Thank you to Southern California food writer and working mom Erika Kerekes for these Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins and guest post. Erika publishes the family-friendly food blog In Erika’s Kitchen as often as her schedule permits. She’s proud to have two boys who are equally skilled at making messes in the kitchen and cleaning them up.
FROM ERIKA: I make a lot of muffins. They’re the perfect hand-held treat, equally useful for breakfast, lunchboxes, after-school snacks or dessert. At this time of year I make a lot of these pumpkin chocolate chip muffins – not that canned pumpkin puree isn’t available year-round (it is), but somehow fall and winter just feel like pumpkin.
The original pumpkin bread recipe came from my college boyfriend’s mother, a career preschool teacher. She baked with her class often and assured me that there was no sifting involved. “Just dump it all in a bowl and stir – it comes out fine,” she said. That’s basically all there is to it, although I do always sift the baking powder and baking soda. Trust me: Even the best muffin is ruined when the eater bites down on a big clump of leavening agent.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
- 2 cups pumpkin puree (canned or homemade)
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup grapeseed or canola oil
- 2 1/2 cups plus 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons each cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 cups all-purpose flour (can substitute white whole wheat flour)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 24-cup muffin tin or two 12-cup muffin tins with paper liners.
In a large bowl, mix together the pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, 2 1/2 cups sugar, vanilla, spices, and salt until everything is well combined.
Add the flour to the bowl with the pumpkin mixture. Hold a sifter or fine-mesh strainer over the bowl, add the baking powder and baking soda to the sifter, and sift them into the bowl. Whisk gently just until the flour is incorporated. Add the chocolate chips and stir to combine.
Fill the muffin tins most of the way up, dividing the batter evenly. Sprinkle the tops of the muffins with the remaining 2 Tablespoons sugar. Bake about 25 minutes or until a tester comes out clean. Remove the pan from the oven, let the muffins rest 2 minutes, and turn the muffins out onto a rack to cool.
Makes 24 muffins.