holiday pumpkin muffins from scratch

…because we make our own destinies (from scratch). Or at least according to the list of life mottos on our fridge we do.


This is a recipe I didn’t so much make myself as witness come to life at the hands of friend and neighbor-across-the-hall Nate, who whipped these up from scratch during Thanksgiving week. They are every bit as pumpkin-y as if they were made from the canned stuff, but taste fresher and better – and the blend of spices is just right. We added a sugary crispy crumble on top to make them even more tempting. They taste like the holidays and they look the part, too.

Pumpkin Muffins

The recipe is based upon this one from Allrecipes, with a few modifications.

For a dozen muffins you will need:

1 small sugar pumpkin, seeded (or any pumpkin-like squash you can get your hands on, really)
3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2/3 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cloves
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp salt

For turkey-dressing your muffins you’ll need:

Slices of green and red apples (or whatever color you fancy)
Grapes for heads
Whole cloves for eyes

For the crumble on top that brings it all together you’ll want:

Half a stick of butter, cubed and cold
1/4 cup sugar, brown and/or white per your preferences

mix and mash
mix and mash

The first thing you’ll do is preheat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare your muffin tin (either line with muffin liner things or grease the tin well).

Next you’ll want to bake your pumpkin or pumpkin-like squash. Slice it in half or in quarters, whatever seems right to you, place on a greased/oiled baking sheet with the rind facing up, cover with foil and bake till fork-tender (timing will depend on your pumpkin but budget at least an hour).

Next let the pumpkin cool, scoop out the pulp and blend. If you have trouble getting it to blend, try adding milk and honey (which, if you think about it, are kind of the answer to everything) and a bit of oil to liquefy things just enough to blend. Measure out two cups of pumpkin.

pour and bake
pour and bake

Next, in a large bowl combine all the dry ingredients. In another bowl mix the pumpkin, oil, and eggs, and gradually blend the wet ingredients into the dry. Pour into muffin tin.

Put the muffins in the oven, and while they start to bake, prepare the crumble top: mix the sugar and butter with your fingers until you get blended pea-sized bits of sugary buttery goodness. Add them to the top of the muffins after 5-10 minutes, and continue to bake them for about 20-25 minutes total. Afterwards, use the cloves/apples/grapes to make turkeys, if you wish (the secret is a convincing apple-beak).

at last
at last

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