Looking to learn how to make the best healthy Banana Pumpkin Muffins?
You can bake our quick & easy homemade Banana Pumpkin Muffins at home in less than one hour.
Banana Pumpkin Muffins are a perfect sweet breakfast or on the go snack. We like to enjoy hot muffins right out of the oven during the cool Autumn and Winter season, smeared with maple butter, ricotta, cream cheese or room temperature butter.
You can also serve these spiced muffins as a healthy dessert accompanied by scoops of ice cream or yogurt, chopped nuts, caramel sauce and sliced fresh fruit.
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History of Muffins
A muffin is an individual-sized, baked product most commonly associated with morning mealtime. It’s one of the most popular on-the-go breakfasts that can easily be made ahead and stored in the freezer to enjoy later.
Muffins can refer to two distinct baked goods, a part-raised unsweetened flatbread that is baked and then cooked on a griddle, and a cupcake-like sweet or savoury quickbread that is leavened with baking powder and baked in a mold.
While the most common quickbread muffins are sweetened (such as lemon blueberry muffins, mincemeat muffins and morning glory muffins), there are also savoury varieties such as jalapeno cheddar cornbread muffins and cheddar apple muffins.
The flatbread “English Muffin” variety is of British origin, and dates from at least the early 18th century, while the quickbread originated in Canada and America during the 19th century.
One 19th century source suggests that muffins may be related to the Greek bread maphula, a cake baked on a hearth or griddle. Culinary historians also look to the Old French mou-pain, meaning soft bread, which may have been corrupted into “mouffin.”
The word is first found in print in 1703, spelled moofin; it is of uncertain origin but possibly derived from the Low German Muffen, the plural of Muffe meaning a small cake. The expression muffin-man, meaning a street seller of muffins, is attested in a 1754 poem, which includes the line: “Hark! the shrill Muffin-Man his Carol plies…”
One of Canada’s top selling cookbooks of the 1980s was Muffin Mania, which helped popularize muffin making from Newfoundland to British Columbia. Homemade muffins were originally prepared as a healthy breakfast option, high-fibre mid-afternoon snack or low calorie dessert.
In 1997, muffins were popularized once again in Seinfeld’s now famous “The Muffin Tops,” episode. Like many muffin lovers, Elaine shared her love for only eating muffin tops. She hilariously talks about the fact that muffin stumps are not worthy of consumption as they don’t have the desirable crunchy texture. She shares the idea of opening a store that sells just muffin tops with her ex-boss and is outraged when he steals her idea.
When he offers her 30% of the profits to help his struggling business, they initially give the unused stumps to a homeless shelter. But after they get complaints about the missing muffin tops by a charity worker, they have to get rid of them elsewhere. Newman eventually takes the muffin stumps off their hands, smiling with glee!
Best Muffin Tools & Equipment
Before making a batch of your favourite Banana Pumpkin Muffins make sure your kitchen is outfitted with essential bakers tools.
- Mixing Bowl Set: It’s important to have a set of durable mixing bowls. We love stainless steel mixing bowls with a good grip. When making muffins you’ll typically need a large mixing bowl to sift your dry ingredients into, and a medium or small mixing bowl to beat your wet ingredients.
- Measuring Cups: Ensure you have a set of measuring cups with a flat top rather than a spout, so you can easily use a knife to level off your dry ingredients like flour and sugar.
- Measuring Spoons: We love these durable stainless steel measuring spoons that will help you accurately measure spices, baking soda and baking powder.
- Whisk: This stainless steel whisk has a great grip and is helpful when beating eggs into other wet ingredients.
- Sieve: It’s essential to have this tool in your kitchen so you can ensure all your dry ingredients are separated and don’t clump in the wet batter.
- Bakers Scale: Use this digital scale to weigh flour and other ingredients that require a weight measurement.
- Spatula: We love this rubber spatula as it also acts as a spoon so you can easily drop batter into each greased muffin cup.
- Muffin Tins: We only use silicone muffin tins as they allow you to easily remove baked muffins from the tin with minimal baking spray required.
- Baking Spray: Ensure your cupboards are stocked with baking spray so your muffins don’t get stubborn and refuse to slide out of the pan.
- Cooling Rack: A sturdy cooling rack is a must to ensure your muffins cool without falling apart or getting soggy. They need breathing space to let out the steam before storing.
- Storage Containers: We love doubling our muffin recipes so we have leftovers to store in the fridge or freezer to enjoy later.
My Family Loves Banana Pumpkin Muffins
One of my fondest memories growing up as a kid was waking up in the morning at our family cottage in Muskoka and smelling freshly baked muffins.
My family’s two favourite recipes were Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins and Lemon Blueberry Muffins. In the summer we’d forage for wild blueberries and incorporate them into out favourite baked goods. My sister was the family blueberry fan while I was mostly obsessed with the marriage of banana and chocolate.
These healthy Banana Pumpkin Muffins are inspired by our love for Banana Muffins and pumpkin pie enjoyed at Thanksgiving and Christmas. The recipe features nutritious ingredients such as banana, pumpkin, oatmeal, egg, yogurt, cinnamon and pecans.
Many Banana Pumpkin Muffin recipe directions direct you to combine pureed pumpkin with mashed banana. In our own twist, the base of our muffin is pumpkin spiced with ground cinnamon. We incorporate the banana flavour by gently folding in diced ripe banana.
The tropical fruit softens in the oven, offering a delicious contrast to the crunchy pecan and oat topping.
Love baking for your family? Check out our best healthy muffins for kids list!
Banana Pumpkin Muffin Health Benefits
Our homemade Pumpkin Muffins are packed full of healthy ingredients!
Containing starch and fibre, bananas are an excellent superfood for digestive health. They are a good source of heart-healthy potassium, as well as amino acids and vitamin B6, which help keep your brain healthy.
All varieties of pumpkin (or squash) are nutritious, but butternut squash is a superfood because it contains high levels of carotenoids, which help combat cancer and support skin health.
Proving more soluble fibre than any other grain, oats also contain slow-release, low-GI carbohydrates. Oats are also rich in beta-glucan, which helps reduce high cholesterol and maintain blood sugar levels, and vitamin B1, which helps your body convert food into energy.
Eggs contain two vital nutrients that are not present in many foods: iodine and vitamin D. Eggs are also rich in tissue-building protein and vitamin B12, which helps your body manufacture blood cells.
Packed with calcium and friendly probiotic bacteria, yogurt helps keep your bones strong and your gut healthy. Yogurt may also help reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes and some types of cancer.
Rich in energy-boosting manganese, cinnamon is also antibacterial and may protect your brain against Alzheimer’s disease.
Pecans offer heart-friendly fats, immune-boosting copper, and manganese, which helps keep your brain and nerves healthy.
Buying VS Making Homemade Muffins
Today, muffins are often sold at grocery stores, McDonald’s cafes and coffee shops like Starbucks and Tim Horton’s. Unfortunately most commercially prepared muffins are simply cupcakes without the icing.
Read the ingredients list and you’ll find store bought muffins are full of sugar, fat and “flavourings” rather than real fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs. The excessive sugar, salt, fat and additives in commercial muffin recipes allow the grocery stores and coffee shops to extend the shelf life so they don’t go stale as quickly as a homemade muffin would.
The best way to enjoy healthy muffins is by preparing them at home, allowing you to control the proportion of ingredients. We suggest eating muffins fresh the day they are prepared. If you have any leftovers muffins pack 3-4 in a ziplock bag in your fridge and simply warm them up the next day in the oven. You can use a microwave to reheat muffins but they won’t produce the desired crunchy texture.
Any remaining Banana Pumpkin Muffins should be stored in the freezer and can keep for 2-3 months. We like to double our muffin recipes when we prepare them so we have a storage of yummy muffins in the freezer that we can easily enjoy several weeks later.
Best Banana Pumpkin Muffins Recipe
There’s no better comfort food than a steaming, moist Banana Pumpkin Cake cooling on a rack straight out of a hot oven.
We prefer to prepare healthy Banana Pumpkin Muffins as they are small individual portions. Homemade muffins can be easily stored in the freezer to extend their shelf life and are a great on-the-go breakfast snack.
So what qualities make the best muffins? The perfect muffin must be crunchy on the outside, well leavened so the muffin cap holds its shape and doesn’t shrink when cooled and feature a moist and light interior.
Looking to prepare easy homemade Banana Pumpkin Muffins? Baking is a science so you can’t just lower a muffin recipe’s fat and sugar content or you will bite into a chewy, hard and unappetizing product.
Banana Pumpkin Muffin Tips
If you’re looking to prepare Banana Pumpkin Muffins on a whim and are missing a few ingredients at home don’t worry!
You can easily substitute whole wheat flour if you don’t have All Purpose. Or use buttermilk instead of yogurt.
The easiest way to source pumpkin is to buy the canned variety used to make pumpkin pie. If you prefer DIY culinary adventures you can also roast pumpkin at home and puree it in your blender.
We prefer to use ripe bananas that are just starting to brown. Do not use green bananas as they are unripe and very starchy. Let green bananas ripen in a paper bag for a few days and once brown spots start to appear on the yellow peel they are ready to cook and bake with.
Chop the ripe bananas into the size of a grape. You want someone biting into the muffin for the first time to see the pieces of banana in the moist muffin crumb.
You can substitute pecans for walnuts or hazelnuts if that’s what you have on hand or prefer. We also sometimes like to add a teaspoon or two of wheat germ for a fibre boost.
The one tip I give all muffin making beginners is to avoid over-mixing the batter. Light and fluffy muffins are made by reducing the amount of gluten in the batter. If you whip muffin batter with a beater the final product will be as hard as a hockey puck.
For best results, form a well in the dry ingredients and pour your wet ingredients inside. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. The finished batter should be fully incorporated, so be sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl so you don’t find unmixed flour. The most important rule to muffin making: when mixing, less is more!
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How To Make Banana Pumpkin Muffins
Best Banana Pumpkin Muffins
- mixing bowl
- measuring cups
- measuring spoons
- Wooden spoon
- muffin tins
- chef knife
- 4 Eggs
- 2 cups White sugar
- 3/4 cups Canola oil
- 1 2/3 cups Pumpkin puree
- 3/4 cups Greek yogurt
- 3.5 cups All Purpose Flour
- 1 tbsp Ground Cinnamon
- 2 tsp Baking powder
- 2 tsp Baking soda
- 1 tsp Salt
- 2 cups Banana cut into small dice
- 1 cup Pecans chopped
- 1/4 cup Rolled oats
- Beat eggs in a large mixing bowl. Add sugar, oil, pumpkin and yogurt and beat thoroughly.
- Add dry ingredients and gently stir until well combined.
- Stir in diced ripe banana.
- Fill greased muffin tins with batter and sprinkle with chopped pecans and rolled oats.
- Bake at 375F for 15-20 minutes.
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