4 Healthy Pumpkin Dessert Recipes

Pumpkin cheesecake slice on a white plate with pumpkins on a white background, homemade autumn food for thanksgiving concept

It is pumpkin season! This fall, try some new pumpkin recipes without sacrificing taste for healthier ingredients. We have found and tested out four delicious dessert recipe that are perfect to make with your friends or family! This is a fun way to spend a weekend afternoon- bake a fall treat and enjoy it watching a Halloween movie! Keep reading to find out more.

Vegan Chocolate Chip Muffins

Pumpkin chocolate chip muffins in muffin tin
Image courtesy of lovefromtheoven.com

This vegan, delicious recipe from Love From The Oven is easy! Bringing these over to a friend’s home or serving them for an afternoon snack in your Glenwood apartment is a great way to spread fall spirit! Your home will also smell amazing while they are baking!

Ingredients:

-pumpkin puree

-brown sugar

-oil (coconut oil is a healthy option)

-maple syrup

-apple juice (or water)

-flour of choice

-baking soda

-baking powder

-salt

-pumpkin pie spice

-chocolate chips

Directions:

Aside from the great flavor, one of my favorite things about this recipe is that it’s a one-bowl pumpkin muffin recipe. Less cleanup!

Wet ingredients are combined, then dry ingredients are added, and they are all mixed together until just combined.

After that it’s just a matter of scooping the batter into a prepared muffin pan, and baking.

Easy peasy!

Paleo Pumpkin Chai Cupcakes

Chai pumpkin cupcakes on a wooden serving board
Image courtesy of Bakerita.com

If you are a chai love, this recipe is for you! It is from Bakerita and is amazing! The recipe and directions are listed below.

Ingredients:

  • eggsroom temperature, see Notes for vegan option
  • 1 cup non-dairy milkI used unsweetened almond, room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons oil of choiceI used coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 package Simple Mills Pumpkin Muffin & Loaf Mix

frosting ingredients:

  • 1½ cups raw cashewssoaked in water in the refrigerator overnight, at least 6 hours, up to 12
  • ¼ cup coconut cream
  • ¼ cup melted coconut oiluse refined for no coconut flavor
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a muffin tin with coconut oil (recommended), or line with paper liners.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, non-dairy milk, oil of choice, and vanilla extract. Add in all of the spices and the Simple Mills Pumpkin Muffin & Loaf Mix. Whisk to combine.
  3. Spoon batter into the prepared muffin tin, filling each 2/3 full.
  4. Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool completely on a cooling rack before frosting.

For the frosting

  1. Drain and rinse the soaked cashews with cool water. In a high powered blender (I used my Vitamix) or food processor, blend the soaked cashews until their smooth and creamy. Add the rest of the frosting ingredients and blend for 3-5 minutes, until completely smooth and creamy. Taste, and adjust spices/tartness/sweetness levels as desired.
  2. If you’re doing a thinner spread of frosting, you can frost as is. If you’d like to pipe the frosting, transfer it to a bowl and place in the freezer for one hour, whisking every 20 minutes, until it’s thickened enough to pipe on top of the cupcakes.
  3. After frosting cupcakes, garnish with a sprinkle of chai spice and a drizzle of paleo caramel sauce, if desired.

No-Bake Vegan Chocolate Pumpkin Cheesecake

A slice of pumpkin cheesecake on a white plate
Image courtesy of TheMovementMenu.com

If you are looking for something to make different than a cake or cupcake treat, pumpkin cheesecake is a great idea! And, if you want to top it with something fall themed, try the chai frosting from the recipe above. This recipe comes from The Movement Menu.

Ingredients:

Crust

Pumpkin Cashew Center

Caramel Sauce (Makes About 1 1/2 Cups)

Directions:

Caramel Sauce

  • Pour maple syrup and coconut sugar into a heavy bottomed saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat and let boil softly for ~15 minutes. Stir every few minutes with a heat proof spatula to keep the bubbles down.
  • Once the syrup begins to coat the outside of a spatula or spoon, it’s time to add the coconut milk. Raise the heat again and bring to a low boil and turn back down. Continue stirring until it begins to thicken up quite a bit.
  • Remove from heat and stir in oil, salt, and vanilla extract.
  • Let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally to keep the fat incorporated. It will thicken and become more creamy and luscious as it sits. Pour into an airtight glass container and store it in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

The Cheesecake

  • Add cashews to a bowl and cover with boiling hot water. Let set, uncovered, for 1 1/2 hours. Rinse and drain thoroughly.
  • Line the bottom of a 6″ or 7″ springform pan with parchment paper (cut out a circle) and lightly oil the sides to make it easier to remove once the cheesecake has set.
  • Combine the nuts in a food processor and pulse until you get a coarse mixture. Add the rest of the crust ingredients and pulse several times until it starts clumping up and forming together.
  • Transfer the crust mixture into the pan. Press down with your fingers to pack it evenly into the bottom of the pan to create an even base. If it starts to get sticky, lightly wet your fingers with warm water. Set aside.
  • Add drained cashews and the rest of the filling ingredients to the bowl of your food processor or into a high speed blender pitcher. Process or blend until creamy and smooth throughout, scraping down the sides as needed. *Taste and adjust accordingly. Be sure to add more lemon juice if it’s too sweet, more maple syrup if it isn’t sweet enough or a pinch more of salt for more balance!*
  • Pour the filling over the crust and tap the pan onto the counter a few times to release any air bubbles that may have formed. Place in the freezer to set for at least 4 hours or overnight.
  • When ready to serve, pull out the cheesecake and allow it to sit at room temperature for about 10-15 minutes before slicing and serving. When you’re ready to slice, run your chef’s knife under very hot water and dry it off with a towel. Cut the cheesecake using that hot knife- it’ll be much easier.
  • Top off with plenty of caramel sauce and some dairy-free whipped cream if you’d like.

 Gluten-Free Vegan Pumpkin Waffles

If you are a breakfast lover, check out this pumpkin waffle recipe! It is from the Vegan 8.

Ingredients:

  • Superfine oat flour: I use Bob’s Red Mill
  • Tapioca starch: This helps the waffles crisp up and also replaces eggs. Using all oat flour would make them too gummy. You can also use cornstarch instead.
  • Baking powder
  • Pumpkin spice: I always use my homemade blend for my recipes. It tastes phenomenal, but store-bought is fine. The flavor may just be a bit less pronounced.
  • Pumpkin puree: Make sure you are buying just canned pumpkin and not pumpkin pie puree.
  • Maple syrup: Maple syrup tastes so amazing with all those pumpkin spices and keeps these vegan waffles refined sugar-free.
  • Roasted almond butter: This replaces the oil, gives a wonderful depth of flavor and helps these crisp up. You can use sunbutter for a nut-free option if you like the taste of sunbutter. Make sure to be using a runny roasted drippy almond butter and not a stiff, dry kind, or the waffles will be more dry/crumbly. Trader Joe’s has a great roasted runny almond butter or you can make your own. You could also use walnut butter or pecan butter and I bet they would taste even more amazing!
  • Almond milk: I love almond milk in these because it’s a runny texture, which works great in these oat flour pumpkin waffles. You could use another milk like cashew milk and possibly soy, although I’ve not tried either. I wouldn’t use too thick of a milk though, or the batter will be too thick. Use a similar texture as store-bought almond milk.

Directions

  1. Add the dry ingredients to a large bowl and whisk well
  2. Add the wet ingredients to a small separate bowl and whist until smooth
  3. Pour the wet over the dry and whisk until smooth but do not overmix. It should be very smooth and pourable
  4. Let the batter sit while you heat up your waffle maker. Once hot, add about 2/3 cup of batter to the center and spread out almost to the edges of the waffle plate. Cook according to your waffle maker directions. I use setting 4 on my All Clad waffle maker.

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