Adventures in Healthier Eating with 2 Kids and a Picky Husband

The "I Almost Nailed Them" Roasted Butternut Squash Muffins

Posted by 7 years ago 29 Comments

You guys know me by now. I share my successes AND failures. Anyone remember this one? It still makes me laugh.

Anyway, today I attempted to make Roasted Butternut Squash Muffins. I’ve been craving muffins something fierce plus it’s been awhile since I had some alone time with my kitchen. What can I say, sometimes I just need to bake.

Let me start with the good and then I’ll tell you what went wrong. First of all the flavor was DEAD on! I was initially planning on just using some pumpkin pie spice but when I realized I was all out, I made my own concoction. It went perfectly with the roasted squash and honey. Oh the Honey! What an amazing sweetener for squash based recipes! Who needs sugar when you have honey? Seriously.

So the taste of the muffins was really delicious. The deep flavor of roasted butternut with a touch of honey and warm spices really hit the spot even though the texture was just ALL wrong. I had a lot of hope midway through baking when I turned the oven light on and saw this..

The "I Almost Nailed Them" Roasted Butternut Squash Muffin - baking

They rose perfectly! But once the 25 minute mark hit and I took them out, they completely deflated down to this..

The "I Almost Nailed Them" Roasted Butternut Squash Muffins - flat

OK, no big deal I’ve eaten flat cupcakes before. The only thing that really matters is the taste and texture. Right? Well if I nailed the taste, I totally murdered the texture. I simply used too much squash. They were beyond moist. Too most. Squishy moist. Just too wet.

Here’s the thing, I purposely used 425g of roasted squash as that’s how much pumpkin is in a 15oz can. I was trying to make a recipe where you could interchange the squash for a can of pumpkin in a pinch because, let’s be honest, we all don’t have an hour to roast a squash when we want muffins.

SO I think my practicality got the best of me this time. I either had the knock down the squash to about a cup, NOT almost 2 OR increase the dry ingredients to account for the extra moisture. Or maybe just ditch the milk? I’m not sure but I SHALL do better next time. I want to perfect this recipe. It’s a keeper in my book.

I figured I’d share how I made this batch so I know where to start next time. I’m sure some of you muffin experts out there will have some suggestions too, I’m all ears! The "I Almost Nailed Them" Roasted Butternut Squash Muffins

  • 1 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Flour (180g)
  • 3 tbsp Ground Flaxseeds (21g)
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp all spice
  • 425g of Roasted Butternut Squash (15oz)
  • 1/3 cup of honey (113g)
  • 1 egg
  • 2/3 cups skim milk (I wish I had almond milk but I didn’t)

I cut the squash in half and roasted for an hour in a preheated 350 degree oven.

I mixed the dry ingredients.. flour, flaxseeds, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and all spice.

Whisked the wet.. squash, honey, egg and milk

Look at that color! Love it!

The "I Almost Nailed Them" Roasted Butternut Squash Muffins - the ingredients

I then mixed the wet and dry to just combined and put the batter in a 12 tin muffin pan.

All looked and tasted good! The batter was so yummy I didn’t even worry about the texture. Maybe I should have noticed it was too wet.

The "I Almost Nailed Them" Roasted Butternut Squash Muffins - before

Then I wouldn’t have been left with this…

The "I Almost Nailed Them" Roasted Butternut Squash Muffins - after

Oh well… you win some you lose some, no? I’m glad I tried. Practice makes perfect as they say. Plus, now I know butternut squash muffins are a good idea.. once I nail the recipe.

UPDATE: Well the Little Guy didn’t think they were a flop. He came home from school and ate 3 of them before I even had a chance to tell him about them! I came downstairs and he said, “Mom these are GOOD!” LOL — I should say they did dry out a little once they cooled.

See other recipes using: butternut squash

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There are 29 comments so far. Join in on the conversation.


    December 2, 2010

    Roni - I made pumpkin muffins yesterday with REAL pumpkin, and I probably could have put a little less pumpkin in -- same problem you had. I think what it is is that the fresh pumpkin and fresh butternut squash contain comparatively more water than the canned pumpkin. I definitely could have let my real pumpkin drain for awhile before I put it in the recipe, OR could have cut down the amount. Mine were a decent consistency, but I do like them a tiny bit LESS moist than they were. So know that you are not alone in your muffin adventure.

    Laura N

    December 2, 2010

    I adore butternut squash BECAUSE OF YOU. :) I hope some baking experts chime in on how to fix, or you fix it yourself soon & update the recipe while the squash is still plentiful. Combining butternut squash with a muffin would put me over the moon.


    December 2, 2010

    Tammy - Good to know! I didn't think of it as being having more water. It just didn't even occur to me. I really think if I cut back the squash this one would work. Actually just skipping the milk probably would have done it too and since I'm using baking powder the don't think the milk is necessary. I liked these so much I may try again tomorrow! lol


    December 2, 2010

    Anything to get more fiber into the clan at my house. :) I have two HUGE pumpkins sitting on my table that still need to be carved and frozen. It just doesn't compare to the canned variety (for me anyway). They LOVED the pumpkin muffins, so I may have to make some more this weekend. I love fall weather! Having pumpkin muffins in the summer just doesn't feel "right". Good luck and let us know how they turn out!


    December 2, 2010

    Roni - I'm with you, it's just a guess but I'm thinking skip the milk! This way you still get all the flavor and moisture from the squash. They still look delicious that's for sure! I'll be curious to hear what happens...

    susiebeeonmaui from eatlittleeatbig

    December 2, 2010

    Such a shame, but let us know when you get it right!


    December 2, 2010

    Well it's not a total shame... I'm still eating them. :)


    December 2, 2010

    They sound delicious! Just try straining the squash or squishing it between layers of paper towel and cheesecloth next time to remove a lot of that excess water!

    Candy Kidwell

    December 2, 2010

    What temp and how long did you bake them? 350 degree oven for 30 minutes? I saw the directions for roasting the butternut squash but do not see how long you actually baked the muffins and at what temp. Thanks, Candy


    December 2, 2010

    I did 25 minutes but the outside was approaching overdone.


    December 2, 2010

    look up a few of my recipes and none called for milk maybe next time leave that out and it might work.


    December 2, 2010

    That's my plan! I actually can't wait to try! I have 2 more squashes too!!


    December 2, 2010

    I just made a recipe for Thanksgiving with pumpkin and it called for the pumpkin to be drained well. I put it first in a coffee filter, topped it with a second coffee filter, and then wrapped it in paper towels. I could not believe the amount of water that came out! I changed those paper towels constantly for about 20 minutes and was left with pumpkin that was almost a paste and VERY flavorful! I'll bet that would work with the squash. The muffins look and sound wonderful!


    December 2, 2010

    I was going to say they probably would dry up after cooling down. I saw it happen on the cupcake wars show on food network once. It sounds divine though maybe after the 25 minute mark you could have plopped a piece of tinfoil on to keep them from browning and cooked seven to ten minutes longer?


    December 3, 2010

    Very cool...I might give these a shot with a little less wet stuff. Very impressed by your ability to improv with baked goods, thats pretty hardcore! BTW, whenever I cook with fresh pumpkin/squash I always take the puree (which I often freeze ahead of time) and let it sit in a coffee filter in a colander in my sink for an hour or so.


    December 3, 2010

    I had a similar problem with some pumpkin bread, I substituted squash for the pumpkin and boy was it dense! I could of blunged someone to death with it....I had to bake it for twice as long. I will attempt it again but use less squash next time. I am so happy I saw your post this morning...


    December 3, 2010

    After I roast pumpkin, I let it cool then I strain it in cheescloth. You can let it set overnight and squeeze the cloth in the morning to get even more liquid out. The pumpkin is then more like the kind in cans. It's still a bit more moist but not much. Maybe this would work with squash also? You can always save the liquid that is drained and use is in soups or something else. I do this when I make pumpkin pie and it really works well. Just an idea!


    December 3, 2010

    The squash definitely has way more fluid in it than you'd think. Plus, the flax seed also retains moisture. You could compensate by either reducing liquid or, as you suggested, increasing the flour content. Or, cut the flax in half. Either way, they do sound yummy!


    December 5, 2010

    i made these with substitutions based on what i had in the pantry: canned bnut squash (a little less watery than fresh) and 1/2 cup of almond milk, 1/4c of maple syrup and a flax egg, and they came out not too soggy ... but a little gooey. still, they're tasty and not too sweet, so thanks!


    December 9, 2010

    Without actually making the recipe, it's hard to know what the right amount of squash would be. However, I know that when I roast my own pumpkin, I always roast-puree-strain. Straining is what gets the same consistency as canned pumpkin. I'm wondering if you strained your roasted/pureed squash?


    December 9, 2010

    I did not. Made it just as stated above. Purely experimental as most of my recipes. :)


    December 11, 2010

    I agree with the straining ... I make a butternut squash pie (soo good) and I strain it in cheese cloth ... works everytime!


    November 13, 2011

    I made this with 1/3rd cup extra flour (I used spelt flour), and I kept the roasted butternut squash as is without straining. I used 1 cup of roasted butternut squash (I roasted an actual butternut squash and didn't use canned). I also used whole milk rather than skim. I baked it at 350 for 20 minutes, and they did not fall flat and were baked evenly through. I think they turned out well although the flavor was lacking something. I think the next time I make these (and I have more butternut squash so that very well could be tomorrow!), I am going to try adding some carrots, apples, and/or raisins because I think it needs another flavor that would support the butternut squash well.


    January 8, 2012

    Made these today....Mine rose perfectly but the honey Just wasn't enough sweetness for me!


    June 1, 2012

    How about applesauce instead of milk? Maybe just 1/2 cup? Sounds yummy.


    August 5, 2013

    Hi just wondering if making this gluten free would be an option.. if so what should I use instead of the wheat flour? Thanks!


      August 6, 2013

      Hi Shannon! I've had success with an oat/almond mixture that may work for you. See this recipe...


    December 12, 2013

    I'm no expert but you probably could have baked these at 275 for an hour and gotten away with it. From my experience fruit batters cook the best at a lower temperature. then stuff them in the freezer immediately after they are done. I'm gonna try this recipe. Thanks for it.


    April 26, 2015

    Your recipe sounds awesome. Did you end up perfecting it?