The conversation in my head went something like this:
I need a pumpkin muffin NOW.
But that oil and sugar. Dern.
And so began the quest for a healthy pumpkin muffin that still tasted like a yummy pumpkin muffin. The original version of these Maple Glazed Pumpkin Muffins was actually a recipe from a bed and breakfast – cute, right? This “healthy” version follows a basic rule of halves.
- Half the sugar of the original, subbing real maple syrup for some but not all because DANG girl that stuff is expensive.
- Half of the flour swapped out for whole wheat. Fiber. Healthy. Simple as dat.
- Half of the total oil, using olive oil. Guess what? NO TASTE. I served it at a brunch with friends and they were all surprised when I mentioned the olive oil. And ironically my other friend who had brought pumpkin bread also made hers with olive oil. This is one where you can get away with that sort of healthy debauchery.
- Half of the glaze. NOT! Hello? The maple glaze is the bedazzling crown of this puffy little muffin.
This recipe is basically five simple things: mix the wet, mix the dry, mix them both together, bake, and glaze. I love recipes that can be explained in one sentence.
Let’s talk muffin tops. I mean jumbo, puffy, extra large, over-proportionate, why even bother with the little nubbin base kind of muffin tops. Muffin tops are basically the heart and soul of the muffin, and I won’t take no for an answer.
I’ll let you in on one of my most professional baking tips: I get extra perfect domes for my muffin tops by scooping them into the muffin tin using an ice cream scoop with a thumb button. What are those called again?
Yes, they’re going to be huge. But don’t doubt for one second whether or not you’re going to die and go to muffin top heaven when those fluffy things come out of the oven. The scoop just works, yo.
Reason #8274 why I love these muffins: they are rough and bumpy and just weirdly beautiful when they come out of the oven.
It’s like this rough baked pumpkin terrain that is somehow perfectly puffed up right in the middle is just begging to be smothered with smooth maple glaze to make the most incredible muffin top art.
Which brings me to the glaze.
THE GLAZE. I couldn’t love it more. I did not skimp on the butter and sugar for the glaze because this glaze is not to be messed with. Like, wowz. I’d be sad if you didn’t make the muffins, but I’d be sadder if you never gave yourself the chance to make the best glaze ever.
It tastes like maple and butter, maintains this thick and creamy consistency, and sets within seconds. When you get it just right, it runs down the sides just enough to get you those dramatically gorgeous drips but stops dripping before hitting the counter. That’s what I call winning. When it sets, it gets that nice dry to the touch kind of thing going on, but then you bite in while it’s still warm and you get the creamy cream-ness of the butter and maple up in your mouth.
I can’t even. ♥
The time is now. Go forth and make your muffins.
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1½ cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon each cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 cups pumpkin puree
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup real maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons milk
- 3 eggs
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1¼ cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 tbs. maple syrup
- 1-2 tablespoons water
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Mix the dry ingredients (flours, baking soda, baking powder, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and sugar). In a separate bowl, mix the wet ingredients (pumpkin, oil, maple syrup, milk, and eggs).
- Combine the dry and wet ingredients in a large mixing bowl, stirring until just combined. Fill each muffin tin almost to the top with a scoop of batter - I like to use an old fashioned ice cream scoop with the little thumb press to get a nice rounded top.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until tops are puffy and spring back when you press them. Remove from the muffin pan and let cool before glazing.
- For the glaze, melt butter in saucepan. Add powdered sugar and vanilla - it will be thick and sticky. Stir in maple syrup. Add water until desired consistency is reached.