Yep, it’s another pumpkin recipe! But it’s pumpkin season and these amazing Pumpkin Upside Down Muffins are just too good not to share! As if I would ever hold out on you…. Not a chance! Another bonus of these moist, but tender-crumbed, perfectly pumpkin-spiced, pecan-caramel bedecked muffins is that they are lightly and more healthfully sweetened with unrefined sugar. Making them that much more awesome!
I usually try to sweeten all of the desserts I bring you with either maple syrup or maple sugar, and I will continue to incorporate them into my recipes, but I’ve been experimenting with using Sucanat, as well. If you aren’t familiar with it, Sucanat is natural, unprocessed cane sugar. As much as I love maple syrup, there are some recipes that it doesn’t work well in, and maple sugar, while very versatile, isn’t super easy to source, so I thought it would be nice to bring you an alternative. I’ll also be trying some recipes with coconut sugar because it’s unrefined too and has a mild flavour profile that will work well with a lot of different recipes.
I hope you’ll check in to see the new treats and try the recipes I come up with as I continue on this amazing dessert blogging adventure.
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup maple syrup (or brown sugar)
- 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
- 3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2/3 cup Sucanat (finely ground*) or brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/3 cups pumpkin purée
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Bring butter and maple syrup to a low simmer over medium-high heat. Stir caramel until it turns a medium golden brown. Remove from heat and whisk in whipping cream and pinch of salt. Divide chopped pecans into the bottom of the individual tins of a greased 12-cup muffin tin. Top each with about 1/2 to 1 tablespoon caramel sauce. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk pumpkin, Sucanat, eggs, oil, and vanilla until smooth. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, and all of the spices. Gently fold flour mixture into liquid mixture, stirring until just combined.
- Divide muffin batter evenly between muffin cups, spooning batter over nuts and caramel. Bake muffins at 425ºF for 5 minutes, then reduce heat to 375ºF and continue baking 15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out with just a couple of crumbs showing.
- Cool muffins in pan for about 10 minutes. Run a knife around muffins, inverting onto a cooling rack.
Why, oh why, we must wait until Fall to create luscious pumpkin desserts? I understand the importance of tradition, but come on…canned pumpkin is available year round! And now that I’ve found these Pumpkin Donuts with Brown Butter Glaze, I’m so grateful for that fact. I had a heck of a time getting these little morsels to adapt to maple syrup instead of brown sugar, but then I tried The Cafe Sucre Farine’s recipe, and with a wee bit of tweaking everything came out just right! They have a moist, tender crumb and that delectable pumpkin and spice flavor. Mmmm, irresistible!
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup butter, melted
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon milk
- 1 large egg
- 1 egg yolk
- ¾ cup maple syrup
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup butter
- ⅔ cup maple sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 2 tablespoons bourbon (optional)*
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Spray 2 6-well donut pans with cooking spray that also has flour in it. (I use Pam cooking spray with flour)
- Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and salt in a large bowl. Set aside.
- Combine melted butter, oil, milk, egg, yolk, maple syrup, pumpkin puree, and vanilla in a medium size bowl. Whisk until completely smooth.
- Pour dry ingredients into the wet, stirring just until flour disappears (You don’t want to over mix – it’ll make the donuts tough).
- Pour batter into a gallon size plastic zippered bag. Zip up bag and press out air. With scissors, cut ¼ inch off of one bottom corner of the bag. Squeezing the bag, fill donut wells with batter, evenly dividing between the 12 wells.
- Place on center rack of your oven and bake for 15 to 18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of one of the donuts comes out without any crumbs on it.
- Remove the doughnuts from the oven, cool for a few minutes, then remove from pan to a wire cooling rack.
- Place butter in a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cook on medium-high heat for 6-7 minutes or until dark golden brown. Be careful because butter can burn quickly.
- Remove browned butter from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Add maple sugar, bourbon (if using), and vanilla extract and stir with a whisk until well combined. Return browned butter to the stove and cook on medium for 3-4 minutes or until bubbly and smooth, whisking to prevent burning. Do a “taste test” and if it’s still grainy, return to heat for another minute or two. Continue to whisk until smooth.
- Dip each donut into the frosting, covering the top with icing. Repeat with remaining donuts. If icing starts to get thick, return to stove for a few seconds. You can also add a couple more drops of milk.