Healthy Pumpkin Cornbread Muffins made low calorie, gluten free and vegan with less sugar. Pumpkin makes this healthy cornbread recipe lighter, more nutritious and flavorful! Gluten Free + Low Calorie + Vegan
I love cornbread! It's one of my favorite holiday foods I look forward to eating every season. This oldie, but goodie healthy cornbread recipe is one I've been making for years. It's not only gluten free, but also made lower in calorie and dairy free too.
The muffins make it portioned perfectly for serving one person or a crowd, but you can make it as a bread if you prefer too like I did with this Almond Flour Cornbread recipe. Both recipes are really delicious!
Healthy Pumpkin Cornbread
This healthy cornbread recipe is made with pumpkin, which is an amazing ingredient to substitute oil and sugar in recipes. Pumpkin is one of my favorites because the flavor is mild making it unnoticeable and it has so many nutrients.
Often, recipes that are low calorie are made lower calorie by replacing ingredients with lower calorie ingredients. Not this one! Here's a few more reasons why I love this recipe.
- Low Calorie - 205 calories per muffin. This is considered low calorie and as I mentioned above, the nutrients that make up the calories is always more important than the number itself.
- Gluten Free - All ingredients are gluten free, you don't have to use gluten free ingredients though.
- Dairy Free - All ingredients are dairy free.
- High Protein - 5 grams of protein is great for a baked good!
- High Fiber - 4 grams of fiber per muffin. I talk about the importance of fiber in this free class.
- High Healthy Fat - Total fat is 8 grams, but only 1 gram is from saturated (less ideal fat) and the remaining is from healthy fat.
- Vegan / Vegetarian - This healthy cornbread recipe is friendly to vegans and vegetarians.
Ingredients For Healthy Cornbread with Pumpkin
- Pumpkin Puree, canned
- Almond Milk, unsweetened
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- Maple Syrup
- Baking Soda
- Almond Flour
- GF Oat Flour
- Coconut Sugar
How To Make Gluten Free Cornbread Muffins with Pumpkin
Start by lining a muffin pan with muffin liners. I find muffins liners make it easier for storing the muffins after baking and removing them from the tin after baking.
Prepare the batter by using a food processor or blender. Add the pumpkin, almond milk, apple cider vinegar, oat flour, sugar, maple syrup and cinnamon and blend until smooth. Next fold in the baking soda, cornmeal, almond flour and salt and combine by hand.
Place the mixture in the refrigerator for 1 hour to thicken. Do not skip this step! This is what makes the muffins thick, delicious and really good.
After transfer the batter to the muffin cavities by dividing it evenly amongst each cavity. Bake in the oven until golden brown. I do recommend removing from the oven and letting the cornbread muffins cool in the pan a few minutes before eating.
The cornbread muffins should be stored in the refrigerator in a container. They will last 5 days. You can also freeze the pumpkin cornbread muffins up to 60 days.
Substitutions For Low Calorie Cornbread Muffins
Here's the substitutions you can make for these muffins. Please remember that when you substitute or change a recipe, it does change the nutrition data you see in the recipe below. I also cannot guarantee results when you alter the recipe.
- Pumpkin - Butternut squash, acorn squash or sweet potato puree can be used instead. You can often buy these already pureed in a can.
- Maple Syrup - You can use honey instead or substitute a low calorie maple flavoring. I like the monkfruit ones.
- Coconut Sugar - I recommend using coconut sugar as it is slightly lower on the glycemic index, meaning it has a slightly better impact on blood sugar. You could substitute regular sugar if you wanted to.
- Gluten Free Oat Flour - You can use regular oat flour if gluten is not a concern for you, regular gluten free baking flour would work too. I never bake with white or wheat flours so I can't say how that would work.
- Almond Milk - Any milk may be used.
- Almond Flour - This cannot be substituted.
- Cornmeal - Semolina is the best non-corn based substitute that you can use instead of cornmeal.
Pumpkin Cornbread Muffins
- Muffin Tin
- Mixing Bowl
- Preheat oven 350 F. Prepare a muffin tin with cooking spray or liners (or baking dish if making this as bread).
- In a food processor, combine the pumpkin, almond milk, apple cider vinegar, oat flour, sugar, maple syrup and cinnamon until smooth.
- Next fold in by hand the baking soda, cornmeal, almond flour and salt to combine.
- Let the batter sit 1 hour in the refrigerator to allow the batter to thicken, the cornmeal will absorb all the ingredients to make fluffier and thicker muffins (trust me!).
- Pour the batter into the cavities, dividing it evenly among each cavity. Bake 30 minutes until the muffins appear golden brown and a toothpick can be inserted cleanly in the center. If making the bread version, you will need to bake longer 50-55 minutes for the bread version.
- Remove the muffins from the oven then let them cool in the tin 10 minutes before serving.