Pumpkin Muffins from The Plant-Based Journey


Pumpkin Muffins

This recipe is adapted from the Easy Pumpkin Muffins in The China Study Cookbook, by LeAnne Campbell. Just like LeAnne, I use whole foods for sweetening when I can, and I decided to make this recipe using date cream—with excellent results. Sweet, moist, and delicious, these don’t beg for even a hint of jam.

Makes about 10 muffins


Date Cream
10 pitted Medjool dates (about 1 cup)
½ cup water

Muffin Base
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon allspice
½ teaspoon ginger
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
½ (16-ounce) can pumpkin puree (about 1 cup)
¼ cup soured plant milk
⅓ cup applesauce
½ cup raisins
½ cup chopped walnuts (optional)


For the date cream

Cover the pitted dates generously with water and soak for a couple of hours or
overnight. Drain, saving the water to use as part or all of the ½ cup of water in the recipe. Add the soaked dates and the water to a food processor or blender. Blend to a rich paste.

For the muffin base

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners (or use a silicone pan).

Mix together the dry ingredients in a large bowl.

In a separate bowl, combine the wet ingredients, including the date cream. Add to the dry ingredients until just mixed.

Fill the prepared muffin cups to the top and bake for 40–45 minutes, until the tops bounce back when lightly pressed. Muffins will be moist and flavorful.

Remove from the oven and let stand for 1–2 minutes, then remove the muffins
from the pan and serve as is or with your favorite jam. Store in an airtight container.


  1. Terri Cole said on

    Is that baking time (40-50 minutes) correct? Most muffins bake in 15-20 minutes.

    • Heather Butterfield said on

      It is! Lani confirmed that she made them yesterday and they were done at the 45-minute mark. They’re very dense and moist so they take longer to bake than your typical muffin. If you make any flour swaps, though, we’d suggest you start checking them earlier since that may decrease baking time.

    • Lani Muelrath said on

      Heather’s right Terri – these are rich and moist and take longer than 15-20 minutes, unless perhaps you are using mini muffin tins? I plan to make some mini-style Pumpkin Muffins to give at book signings so I’ll time it and let you know!


    • Heather Butterfield said on

      Good question, Diane! To make soured plant milk or vegan “buttermilk,” for every 1 cup of plant milk add 2 teaspoons of lemon juice or vinegar and mix to combine. Let sit for 5 minutes and your soured milk will be ready.

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