Vegan Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Featuring a blend of pumpkin puree, applesauce, and warm seasonal spices, these vegan muffins are packed with flavor. They’re easy to make and perfect for dessert, snack, or breakfast.

Kirsten Nunez, MS

By Kirsten Nunez, MS

4 Ratings

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Vegan pumpkin cream cheese muffins.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez

During the fall, there are few things more satisfying than eating a pumpkin treat. And while you can’t go wrong with vegan pumpkin pie or the iconic pumpkin spice latte, you might be looking for something a bit different this season.

Take these vegan cream cheese pumpkin muffins, for example. Ready in just 30 minutes, these muffins are moist, delicious, and packed with flavor.

What’s more, this vegan dessert recipe requires just five easy steps, so it’s ideal for beginner bakers. Enjoy these muffins with tea, coffee, or a warm cup of golden milk.

Key Ingredients

Ingredients for vegan pumpkin cream cheese muffins: Flour, brown sugar, pumpkin puree, canola oil, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, apple sauce, vegan cream cheese, vanilla extract, and spices.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez
  • Pumpkin puree. Canned pumpkin is the star ingredient of this vegan muffin recipe. Be sure to use pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling.
  • All-purpose flour. To make this recipe gluten-free, use your favorite 1-to-1 gluten-free all-purpose flour.
  • Brown sugar. You can use light or brown dark brown sugar.
  • Unsweetened applesauce. Applesauce serves as an egg replacement.
  • Cream cheese. Use your favorite vegan cream cheese brand.

How to Make Vegan Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

These easy vegan pumpkin cream cheese muffins come together in five simple steps. For the full ingredients list and steps, check out the recipe card at the bottom of this post:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a muffin tin with paper liners. You can also use silicone baking cups.

In a large bowl, whisk the all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and spices together.

Mix flour, spices, baking soda, and baking powder in a bowl.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez

2. In a separate bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, applesauce, oil, brown sugar, and vanilla extract.

Mix pumpkin puree, applesauce, oil, vanilla extract, and brown sugar in a separate bowl.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez

3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix until just combined, taking care to avoid overmixing.

Wet ingredients and dry ingredients combined into a batter for vegan pumpkin cream cheese muffins.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez

4. In a smaller bowl, combine the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract. You can also add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon for extra flavor.

Mix vegan cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract in a bowl.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez

5. To the muffin tin, add 1 tablespoon of batter to each cavity. Top with 1 teaspoon of cream cheese mixture.

Muffin pan lined with muffin cups and filled with batter and a dollop of vegan cream cheese mixture.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez

6. Add another 1 tablespoon of batter, making sure the cavity is no more than 2/3 full. Make sure the top layer of batter fully covers and encases the cream cheese in the center.

Top with another 1/2 teaspoon of cream cheese mixture, and use a toothpick to swirl, gently incorporating it into the batter. You may have some cream cheese leftover.

Muffin pan lined with muffin cups and filled with batter and vegan cream cheese swirled on top.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez

7. Bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the muffins comes out clean. Let sit for 10 to 15 minutes, then serve as is or with a pat of leftover cream cheese.

Vegan pumpkin cream cheese muffins.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez

Recipe Tips, Variations, and Substitutions

  • Add more spices. If you’re a fan of certain spices, like ground ginger or nutmeg, feel free to add more than the recipe calls for.
  • Skip the cream cheese. You can make these vegan pumpkin muffins without cream cheese.
  • Avoid overfilling the liners. It’s essential to fill the liners until they are 2/3 full. Any more will cause the batter and cream cheese to spill over in the oven.
  • Fold in additional ingredients. For extra flavor, sprinkle raisins, cranberries, or chocolate chips on top of the muffins.
  • Make jumbo muffins. To make jumbo muffins, add another 5 minutes to the baking time.
  • Warm them in the microwave. When eating leftover muffins, try warming them up in the microwave or toaster oven first.
Vegan pumpkin cream cheese muffins.
Photo: Kirsten Nunez

How to Store Leftovers

These muffins are best enjoyed immediately. However, you can store leftover muffins in an air-tight container at room temperature for 3 to 5 days.

Serving Suggestions

  • Mushroom coffee. For a tasty breakfast, enjoy these muffins with a side of mushroom coffee.
  • Vegan eggnog. Get in the holiday spirit with a glass of vegan eggnog.
  • Golden milk. If you love warm and spicy flavors, pair these muffins with homemade turmeric tea.
Vegan pumpkin cream cheese muffins

Vegan Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Featuring a blend of pumpkin puree, applesauce, and warm seasonal spices, these vegan muffins are packed with flavor. They’re easy to make and perfect for dessert, snack, or breakfast.
Click stars below to rate, or leave a full review in the comments
4 Ratings
Print Rate it Now Pin Recipe
Course: Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine: American
Diet: Vegan
Keyword: vegan muffins, vegan pumpkin cream cheese muffins, vegan pumpkin muffins
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 12 muffins
Calories: 210kcal
Author: Kirsten Nunez, MS

Ingredients

Vegan Pumpkin Muffins

  • 1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree not pumpkin pie filling
  • ½ cup applesauce unsweetened
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup brown sugar light or dark

Cream Cheese Topping

  • 4 ounces vegan cream cheese plain
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Ground cinnamon optional

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a muffin tin with paper liners. You can also use silicone baking cups.
  • In a large bowl, whisk the all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, spices together.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, applesauce, oil, brown sugar, and vanilla extract.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix until just combined, taking care to avoid overmixing.
  • In a smaller bowl, combine the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract. You can also add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon for extra flavor.
  • To the muffin tin, add about 1 tablespoon of batter to each cavity. Top with 1 teaspoon of cream cheese mixture.
  • Add another 1 tablespoon of batter, making sure the cavity is no more than 2/3 full. Make sure the top layer of batter fully covers and encases the cream cheese in the center.
  • Top with another 1/2 teaspoon of cream cheese mixture, and use a toothpick to swirl, gently incorporating it into the batter. You may have some cream cheese leftover.
  • Bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the muffins comes out clean. Let sit for 10 to 15 minutes, then serve as is or with a pat of leftover cream cheese.

Notes

  • If you’re a fan of certain spices, like ground ginger or nutmeg, feel free to add more than the recipe calls for.
  • You can make these vegan pumpkin muffins without cream cheese.
  • It’s essential to fill the liners until they are 2/3 full. Any more will cause the batter and cream cheese to spill over in the oven.
  • Store leftover muffins in an air-tight container at room temperature for 3 to 5 days.

Recommended Tools & Products

Large bowl
Small bowl
Muffin tin
Paper liners

Nutrition

Calories: 210kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.02g | Sodium: 233mg | Potassium: 92mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 3182IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 69mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @CleanGreenSimple or tag #CleanGreenSimple!
Kirsten Nunez

About the Author

Kirsten Nunez is a journalist who focuses on healthy food and cooking. Her vegan and plant-based recipes have appeared on VegNews, eHow, Shape, and more. When she’s not creating vegan recipes for Clean Green Simple, you can find her experimenting in the kitchen and sharing plant-based meals with friends and family. More articles by Kirsten.

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