These hearty whole wheat pumpkin raisin muffins are easy to whip up for a breakfast treat, and can also be frozen and popped into lunch boxes for a special surprise. I think you’ll also like that they are optionally nut-free and school-safe. Plus, they are quite versatile. In fact, we have numerous options to suit your kitchen.
Refuel with these Dairy-Free Whole Wheat Pumpkin Raisin Muffins
This basic, wholesome recipe for dairy-free pumpkin raisin muffins was originally shared with us over a decade ago. It was in need of a refresh, so we’ve updated it and added more options via the FAQs below.
Can I Substitute Pumpkin Pie Spice?
You can substitute 1 1/2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice for the cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves. You can even increase it to 2 teaspoons if you want a little more spice.
Can I Use Oat Milk instead of Almond Milk?
Definitely! Most types of milk alternative will work great in this recipe. In a pinch, you could even use water.
I Don’t Have Pumpkin Pie Spice. What Can I Use?
There are two good options. If your spice supplies are limited or you just love cinnamon, increase the cinnamon to 1 1/2 teaspoons and omit the pumpkin pie spice. If you have other spices available, increase the cinnamon to 1 teaspoon and add 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg or allspice, 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, and a pinch of ground cloves.
Can I Use a Whole Can of Pumpkin Puree?
You can, but this will make the muffins more moist and dense. You might need to cook them a little longer. I would also increase the salt to 3/4 teaspoon to ensure that extra pumpkin flavor gets emphasized.
Will Pumpkin Pie Mix Work?
Pumpkin pie mix looks very similar to pumpkin puree on grocery shelves, but it already has sugar and spices added. So it won’t work as a direct substitute for the pumpkin puree in this recipe.
Will Coconut Oil Work for the Oil?
It will, but make sure all other ingredients, including the eggs and milk alternative, are at room temperature. If any ingredients are cool, it can cause the coconut oil to solidify into little hard beads.
Can I Substitute Applesauce for the Oil?
I don’t recommend it. These dairy-free whole wheat pumpkin raisin muffins are already low fat, so reducing or cutting the oil could result in a poor texture. And I’m not personally a fan of fat-free muffins. They often taste fine out of the oven, but become gummy once cool. Substituting the oil would also result in denser, more moist muffins that might not bake through.
Can I Substitute Butter Alternative for the Oil?
You can use melted dairy-free buttery spread or buttery sticks for the oil. This will lower the fat a little, which can affect the texture.
Can I Use Different Sweeteners?
You could substitute regular white sugar for the brown sugar. As mentioned, coconut sugar will also work, and will just be a little less sweet. Two other tasty alternatives would be evaporated cane juice (Sucanat) or maple sugar. For the liquid sweetener, honey, maple syrup, golden syrup, or brown rice syrup will work great. I haven’t tested this recipe with any sugar-free sweeteners, so I can’t comment on how they will perform or taste.
Can I Add Dairy-Free Chocolate Chips?
That’s up to you! You can substitute dairy-free chocolate chips for the nuts, or add some with the nuts or seeds.
How Can I Make this Muffin Recipe Gluten-Free?
I haven’t tested this recipe as gluten-free dairy-free pumpkin raisin muffins. But if you use eggs, most gluten-free all-purpose flour blends should work well. A close friends subs King Arthur Measure for Measure whenever she bakes muffins, and she says it works perfectly. But that isn’t a whole grain blend. Do not substitute coconut flour, almond flour, or another grain-free flour for the wheat flour. These will not perform properly. If you opt to use a single gluten-free grain flour (like gluten-free oat flour, rice flour, or sorghum flour), the muffins will be a little more crumbly.
How Can I Make this Muffin Recipe Egg-Free?
As mentioned, we haven’t tested this recipe without eggs. See the egg-free and vegan suggestions in the special diet section below.
Batter is Too Dry – Many recipes are tested in somewhat humid and low altitude environments. If you’re in a dry climate or season, the batter can be a little dry. If this is the case, simply add a little more liquid to make the batter easy to scrape into your muffin cups. If you’re at higher altitude, you likely need less baking powder. You can add a little more liquid, which might work fine …
Muffins Collapsed when Baking – If the muffins rose up quickly and domed mid-way during baking, but were concave and dense when the time was up, there was too much leavener for your climate or altitude. If they were flat or slightly concave, reduce the baking powder to 2 teaspoons. If they were quite concave, reduce the baking powder to 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons.
Muffins Never Rose – If you checked in midway through, and they weren’t rising up, and they came out short and/or flat when finished, check your baking powder. Baking powder does go bad, even if it hasn’t reached its expiry. To test it, put about a 1/2 teaspoon of the baking powder in a bowl. Add some boiling water. It should vigorously fizz and bubble. If not, it’s on the way out. Try these dairy-free pumpkin raisin muffins with fresh baking powder.
Special Diet Notes: Whole Wheat Pumpkin Raisin Muffins
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, optionally nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, and vegetarian.
For egg-free pumpkin raisin muffins, substitute powdered egg replacer, aquafaba, or a generous 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce for the eggs. If using aquafaba or applesauce, I would add another 1/8 teaspoon baking powder. Please note that we haven’t tested this recipe without eggs.
For strictly vegan pumpkin raisin muffins, use and egg-free option (above) and maple syrup instead of honey.
For gluten-free pumpkin raisin muffins, substitute your favorite whole grain gluten-free flour blend for the wheat flour. And for best results, use eggs rather than one of the egg-free options. This is just a suggestion, as we haven’t tested this recipe without gluten.
- 2¾ cups whole wheat flour (we use white whole wheat flour)
- ½ cup packed brown sugar or coconut sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder (reduce to 2 teaspoons above 4000 feet)
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- Pinch ground cloves
- 1 cup plain dairy-free milk beverage (such as Almond Breeze)
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- ½ cup honey (can substitute maple syrup)
- 2 large eggs (see above for egg free options)
- ⅓ cup oil
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 cup sliced almonds or pumpkin seeds (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF and grease 12 jumbo muffin cups (or 24 regular-size muffin cups).
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, salt, and cloves.
- Put the milk beverage, pumpkin, honey, eggs, and oil in a large mixing bowl. Beat with a hand mixer until foamy.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet, and stir until the batter is just combined. Do not over mix.
- Fold in the raisins and almonds or pumpkin seeds.
- Divide the batter between the prepared muffin cups; they should be about ⅔ full.
- Bake the muffins for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the muffin tops spring back when touched and a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.
- Let cool for 5 minutes in the tins before removing the muffins to a wire rack to cool completely.
Enjoy these Healthy Banana Muffins too!