Cinnamon-Spiced Butternut Squash Dessert Muffins

Butternut squash is one of my favorite autumn vegetables. It has a sweetness that is not overbearing and it is extremely versatile. You can add it to meals like soups and casseroles, but it’s also a great ingredient in baked goods! Swap out the pumpkin for butternut squash in most recipes, even pumpkin pie.  You will love it in this recipe, Cinnamon-Spiced Butternut Squash Dessert Muffins. 

These “dessert” muffins are a healthy alternative to traditional, cloyingly sweet cupcakes. They are just sweet enough for dessert or a mid-day treat and pack a bonus dose of beta-carotene. Purchasing a 10-ounce package of steam-in-the-bag riced butternut squash from the frozen section of the grocery store helps to simplify this recipe since it only takes about 2 minutes to defrost. Contrary to popular belief, frozen vegetables hold the same nutritional value as the fresh versions. Therefore, buying frozen vegetables can make lunch or dinner a breeze, helping you meet the daily recommended servings of vegetables, and no peeling or chopping required.

Cinnamon-Spiced Butternut Squash Dessert Muffins


1 cup white whole wheat flour

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar plus 1 tablespoon

1 egg

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

10 ounce package frozen, steam in the bag riced butternut squash


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray muffin tin with cooking spray. Microwave butternut squash for 2 minutes or until defrosted. In a large bowl, mix flours, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. In a medium bowl, mix egg, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, oil, applesauce, and defrosted squash. Pour wet ingredients into dry and mix until evenly combined. Divide mixture between 12 muffin cups. Sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Serving size: 1 muffin

Nutrition Note:  Because these muffins are on the sweet side,  I recommend serving them as a light dessert or sweet treat rather than as a breakfast muffin.


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