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Best Healthy Pumpkin Muffins (WFPB, Vegan, Oil-Free)

I recently went to a MOPS activity (Mothers of Preschoolers–a great nation-wide group!) and was supposed to bring a breakfast bread item. Being new and not wanting to be too weird, I needed a healthy option I was willing to eat that was also very normal-tasting. I have been experimenting to come up with a recipe that meets all my criteria, and am so happy with the results! They are scrumptious.

I started with Cookie and Kate’s pumpkin muffins (her recipes are always amazing!) and followed all her optional adaptations (flax egg instead of real egg, applesauce instead of oil). Β I compared them to a batch made with coconut oil, hoping to say there was no noticeable difference, but the fat-free ones were significantly low-fat tasting and tough. A whole-foods approach avoids oil since it is not a whole food and is void of all nutrients. I try to avoid oil as much as possible in my cooking.

So I then subbed some of the whole wheat flour with almond flour, changed the spices to be a delicious pumpkin spice blend, and they are perfect! Moist, fluffy, perfectly sweet, tender, and not at all “healthy-tasting.” They even have better texture than the version made with oil!

Although I haven’t tried making these gluten free, I think gluten-free oat flour or gluten-free all purpose flour would work very well.

Some healthy muffins are a little too “healthy tasting” for average people, but these are not so. Can’t wait for you to try them!

It appears like a long ingredient list, but it’s mostly the spices. They come together quickly.

5 from 11 votes
Best Healthy Pumpkin Muffins (WFPB, Vegan, Oil-Free)
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
30 mins

Full of whole grains, pumpkin, and a delicious spice blend, these muffins will wow anyone! See notes for gluten free version.

Course: Breakfast, Snack
Keyword: pumpkin muffins, vegan, whole food plant based
Servings: 12 muffins
Author: Faithful Plateful
  • 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup (or sugar or honey)
  • 2 TBSP ground flax seed mixed with 4 TBSP water
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice
  • 1 TBSP cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4-1/2 cup mini dark chocolate chips or chopped walnuts (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 325. Prepare muffin pan.

  2. Mix ground flax seed and water together and let sit while you combine the rest of the wet ingredients.

  3. In a separate bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. Stir all together. Batter will be thick.

  4. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full. Should make exactly 12 standard muffins, 18 mini muffins, or 4 mini loaves.

  5. Bake standard muffins for 25-28 minutes. Mini muffins for 18-20 minutes, and mini loaves for about 35 minutes. Let cool completely in the pan before removing them, as they are too tender to remove when hot.

  6. Store in the fridge in an air-tight container.

Recipe Notes

Note: These are lightly sweet. I think it's perfect, but you could add an additional 1/4 cup sweetener for sweeter muffins.

For gluten-free, use 1 cup all purpose gluten free flour and 1/2 cup oat flour instead of whole wheat flour. Delicious.Β 


Adapted from the Cookie and Kate Healthy Pumpkin Muffin recipe.

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  1. Love these! I made them for dinner and my family loved them. The only changes I made were: added 1/8 tsp baking powder to adjust acidity for no eggs, and I used gluten free flour blend. I’ll be making these weekly! Thank you for the great, healthy recipe.

    1. I’m glad they worked with GF flour blend!I hadn’t heard of baking powder to adjust acidity when skipping eggs. Interesting.

      1. I’ve been doing flaxmeal eggs like that for probably a decade. I’m not sure where I even found that info, but I’ve never had baked goods fail with it. Per egg: 2T flaxmeal, 3T water, 1/8 tsp baking powder. In fact, I rarely even mix those together, just dump it all in when it’s time for the eggs and it always works.

        Just to add to my other review, we ate the rest of them for breakfast this morning and they make GREAT leftovers. Even my nephew and husband who are carnivores liked them and were surprised they weren’t made with oil/butter and refined sugar. It’s a win-win!

      2. Now that I think about it, maybe it’s to help with leavening and not acidity? Maybe I’m thinking about acidity levels when substituting honey with sugar, I think that’s what I’m confused on. This old brain has too much in there!🀣

  2. I don’t have any almond flour but I have coconut flour and whole wheat flour. Would that combo work instead of the almond flour?

    1. I think that would work! They might be a tad more dense than with almond flour, but still good. πŸ™‚

  3. Just like your banana muffins these were excellent! Some changes; I used regular sized Guittard dark chocolate chips (prob. 1/2 cup), homemade apple sauce (kind of chunky) and a little bit more of the canned pumpkin than the recipe (eyeballed it instead of measured) and they still turned out delicious. After storing in the fridge they are denser and even more addictive.

  4. We are at altitude (5000+ feet) so WFPB is even more of a challenge here. These, however, really were a surprise that they worked the first time. (It usually takes 2-3 attempts before I can make WFPB also altitude friendly.)

    I did my normal “first adjustment” for altitude (increase temp & decrease baking soda/powder by 25-30%) and didn’t change anything else. I did use sweet potato instead of pumpkin, because I had leftovers I needed to get rid of, and did a 50-50 split with white whole wheat flour & spelt. Other that that, I followed the recipe exactly and THANK YOU!! This is my 3rd recipe from your site and all 3 have been home runs.

    1. YAY! High altitude does sound like such a challenge. I’m so glad these worked! Muffins without eggs are a struggle in general, I find. So hard to get that structure and fluffiness of egg muffins.

  5. I made muffins without oil once awhile back, but this recipe totally changed my mind how tasty they can be without it!! It was so good, Faith. Thank you so much! LOVED it and my husband did too. I don’t think i’ve ever made better muffins, haha! Loved the almond flour in it also. I’m excited to try out more of your recipes.

    1. So glad you enjoyed them! πŸ™‚ Thank you for coming back to comment! It helps me and other so much.

  6. I LOVE!!!!!! these. I have made 5 recipes (2 were doubles!). I use date syrup. Last batch used canned in juice pears bc I had no pumpkin. they are incredibly light & moist even using oat flour! I have to add more ginger but that’s me.
    I’m trying next without almond flour – will update results.
    thank you again for this stellar recipe!

    1. Yay! Please let me know how they work without almond flour. I find that the almond flour gives the best texutre if you’re not using oil or eggs, but it would be great to cut back on the fat.

  7. Holy moly! These are THE best muffins I’ve ever had. I’ve been testing a lot of wfpb muffins and all of them gave been just meh. Thank you for the new healthy staple, the whole family loves them!

  8. These muffins are SOOOO GOOOOD! I made them with my 3 year old (so they’re pretty bullet-proof hahaha) and everyone in the family loves them. So tender and full of lovely pumpkin flavor – the spices are perfectly balanced, and these are quick and easy to put together! Thanks so much for this delicious recipe! I’ll now be working my way through the rest of your muffin recipes, and these will be on repeat in our home! πŸ™‚

  9. Hi Faith! Just made these tonight and I loved them!!! Thank you!! I love pumpkin muffins and this was a great recipe!! Hope the baby enjoys it in the morning haha. Thanks again!

  10. This was lovely, thank you. I didn’t have applesauce but did find mangopuree in my cupboard so used that. And instead the almondflour I used nutpulp from the milk I made earlier (hazelnut, cashew, walnut and a little sesameseeds). It smells and tastes wonderful!

  11. I keep making these, but they don’t cook all the way thru. They come out gooey. What am I doing wrong? I love them. They are so delicious, but I would like them to be cooked all the way thru.

  12. I don’t see that my comment got posted. My muffins don’t end up cooked all the way thru, even cooking them for 35 minutes. What am I doing wrong? Also, can you substitute honey for the maple syrup?

    1. Yes, honey is fine. I’m not sure why they didn’t cook through….mine always do and I’ve made this exact recipe many times. Maybe you added too much pumpkin or other liquid?

  13. I used silicone muffins pans that I put on top of a metal baking sheet. Do you think that’s why? I had a hard time picking up the floppy silicone with muffin mixture in it, so that’s why I put it on top of the metal pan. What do you use? I think I tried using cupcake papers in a metal muffin pan, but the paper sticks to the muffin, and I don’t want that. Thanks.

  14. Oh, and I forgot to say, I’ve been playing around with the flour measurements, using less wheat and more almond flour. I was trying to see how little wheat I could get away with using, but adding that measurement to the almond flour (for example, 1/2 cup wheat, and 1 1/2 cups almond). Do you think that could be the reason?

    1. Oh yes, definitely. Almond flour doesn’t absorb much moisture, where as wheat does. You can’t switch them.

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