Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins

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I am so excited to finally share these Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins with you! Two years ago when I first tried The Best Pumpkin Muffins from the Post Punk Kitchen they became an instant favourite. I made them constantly all of that fall and winter. Last winter I was so busy trying new recipes, that I only revisited these a couple times, and never took any photos. Now its pumpkin season once again and I have fallen in love with these muffins all over again.

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Through the many times I’ve made them, The Best Pumpkin Muffins has slowly morphed into something healthier and a little different: my Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins. I use whole grain flours, a lot less sugar and oil (and healthier versions of both), more molasses and pumpkin, and the cranberries are never optional. While the PPK’s pumpkin muffins lived up to their name, I have to say that I enjoy them even more with the changes I’ve made. I hope you do too!

Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins (Yields 12 Muffins)
1 cup whole wheat flour
½ cup chickpea flour (besan)
¼ cup brown rice flour
½ cup coconut sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
½ tsp ground nutmeg
¼ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp ground cloves
¼ tsp sea salt
1 ¼ cups pureed pumpkin
½ cup unsweetened nondairy milk or water
¼ cup molasses
⅓ cup coconut oil, melted
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
½ cup chopped almonds, walnuts, or pecans (optional)

Notes:
– Please don’t be scared away by the somewhat lengthy ingredient list; one third of it is spices. The recipe is really simple and comes together quickly.
– If you don’t have chickpea or brown rice flour, you can use all whole wheat but your muffins will be a little denser and you may need a little bit of extra milk or water.
– For a special treat, I highly recommend trying these with a ½ cup of vegan dark chocolate chips instead of the nuts. You won’t be disappointed!
– For some an extra pop of ginger, toss in a couple tablespoons of chopped crystallized ginger.

Preheat oven to 400°F.
In a large bowl mix together the flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices.
In a smaller bowl whisk together the pumpkin, milk, oil, and molasses.
Stir the cranberries and nuts (if using) into the dry ingredients.
Add the wet ingredients into the dry and stir until just combined.
Use a ¼ cup measuring scoop to scoop batter into a lined or lightly greased muffin tin.
Bake for 20-23 minutes.
Enjoy!

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In case you’re wondering, these muffins freeze amazingly well, though I usually have a hard  time having extras to put in the freezer.

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These little guys are so moist and flavourful they really don’t need anything else! (Though a little smear of Earth Balance probably wouldn’t hurt.) Yum!

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I’ve shared this post with Healthy Vegan Friday #70 and Wellness Weekends.

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Dark Chocolate Raspberry Banana Bread

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Vegan Mofo 2013 – Post #8 – Now only 2 posts behind, and almost halfway through. I may actually make it!

I don’t know if you remember, but awhile back I posted about the amazing Lower-fat Banana Bread recipe from Veganomicon. Well, I recently stumbled upon this variation on that recipe, and it was a definite must-try! I usually add chocolate chips to my banana bread, but Herbivore Triathlete had the genius thought of also adding raspberries!

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Banana bread + dark chocolate + tart berry goodness = love!

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When making this Dark Chocolate Raspberry Banana Bread, I made the same minor changes that I mentioned in my previous post, except that this time I replaced the all purpose flour with 1 cup whole wheat flour, 1/4 cup brown rice flour, and 1/4 cup chickpea flour.

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You should give this a try!

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Title, Cranberry Orange Cardamom MuffinsCranberry Orange Cardamom Muffins

 

PPK Ginger Chocolate Chunk Scones

Okay, I lied. I have something for you after all. Apparently giving myself permission not to post again until the new year (and maybe an unexpected day off from work) was all it took to get myself in the mood to post something.

Have you read Isa’s recipe for these Ginger Chocolate Chunk Scones yet? It’s hilarious! I know it’s a few years old, but I just rediscovered it and I wanted to share.

I just finished making these, in preparation of Christmas brunch with the family tomorrow, and I’m in love! They were very quick and easy to throw together and turned out fantastic! I think the ginger flavour could be a little stronger, but they do taste great as they are. Some crystallized ginger would be awesome!

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The only modification I made to Isa’s recipe was to use half whole wheat flour and half brown rice flour. I chose to use sucanat for the sugar and Enjoy Life Mega Chunks. And I’m a little sad I forgot to sprinkle them with sugar, because the large sucanat crystals would have looked so pretty.

I can’t wait to share these at brunch tomorrow. I think this just might become my go to scone recipe!

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Also, you should watch this music video. I love She & Him, have always loved this song (in almost any incarnation), and this video makes me smile each time!

Merry Christmas!

Cranberry Orange Cardamom Muffins

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If you haven’t noticed already, I have been going a little crazy for cranberries lately. Cranberries turn up in my muffins and other quick breads quite often. Their sweet-tart flavour makes a great main attraction when paired with a little lemon or nuts, and I love the contrast they give in spiced pumpkin muffins.

But this time I wanted something a little different. Enter, the organic pure orange extract I just bought. Perfect! Cranberry and orange goes great together! But I still wanted something else to contrast the sweet-tart pairing of cranberries and oranges. Normally cinnamon would be the first thing I’d reach for. I find it very difficult to not add cinnamon to every single thing I bake. But then I remembered the little packet of ground cardamom I had hiding in my spice cupboard. Sold!

In need of a fall/winter muffin that is simple without being boring? Maybe a bit special? Try these! Both the orange and cardamom flavours are subtle compared to the bold bursts of sweet-tart cranberries, but they are definitely detectable and the combination is so good!

Cranberry Orange Cardamom Muffins (Yields 12 muffins)
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup brown rice flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground cardamom
1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk
1/3 cup agave or maple syrup
1 tsp pure orange extract
1/3 cup canola oil
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 1/2 cup fresh or frozen cranberries

Notes:
These muffins have subtle orange and cardamom flavours. For bolder flavours, try adding the zest of one orange or doubling the amount of ground cardamom.

Preheat oven to 375°F and lightly grease a muffin tin. In a large bowl whisk together all the dry ingredients: flours, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt, and cardamom. Set aside. In a small bowl mix together the wet ingredients: milk, syrup, orange extract, oil, and applesauce. Measure out the cranberries so they are ready when you are.

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Pour the liquid ingredients into the large bowl containing the dry ingredients. Stir until about half-way combined. Add in the cranberries and gently fold in, until everything is just combined. Divide batter into a 12-cup muffin tin.

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Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling. Enjoy!

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Nutritional Info (per muffin, using unsweetened soy milk and agave syrup): 230 calories, 7.2 g fat, 0.5 g saturated fat, 249 mg sodium, 36 mg potassium, 39.4 g carbs, 5.3 g fibre, 13.6 g sugars, 4.2 g protein, 1% Vitamin A, 17% Vitamin C, 5% calcium, 7% iron.

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Peach Cornmeal Cake

This Peach Cornmeal Cake is simple, quick, and delicious. A great way to highlight fresh local peaches at the height of their season. Honestly, the hardest part is peeling and cutting up the peaches, but I’m sure you will do just fine. You definitely don’t need perfectly diced peaches for this.

This is a cake, but it isn’t too sweet. You might want to add more sugar if you like quite sweet desserts, but I enjoy the natural sweetness that comes from the peaches here. The cornmeal gives this a fantastic texture: a bit crisp on the outside, and perfectly moist on the inside. This is the best cornmeal cake I’ve tried, and it would make a great base for highlighting other fruit.

Peach Cornmeal Cake
Adapted from Vanilla & Spice.

1 1/2 cups non-dairy milk
1 tbsp white vinegar
3/4 cup cornmeal
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup brown rice flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup coconut sugar (or brown sugar)
1/4 cup organic cane sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups peeled and diced peaches (about 3 small/medium peaches)

Preheat oven to 350°F and lightly grease 9″ pan. In a small bowl, stir together the non-dairy milk and vinegar. Set aside to curdle while you prepare the other ingredients. It should look like the second photo, when you use it.

In a large bowl stir together the cornmeal, flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In a smaller bowl, whisk together the sugars, oil, vanilla, and milk-vinegar mixture. Pour this liquid mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until just mixed together.

Gently fold in diced peaches. Pour into prepared pan and place in warmed oven. Bake for 45-50 minutes, until the cake is coming away from the edges of the pan and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out dry.

Let the cake cool in the pan for about 5 minutes before inverting onto a plate or wire rack. Let cool completely before slicing. I don’t suggest keeping this cake fully covered with a lid or plastic wrap, as it will get quite mushy in the centre.

Enjoy!

I hope you enjoy this Peach Cornmeal Cake as much as I did!

Sorry for the sporadic posting, but I think this will be my last post before October 1st. I’m participating in the Vegan Month Of Food for the first time this year, and am going to use my free time this week to try to prepare a bit.

This recipe has been submitted to October 1st’s Slightly Indulgent Tuesday hosted by Simply Sugar and Gluten Free.

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