Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins

Delicious, impressive yet super simple to whip up- These Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins are NOT just reserved for Fall! Gluten free, high in protein and very low in sugar, these are the perfect snack between meals or dessert- They also have a vegan option too!

Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins- Delicious, impressive yet super simple to whip up- These Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins are NOT just reserved for Fall! Gluten free, high in protein and very low in sugar, these are the perfect snack between meals or dessert! @thebigmansworld -


If there is one holiday or tradition that I kinda hate on Australia for not being on board with, it’s Thanksgiving

Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins- Easy, delicious and LOADED with delicious spices- NO nasties and 100% delicious! {vegan, gluten free, sugar free recipe}-

I love the excitement leading up to it, the unity of friends and family and of course, the food. During my time in America, I experienced a few firsts- meeting amazing people, checking out a couple of new places and….eating the best sandwich ever

This sandwich must have been from some famous deli or cafe in NYC where people line up for days to obtain!’

That were the words from a good mate of mine after I explained this story to him. I may or may not lose many readers when I say where said sandwich was eaten. 


I know, I know. ‘The best sandwich’ from Starbucks but hear me out. It’s not one of their standard offerings- it was their Holiday sandwich- a Turkey and Stuffing Panini. Wow. I would never have in a million years thought I would eat the world’s greatest sandwich from Starbucks, but it happened! 

Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins- Easy, delicious and LOADED with delicious spices- NO nasties and 100% delicious! {vegan, gluten free, sugar free recipe}-

Now that I’m back on home soil, I am getting slightly very jealous seeing everyone getting pumped up for Thanksgiving and ready to suffer food comas. Turkey, pecan pie and honey roasted vegetables- damn, my mouth is already watering.

One thing I will NOT be FOMO over (is that acronym used correctly?) is pumpkin pie. I’m sorry. I just cannot get on board with it. I tried it in 2012 AND in 2013 and still wasn’t on board. One which I actually enjoyed was the bite I ate at Davida’s joint  which was Paleo with a homemade crust. However, when she suggested having it for breakfast I drew the line. Pumpkin in Australia is available year round and is mostly eaten savoury- My favourite way is simply roasted in olive oil and sea salt until tender. BOOM. Delicious. However, I love using it in baked goods and other sweet treats- except for pie. 

Back to FOMO on Thanksgiving. In honour of this holiday which I am missing out on, I will cry into my pillow while stuffing my face with perhaps, the greatest recipe to hit this blog to date. Big call.

Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins- Easy, delicious and LOADED with delicious spices- NO nasties and 100% delicious! {vegan, gluten free, sugar free recipe}-

This recipe took FOREVER to perfect. FOREVER. 

I used adapted Averie’s Peanut Butter and Jelly muffins but gave it a Pumpkin Cheesecake makeover. Why did this recipe take over? Well.

Attempt 1- The muffins overflowed and looked like mini cauliflowers

Attempt 2- The muffins gave birth cream cheese. (They blew up. Serves me right for over stuffing).

Attempt 3- The cream cheese centre sunk to the bottom. (…which was a blessing in disguise. I dunked crackers in the mess it left).

Attempt 4- Don’t ask. 


Safe to say, attempt 5 was a success (excluding the 3 out of the 15 which once again, blew up). These (healthy!) gluten free muffins would make the perfect dessert or treat for your Thanksgiving dinner- but also a snack anytime of the day! It’s relatively high in protein, low in sugar compared to many of it’s relatable counterparts and the bonus- a serving of veggies too! The cream cheese centre is like a welcoming surprise! I used Davida’s pumpkin pie spice but in all honestly, I have no idea what pumpkin pie spice is supposed to taste like, but it gave the cream cheese a really amazing smell.

Friends, when you sit down to thanksgiving dinner this year- think of your Aussie mate here.

With these muffins. Don’t be jealous.

Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins- Easy, delicious and LOADED with delicious spices- NO nasties and 100% delicious! {vegan, gluten free, sugar free recipe}-

Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins
Serves 13
A delicious gluten freemuffin recipe with a cheesecake centre and perfect for the festive season- or a snack anytime!
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Dry Ingredients
  1. 1 ½ cups gluten free flour blend (can sub for oat flour)*
  2. ½ cup coconut sugar
  3. 1 tsp baking soda
  4. 1 tsp baking powder
Wet ingredients
  1. 1 large egg*
  2. ½ cup Greek yogurt (I used Chobani 0%)*
  3. ½ milk of choice (I used Unsweetened Almond milk)
  4. ½ cup mild tasting nut butter of choice (I used almond butter)
  5. ½ cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
Cream cheese filling
  1. 3 T cream cheese, softened*
  2. 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  3. 1 tsp coconut sugar (can sub for brown)
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Generously coat 2 standard sizes muffin trays with oil or butter (this recipe makes 15 muffins- if you want giant ones which overflow, you can use a standard 12 count tray).
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, coconut sugar and baking powder. In a small mixing bowl, whisk the egg, Greek yogurt, milk, nut butter and canned pumpkin until fully incorporated.
  3. In a separate small mixing bowl, combine the softed cream cheese, pumpkin pie spice and coconut sugar and mix until combined. It should look similar to butter. Set aside.
  4. Add the wet mixture to dry mixture and mix well until no clumps remain. Do not overmix.
  5. Pour 3 tablespoons of batter into the muffin tray. Add 1 teaspoon of the cream cheese filling as close to the centre of each muffin as possible. Top each remaining muffin with around 2 tablespoons of the remaining batter until it is fully used up.
  6. Bake in the oven for 18-25 minutes (depending on oven type) until the tops are golden. Do not over bake.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow to sit in the tray for 5 minutes, before removing to a wire rack. Allow to cool completely.
  1. * This has been successfully tested using a flax egg, dairy free/vegan yogurt and vegan cream cheese.
  2. I stored these at room temperature (covered) for 3 days- any longer and they dry out. They freeze really well- simply thaw completely.
  3. If you use oat flour, they will have more of a sunken look.
Adapted from Averie from Averie Cooks
The Big Man's World ®


What are you looking forward to eating this Thanksgiving (if you celebrate it)? 

Are you a fan of pumpkin pie?

Is it criminal that this sandwich came from Starbucks? (Please don’t say yes)

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130 thoughts on “Healthy Pumpkin Cheesecake Muffins

  1. I work next door to a Starbucks and I must say that a lot of their sandwiches are really good. I’ve had a lot of good ones from there.

    These look really tasty Arman. Your recipes always make me hungry in the morning!

  2. Haha I’m with you on so many levels, Arman! I feel ridic when I say that one of my favourite cookies ever is from Starbucks (LOVE their oatmeal raisin cookies)! And also FOMO about the lack of Thanksgiving? ME TOO! India needs to get on board with it asap…and even if that’s not the case, at least they gotta make turkey & the other Thanksgiving goods freely available for those of us who would like to partake!

  3. I think you should go for it and invite a table full of friends and have an Aussie Thanksgiving of your own. I literally lol’ed about the failed attempts. I have been there, and it is great to commiserate with you.

  4. I love pumpkin stuff including pumpkin pie! Pumpkin bread with cream cheese is a fave so these are totally calling me. Have you been to the States for Thanksgiving? I can totally see you losing your mind.

  5. Haha, I see that sandwich in the cold display case everyday while I’m waiting in line for my coffee…I’ve never seen anyone get it though…or any sandwich for that matter, haha!
    P.S. I’ve always wanted to try and bake a “stuffed” muffin or cupcake! Ah! Need to get on that!

  6. I am not the biggest fan of cheesecakes, so I thank you for this twinkie-like version (and I say that completely honestly). I think that the starbucks panini sounds delicious, and that is saying something, considering that I’ve been sick all this week and 95% of foods have been about as appetizing as a lobotomy, which coming from me is saying something. But it has all my favorite things, so I intend to get one for myself (hopefully) soon!

  7. Ohmigosh these look so yummy. You should make your own Thanksgiving feast anyway and just celebrate with us virtually. I get really excited about sweet potatoes topped with marshmallow on Thanksgiving. Probably cause I only get it once a year. It’s so good!!!

  8. I have so many comments here. First, sandwich from Starbucks? Really? But it sounds like it was really good…I’m just surprised at that one. As far as pumpkin pie, I think you should make a savory version. I mean quiche is eaten in a pie crust, and it’s savory. Do it. And top it with crumbled bacon…because bacon makes everything better! But now to these muffins. I need these in my life. I apparently haven’t fully lived yet because I’ve never had one of these. They sound incredible. Mail me one?

    1. I know, I know. I hang my head in shame.

      Just kidding, it was delicious (I had nothing to compare it to!). YES- mate, I have a pumpkin quiche recipe but it falls apart. I will redo. And I will personally deliver them, save me a seat at Thanksgiving dinner.

  9. Guilty of enjoying Starbucks Sandwiches, too. No actually not guilty 😉
    Onto those Muffins. Really? Do you have to do this to me? I want them. I want them badly! NOW!!!!!

  10. These look pretty bombdotcom. As you eat these, you should have zero FOMO on anything I’m about to ingest into my body, such as turkey and mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes and green beans and pecan pie and stuffing and ALL THE FOODS. That was mean huh? I see a Starbucks recipe redo in the near future on your blog!

  11. Laughing at your Starbucks sandwich ;). I’ll admit their sandwiches are pretty tasty, especially when heated up, but the BEST sandwich? Boy, you cray.

    And props to you for perfecting the recipe. Usually if I can’t get it right the first three times, I give up and decided that it’s just not in the stars for me. Also, with ya on the pumpkin pie. NOPE. I just don’t get it. Why would you even consider eating pumpkin pie when you have APPLE PIE available. It doesn’t make any sense to me. Like seriously, WTF.

    Delicious looking recipe!

  12. So even though Canada has Thanksgiving, it’s nowhere near as big of a deal as it is in the States. It was over a month ago too, so I’ll be joining you in jealousy next Thursday :-p And YES I love pumpkin pie! I can’t say it’s my favourite (that goes to lemon meringue) but it’s definitely up there.

  13. I’m not gonna lie, pumpkin pie is one of my all time favorite desserts, especially when it’s infused with a ton of spices. I’ve made a similar muffin before, and it definitely took me a few tries to get it right! It’s that stubborn cream cheese filling!

  14. You should definitely celebrate yourself over in Australia. Start a new trend or something 🙂 And a sandwich from Starbucks? I am always afraid to try their food items except for the breads….I guess need to get on board

  15. I love pumpkin pie! Once fall comes around here I’m straight into pumpkin craze. These muffins look gorgeous, I’m glad they’re no longer spouting cream cheese haha. Also, don’t know if you saw, but I tagged you in a question and answer on my blog today! Check it out if you have time 🙂

  16. Holy Batman these look terrific! You had me at pumpkin. I do love pumpkin pie, sans crust. Not a fan of pie crust but the filling, oh so yum.
    I shall not laugh at your Starbucks sandwich crush. A couple of years ago i was flying out of LAX and needed to grab dinner to take on the flight. The only options were Burger King, cheap pseudo-Mexican, or Starbucks. I purchased a sandwich from Starbucks. It was really simple, turkey and cheese, but I must say (type) it was really tasty.
    By the way, I have had one of your microwavable english muffins as part of my breakfast everyday for over a week now. CAN. NOT. GET. ENOUGH. 🙂

  17. We don’t celebrate Thanksgiving here in Germany. Well, why should we anyway, it’s not our history/tradition. I’d love to join the festivities once though. It sounds like THE holiday! All that food…mmmmh. But our Christmas is awesome as well (think roast goose!!)
    I liked the pumpkin pie that I tried in Las Vegas, it was good. Don’t know why everyone makes such a fuss about it though.
    I really love that cream cheese center of these muffins!

  18. Sam hasn’t made any of the recipes I’ve telepathically told her I wanted to make. Can you tell her I want this one too?

    Thanksgiving is long gone for me, Christmas is the only thing on my radar now! Hey are you free to Skype/FT tmrw night?

  19. HEY, what’s wrong with getting a quality sandwich from Starbucks!?! HAHAAA. No really though, I’ve heard that panini is legit the best shit ever. My mom about cried she thought it was so good when I brought one home for her. I am sad you don’t get to celebrate Thanksgiving down under, but you should still do it anyway. Either way I will eat 2x the amount of food in your honor.

  20. Well I’m not really celebrating Thanksgiving this year (womp womp) but will sure make up for it on Christmas. These look so good and love the minimal amount of sugar. I think I’ve eaten pumpkin pie for breakfast on more than one occasion. No shame.

  21. Haha way to persevere! These look awesome! Also, I am a fellow pumpkin pie hater. But I can totally get on board with these. Also, you should TOTALLY have T day in Australia.

  22. I’m actually not a huge fan of Thanksgiving food! (I know…I’m a horribly unpatriotic American). I always want to try new recipes and my family definitely likes to go the more traditional route. I’m in charge of mashed potatoes this year, though, and I’m totally sneaking in roasted garlic and goat cheese…

  23. If it makes you feel any better, even though we celebrate Thanksgiving up here in Canadaland, it doesn’t really seem to be as big of a deal as it is in the States… it’s just kind of over before anyone really realizes it’s happening. Heck, we didn’t even bother cooking turkey for our last one because no one was really in the mood 😆 Muffins I’m always in the mood for, though… just don’t ever use muffins and cauliflower in the same sentence…

  24. Thanksgiving is probably my least favorite holiday. Too much meat, weird jello molds, and bastardized veggies, It ain’t my thing so no FOMO here.

    Rock out with your muffins out, or at least the exploding cream cheese filling.

  25. I’m jealous seeing everyone get ready for Thanksgiving too! I mean, we already had Canadian Thanksgiving, but it seems like it was so long ago… I wish we could have another one this month!

    I can’t understand how you don’t like pumpkin pie… but I CAN understand why you love these. They look amazing! 🙂

  26. OMG i can’t tell if i’m really happy or really sad that i JUST pulled another loaf of your carrot cake bread from my oven.. because i still want it but now i want these. although since i don’t make decisions i guess i need both. looks like next weekend we know what is going to be happening =l as if pumpkin and nut butter couldn’t convince me to make ANYTHINGGG!

    p.s. those apple pie gluten free and vegan bars. please crush one up and make me a sundae now 🙂 still deciding what to make for thanksgiving dessert and ironically pumpkin pie isn’t on the list!

  27. Pingback: Sunday Sessions #2
  28. See that right there is the reason I don’t usually stuff things in my muffins I have a fear of things exploding all over the oven and then never being able to get it properly clean.

    So thanks for taking one for the team and perfecting these because they look delicious! If you want to bring some with you are more than welcome to come join our Thanksgiving table 🙂

  29. Urgh I wish the UK celebrated Thanksgiving (well a UK version of it, obv we didn’t have the pilgrim, Indian story and all that jazz!) – it just seems so amazing to get together with friends and family and celebrate what you are thankful for, especially that big huge Turkey filled tasty meal…
    We can just watch from ‘the worlds window’ and look longingly inside and their joy! Haha!

  30. I can totally get down with recipes if they contain cream cheese. Keep posting cream cheese-filled goodies, haha! Also, I saw that sammie at Starbs the other day and I’m totally making it with my turkey day leftovers.

  31. I’m sending over some T-day treats for ya! 😉
    Also, I am on board with pumpkin anything & everything…except pumpkin pie. Blech.

  32. Oh dear lord, you had me laughing through this whole post. Ok, pumpkin pie is one of the best things about Thanksgiving. Now I have been a S’bucks consumer for years and have NEVER seen this sandwich you describe. But then again I live in a town where 75% of the population view coffee as a sin, so we have a small S’bucks. If you ever find yourself in the States during Turkey day, pop on over, I’ll feed you a feast.

  33. I do not see how cream cheese blowing up is a problem… at all… Mmm…

    I have not ever tried one of those Starbucks sandwiches, so I’ll have to take your word for it. If you are ever in the West Coast part of the states, I can MAKE you a proper sandwich! or be a tour guide and show you some dang fine sandwich shops!

    …still cannot figure out how overstuffed cream cheese is wrong.

    1. Kristina, I am holding you to that, if should you decline on I arrive, I will spray your sriracha in your contact lenses solution, like the twat I am and did to myself today.

      Touch sriracha. Touch eyes = pain.

  34. Arman,
    I’ve still got a wee little pumpkin in the Strategic Winter Squash Reserve. Now I’m getting a hankering for muffins. Again!
    I should curse you for giving me the pumpkin hankering, but these look too good.

  35. Whenever I find something that really looks good on Pinterest- it often brings me to your blog. Your recipe is similar to my peanut butter and jelly muffin too.. Love your idea to switch it to pumpkin and cream cheese. Love it! Pinning them for now, will make them in the fall when I can make my own pumpkin puree.

  36. First off, even though you don’t have Thanksgiving…pumpkin is celebrated in America the second fall hits ? but second, oh my gosh thank you for this Recipe! As a gluten free and clean eater, I can’t wait To try this out!

  37. Do you have any advice for using Buckwheat Flour instead? (ie. less flour, or more milk). Buckwheat tends to dry out alot and is really dense. Just wondering if you had a patch solution for using it.

  38. What can I use in place of the nut butter? All I keep in the house is peanut butter which is WAY to strong a taste for this, I don’t want to buy other nut/seed spreads, its expensive and I dont have time right now. Can I use more pumpkin instead?????

  39. So I was a little concerned when you put coconut sugar in this recipe because it has the same amount of carbs as regular sugar and 0% greek yogurt is also full of sugar in fact most yogurt is full of sugar but the less fat the more sugar they add to make up for taste. I think I would use sour cream and stevia in place of the previous contents and make it even healthier, at least a full fat yogurt really is not the diary fats that a problem it’s your carbs and sugars that your enemy.

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