Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Recipe - Gluten-Free** Pumpkin Oat Muffin

I've been a big Alton Brown and Good Eats fan for years so when I saw this recipe for Pumpkin Bread, I had to try it.  Of course, I can't eat wheat, so I had to "tweak" the recipe a bit.  I'm sure Mr. Brown won't mind.  ;-)

These aren't really "paleo-friendly" but I'm sharing the recipe here for those of us who are "Gluten-Free" but miss having an occasional "baked good" to enjoy while everyone else is snarfing down pies, cakes, and cookies at the holiday get-togethers.  Best of all, they're cheap and easy to make, thanks to the use of  ground "instant oats" instead of the more expensive specialty flours.

I made this recipe as a "dessert" for one of our "soup" nights a few weeks ago.  Since all I had were "large cans" of pumpkin, I ended up making a double batch and freezing the leftovers.  They freeze well, though I will advise that if you use the microwave to defrost them (as I do often), you should let them cool for 5 minutes.  If you don't they seem to fall apart.

My only real complaint - they didn't rise very much though the look and texture of the inside were perfect.  I'm thinking my baking powder is out of date.  Considering I rarely bake, I wouldn't be surprised.  So, you may want to do a "test batch" to check your batch.  These "small muffins" ended up being the perfect "kid size" snack or dessert, so it wasn't a big deal for me.

I will warn you that they taste a bit too sweet for me but I'm extra sensitive to sugar now these days.  So, I advise cutting back the sugar to 1 cup if you're audience is sugar sensitive/low-carb/Paleo, but if you're serving to people who mainly eat SAD (Standard American Diet), keep it as is.  Otherwise, they may complain that it's too bland.


Gluten-Free** Pumpkin Oat Muffins
(a.k.a. - a gluten-free version of Alton Brown's Pumpkin Bread)

  • 3/4 cup of your favorite oil (I used a combo of coconut oil and butter)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 small can or 1/2 large can of pumpkin
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups oat flour (I grind instant oats in the food processor)

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Prepare muffin tins - if you're not using paper cups, make sure to oil the pan well.  These do stick!
  3. In a bowl, cream oil and sugar together.
  4. Add eggs and vanilla - mix.
  5. Add in pumpkin, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt - mix.
  6. Once mixture is mixed well, start slowly adding in oat flour, hand-mixing as you go, until it reaches "muffin batter" consistancy.  It's okay if it's lumpy - they'll bake out.
  7. Dish into muffin pan (I filled my muffin cups about 1/2 way, since I wanted small kid portions)
  8. Bake at 325 degrees for 30-35 minutes.  Start testing around 30 minutes - a knife stuck in the center of a muffin should come out clean.
  9. Let cool for 5 - 10 minutes and then carefully turn out onto a cooling rack to cool completely.
Special Notes:
  • Make sure to re-oil the pan if you're going to make another batch or they will stick! (And yes, I'm talking from experience!)
  • I ground my own oat flour by dumping instant oats into a food processor and pulsing until the right consistency.  Not sure how the recipe would end out using different versions of oats.
  • I'm sure something similar can be done with a basic banana bread or other "quick bread" recipes that use baking powder/soda instead of yeast to leaven the bread.  I'll have to try these later, when I have the motivation and/or craving.  ;-)

If you  have any questions or comments, please feel free to post them in the comments section below.  I love to experiment with cooking and would love some feedback on the recipe so I can refine it.

** I call these muffins "Gluten-Free" because they are made with oat flour (aka - ground oatmeal), which is by nature gluten free...BUT most oats are processed in plants where wheat is also processed.  So, there can be some intermingling of gluten and wheat molecules.  Oats don't bother me so I use them periodically as a cheap "flour substitute", but some people are "super sensitive" to gluten and can not tolerate them.  So, you have been warned!

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