Kate posted some amazing classic pumpkin muffins last week, and I’ve got my favorite Pumpkin Muffin, today.  No surprise that mine include chocolate.  You guys all know about the best Zucchini bread on the planet, right?  This Double-Chocolate Zucchini Bread?  Well this is a pumpkin-spice version of that recipe, so I’m guessing there are lots of you that already know you’ll be fans!  The best part?  This versatile recipe works as muffins, as a quick bread, annnnnd as cupcakes.  I couldn’t decide which one to really claim here- because they’re ALL so good, so I’m giving you everything.

These start out so easy as you can literally just dump everything into a bowl.   Unsweetened cocoa powder gives them a gorgeous color and deep chocolate flavor, without being to rich. They still have plenty of pumpkin, which makes them really tender, and just enough of those warm autumn spices.

One of my favorite secret tricks for pumpkin spice flavored things, is this extract, it’s totally optional in this recipe, but if I have some, I usually toss it in there:

You can find it wherever Watkins Spices are found.  I buy them at Walmart!

These bake up with the most perfect, rounded domes.

Fresh out of the oven, and plain like this, they make great muffins.  You can even freeze them for quick snacks on the go. 

The best part about calling them muffins is that it’s totally socially acceptable to slather butter on them.  Even better, Maple-Cinnamon Butter.

If you want to turn it into an ultra-tender quick bread, just pop it in a loaf pan.  I did mini loaves and tossed in some salted caramel chips I wanted to try out. 

It was perfect.  Totally didn’t need the chips, but it made it look kind of fun. 

Lastly, you can spread on a dollop of frosting for an amazing fall cupcake.  I did a cream cheese cinnamon-vanilla bean frosting (no recipe, just eyeballed it) and it was fantastic.  This brown sugar caramel frosting would be amazing, as would cream cheese frosting.

They’re festive, and kind of perfect inside.  

A recipe this versatile definitely needs to be in your recipe arsenal.  If you make them, snap a picture and tag me on Instagram so I can see!

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Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins

  • Author: Sara Wells
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes


A versatile recipe yielding tender muffins, perfect cupcakes OR a glorious quick bread.  Rich chocolate flavor with pumpkin and spices.


  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin spice extract, optional
  • 1 15oz can pumpkin puree


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a muffin tin with papers and set aside (or spray loaf pans with non-stick spray.

Combine flour, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, nutmeg, salt, baking soda, and cocoa powder in a large mixing bowl and whisk until combined.  Create a well in the center and add oil, sugar, brown sugar, eggs, extracts, and pumpkin.  Mix everything together until well combined, but don’t overmix.  

Place batter in prepared muffin tins and bake for 12-15 minutes.  Toothpick inserted in center should come out with just moist crumbs attached. 

Yields about 1.5 dozen muffins, or 2 standard loaves.  If you’re baking mini loaves, or regular loaves, you’ll have to eyeball the baking time.  I only timed muffins for you!  For cupcakes, just pick your favorite frosting.  Favorites of mine are: Brown Sugar Caramel Frosting and Cream Cheese Frosting. Let cool completely before frosting.





  1. I debated between liquid and powdered pumpkin spice the other day at the store and got powdered, haha. Does the pumpkin spice extract measure the same as the powder? Can you substitute it in any recipe?

  2. I saw this recipe last night, made them this morning. My 11 year old granddaughter declared them “even better than the school’s chocolate muffins” (which she adores!). Total winner! Thank you for all your blog efforts, I am a major fan!

  3. Bravo!! Another killer recipe. I whipped-up a few dozen chocolate pumpkin mini-muffins for a school Halloween party and Confirmation class. In both cases, added luxurious cream cheese frosting and – this should come as no surprise – the containers came. home. empty. I love you, OBB! Keep up the great work.

  4. Just made these as mini muffins. Took about 12 minutes to bake. They were yummy! I did add chocolate chips on the second batch and they were even better. 🙂

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