Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins


I’m sitting at home, craving something reallllly sugary and sweet. You know why. Usually I’m a salty, crunchy kind of snacker, but I had already eaten a bag of popcorn coated in butter and salt, and was still on the hunt for something to inhale.  I open the freezer, stare into the fridge, and dig through the pantry and all I can find are some frozen mango chunks and a half eaten jar of peanut butter; neither of which I’m particularly interested in. I find about 4 cans of pumpkin puree that I had picked up, all at different trips to the store I’m sure, thinking, “Hey, I need to keep this on hand for something.” And here we have our “something”. These have a bit more sugar than the usual 1/2 cup I call for, but without it, pumpkin just tastes like squash and that’s not at all why we crave pumpkin flavored everything this time of year–especially in my pms-induced sweet dreams. I had already eaten 3 muffins before I got the pictures off the camera.

Yield: 12


  • ½ cup coconut flour (Let’s Do Organic)
  • ½ cup tapioca flour (Ener-g)
  • ½ t baking soda
  • ½ t baking powder
  • ¼ t salt
  • 1 ½ t ground cinnamon
  • ½ t freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ t ground cloves
  • ½ c melted butter (or coconut oil or palm shortening)
  • 2/3 c sugar (I used plain old white sugar, ha)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 c pumpkin puree (not quite a 15 ounce can)
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • extra cinnamon and sugar for sprinkling on top


Preheat your oven to 350ºF and line a standard size muffin tin with liners.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the coconut flour, tapioca flour, baking soda, powder, spices and salt.

In a large bowl, whisk together the butter, sugar, eggs, pumpkin, and vanilla.

Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and whisk to combine. Portion into your muffin liners. Sprinkle the top of each muffin with more sugar and cinnamon and it’ll bake into a nice crunchy topping. Bake until puffed and cooked through, about 25-30 minutes.

48 thoughts on “Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins

      • Aimee Reply

        ok, I might try it. Thanks! They look awesome so I may try the original recipe anyway :)

    • missysoupy Reply

      I used about 1/4 C sugar, plus a glug of maple syrup for good measure (and deliciousness), and they were amazing! Plenty sweet, in my opinion (and my 3 kids gobbled them right up). If you do cut the sugar, I’d still recommend a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar on the top. I used no more than 1 tsp total to top a dozen muffins, so isn’t much but it adds a lot of pleasant crunch and a little shimmer. :o)

  1. canary Reply

    @aimee – of course. just make sure you don’t give me one.

    making these immediately. stupid cotton week!

  2. Helen Reply

    I just put these in the oven. They smell devine! I used coconut sugar instead. I just wanted to see how they turn out. I have no problem with white sugar, just had it on hand…

  3. Stephanie KL Reply

    Friday is scheduled to be a rain day and I’ll be in the kitchen making these muffins. We thoroughly enjoyed your Chunky Monkey Muffins. I love using coconut flour!

  4. Christina Reply

    what about almond flour instead of tapioca flour? and honey or agave instead of sugar?

  5. Michelle Reply

    Can I use stevia blend instead of the white sugar? In almost all cases it has been subbed 1:1 for white sugar in recipes. Thanks.

  6. Hollis K. Reply

    What would be the best substitute for eggs? I have to cook/bake for several people who cannot have gluten, dairy, eggs or soy. I would love to make more baked goods but sometimes the flax/egg or the dry egg replacer don’t come out quite right.

    Thanks for a great post! Love pumpkin anything!

  7. Lulu Reply

    Same question about eggs. We can’t do flax or chia eggs either…. Any other egg sub suggestions?

    • Anne Reply

      My daughter is allergic to eggs and flax seed. I use bananas and applesauce as subs. Try 1/4 c of mashed banana or unsweetened applesauce along (per 2 eggs) with a pinch teaspoon baking soda (this is in addition to any required by the recipe) to give the batter a little more loft like the egg white does. These measurements are a bit of a guesstimate as I usually just add dollops of applesauce until the consistency is good- sorry! If you use sweetened applesauce cut back on any sugar in the recipe or it may become overly sweet. Hope this helps!!!!

  8. Stanford Girl Reply

    Love the idea of these muffins. But just started transitioning to Primal (bought your wonderful book and have been recommending it to all of my friends). I love the layout of your book and the quality of the paper. So far I have made the chunky monkey muffins and the coconut and double chocolate cookies. So will have to wait until I lose some weight before making these yummy delights. Fingers crossed I will be able to make them in Oct. I have been recommending your book to my friends that need to cook gluten free. They are excited to make your recipes too.

  9. Melissa Robertson Reply

    I love me some non-paleo popcorn. Sometimes you just have to go for it! These look great. I have followed you for about a year now and I appreciate your use of plain white sugar. Its cheaper and we all know sweets just aren’t the best thing for us so most healthy folks eat in moderation. It won’t kill people to eat some white sugar once a month at best. Thanks for keeping it real!!

  10. Mia Reply

    Oh snap-these sound AWESOME! Making them as soon as I get my hands on some pumpkin :-) P

  11. FitMomPam Reply

    I don’t even think I own white sugar anymore! haha Looks great. I think I’ll try honey first then maybe maple syrup next if I don’t like that taste.

  12. hurrrr Reply

    Hah! I totally noticed that when I am on my period I have WAY more sugar cravings than usual. So it’s important that I make and have on hand some healthy-ish paleo muffins on hand to deal with the cravings at work so I don’t raid the conventional candy bowl at work. Also I love pumpkin but it’s very watery, but that should be taken care of by the absorbent coconut flour. Also I like recipes in units of “a whole can” so I can just dump it and be done with it (and not have any left over to worry about how to use up).

    • Amy in Austin Reply

      I don’t recommend that unless you’re prepared to use much, much more sugar and spices. I grabbed the wrong measuring cup and accidentally used 1.5 cups in my first batch and was not pleased with how squash-y the flavor turned out. But of course, feel free to experiment for yourself – that’s half the fun of baking.

  13. AIMEE Reply

    I made this recipe last night….delicious! I used coconut sugar because I have a ton of it! But I did use just regular white sugar for the sprinkle on top cuz I already had a shaker full of cinnamon sugar. Soooo, yeah, these were awesome…I kept the remainder of the pumpkin, almost another full cup, to make another batch of these lovelies so I can freeze them for a quick fix. I will say, they were kind of dense and there wasn’t much puffing going on during the bake process. They looked the same way I put them in the muffin liners. I put them in the fridge and they tasted great this morning! Thanks for a great seasonal recipe that’s sure to stay in my rotation!

  14. Wenchypoo Reply

    Something that work really well with pumpkin items: maple flavoring.

  15. Lynn Reply

    These are in the oven right now. Just wanted to clarify the amount of pumpkin. Says 1c but then I just noticed in () it says not quite all of a 15 oz can. The two amounts are pretty different! Is 1c correct? :-)

  16. Jen Reply

    Fucking amazing, as all of your recipes always are. THANK YOU!!!

    • Vanessa Reply

      I suggest Elana’s Pantry’s Pumpkin Whipped Cream for extra pumpkin-y deliciousness.

  17. Laura Reply

    LOVE THESE. My entire house smells like fall right now. I ended up using the whole can of pumpkin and they came out super moist. Couldn’t help myself, they never even cooled before I scarfed 2 down. Thanks!

  18. Vanessa Reply

    I’ve been adapting the basic muffin recipe from Primal Cravings for various flavors (I adapted the carrot one to make an awesome zucchini bread), and was just thinking about a pumpkin version. I thought, “I should check Health Bent to see if they’ve already done a pumpkin flavor, since it’s that time of year.” Lo and behold, here it is. Thanks for saving me some tinkering (though I’m glad I was on the right track with replacing the applesauce with pumpkin–I’m getting better at this paleo baking thing)!

    Also, I just want to say that I appreciate your views on Paleo. You don’t make a big deal about white sugar or potatoes when your body is craving them, and I’m so glad you’re not snobby purists. :)

  19. Sara Reply

    These look awesome! Do you think a ripe banana or two can be subbed for the sugar?

  20. Bethany Reply

    I made these and your Chunky Monkey Muffins last week. Both recipes were so good, and my family and house guests devoured them! I appreciate the combination of tapioca and coconut flours. They taste more like “regular” muffins. I think it gives them a much better crumb and consistency than just using coconut flour by itself. I am hoping to buy your cookbook very soon. Big props to you guys!

  21. Michelle Reply

    I am excited to stumble upon your amazing website! I wanted to try to make these this weekend, first venture into non-mix gluten free baking. I purchased the ingredients but Bobs Red Mill is what my local sprouts had. And I’ve been seeing some other websites hate on Bob’s red Mill. Will my muffins/donuts/whatever else I decide to stuff my face with in my own pms haze turn horrible wrong? And it’s one CUP of pumpkin puree not one can? I am sure my dog will appreciate the leftover pumpkin and I am thinking about making a pumpkin icing. Sorry if these have been answered before, I am a newbie. :)

  22. Alice Reply

    This is my new favorite pumpkin bread recipe. I didn’t feel like washing muffin tins so I made this in a 11 x 7 pyrex dish. It yielded a light bread about 1/2 inch thick so now I have delicious breakfast bars. I put approx 1 C fresh cranberries (chopped) into the second batch and they were also really good. The sugar was just right with the tart berries.

    Thank you so much for creating healthy recipes for us.

  23. Jennifer Reply

    I love you!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Just made these a few minutes ago and they are AMAZING!!!!!!!!

    The crumb is just like a “normal” muffin…I’m very excited! We are foodies and I was getting discouraged…but there IS hope!!!! I’m soooooo glad I found you!

  24. Suzanne Reply

    Made these twice in 2 wks….extraordinary recipe that finally won over my family (who patiently put up with my Celiac Paleo self!) ha. Got em!

    Used 1/2 br sugar, 1/2 coconut sugar just to not feel so guilty eating so many….but that did NOTHING to cut down on my craving for them, so there goes that experiment! (And yes, they were still perfect…added some fresh ginger and orange oil to second batch, sure there are a million variations)

    Also, thanks for your “sane” take on Paleo…I do actually have to do this for health reasons, and I still do not like the purist attitudes (that also give Paleo eating a bad name). This is simply a way to eat that makes you feel pretty good and look good going into second half of life. I have no interest in mimicking cavemen. Pretty damn sure they didn’t eat much like any nutso paleo bloggers out there, so why worry so much about it??

  25. Tiffani Reply

    I think these are the best grain-free muffins I have ever had. They are amazing! I love the coconut/arrowroot mixture. I used 1/2 cup of sugar and that was plenty for us. I may cut it down a little more next time and sprinkle more one top :) Thanks for the great recipes!

  26. Michelle T Reply

    I make muffins for my boyfriend and his roommate about once a month, but I have run out of recipes. This one is definitely going to be the November flavor. Thanks for sharing!

  27. Aislinn C. Reply

    Love your recipes–but it would be helpful of you used Abbreviations for teaspoon and tablespoon.

  28. Logi Reply

    Love the recipe, and was wondering can you use this batter to make pancakes?

  29. Hailey Lorr Reply

    You can do anything, but not everything. ~Anonymous

  30. Brook Reply

    These are the best grain free muffins! I make them all the time. And I only use about 1/2 cup sugar total.

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