These super soft, incredibly moist Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins are a family favorite – and after one bite you’ll understand why! They’re so simple to make and irresistibly delicious! Bursting with warm pumpkin pie spice and overflowing with rich chocolate chunks, they’re big in flavor, taste better than a bakery and perfect for pumpkin spice lovers!
Enjoy these pumpkin muffins with a cup of coffee, hot chocolate or warm apple cider! Or, serve them as a part of a fall brunch spread with apple cider donuts, cinnamon apple bread or cinnamon waffles! No matter how you dish them out, these tender, fluffy, bakery-style muffins will become a fall favorite you’ll make again and again!
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
Move over Pumpkin Spice Lattes, there’s a better pumpkin breakfast treat in town! These muffins are the perfect combination of everything you love about fall – they’re cozy, comforting and pack all the warm pumpkin flavor!
These pumpkin muffins are soft, fluffy, moist and light in texture with a tender crumb. Savory with a touch of delicate sweetness, they’re bursting with real pumpkin flavor, loaded with warming spices and overflowing with rich, melty chocolate chunks! Essentially, they are ultra-comforting and the perfect warming, fall flavored treat!
Plus, these pumpkin flavored, chocolate studded muffins are easy to prepare, made with basic kitchen ingredients (plus pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice), and they freeze beautifully!! They’re the perfect treat to have on hand whenever your pumpkin craving strikes – enjoy them on chilly fall mornings, as a snack on the go, or an easy dessert!
What are pumpkin muffins?
A pumpkin muffin is an individual-sized, pumpkin spiced baked good that celebrates the autumn season. They are moist, savory, quick breads that are flavored with real pumpkin, chemically leavened and baked in a muffin tin. Pumpkin spice muffins can be filled with a variety of tasty mix-ins, such as chocolate chunks, cream cheese or nuts. Additionally, they can be topped with sweet streusel, cinnamon sugar or a smooth, rich glaze.
Pumpkin muffin batter is made up of real pumpkin puree along with warm pumpkin pie spices, flour, eggs, sugar, milk, oil (or butter), and chemical leaveners, such as baking soda.
Ingredients in pumpkin chocolate chip muffins
These muffins are made with simple ingredients, plus pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice! While the ingredient list may be basic, when combined they yield irresistibly delicious pumpkin spice muffins!
- Flour: All purpose flour is the foundation of this muffin recipe. You can substitute gluten-free flour blend if needed. Look for brands that can be substituted in a 1:1 ratio for regular flour. (Scroll down for more information on types of flour you can use to make muffins.)
- Pumpkin Pie Spice: Pumpkin spice blend is what adds that iconic, intensely aromatic touch of warm flavor to the muffins.
- Baking Soda: A chemical leavener provides lift and helps the muffins rise.
- Salt: A touch of coarse kosher salt is needed to enhance all the flavors!
- Eggs: Eggs add structure and moisture, plus they help everything bind together.
- Sugars: Both granulated sugar and dark brown sugar are used to provide a depthy of dynamic sweetness.
- Pumpkin Puree: Make sure you use plain pumpkin puree for this muffin recipe, and not pumpkin pie filling! Canned pumpkin puree is 100% cooked and pureed pumpkin. On the other hand, canned pumpkin pie filling is sweetened and flavored with various spices which will alter the recipe.
- Oil: Oil prevents a dry muffins – it adds moisture and creates tender muffins.
- Milk: Half-and-half or whole milk adds even more moisture and helps lighten up the muffins crumb.
- Vanilla Extract and Pure Maple Syrup: Both add tons of flavor!
- Chocolate: These wouldn’t be pumpkin chocolate chip muffins without chocolate! I prefer huge chunks of rich chocolate; however, you can use chocolate chips! Or, feel free to substitute with a different tasty mix-in! (Scroll down to read how to customize these muffins!)
Not a fan of chocolate chunks or chocolate chips?! No worries! You can add any type of mix-in you prefer! Get creative and create a pumpkin muffin chock full of ingredients you and your family love! You can substitute any of the below options in a 1:1 ratio, or you can use a multiple mix-ins – just make sure you have 1 1/3 cup total.
- White chocolate: Buttery white chocolate is a delicious option! You can use white chocolate chunks or chips. (Scroll down for more information on types of chocolate you can use.)
- Caramel: Complex caramel is a wonderful add-in! Opt for caramel squares and roughly chop them by hand.
- Nuts: You can use any variety of nuts you love; however, walnuts and pecans are your best bet. (Scroll down for more information on varieties of nuts you can use.)
- Raisins: Chewy raisins are perfect if you are looking for a healthier option!
- Shredded coconut: While it might sound odd, the rich combination of shredded coconut and pumpkin are delicious!!
What flour for pumpkin muffins?
Not all flours are created equally! While all flours look similar, the difference lies in how they’re milled, the wheat they’re made from and the time of year the wheat is harvested. However, the biggest difference is their protein content. When liquid interacts with the proteins in your flour, it forms gluten – which gives baked goods the ability to rise. More protein means more gluten will be formed.
While there are many types of flour – all-purpose, cake, bread and self-rising, to name a few – the best for muffins is all-purpose flour.
- All-purpose flour: This versatile flour is perfect for making almost anything – from cookies, cakes and muffins to some breads and pizza dough. All-purpose flour is recommended for this pumpkin chocolate chip muffin recipe.
- Cake flour: This flour is milled to an ultra-fine consistency. It has a low protein count which gives baked goods a tender texture and high rise. If you are looking for a sweeter pumpkin muffin that is more cake-like in texture, you can swap out the all-purpose flour for cake flour.
- Whole wheat flour: White all-purpose flour has a milder flavor than whole wheat flour. And, whole wheat flour is more absorbent, meaning it requires more liquid. This can result in an extra-sticky dough. If you are interested in using whole wheat flour in this recipe, I recommend you swap 25 % of the all-purpose for whole wheat.
- Bread flour: Bread flour contains a greater amount of gluten than all-purpose which contributes to a chewy consistency in baked goods. I do not recommend bread flour for this recipe.
What type of chocolate can I use?
This recipe calls for roughly chopped semi-sweet chocolate. For the best taste, I recommend using high-quality chocolate baking bars, such as Baker, Ghirardelli or Lindt. They are typically sold in 4 ounce bars and located the baking aisle of the grocery store.
With that said, you can use any type of chocolate you love! Try dark chocolate, milk chocolate or white chocolate for a delicious variation! Or, try using half chocolate chunks and half mini chocolate chips for a little more chocolate in each bite!
Can I add nuts?
You can absolutely add nuts to these muffins! Feel free to swap out the chocolate chunks for your favorite variety of nuts! Or, you can even use a combination of chocolate and nuts! I recommend walnuts or pecans; however, hazelnuts are also a delicious option. Make sure you roughly chop the nuts before folding them into the muffin batter.
How to make pumpkin muffins from scratch?
This muffins recipe couldn’t be easier to prepare! The muffin batter comes together in a matter of mere minutes, so these muffins are perfect whenever your pumpkin spice craving strikes!
Tip: Make sure your eggs and milk are at room temperature. Room temperature ingredients bond together more easily than cold ingredients, resulting in an evenly textured and smooth batter. (Don’t forget to scroll down for the detailed measurements in the complete printable recipe at the bottom of the page.)
- Mix the dry ingredients together. In a large bowl, combine the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda and salt.
- Whisk the wet ingredients together. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and both sugars. Add in the pumpkin puree, oil, milk, vanilla and maple syrup. Whisk again until combined.
- Combine wet and dry ingredients. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Use a rubber spatula to gently fold until everything is just combined.
- Add chocolate. Gently fold in 1 cup of chocolate chunks.
- Fill muffin tins. Divide the batter into prepared muffin tins, filling each nearly all the way to the top. Sprinkle with more chocolate chunks and gently press the chunks slightly into the muffin batter.
- Bake. Bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 425 degrees F. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 F. Bake for an additional 15-16 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Cool: Remove from the oven and place muffin pan on a wire rack. Allow muffins to cool in pan for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from the pan and transfer them onto the wire rack to cool completely.
- Serve: Serve the muffins warm or at room temperature and enjoy!
Tips for the best pumpkin spice muffins?
While these muffins are incredibly easy to make, below are a few simple tips to ensure they turn out perfect every single time!
- Properly measure ingredients: This seems obvious, but properly measuring your ingredients is key! To properly measure flour, use a spoon and lightly spoon the flour into your measuring cup. Then, use the flat, straight edge of a knife (or similar object) to level off the top of the flour.
- Sift dry ingredients: While sifting is an extra step, it helps produce lighter, more tender muffins!
- Use the muffin method to mix: The muffin method for mixing batter helps create a better muffin! Make sure you mix the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet ingredients in another bowl. Then, mix the two together until just combined.
- Don’t overmix: When combining the wet and dry ingredients, do not overmix! Over-mixing the batter will produce tough muffins! You want to gently fold the ingredients until they are just combined – a few lumps in the batter is perfectly fine!
- Fill the muffin tins: Use an ice cream scoop to transfer the batter from the mixing bowl into the muffin tins. Fill the tins almost all the way to the top – don’t worry, the muffins won’t spill over.
- Start with a blast of heat: To help the muffins rise quickly and develop the perfect domed top – bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 425°F degrees. Then, reduce the temperature to 350°F and continue to bake for an additional 15-17 minutes. The initial blast of heat lefts the muffins quickly, so don’t skip this step!
How to make muffins moist?
These pumpkin chocolate chip muffins are perfectly moist with a tender crumb. Follow the simple tips below to ensure your muffins never fall short in texture!
Tips for making moist muffins:
- Avoid whole-wheat and coconut flour. Muffins made with wholesome flour tend to produce dry muffins. This is because flours, such as whole wheat and coconut, absorb moisture from your batter.
- Use good-quality pumpkin puree. Pureed pumpkin provides plenty of moisture and prevents the muffins from becoming dry. Make sure you are using a good-quality 100% pumpkin puree and make sure you use the proper amount (1 1/2 leveled cups). If you skimp on the puree, the muffins will turn out dry and crumbly.
- Use oil. This recipe calls for vegetable oil. Oil gives muffins a superior texture and helps the muffins stay moist and tender far longer than muffins made with butter.
- Bake at the proper temperature: The time and temperature for baking plays a big role in the moisture of your muffins. Over-bake the muffins at too high a temperature and they will lose their moisture and turn out dry.
- Proper storage: Store the muffins in an airtight container to preserve moisture. Exposure to air will cause the muffins to dry out.
- Troubleshooting: If you mismeasured your ingredients, overbaked your muffins or experienced some other mishap, don’t worry – the muffins can be salvaged! You can use a simply syrup to moisten your muffins! The simple syrup won’t make the muffins overly sweet or alter their taste; however, it will enhance the subtle sweetness already in your muffins. To make a simple syrup – combine 1 cup granulated sugar with 1 cup of water in a medium saucepan. Bring the contents to a boil and stir until all the sugar has dissolved. Remove the syrup from the heat and allow to cool completely. To use the syrup – dip a pastry brush into the syrup and brush it evenly over the muffins.
Why are my muffins dense?
If your pumpkin muffins are dense, chances are you overmixed the batter. When you mix muffin batter you are developing gluten – and, the more you mix your batter, the more gluten you are developing. Overmixing leads to over-developing the gluten which will cause muffins to be very dense instead of light and tender.
Tips to prevent dense muffins:
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl. It’s imperative you stop and scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl between ingredients additions. This ensures all the ingredients are incorporated. It will also help you to avoid over-mixing the batter at the end.
- Fold the ingredients: Make sure you use a rubber spatula to gently fold the wet and dry ingredients together. If you use a handheld mixer, or stand mixer, chances are you’re going to overmix the batter.
How long to bake pumpkin muffins?
The length of time pumpkin spice muffins requires to bake will depend upon the recipe and the temperature of your oven. This muffin recipe will take approximately 20-22 minutes to bake.
You should always bake your muffins until a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffin comes out clean – a few moist crumbs are perfectly fine.
How to serve pumpkin muffins?
These pumpkin chocolate chip muffins are great for breakfast, an afternoon snack or easy dessert! Or, serve them as a part of a fall brunch spread with stacks of pancakes, fluffy omelets and bottomless apple cider sangria!
Muffins are delicious freshly baked and warm straight from the oven, lightly toasted, or at room temperature. You can enjoy them plain or smear them with cinnamon butter! Or, if you prefer a sweeter muffin, try drizzling them with a sticky, rich glaze! I’ve included the recipes for cream cheese icing and maple icing in the notes section of the recipe card below!
No matter how you serve these muffins, they are guaranteed to please!
How to store?
Leftover pumpkin spice muffins do not need to be refrigerated. They can be stored at room temperature for 3-4 days. Alternatively, muffins can be be refrigerated for up to 10 days, or frozen to extend their shelf life.
To store muffins: Before storing muffins, make sure you allow the muffins to cool completely on a wire rack. Transfer the muffins to an airtight container lined with a sheet of paper towel. Arrange the cooled muffins in a single layer and cover the top with another sheet of paper towel before sealing the container with a tight-fitting lid. Pro-tip: The paper towels will absorb the excess moisture from the muffins and allow them to stay fresher for longer.
Can you freeze muffins?
These pumpkin chocolate chip muffins freeze beautifully! They’re perfect to have on hand for rainy days and breakfasts on the go!
To freeze muffins: Allow the muffins to cool completely on a wire rack before wrapping them individually in plastic wrap. Transfer wrapped muffins to a freezer-safe resealable bag and store in the freezer for up to 2 months.
When ready to eat: Thaw muffins at room temperature on the counter, or gently warm the muffins in the oven. Alternatively, you can reheat muffins in the microwave at 50% until slightly warmed if desired. Do not over-microwave the muffins or they will become extremely hard and unappetizing.
Looking for more pumpkin recipes?
If you love these muffins, try one of these pumpkin flavored recipes next:
How to make the best pumpkin chocolate chip muffins recipe👇
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
- Mixing bowls (2)
- Rubber Spatula
- Muffin Tin
- 2 cups All-Purpose Flour – spooned & leveled
- 2 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
- 1 ½ tsp Baking Soda
- ¾ tsp Coarse Kosher Salt
- 2 large Eggs – at room temperature & lightly beaten
- 1 cup Granulated Sugar
- ½ Cup Dark Brown Sugar - packed
- 1 ½ cup Pumpkin Puree
- ½ cup Vegetable Oil (or Canola Oil or Melted Coconut Oil)
- ¼ Cup Half-and-Half or Whole Milk – at room temperature
- 1 ½ tsp EACH: Vanilla Extract & Pure Maple Syrup
- 1 1/3 cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chunks or Chips – DIVIDED (200 grams)
Serving: Cinnamon Sugar or Cream Cheese Glaze (see notes for recipe
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line 12 muffin tins with paper liners.
- Dry ingredients: In a large bowl, combine the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda and salt. Whisk until combined.
- Wet ingredients: In a medium bowl, combine the eggs and both sugars. Whisk until combined. Add in the pumpkin puree, oil, milk, vanilla and maple syrup. Whisk again until combined.
- Add wet to dry: Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Use a rubber spatula to gently fold until everything is just combined. There should be a few lumps – do not overmix.
- Add chocolate: Gently fold in 1 cup of chocolate chunks.
- Fill muffin tins: Divide the batter into the prepared muffin tins, filling each nearly all the way to the top. Sprinkle the remaining chocolate chunks over the muffins. Very gently press the chunks slightly into the muffin batter.
- Bake: Bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 425 degrees F. Keeping the oven door closed, reduce the oven temperature to 350 F. Bake for an additional 15-16 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean – a few small moist crumbs is fine.
- Cool: Remove from oven and place muffin pan on a wire rack. Allow muffins to cool in pan for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from the pan and transfer them onto the wire rack to cool completely.
- Serve: Serve the muffins warm or at room temperature dusted with cinnamon sugar. Or, glaze cooled muffins and enjoy! Or, simply enjoy the muffins plain!
- Flour: Make sure you properly measure and level all your ingredients, especially the flour! To do so, use a spoon to scoop the flour into a measuring cup. Do not pack the flour down. Use the flat edge of a knife to gently and evenly level the flour.
- Storage: Cover and store leftover muffins in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-4 days. Reheat in the microwave at 50% power until slightly warmed if desired. Muffins can also be stored in the refrigerator for 10 days, or frozen for up to 3 months.
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