People often ask me why I bake so many gluten-free recipes when I don’t follow gluten-free diet myself. It’s true- as an avid baker, I love my gluten! However, I have some dear friends and family members who are gluten-free, and it’s very important to me to develop and perfect treats they can enjoy.
I was struck by something my aunt said a few years ago about being gluten-free. We were at her daughter’s wedding and the bride (my cousin and best friend) and groom had carefully picked a menu they knew their guests would enjoy. Dinner was delicious- chicken with vegetables and mashed potatoes. We assumed my aunt would enjoy the same dish we did- except with grilled chicken instead of breaded, and without the thick gravy. Instead, servers brought her a gluten-free pasta dish. It was delicious, my aunt said, but it was different. When everyone else is eating chicken, you feel left out eating pasta. And no one likes being left out.
That story has stuck with me, and whenever I’m cooking or baking for someone with dietary restrictions, I do my best to make a comparable dish. I love to bake for family and friends, and I want everyone to be able to participate and enjoy, not pick around the things they can and cannot eat. Food is supposed to bring people together, not leave people out.
I hosted a brunch for my family to celebrate my 25th birthday and needed a gluten-free friendly breakfast recipe that would fit in with the rest of the menu. I turned to one of my favorite ingredients- pumpkin! (Yup, I know it’s April, I use pumpkin year round.) I love baking with pumpkin, it makes these muffins moist, rich and decadent. And of course chocolate chips and raisins make everything better. Gluten-free or gluten-obsessed, you won’t be able to resist these pumpkin muffins. Seriously so good. Please excuse me while I eat the rest of the batch.
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons maples syrup or brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons coconut oil
1/4 cup milk (may substitute almond milk)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit and lightly grease or line muffin tin (for 12 muffins).
Add all ingredients except raisins and chocolate chips in the food processor, and mix for 30 seconds or until well combined. I love the texture of the oats, so I processed my batter just until well mixed. If you’d like a smoother batter, you can blend longer to further process the oats.
Remove food processor blade (or transfer batter into another bowl) and mix in raisins and chocolate chips with a spoon until evenly distributed.
Spoon batter into muffin tin, filling each cup about 3/4 full.
Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until golden brown
Let cool, and enjoy!
Store these muffins in an airtight container in the fridge, but if your family loves muffins as much as mine, I doubt they’ll last more than a few minutes!
I threw all the ingredients in my food processor, which was so easy and made for easy clean up. If you don’t have a food processor, you can mix the batter in a bowl with an electric mixer or spoon- it might take a little longer and your oats will be a little bigger than mine, but your muffins will still be delicious. These gluten-free pumpkin muffins are pretty fool-proof, just mix all the ingredients together and bake!
I tried these muffins with both brown sugar and maple syrup. Both are delicious! I was wary of using maple syrup because I didn’t want my muffins to taste like pancake syrup, but it turned out great. Pumpkin and maple go well together and the maple flavor was very subtle. If you use syrup, please do yourself a favor and use real syrup instead of the fake stuff- it does make a difference! My French friends call imitation maple syrup “Fence Post Syrup”. If the shoe fits, friends.
I recently brought these muffins to work, and my gluten-free colleagues were so tickled to have a treat they could enjoy. Never underestimate the power of a muffin. :]