A few years ago, I learned a trick that became an easy swap when I want to make healthy muffins, but don’t feel like making them from scratch.
I simply add canned pumpkin to a muffin mix, instead of adding eggs and oil. This yields fluffy muffins with significantly less calories than the standard recipe and packs a punch of vitamin A in each little muffin.
For example, the particular muffin mix shown (Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Bread and Muffin Mix) above was 150 calories before the eggs and oil were added and would have been 250 calories if I had added these ingredients, each little muffin would have been 250 calories.
By leaving out the eggs and oil and using 1 cup of pumpkin instead, I only added 7 calories per muffin, not the 100 calories the box directions call for, yielding muffins with only 157 calories a piece. That’s pretty incredible, in my opinion.
And what’s even better is that I sacrifice none of the taste. If anything, the muffins are more pumpkin-y. A very good thing, in my book.
There is no exact science to this method of baking. The box called for two large eggs and half a cup of oil so I estimated that the eggs would be equal to about half a cup of pumpkin and to substitute for the oil, I would need another cup of pumpkin. I also added a cup of water, which the box directions called for.
Now, in my opinion, don’t go around adding pumpkin to just any ol’ muffin mix. For example, I’m not so sure pumpkin and strawberry would make a good pair. But pumpkin and chocolate chips sounds like a match made in heaven.
Other muffin/bread mix flavors that will go well with pumpkin:
- Cranberry Orange,
- Chocolate Chip
- Banana Bread
- Apple Cinnamon
Note: If eating vegan is important to you, check the ingredients of the muffin or bread mix to make sure they are vegan as is ,in order to determine if substituting pumpkin will yield vegan muffins. If ingredients like milk powder are present, the mix already contains dairy and thus can’t be vegan.
Have you tried this simple ingredient swap?