The fall season ushers in a tempting array of pumpkin products. There is something about this squash vegetable that is seasonally great. Yet so often, it is found in the form of pumpkin pies, pumpkin cupcakes or other high-sugar treats that do not always fit in with the healthy lifestyles we are trying to create. I have found a way to balance the desire for pumpkin treats with the desire to eat clean: pumpkin protein muffins.
In the recipe below, you will find a gluten-free, sugar-free and dairy-free pumpkin protein muffin recipe. The protein content comes from the base of eggs and almond meal. However, these pumpkin protein muffins could easily be altered to add extra protein powder based on your particular diet.
Other additions to this recipe include chopped nuts, chia seeds, blueberries, a splash of vanilla extract, dried fruit and cacao nibs. Spices like cinnamon that are often found in pumpkin treats will really elevate the feeling of fall. Get a little creative and see what combinations you like best.
Pumpkin Protein Muffins Recipe
2 cups almond meal (also called almond flour)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup ripe banana, mashed
1 cup cooked fresh, canned or frozen pumpkin
1/4 cup olive oil
Preheat your oven to 400F. Combine the first three ingredients in a bowl. Use a food processor, blender or an electric mixer to combine eggs, banana, pumpkin and oil together. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Fold in any additional ingredients. Spoon into muffin tins lined with muffin papers, until the tin is filled to the very top. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes up clean.
These pumpkin protein muffins are great to take on the go. They add a boost of energy between the office and the gym. If you are craving some sort of baked good, they cater to that without any processed ingredients or refined sugars. Yet the sweetness of the bananas adds a satisfying flavor. The texture of these pumpkin protein muffins is fluffy and moist which can be difficult to achieve in gluten-free goods.
Recipe adapted from The Abascal Way, an anti-inflammatory clean diet program.