Seeded Pumpkin and Feta Muffins

Seeded Pumpkin and Feta Muffins

I originally highlighted this recipe in 2010, and revisited it last week. So good! You all know by now, I love self-published cookbooks. Particularly ones with a strong point of view, thoughtful design, and inspired recipes. In that spirit, I have a gem to share with you this afternoon. It is a light-hearted little cookbook titled Martha Goes Green, created by a media-savvy trio of friends in Melbourne, Australia. The book includes a recipe for these sunflower seed and spinach-flecked pumpkin feta muffins. Savory muffin fans, you know who you are, these don't disappoint.Pumpkin and Feta Muffins with Sunflower Seeds
When I spent a month traveling around New Zealand a few years back, it became clear that New Zealand is the land of the A+ muffin. Scones too, but muffins in particular. There were lots of savory versions to choose from, but my favorites always had winter squash in them. If this book is any indication, I suspect Australia might be similar. Anyhow, these muffins are exactly the sort of thing I crave and remember from that trip. I love the kick of black pepper here, and the blend of cheese. It's not quite pumpkin season here, so I substituted butternut squash. But really, just about any winter squash will do.

Pumpkin and Feta Muffins with Sunflower Seeds
As far as the specs of the book go, Martha Goes Green is a collection of about fifty vegetarian recipes. It is just shy of 100 pages, spiral-bound and printed on recycled paper using vegetable based inks. Nearly all of the recipes have been photographed, and the book is punctuated with adorable illustrations by Jessica Honey. The recipes have an accessible, achievable vibe to them and I have the vegetarian pho, satay curry, stir fried noodles, and lentil mushroom moussaka earmarked to try next. The book doesn't seem to be available anymore (it has been over a decade), but you can still check in on some of the recipes here and here on Rosie's site
Pumpkin and Feta Muffins with Sunflower Seeds

Other things to know about these muffins from people who have baked them over the years:

Michele says, "I froze a bunch, so wanted to let you all know they freeze well. And, while this is probably obvious, they need to be stored in the fridge. I forgot they weren’t “regular muffins” and just left them in a container on the counter and the cheese went bad." Julia noted, "I only had fresh dill instead of the parsley and asiago in place of the parmesan. Was still really tasty." There are a bunch of other ingredient swap suggestions in the comments along with people reporting back on gluten-free and vegan versions!

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Seeded Pumpkin and Feta Muffins

4.14 from 15 votes

The recipe calls for 2 cups of flour. There are a couple different flour combinations you might explore. The original: you can use unbleached all-purpose flour - 2 cups / 9 oz / 260g. Alternatively, I use equal parts APF and spelt flour which translates to 1 cup / 4.5 oz/ 130g APF + 1 cup / 4 oz / 115g spelt flour. I might try a whole wheat pastry flour version next time - using 2/3 wpp + 1/3 apf, the first time around - to see how that goes. You might need to add an extra splash of milk though.

Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups / 9 oz / 255g cubed pumpkin or butternut squash, 1/2-inch cubes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 large handful of baby spinach, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley or cilantro
  • 1/4 cup / 4T. sunflower seeds kernels
  • 3/4 cup / 1 oz / 30g freshly grated Parmesan
  • 100 g / 3.5 oz / 1/2 cup cubed feta
  • 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup / 180 ml milk
  • 2 cups flour (see headnote!)
  • 4 teaspoons aluminum free baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 405F / 200C, with rack in the top third. Use the butter to grease a 12-hole muffin pan and set aside, alternately, use paper liners.
  2. Sprinkle the olive oil and some salt and pepper over the squash. Toss well and turn onto a baking sheet or roasting pan. Arrange in a single layer and bake for 15 - 25 minutes or until cooked through entirely. Set aside to cool. You can do this step a couple days in advance, and refrigerate the squash until you're ready to use it.
  3. Transfer two-thirds of the squash to a large mixing bowl along with the spinach, parsley, sunflower seeds, Parmesan, two-thirds of the feta, and all of the mustard. Gently fold together. In a separate bowl beat the eggs and milk together and add to the squash mix. Sift the flour and baking powder onto the squash mix, top with the salt and a generous dose of freshly ground black pepper and fold together just until the batter comes together, be careful not to over mix.
  4. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan, filling each hole 3/4 full, top each muffin with a bit of the remaining squash and feta (see photo up above). Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the tops and sides of the muffins are golden, and the muffins have set up completely. Let cool for a couple minutes then turn out onto a cooling rack. I like these muffins cooled a bit, served just warmer than room temperature.
Notes

Adapted from a recipe in Martha Goes Green by Rosie Percival and Ruth Friedlander.

Serves
12
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
1 hr 5 mins
 
 
If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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Comments

I have pumpkin. I have feta. I WAS going to make spinach and feta muffins tonight, but now it's going to be spinach, feta and pumkin. Can't stand sweet muffins - never could. Thank you for this! Robyn

Koek!

Yay for Melbourne, Australia! What a gorgeous book and recipe. Darling illustrations too. Thanks, Heidi, for bringing this great book to my attention. Heidi xo

Heidi - apples under my bed

These muffins look perfect for fall. Thanks for sharing the cookbook. If and when I pt one together - this is a great model!

Michelle

this is a nice new way to use pumpkins this season! besides pumpkin pie or bread. and i love the concept of a savory muffin, thanks for sharing this recipe! definitely going to try it.

mariya

Love the feta and pumpkin combo; I tried this tnite with goat cheese and it was fabulous too! Thanks Heidi!

The Healthy Apple

what a gorgeous book - I am going to see how these go with some dried chili flakes for a bit of a kick agreed that the savoury muffins are definitely less common here in Australia - I'll see if I can't do something about that :) (once we conquer savoury muffins, my next project will have to be the ubiquitous kiwi hokey pokey ice cream)

georgie

My children gave me Martha Goes Green for my birthday and the recipes are just fabulous. There are many great foodies down here in my home town Melbourne, Australia. Your posts are always good Heidi, really enjoy all your food! Thanks Sandi

Sandi

Oops -- I just re-read my post and meant to say: 1/3 APF in the ratio of flours.

Suzanne

Just sampled my first muffin after making your recipe tonight. I used 2/3 whole wheat flour (NOT ww pastry flour as recommended...didn't have it) and 1/2 APF. It turned out a little spongey but otherwise they are great. I needed a little butter put on (while warm) and i think the flavor combinations all came together quite well! My only confusion came with the black pepper: Heidi made it sound like you could really taste the black pepper but I don't really. I wish I had added more but when I followed the directions, it wasn't clear just how much should be mixed in in order to really clearly taste it once it's baked. Some of us direction-follower types need things a bit more obvious. :) Was really easy to make, too, which I love for a Sunday night! Can't WAIT for more fall recipes! Thanks, Heidi!

Suzanne

Oh my goodness, I'm so excited! I love the combination of winter squash, feta, and Parmesan, and have been putting it into everything lately, from pasta, to calzones, to tarts, to omelets and I had just run out of ideas for what to do next. But now I know. I am making these tonight!!!

Emily

I love all of the savory pumpkin recipes circulating around the blogosphere lately. These muffins look and sound delicious! I recently posted my recipe for pumpkin mac & cheese, and after reading your post I think a bit of feta on top would have been a nice addition :).

Lauren

OMG FANTASTIC! I just made them with GF flour and butternut squash! Wonderful! I had to tweet about it it was so good! I didn't use sunflower seeds as I don't care for them however it didn't detract from the great flavor. It was perfect for a fall treat warm with a bit of butter. Soft flavors, I wasn't looking for a strong punch but a great comfort food and this was perfect. THANK YOU!

Candace

Thanks for this recipe!! I just made these muffins and thoroughly enjoyed the smell of the baking squash (I used an organic Kuri squash). I also used basil instead of cilantro or parsley, because I had it on hand. I found them tasty but a bit salty. I found Jane's comment interesting as I have never bothered to investigate baking powder to find out about the sodium. Using goat cheese or ricotta and leaving out the salt at the end would fix this little issue, I think.

Anonymous

Just too gorgeous can't wait to try!:)

Ananda Rajashekar

That cookbook looks amazing. So pretty to look at and the muffins and recipes look very tasty.

Sarah

I love the idea of pumpkins in muffins! And good feta makes anything taste good, so definitely a winning combination. Thanks :) I had just made what I call 'silky-smooth squash soup' for dinner last night. As I was checking out your latest post, I thought Aha! Another option for butternut squash.

Merry

I'm going to try a variation with what I have on hand: sweet potato, pomegranate seeds, goat cheese or feta. I found a great book at the library called Savory Baking by Mary Cech, Chronicle Books, 2009 with lots of interesting suggestions for making traditionally sweet baked goods into savory ones. It's definitely worth checking out! Thanks, Heidi, for this great website and for your cookbooks--your recipes have definitely inspired my own creativity in the kitchen and have clearly done so for a great many others as well. It's very much appreciated!

Jenna

I'll definitely be trying these! I've used pumpkin and feta together before, together with puy lentils to make a salad and I think they really compliment each other. I really enjoy savoury muffins and as we move into pumpkin season, these will be great to try.

Holly

These are so delicious and easy to make. I am eating one as I type. Beautiful food Heidi, thank you so much for such inspiring recipes!

Christina

These muffins sound delicious! I've never tried the pumpkin-feta combination, but will definitely have to try. Thanks for sharing :-)

HappyWhenNotHungry

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