple pumpkin puree. It’s like the miracle squash.


lo October 26, 2010 at 6:13 am

No oil, butter, or eggs? Comeon, Amy – what fun is that? ;)
Seriously, though — these look pretty fantastic. Pumpkin is one of my very favorite things about this time of the year.


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