130 Calorie Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Muffins

These 130 calorie chocolate muffins taste like dessert. Lightly flavored with pumpkin, spices, and maple!

chocolate pumpkin spice muffins

We’re back from one incredible honeymoon on Maui and Kauai. Of all the sights we saw, delicious food we ate (including tuna ceviche with coconut milk and macadamia nut crusted mahi mahi- omg) and drinks we tasted, I have to say that the sunrise at Haleakala Summit was absolutely my favorite part. Haleakala was 2 hours from our hotel, so you can imagine what time we woke up in the morning.

If you ever go to Maui, this is a sight you MUST see. Get there early to get a front row spot. It was 40 degrees at the top (10,000 feet), so bring warm clothes and a blanket. I had 3 blankets and was still shivering. Worth it. Look at this!

Haleakala sunrise

I saved a healthier recipe for today. Hopefully you had something indulgent for breakfast over the weekend – did you try these yet? – and are ready for something that won’t necessarily rot your teeth in the best way possible.

I made these fudgy muffins a few weeks ago and froze the rest. I ate two as I was unpacking avoiding unpacking my massive suitcase and doing laundry. They truly taste like a piece of chocolate cake. For only 130 calories.

Let’s talk about the calories. I do not count calories. I do not count calories for my recipes. Desserts are desserts. Eat it with a smile and move on. But muffins that I want to lighten up, I’ll definitely take time to smack a number on them. And only 130 calories for such a rich-tasting chocolate treat left me pleasantly surprised. Trust me, these chocolate pumpkin spice muffins do not taste like cardboard, I mean health food.

To make today’s muffins, I took my Skinny Double Chocolate Chip Muffins and switched some things around to include pumpkin puree. Pumpkin is a powerhouse! So much goodness for so little calories. I add a little bit of coconut oil for tenderness to offset pumpkin’s dense texture. A bit of brown sugar and maple syrup sweeten the muffins while complementing the light pumpkin taste. Lots of tasty fall spices in each bite, too.

While warm, all you really taste is chocolate. Totally not a bad thing! After a few hours, the pumpkin taste is intensified. Sort of like how banana bread and pumpkin bread are more flavorful on day 2. So, I consider these chocolate muffins with a little pumpkin rather than pumpkin muffins with chocolate. Get it? Got it. Good!

chocolate pumpkin spice muffin with a bite taken from it

I use a mix of whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour for these muffins. However, feel free to use all all-purpose flour or even white whole wheat flour. I do not recommend using all whole wheat flour (or whole wheat pastry flour) because the muffins will have a dense texture – not really appetizing and much too heavy.

The chocolate chips are optional. But let me tell you – the melty chocolate chips inside the muffin put these over the top! I like to use mini chocolate chips so there are more in each bite. If you like nuts, try toasting some chopped walnuts and tossing them in. Sort of  kind of almost like chocolate nut brownies… for breakfast.

Heck, swipe some cream cheese frosting on them to get a lightened-up pumpkin chocolate cupcake of sorts. Cream cheese is breakfast food so it’s ok.

stack of chocolate pumpkin spice muffins

I should probably go unpack be tortured now, but not before I eat more chocolate pumpkin muffins.

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

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chocolate pumpkin spice muffins

130 Calorie Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Muffins

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 18 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 12-13 muffins
  • Category: Muffins
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These 130 calorie chocolate muffins taste like dessert. Lightly flavored with pumpkin, spices, and maple!


Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup (185g) pumpkin puree (fresh or canned)
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (82g) pure maple syrup
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 2/3 cup (160g) nonfat Greek yogurt*
  • 2 Tablespoons (30ml) coconut oil, melted
  • 1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (63g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 cup (66g) whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup (41g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/3 cup (60g) mini chocolate chips (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C). Spray 12-count muffin pan with nonstick spray. If using cupcake liners, spray those lightly with nonstick spray. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine pumpkin, brown sugar, maple syrup, egg whites, greek yogurt, oil, and vanilla extract. Whisk them all together until smooth, with no yogurt lumps remaining.
  3. Sift* the flours, cocoa powder, salt, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice together into a large bowl. Slowly stir in the wet ingredients, being careful not to overmix. Get any dry pockets of flour out. Fold in the mini chocolate chips. The batter will be a little chunky and extremely, extremely thick.
  4. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups – fill them all the way to the top if you can. If desired, sprinkle a few more mini chocolate chips on top before baking. Bake for 5 minutes at 425°F (218°C). Keeping the muffins in the oven, reduce the temperature down to 375°F (191°C)* and continue to bake for 13 more minutes. Insert a toothpick into the center of one muffin. If it comes out clean, they are done. If not, bake for only 2 more minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 3 minutes in the pan, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Makes 12 muffins. Muffins stay fresh in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.

Notes

  1. Freezing Instructions: Muffins freeze well up to 3 months. Heat up for 45 seconds to thaw. They are so good warm!
  2. Yogurt: I prefer nonfat Greek yogurt in these muffins. If using regular yogurt, a different fat percentage, and/or a flavored variety such as vanilla, the calorie count may be different.
  3. Sifting: Sifting the dry ingredients is optional, but recommended. It helps get out any little cocoa lumps and ensures the heavy whole wheat flour and lighter all-purpose are evenly combined.
  4. Why Initial High Temperature? See my sky-high muffin dome tricks for more detail.

Keywords: chocolate chip pumpkin muffins, healthy pumpkin muffins

Do you like pumpkin and chocolate together? Hope so.

46 Comments

  1. Hi Sally! These look incredible and I cannot wait to try them! I understand that these muffins are perfect for those who are calorie conscious, but I’m curious if I could use a whole egg or two versus just the whites? Thank you

    1. A whole egg would be just fine. In fact, they would probably taste even richer. I made them this way not really for the calories but because I had an extra egg white laying around (made a batch of cookies with 1 extra yolk). Enjoy!

  2. These look great! Anything I can substitute for the melted coconut oil?

    1. Canola, vegetable, or even olive oil would be fine. Melted butter works as well.

    2. Love these so much!

  3. Thanks for the wonderful idea – pumpkin and chocolate together couldn’t sound more delicious 🙂 totally making these today! Since I only have 100 grams of pumpkin puree, do you think I could substitute the rest for mashed banana? Maybe about 1/4 of the fruit? I know the taste will be different but it might be an interesting combination to try :)) Have a great day!

    1. Marie, that would be just fine. Play around – I’m sure it will be tasty. I love pumpkin with anything pretty much!

  4. Sally- I just made these without the chocolate chips and I am dying! They are soo delicious! I am doing an eight week “get healthy” challenge and these are just the perfect “treat” for me that fit into my healthy living quest! I, of course, indulged in your pumpkin chocolate chip snickerdoodle cookies the other day when I could have a free treat. I love your website- everything I’ve made here has been a hit!

    Congrats on your wedding! Your honeymoon looked like it was a piece of heaven! Enjoy the rest of your Fall!

    Love, from UT

  5. Marioma Mahmoud says:

    Sally I loveeeeee your blog especially that youre making things lighter and healthier without sacrificing the flavor (I’m 14 years old and think your recipes are simple and easy) I was just wondering can I use normal non fat yogurt instead of greek becouse I dont have any on hand
    P.s welcome back from your honeymoon 😀

    1. Yep, that’s fine. Enjoy!

  6. Antonia Vetrano says:

    Sally, I love, love love these muffins! They’re moist, light, chocolaty,and low calorie ! My 17 yo. son eats 3 or 4 at a time from the first 2 batches that I made on different days this past week. I was lucky to get just 1 from the last batch! Today I made a double batch! Let’s see how long these last. Thanks for your wonderful recipes.

  7. oh my goodness these were good! So light and fluffy. Loved the chips.

  8. Hi Sally,
    I just made these and my only complaint is the chocolate was getting all over me as I was eating these scrumptious muffins. I couldn’t eat just one! I substituted oat flour for the whole wheat flour, sugar for the maple syrup, low fat sour cream for the yogurt, and 1 whole egg instead of egg whites.

    question; can agave syrup be substituted for the maple syrup?

    Also as you are in Philadelphia, please come say hello next spring at the Rittenhouse Outdoor Art Show. I am always in Booth 114 across from Parc Restaurant. www.arlenesteinberg.com

    1. Hi Arlene– glad you enjoy these. and yes, agave can be substituted for maple syrup!

  9. Just made these this afternoon. Love at first bite!! I am a bit muffin obsessed lately, so it is nice to have a healthy muffin that tastes like a treat. My son ate one when he came home from school and he gave them a thumbs up too. Thanks once again for a great recipe!

  10. Question – does the 130 calories for these include the chocolate chips? Since it says optional I wasn’t certain. Thanks! I already made them with the chips and they are delicious! But I do need to count calories too! Thank you!

    1. Yes, including. Enjoy!

  11. Olivia Munro says:

    I absolutely love this recipe & more importantly so does my daughter and her friends. Because they’re so moist, gooey and chocolatey, they all think they’re brownies. When I tell them they’re pumpkin muffins and low fat they’re amazed but keep coming back for more. I just think it’s hilarious that you think chocolate chips could be optional. Try telling that to hungry teenagers!

  12. These are delicious and taste like cake!

  13. These are the most fluffy and light healthy muffins that I have ever had! Usually all healthy muffins are dense and feel as heavy as a rock. You did it again Sally! Thanks for another great recipe!!!

  14. These sound amazing! If I were to bake them in the larger size muffin tin, any idea how that would change the time/temp for baking these?

    1. Michelle, here’s a recipe I made giant size. Assuming you’re using a jumbo muffin pan? Follow these baking times for these chocolate pumpkin muffins.

  15. What if I wanted to turn this into a bread loaf. Would I still have the temp at 425 for min, then turn it down to the 375 and cook it for maybe 30 min until it came out clean? Also how long would I leave it in the pan before turning the loaf out?

    1. No need for higher/lower temp if making a loaf. Allow it to fully cool in the pan before turning it out.

  16. Hi Sally! These sound amazing!! How would you adjust the time/temp for mini muffins??

    1. Hi Alicia– about 11-13 minutes at 350.

  17. These muffins are ridiculous and I mean that in the best way possible. They are so moist and fudgey that they are more like chocolate cake than a muffin. Tender and delicious with little bits of chocolate throughout thanks to the mini chocolate chips. Amazing! I even used all white whole wheat flour instead of AP and they still turned out better than I could have hoped for. Muffins that have a good amount of vitamin A, fiber, and taste like chocolate cake? Yes, please! I keep them in a Ziploc bag in the fridge, so sometimes I microwave them for about ten seconds and the mini chocolate chips become all melted and the muffin becomes even better. Next time I make them I think I might leave out the spices so that they’re even more chocolate cake like. Love this recipe!!

    1. Yes I love them too! Especially after being warmed up.

  18. Hi Sally! I was wondering if the pumpkin gave the muffins any flavor or if it’s just to moisten them? I plan on making these as a Halloween treat and want something with a chocolate/pumpkin balance that doesn’t solely rely on the pumpkin spice (not enough pumpkin flavor IMO). Thank you! 🙂

    1. For a chocolate/pumpkin balance, I would go for my pumpkin chocolate chip bread recipe. You can make it into muffins too!

  19. What can I use to replace the coconut oil?

    1. Melted butter works.

  20. Hey Sally! 

    Just wanted to say thanks so much for being awesome!! I am not kidding when I say that yours is the only website/ cookbook I go to when I need a recipe (which is often!). Just made these muffins and took my first bite! DELISH!!! Happy Holidays! 

  21. Hello Sally, I love the sound of these muffins, I will be making them to take to my Son’s on Sunday. I have made so many of your recipe’s and all are delicious. I sometimes have to change things as I can not get some ingredients  here in England. But have always been successful!
     

  22. I made these today to eat for breakfast this week, but they looked so good that I couldn’t help eating one right out of the oven. 🙂 They were really good! Very moist and not too sweet, which is exactly what I need (I’m a sugar junkie who is trying very hard to limit her sugar intake). The spice wasn’t very strong in mine, but I didn’t have any pumpkin pie spice, so I only used cinnamon and nutmeg which was all I had. I’m looking forward to making these again after I get some pumpkin pie spice. I’m sure that will make them taste even better, although they’re delicious as is.

  23. These are AMAZING! I just made them earlier this afternoon and my boyfriend (who does not typically like pumpkin) said they were the best muffins he’s ever had! I didn’t tell him there was pumpkin in them and it was virtually undetectable in the finished muffin. I didn’t add any cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice because I wanted more of a plain chocolate flavor and they were perfect. Thanks Sally! 

  24. Just made these and cannot wait to slather with almond butter for breakfast tomorrow!

  25. Hi Sally, I’m wanting to make these for day care for my baby’s first birthday. Wondering what can I replace the yoghurt with? Coconut yoghurt or goats milk yoghurt? Someone is allergic to dairy…. :/ 
    Thanks 🙂 

    1. Any dairy free yogurt would be great!

  26. Could you use just all AP flour in this recipe? I only have AP and bread flour in my cupboard right now and don’t really want to have to run to the store as I have everything else. Thanks!

    1. Hi Loghan! Yep, you can use all-purpose flour in this pumpkin muffin recipe instead of whole wheat flour.

  27. Hello, what can i use as a substitute for the coconut oil?

    1. You can use vegetable or canola oil instead.

  28. I made these without the chocolate chips and they tasted really good! I also forgot the baking soda but they turned out fine with just the baking powder. Although I wish this recipe had more pumpkin/pumpkin spice flavor. The pumpkin I felt like was more to enhance the chocolate in this recipe than stand on its own. The muffins are still delicious though! Perfect way to start getting ready for fall 🙂

  29. Could we use all purpose flour only? Would we just take the total amount of flour and use that?

    1. Michelle @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Ariel, Yes you can use the total amount of flour with just all purpose flour.

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