Gluten-free pumpkin muffins are a perfect way to celebrate fall. These muffins are easy to make, loaded with flavor, and not too sweet!
Gluten-Free Pumpkin Muffins
For a long time, I didn’t think I needed a recipe for gluten-free pumpkin muffins. After all, I’ve got a great recipe for gluten-free pumpkin bread. Isn’t it the same thing?
It’s not! Just like gluten-free banana bread is different than gluten-free banana muffins, pumpkin bread and pumpkin muffins are two separate treats. They aren’t as sweet or as rich. And like most gluten-free muffins (I’m looking at you corn muffins and sour cream muffins) they’re really easy to make.
How to Make Perfect Gluten-Free Pumpkin Muffins
- Preheat oven. Muffins started in a cold oven can turn out dense and heavy. Heat your oven before baking. The time this takes depends on the model. Most ovens take about 15 minutes to preheat.
- Make the batter. First, whisk together the dry ingredients. This step helps evenly distribute the baking powder, baking soda, and salt throughout the gluten-free flour. Why does this matter? When the baking powder and soda are mixed evenly into the flour, the muffins rise beautifully.
Add the remaining ingredients and stir until the batter is smooth. You can use an electric mixer or a handheld whisk to make this batter. After mixing, scrape the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Gluten-free flour sometimes clings to the bottom of the bowl. you want to mix this into the batter before scopping it into the pan
- Fill Pan. Fill the muffin cavities about 2/3 full. I like to use paper liners when making muffins. If you don’t use liners, be sure to grease the pan well to prevent the muffins from sticking.
- Bake until golden brown. These muffins take about 20 minutes to bake. Check for doneness by inserting a cake tester into the center of one of the muffins. You could also press gently down on the top of the muffin. It should spring back to the touch. If it feels damp or squishy, it’s not done.
- Cool. Cool the muffins for about 5 minutes in the pan and then remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack. This allows steam to escape quickly from the muffins. When the steam gets caught between the muffin and pan, the bottom of the muffin can get soggy.
Ingredients You Need for Perfect Gluten-Free Pumpkin Muffins
Gluten-Free Flour. To make these muffins light and tender, use a gluten-free flour blend that contains xanthan or guar gum. I tested the recipe with Bob’s Red Mill’s 1:1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour. Please note: a grain-free flour blend won’t work with this recipe.
Baking Powder and Baking Soda. The combination of baking powder and baking soda helps the muffins to rise and brown beautifully. For the best results, always use fresh baking powder and soda.
Salt. A little bit of salt enhances the flavors. When muffins are made without salt, they tend to taste flat. Table salt is always best for baking because the texture is fine and it easily mixes into the batter.
Pumpkin Puree. Canned pumpkin (also called pumpkin puree) brings moisture and flavor. Be sure to use pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling.
Brown Sugar. Adds sweetness and flavor. You can use either light or dark brown sugar. Both work great! If you use dark brown sugar, the muffins bake a little darker and have a slightly stronger molasses flavor.
Oil or Melted Butter. Oil or melted butter makes these muffins rich and tender.
Eggs. Two eggs help give the muffins structure. If you’re egg-free, you can try a flax-egg replacement.
Pumpkin Spice. For the classic “pumpkin” flavor, use pumpkin pie spice. This blend of spices usually contains cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice. If you don’t keep pumpkin spice in the house, I’ve included a recipe for it below.
Storage and Freezing Tips
These muffins are best enjoyed soon after baking. Since they contain pumpkin, they’re very moist and remain fresh for about three to four days. Be sure to wrap or place in a covered container when storing on the counter. Gluten-free muffins dry out when left unwrapped. If you need to store them longer than that, consider freezing. After the muffins are completely cool, place them into a freezer bag or container. They keep well in the freezer for up to three months.
Gluten-Free Pumpkin Muffins
Easy gluten-free pumpkin muffins bake up light and tender. Loaded with pumpkin spice flavor. (Dairy-free recipe)
- 2 cups Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour (9 ounces/ 260 grams)
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin spice
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
- ¾ cup lightly packed dark brown sugar (5 ½ ounces/ 155 grams)
- 2 large eggs (about 4 ounces; 113 grams)
- ½ cup oil or 1 stick butter, melted and slightly cooled (4 ounces; 113 grams)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 15 muffin cups with paper liners.
Whisk together gluten-free flour, pumpkin spice, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Add pumpkin puree, brown sugar, eggs, and oil. Mix until a batter forms. Scrape the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Mix any flour that’s clinging to the bottom of the bowl into the batter.
Fill prepared muffin cups halfway with batter.
Bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes; remove from pan and place on a wire rack to cool completely.
Store, wrapped, on the counter for up to three days or freeze for up to three months.