Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins (vegan, dairy-free, whole grain)

These moist, vegan, and dairy-free cinnamon sugar pumpkin muffins are 100% whole wheat (but can also be made with all-purpose flour) and naturally sweetened with maple syrup!

The past 5 days have been a baking frenzy getting ready for the next 10 days. After eating pretty much only sweets all day long for 6 months, I need a little detox. So Mr. Texanerin, a friend and I aren’t going to eat any grains, sweeteners, potatoes or other starchy-like stuff for the next 10 days. What does that even leave? Fruits, vegetables and meat? And cheese. I’m going to eat lots of cheese. :D

Cinnamon sugar pumpkin muffins lightly sweetened with maple syrup {vegan, dairy-free, 100% whole wheat}

First up we have these cinnamon sugar pumpkin muffins. When they came out of the oven, they looked kind of funky texturally but they were perfectly moist, not fluffy but a little dense (but in a good way!), which is exactly how I like my cakey goodies. If you want something a little lighter, try these non-vegan baked pumpkin donuts. And if you want something gluten-free, try these paleo cinnamon sugar pumpkin donut holes.

I coated some of these in pumpkin spice sugar coating but by the end of the day, I thought they tasted like zucchini. Really! Definitely go with cinnamon sugar unless you want zucchini cinnamon sugar pumpkin muffins, which is just weird. While I liked them without the cinnamon sugar coating, I thought that they were loads better with it, which I guess is kind of obvious because, well, it’s butter, sugar, and cinnamon.

Cinnamon sugar pumpkin muffins lightly sweetened with maple syrup {vegan, dairy-free, and 100% whole wheat}

You know how you normally just plop the batter in the pan and if it’s not very even, neat or pretty, it straightens itself out while baking? That doesn’t happen here. How they look in the pan is pretty much how they look after baking. I smoothed the top of the one of the left. If you don’t do that, they’ll look like the ones of the right.

I adapted this recipe from these maple pumpkin donuts on My Darling Vegan. If you don’t have a mini muffin pan or if you want some spiced glaze instead of cinnamon sugar, go check it out!

More vegan treats for the fall!

  • Paleo Vegan Apple Crisp
  • Apple Crumbles for Two (gluten-free, vegan, whole grain)
  • Swedish Apple Pie (gluten-free, vegan, whole grain, dairy-free)

Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins (vegan, dairy-free, 100% whole wheat)

Rated 5.0 by 6 readers
Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins (vegan, dairy-free, whole grain)
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Ready in:
  • Yield: 8 muffins


    For the donut holes:

  • 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons (109 grams) whole wheat flour, whole spelt flour or all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/4 cup (56 grams) coconut oil, melted or canola or olive oil
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup (182 grams) pumpkin puree, room temperature
  • For the cinnamon sugar coating:

  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar (make sure to use vegan certified sugar for a vegan version)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2-3 tablespoons (28-42 grams) unsalted butter (vegan butter or coconut oil for a dairy-free or vegan version), melted1


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C) and line muffin pan with 6 muffin liners.
  2. In a medium bow, mix together the dry ingredients (flour through cloves). Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the oil, maple syrup and pumpkin.
  4. Add the dry mixture to the wet one and stir just until combined.
  5. Divide among the liners and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  6. Invert the muffins onto a wire rack to partially cool, about 5 minutes, while you prepare the cinnamon sugar topping.
  7. Mix together the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  8. Dip the tops and sides of the mini muffins in the butter and then roll in the cinnamon sugar.
  9. Serve immediately. Can also be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days (in which case I'd warm them up before serving).


  1. If you use unrefined instead of refined coconut oil, these will taste coconut-y.

Adapted from Maple Pumpkin Donuts with Spiced Glaze from My Darling Vegan

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49 comments on “Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins (vegan, dairy-free, whole grain)” — Add one!

  • Tara
    August 16, 2017 @ 3:09 am

    These are FABULOUS!!! I substituted in Gluten Free Flour and split the maple syrup with some Coconut Sugar. They are super delightful. So fluffy and light!

    Will be making again and again!!

  • Shiffali says
    March 15, 2017 @ 4:24 am

    What can I use instead of maple syrup?

    • Erin replies to Shiffali
      March 15, 2017 @ 9:32 pm

      Hello! Honey or another liquid sweetener should work. :)

  • Anna
    December 28, 2016 @ 3:48 pm

    I substituted 2 tbsp of flour with ground hemp hearts, I also made the muffins mini for my picky little eaters. 4 out of 4 loved these. I will definitely make again.

    • Erin replies to Anna
      January 5, 2017 @ 9:37 pm

      That’s an interesting sub! I’ll have to try that. I’m so happy that they came out well! Thanks a bunch for your comment (and sorry for my slow reply!).

  • nikky
    November 16, 2016 @ 3:19 am

    completely forgot to coat in sugar and cinnamon but these were amazing!! i loved how fluffy they were and i always put double the spices in cos i really like this spice combination and want to really taste it. and in this i did. its like a smack in the face but a good thing! so tasty and such a lovley texture! only thing im disappointed in is i only got 9 and me and mu two kids smashed them all within minutes!! wish i had more to share with others. oh well back in the kitchen to make another batch tomorrow. i guess its a good thing really because if they were not to my liking i didnt waste too many ingredients and i can always double the ingredients.

    • Erin replies to nikky
      November 16, 2016 @ 9:24 pm

      Haha. Yeah. I wouldn’t recommend doubling the spices or vanilla in my recipes because I already double or triple them. :D I’m sorry that they didn’t last long! And I’m with you on not making too much the first time around. I actually usually make a 1/4 batch the first time because I live in Germany and bring most of my baking ingredients with me from the US when I go back to visit. It’s painful to waste ingredients! Anyway. I’m happy you all enjoyed the muffins! Thanks for your comment. :)

  • Carol says
    October 24, 2016 @ 1:45 pm

    I am going to try these later today!
    Do you think adding a flax egg may make these muffins a bit lighter…or rise a bit?

    • Erin replies to Carol
      October 24, 2016 @ 8:18 pm

      I wouldn’t do it as I think that’d throw off the whole recipe. But if you try it anyway, I’d love to hear how it goes. :) Enjoy! By the way, they may not rise a lot, but they’re still delicious and not overly dense. :)

      • Carol replies to Erin
        October 25, 2016 @ 3:11 am

        I think you are right. I like kinda dense cake stuff anyways…just wondered as I usually bake things with some egg sub. I am going to make em as the recipe calls for. looking forward to it. And using fresh roasted pumpkin as that is what I have. Do you think that will work well?

        • Erin replies to Carol
          October 25, 2016 @ 9:59 pm

          I hope you’ll enjoy them! As long as the homemade pumpkin puree looks to have about the same water content as canned, it should work fine. :)

  • Lily says
    October 24, 2016 @ 12:46 am

    Mine came out too moist. Maybe too much pumpkin??

    • Erin replies to Lily
      October 24, 2016 @ 8:14 pm

      Did you use canned or homemade pumpkin? The water content varies in homemade puree so that could explain it!

      • Lily replies to Erin
        October 24, 2016 @ 8:48 pm

        Ah, i used canned.

        • Erin replies to Lily
          October 25, 2016 @ 9:57 pm

          Canned’s what I used so that’s not the problem. Perhaps bake them a little longer next time? :)

  • Dawnelle says
    October 9, 2016 @ 12:19 am

    Butter is not vegan. This is not a vegan recepie, am I right? Looks yummy though.

    • Erin replies to Dawnelle
      October 9, 2016 @ 12:23 am

      I’m not sure where you’re looking? The recipe says, “2-3 tablespoons (28-42 grams) unsalted butter (vegan butter or coconut oil for a dairy-free or vegan version), melted.” :)

  • Savorysweets says
    October 6, 2016 @ 6:24 am


    • Erin replies to Savorysweets
      October 6, 2016 @ 9:06 pm

      I haven’t made these in a while but I think they rise a little! Otherwise they wouldn’t be domed at all like in the pictures. I’m happy you liked them, though! Thanks for your feedback. :)

  • Mallory says
    September 26, 2016 @ 7:14 pm

    Can I use honey instead of maple syrup?

    • Erin replies to Mallory
      September 26, 2016 @ 9:03 pm

      I haven’t tried it but I’m pretty sure it’d work!

  • Michelle says
    September 20, 2016 @ 7:19 pm

    We just discovered my daughter has a serious egg and dairy allergy, so I’m very thankful for this recipe! If I want to freeze a batch, can I do that with the finished product? Or would you recommend doing it before the butter and cinnamon sugar step?

    • Erin replies to Michelle
      September 20, 2016 @ 10:19 pm

      You could freeze them with the cinnamon sugar on them, but it’d get kind of liquidy. I think it’s best to freeze them, defrost them and then cover them in the coating. :) I hope you and your daughter will enjoy them!

  • Samantha Booth says
    September 3, 2016 @ 9:00 pm

    Do i have to refrigerate these if i make them the day before??
    Cant wait to try these!!

    • Erin replies to Samantha Booth
      September 4, 2016 @ 6:24 pm

      If you roll them in the butter and sugar, I’d refrigerate them just to be on the safe side. Or what I’d probably do is keep them at room temperature and then on the day of serving, warm them slightly and then roll in the butter and cinnamon sugar. Enjoy! :)

      • Samantha Booth replies to Erin
        September 4, 2016 @ 6:56 pm

        Good idea!! Thanks so much! 😊

  • Nicole
    May 26, 2016 @ 6:47 pm

    I made these this morning, and we all inhaled them. lol

    I only sugared the top and it was perfect.

    • Erin replies to Nicole
      May 26, 2016 @ 9:21 pm

      Haha. That’s good to hear! I’m so happy you liked them. :) Thanks for your feedback!

  • Alyssa
    December 20, 2014 @ 9:43 pm

    I made these last night- and they turned out incredible! I substituted Bob’s Red Mill All Purpose Gluten-Free flour for the donut holes, and used a light brushing of Avocado Oil to coat before rolling half the batch in Coconut Sugar/Cinnamon, the other half in Cacao Powder/Coconut Sugar/Nutmeg. They’re addictive, plus a perfect fluffy donut texture. I’m so happy with this recipe, thank you!

    • Erin replies to Alyssa
      December 24, 2014 @ 7:21 pm

      I’m so happy that they came out well! And how awesome that they work with Bob’s Red Mill’s GF flour. :) That’s great to know. Sorry for my slow reply – Christmas preparation has been a little crazy. ;) Thanks so much for your feedback and happy holidays!

  • Mandie says
    October 22, 2014 @ 7:21 pm

    Pumpkin doughnuts. These sound so good! There are SO many pumpkin recipes I want to try this fall/winter!

    • Erin replies to Mandie
      October 24, 2014 @ 8:00 pm

      I hope you get a chance to try these! :)

  • Sabine Lainé
    October 10, 2014 @ 12:46 am

    Absolutely delicious, I had no pumpkin puree and used half an half carrots and sweet potatoes. As sugar I used maple sugar – we love the taste. thanks for the recipe.

    • Erin replies to Sabine Lainé
      October 11, 2014 @ 8:30 am

      Wow! That’s an interesting sub. I’m so happy it worked for you. :) Thanks for the feedback!

  • Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction says
    October 7, 2014 @ 3:45 pm

    Pumpkin donut holes are the best! Love the cinnamon sugar coating!

  • Kelly @ hidden fruits and veggies says
    October 6, 2014 @ 5:19 pm

    In *LOVE* with these. I should probably join you on that detox, but instead lemme just each roughly 5 dozen of these, because how can a normal human be expected to resist?!

  • Jocelyn (Grandbaby cakes) says
    October 6, 2014 @ 4:11 pm

    Oh wow these look so perfect. I love that they are vegan!!

  • Carla Cyr says
    October 6, 2014 @ 3:48 pm

    I’m going to have to open one of my stashed cans of pumpkin puree to make these! Thanks for the vegan option and just in time for the cooler weather and changing leaves.

    • Erin replies to Carla Cyr
      October 7, 2014 @ 12:23 pm

      I hope that you’ll find them worth using your stashed can on! And I’m happy to hear someone appreciates the vegan part. :)

      • Carla Cyr replies to Erin
        November 3, 2014 @ 9:29 am

        I did finally make these for a Halloween party and they were a big hit! Thanks again. Of course I ate one straight off the cooling rack and then another with the cinnamon sugar, sugar dipped wins hands down. ; p

        • Erin replies to Carla Cyr
          November 4, 2014 @ 5:14 pm

          Haha. Yup. WAY better with cinnamon sugar but then again, isn’t it always? ;) Thanks so much for the feedback! I’m happy you enjoyed them.

  • Sam @ PancakeWarriors says
    October 6, 2014 @ 2:29 pm

    love the cinnamon sugar coating on these little babies. Sounds so yummy and reminiscent of being a kid and getting donut holes for someone’s birthday celebration! Thanks for sharing!

    • Erin replies to Sam @ PancakeWarriors
      October 7, 2014 @ 12:22 pm

      Oooh… that’s right! That’s pretty much the only time I ever got donut holes growing up. I feel so liberated now that I can have donuts holes all day, every day. ;)

  • Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar says
    October 6, 2014 @ 1:56 pm

    Such a yummy recipe girl! Donut holes are the best!


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