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Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Muffins

A nutrient-rich pumpkin muffin recipe using canned pumpkin and Trader Joe’s chocolate chunks (or a Trader Joe’s pumpkin bread modification with chocolate chunks).

I’m not somebody who bakes often. I typically need an “occasion” on the calendar to motivate my baking.

When my daughter told us she was running in the Big Apple Half Marathon, I decided this was one of those occasions to finally create a recipe for pumpkin chocolate chunk muffins.  

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Muffins

My husband and I were planning to cheer her on, so I made a batch of these muffins and brought them with us.

I figured she could freeze them for a quick breakfast on her way to work.

The muffins were a big hit. They turned out to be hearty, chocolate-ly, and a welcome twist on pumpkin spice muffins.

Running the Big Apple 1/2 Marathon

Pumpkin Muffins with Chocolate Chunks

The idea for this pumpkin muffin recipe came from a whole wheat pumpkin spice bread I made last year. It was loaded with pumpkin puree.

Since then, I’ve been dreaming about modifying the recipe into muffins.

On a recent trip to Trader Joes, I noticed they had chocolate chunks available (not always the case), so I picked up a bag.

(Trader Joes chocolate chips are my favorite brand, so I was excited to use the chocolate chunks in a new recipe.)

Immediately, I thought they’d be a good addition to the cupcake sized pumpkin muffins I‘d been wanting to make.

That’s how I came up with this recipe for pumpkin muffins with chocolate chips.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Muffin recipe

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Muffins Recipe

In this recipe, I used canned pumpkin, a combination of spices, and chocolate chunks. The other ingredients are standard baking additions you’d likely have in your pantry.

Or, if you’re really in a pinch for time, do a Trader Joe’s pumpkin bread modification. Grab a box of Trader Joe’s Pumpkin bread and add their chocolate chunks to the mix!

The most important tip for making tender, melt-in-your-mouth muffins is to separately mix the wet and dry ingredients and then bring them together just enough so that they are mixed.

Overmixing will result in a tough, dry muffin.

No Bueno.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Muffin

Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice

I didn’t have any pumpkin spice around so I mixed cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger together.

This comes through as a gentle hint of spice in the muffin.

A tray of pumpkin chocolate chunk muffins

A Cupcake-Sized Muffin

I used my regular muffin tins and filled them ¾ of the way full. The result? A nice-sized muffin, not too small and not too big.

I dotted the top of the muffin with two or three chocolate chunks to give them that professional bakery look (Yes, I was feeling very baker-esque.)

Here’s the recipe – I hope you like it! They are delicious fresh out of the oven but also easy to freeze and pop out one at a time.

Perfect for Breakfast or a Snack

These are great as a stand-alone snack or pair them up with one of the following breakfast ideas:

Need More Family Food Inspiration?

Check out my page of recipes! Or my recipe booklets

A tray of pumpkin chocolate chunk muffins

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Muffins

Yield: 24 muffins
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Additional Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 38 minutes

A pumpkin muffin recipe made with chocolate chunks. Subtly spicy and addictively delicious.


  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups dark chocolate chunks (such as Trader Joe's semi-sweet chocolate chunks)


Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Place paper cupcake liners in a regular size muffin pan or spray with non-stick spray.

In a large bowl, mix together eggs, sugar, pumpkin puree and oil until smooth.

Combine the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, including flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt.

Add the dry ingredients (from step 4) to the wet ingredients (from step 3) slowly just until combined. Don't over mix.

Fold in the chocolate chunks.

Use a 1/4 cup measure to portion the batter into each muffin cup; fill about 3/4 of the way full.

Bake for 17-18 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then turn onto a cooling rack.


Place a couple of chocolate chunks on top of each muffin for a "bakery" look.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 24 muffins Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 318Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 33mgSodium: 230mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 2gSugar: 26gProtein: 4g

This is an estimation of nutritional content.

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