Today’s recipe for ricotta pumpkin muffins is my go-to for a quick breakfast or hearty snack. They are easy to make, easy to eat, and highly nutritious! #winningatbreakfast.
I usually don’t eat breakfast for several hours after waking – I tend to do water, coffee, exercise and some work, and wait until I have time to sit and eat mindfully. I’ve written about my tendency to buck the breakfast-first trend here.
But sometimes the morning gets carried away and I find myself in need of something quick, wholesome and tasty to eat on the run. These muffins tick all the right boxes.
This recipe came about when I was in Australia helping my mum and step dad after his open heart surgery. The days were cold and it was a treat for me to spend time pottering about the kitchen, baking, braising and blending.
After the first batch I knew that these muffins were a hit, so I started making them by the dozens (they freeze well too).
In Australia we have an amazing selection of delicious pumpkins, and whenever I go back I want to devour roasted pumpkin at every opportunity! I haven’t found as many that I like in the US, so I use butternut pumpkin when I make this recipe at home.
Butternut (technically a squash) is good for baking as it is more dense and dry than other varieties, but if you can get your hands on something sweeter – such as a kent or jap pumpkin – you’ll be pleased that you did. I tried a batch of these using canned pumpkin and… it’s ok. Just make sure you buy organic pureed pumpkin with nothing else added to it.
Why You Want This
Because some days you need breakfast on the run (or a terrific morning or afternoon snack) that is just as wholesome as sitting down to an omelette on toast.
Why You Need This
Processed breakfast foods like packaged granola bars or Starbucks sandwiches are often low in nutrients and high in calories and sodium. And let’s be honest, they aren’t very satisfying.
These pumpkin muffins are nutrient-dense, high in protein and oh so tasty. They’re basically eggs-and-veg in a portable, edible container!
Pumpkin is low in calories and high in beta-carotenoids, potassium and fiber. It supplies important antioxidants that can be converted to vitamin A, and is also a good source of vitamin C and some B vitamins.
How To Get Your Fiancé On Board
You know what, I think he’ll like them. But incase you’re worried, just serve them up with a side of bacon — that’ll do the trick!
Ricotta & Pumpkin Muffins
This recipe is my adaptation of the original recipe from I Quit Sugar
- 2 cups chopped butternut pumpkin squash or your favorite pumpkin variety*
- 2 cups wholewheat spelt flour, or wholewheat self raising flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup full-fat ricotta (organic if possible)
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 cup olive oil, plus extra to drizzle on squash/pumpkin
- 2 cups chopped baby spinach (preferably organic)
- Preheat oven to 400°F / 200°C for 15 minutes and position rack in the middle of the oven.
2. Line a baking tray with non-stick paper, add chopped butternut pumpkin and a drizzle of olive oil. Toss to combine. Roast for 30 — 40 minutes or until soft and cooked through.
3. Line a muffin tray with muffin liners and set aside.
4. Whilst pumpkin is cooking: Sift all dry ingredients into a large bowl and mix with a spoon to combine.
5. Once pumpkin is cooked: remove from oven and REDUCE oven temperature to 360°F / 180°C
6. In a blender combine all wet ingredients, plus pumpkin, and blend until smooth. It turns a most brilliant color!
7. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the pumpkin-ricotta mixture. Using a large metal spoon, fold wet ingredients until combined, trying not to over mix as this will create a chewy muffin. Gently stir through chopped spinach.
8. Spoon batter evenly into prepared muffin tray and bake for 20 – 25 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the muffins comes out clean (cooking time will depend on your oven).
9. Allow to cool in the tray for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Muffins stay fresh in an airtight container for 3 days, or freeze.
- These muffins store well in the freezer, remove and leave muffin at room temperature for about 30 minutes before eating.
- *If you have access to good-quality, pureed pumpkin from the supermarket you can swap the 2 cups of butternut pumpkin for 1 cup pumpkin puree. Skip step two in the directions. Look for pureed pumpkin that only reads ‘pumpkin’ on the label.