This lightly sweetened chocolate pumpkin muffin recipe has a mild pumpkin flavor paired with delicious chocolate. You can use dark, semisweet, or milk chocolate chips to make these pumpkin muffins perfect for an afternoon snack, light dessert, or fall breakfast!
Chocolate pumpkin muffins are a great recipe to use up one cup of leftover pumpkin puree. This time of the year, I seem to always have leftover pumpkin in the fridge from making other recipes, like my pumpkin spice caramels, pumpkin pie ice cream, and creamy pumpkin macarons, and I love an easy way to use it up!
Bonus: This recipe includes instructions for making the muffins two ways: Bakery-style and regular! Bakery-style chocolate pumpkin muffins are much larger serving size than regular muffins and feature a beautiful, tall muffin top.
This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no cost to you. Thank you for helping to support The Floral Apron!
Ingredients for Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins
Chocolate pumpkin muffins are made with simple ingredients you’ll probably already have in your pantry. And as a bonus, everything comes together in just one bowl for easy cleanup.
- Pumpkin puree. The star ingredient for chocolate pumpkin muffins—be sure to use 100% pumpkin, not canned pumpkin filling (which contains sugar).
- Eggs. Eggs provide structure and contain emulsifiers that help hold the muffins together.
- Granulated sugar. Sugar helps the muffins stay moist, and because the pumpkin already has a bit of sweetness, we don’t need to add a ton to these muffins.
- Neutral oil. Something like canola, vegetable, or avocado oil will work well. I don’t recommend using melted butter, as it has a lower fat content and results in a drier muffin.
- Vanilla extract. Just a touch to increase that fresh-baked flavor!
- All-purpose flour. Plain flour gives these muffins the right crumb and structure.
- Cocoa powder. Necessary for the chocolatey flavor in these pumpkin muffins! I used regular cocoa powder, but Dutch-processed cocoa should also work if that’s all you have on hand (though I have not personally tested it).
- Baking powder. There’s a bit more baking powder in these muffins than standard cakes to give these a nice, tall muffin top.
- Salt. Just a pinch helps to enhance all the flavors.
- Chocolate chips. I used dark chocolate chips to keep these muffins subtly sweet, but you can use milk chocolate if you’d like a sweeter muffin.
How to Make Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins
These chocolatey pumpkin muffins are made in one bowl with one spatula, which makes them really easy to make! Here are a few tips to help you get the tallest, most delicious pumpkin muffins you’ve ever had.
Mix the Wet Ingredients Together
In a large bowl, vigorously stir together the pumpkin puree, eggs, sugar, oil, and vanilla extract. I use a spatula so I only have to wash one utensil at the end of the recipe. You can use a whisk here if you’d like, but I recommend using a spatula for the next step.
Add in the Dry Ingredients
Next, add in the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. If the cocoa powder looks lumpy, you may want to sift it to prevent small clumps of cocoa powder in your baked muffins.
Stir these ingredients until just combined so the muffins keep a light and fluffy texture. The more the batter is stirred, the more gluten is developed. The more gluten that is developed, the denser these muffins will get.
Gently fold in the chocolate chips once the chocolate pumpkin muffin batter is combined. With a nice spatula, this should only take five folds or so. The less we agitate the batter, the less gluten we risk developing.
Divide the Batter into Muffin Cups
The secret to getting super tall, bakery-style muffins at home is threefold: Filling the muffin cups to the brim, leaving enough room for plenty of airflow, and baking at a high temperature.
For large chocolate pumpkin muffins (like you’d see at a bakery or coffee shop), fill the muffin liners with muffin batter right up to the top. I like to use a scoop to ensure I add the same amount to every muffin cup. The muffins may spill over a little bit in the oven, but that’s ideal for getting a super tall muffin top.
For regular-sized muffins, fill the muffin cups about two-thirds of the way full. They will still get a nice dome, but they are at a lesser risk of spilling over the edges of the liner this way.
Then, sprinkle a few more chocolate chips on top of each muffin, like in the second photo below.
Bake and Enjoy
Bakery-style muffins bake best at a higher temperature, whereas the high temperatures can dry out smaller muffins. Follow the directions in the recipe card for the style of muffin you plan to make.
Large muffins need a little extra room to bake properly, so I only fill every other hole in the muffin pan with a liner. This gives each muffin enough room to overflow (if necessary) and better distributes the heat around each little cake.
Bake large, full muffins at 375°F/190°C for 20-23 minutes, and bake regular-sized muffins at 350°F/175°C for 17-20 minutes, until the tops bounce back when poked with a finger. Enjoy warm or at room temperature for the best flavor!
FAQs about Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins
No, they have a mild pumpkin flavor that’s perfect for pumpkin lovers and pumpkin haters alike!
You can store these pumpkin muffins in an airtight container at room temperature or in the fridge.
Yes, if you want to make these chocolate pumpkin muffins sweeter, you can add an extra quarter cup (50 grams) of granulated sugar and use milk chocolate chips.
Other Recipes You May Enjoy
If you’re looking for more fall muffin recipes, try my caramel chai muffins. They’re soft, sweet, and full of chai flavor.
On a chocolate kick? My chocolate Bundt cake without sour cream is deeply chocolatey and moist without needing a thick and creamy ingredient like Greek yogurt.
An easy, any-time-of-the-year treat from the Midwest, my aunt Deb’s Special K bars are a nostalgic recipe.
Dish Cleanup: Not Too Bad
I rate my recipe cleanups on a scale of 1 to 5. 1 is only a handful of dishes, and 5 is everything including the kitchen sink.
This chocolate pumpkin muffin recipe has a cleanup rating of a 2. With just one mixing bowl, one spatula, and a handful of smaller bowls/measuring cups, this is an easy cleanup recipe. You may be able to get away with not having to clean the muffin pan(s) if you’re careful. I recommend using a cookie scoop to cut down on the chance of spills significantly.
Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins Recipe
- 1 cup pumpkin puree (240 g)
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- ¾ cup granulated sugar (150 g)
- ¼ cup neutral oil (60 ml)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (5 ml)
- 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour (170 g)
- 3 Tablespoons cocoa powder (18 g)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder (10 g)
- ½ teaspoon salt (2 g)
- ⅓ cup chocolate chips (65 g), plus more for topping
- This chocolate pumpkin muffin recipe makes about 8 large bakery-style muffins or 12 regular-sized muffins. For bakery-style muffins, preheat the oven to 375°F/190°C and line every other hole in a muffin pan with paper liners. You may want to use two pans or bake in two batches. For regular muffins, preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C and line a muffin pan with 12 paper liners.
- In a large bowl, stir the pumpkin puree, eggs, sugar, oil, and vanilla extract together with a spatula until no streaks of egg remain.
- Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt to the pumpkin mixture bowl and stir together until just combined with a spatula, scraping the sides of the bowl.
- Add the chocolate chips and fold into the batter (just five folds is usually sufficient).
- Scoop the batter into the muffin cups—right to the top of the paper liner for bakery-style and about two-thirds full for regular—and top each with a small handful of chocolate chips.
- Bake bakery-style muffins for 20-23 minutes and regular muffins for 17-20 minutes, until the tops of the each muffin bounces back when you poke them with a finger (or a toothpick or knife inserted into the center comes out clean).
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days, or in the fridge for up to five days.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Serving Size:1 muffin
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 178Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 16mgSodium: 177mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 1gSugar: 16gProtein: 3g
The nutrition facts are estimated and may vary based on specific ingredients used.
Thanks for trying out my chocolate pumpkin muffins with chocolate chips recipe! If you make this recipe, please consider rating this recipe so others find it, too.
I’d love to see how your recipe turns out: Take a photo and tag me on Instagram @floralapronblog to share with me, or use the hashtag #floralapronbakes.