Confession: We’ve been baking more than usual. Older bags of specialty flours are finally getting used up (helloooo fancy hazelnut flour), new superfood additions are being tested (Q: Can you use superfood tinctures in baking? A: Not really.), and the freezer is officially bursting with overstock banana bread (because someone went a *little* overboard with the idea of batch cooking).
And yet the call of a preheated oven is still oh-so real...
As a result, we’ve been reworking a few classic recipes to make them healthier than ever, while satisfying the desire for something utterly comforting. So really, it was only a matter of time before some carrot-cake-like muffins came onto the cravings agenda.
Baking with carrots is a wonderful way to sneak in an extra serving of vegetables, but let’s be real: A couple of vitamin-rich roots hardly makes up for the sheer saturation of unhealthy ingredients found in most carrot-based "treat" recipes. That’s why our Cinnamon-Carrot Muffins are such a baking unicorn: bursting with flavor, ultra moist (no cream cheese frosting needed!), and fully loaded with superfoods and nutrient-dense ingredients you can genuinely feel great about. Flaxseeds! Almonds! Goji berries! Yogurt! There’s just so much goodness to love in every one of these small muffin packages.
WATCH HOW WE MAKE OUR CINNAMON-CARROT MUFFINS:
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CINNAMON-CARROT MUFFIN COOKING TIPS:
Structurally, these muffins are pretty similar to classic muffin recipes: Mix dry ingredients, mix wet ingredients, combine, bake, and voila! Nevertheless, here are a few tips to make sure your muffins turn out perfect.
Use a fine-shred on your box grater for the carrots. For the best muffin consistency, use the eighth-inch grater to make the shredded carrots. Larger shreds will give the muffins a lumpier, more “homemade” look, while smaller shreds will make the muffins too dense … but the eighth-inch-fine shred creates ideal distribution.
Mix gently. When combining the wet and dry ingredients, mix together until the flour is fully incorporated, but no longer. Over mixing can disrupt the way the muffins rise.
Cut the sugar. Thanks to its lower glycemic index and trace minerals, the coconut sugar used in these muffins is already a “better choice” sugar. You can reduce your sugar impact even further, however, by replacing ¼ cup coconut sugar with ¼ cup 1:1 monkfruit sugar replacement.
Add superfoods. Our recipe contains two star superfoods already—flaxseed and goji berries—but you can always add more! Try a spoonful of chia seeds or hemp seeds, a handful of cacao nibs, or even mix a measured teaspoon or two of maca powder into the flour mixture (you will taste it a little, but the result is pleasant … just don’t add too much).
MORE HEALTHY BAKING RECIPES:
These super-moist muffins offer big cinnamon flavor with lots of flavorful, healthy gems inside (like sweet carrots, plump raisins, soft goji berries, and crunchy pecans). For best results, finely grate the carrots (use an eight-inch shredder) for better distribution, and feel free to substitute ingredients for the fruit and nut add-ins. Watch the video above to see how the muffins come together!
Prep Time: 15 mins | Bake Time: 25 mins | Total Time: 40 mins Servings: 12 muffins Author: Julie Morris
¼ cup ground flaxseed powder
½ cup water
1 cup spelt flour, or gluten-free 1:1 flour blend
½ cup fine almond flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
½ cup + 1 tablespoon coconut sugar, divided
¾ cup unflavored, unsweetened yogurt (non-dairy variety recommended)
¼ cup olive oil
1 packed cup shredded carrot (about 2 medium carrots)
½ cup raisins
¼ cup dried goji berries
¼ cup + 1 heaping tablespoon finely chopped pecans, divided
1. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.
2. In a large bowl, stir together the flaxseed powder and the water. Set aside while you proceed with the next step to allow the flax to become swollen.
3. In a medium bowl, combine the spelt flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Mix well.
4. To the bowl with the flaxseed gel, add ½ cup of the sugar, along with the yogurt and olive oil. Mix until smooth. Fold in the carrots, raisins, goji berries, and ¼ cup of the pecans. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, and mix into a thick batter—do not over-mix.
5. Divide the batter amongst the 12 muffin cups, gently smoothing out the tops a bit with your finger, if needed. Sprinkle the muffins with the remaining 1 tablespoon of coconut sugar, followed by the remaining 1 tablespoon of pecans. Bake for 20-25 minutes (our tests were done at 23 minutes), or until the sugar has caramelized and the tops are lightly browned. Remove the muffins from the heat and let cool for 10 minutes in the pan before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling (or enjoy warm).
Store extra muffins in a sealed container in a cool, dark place—muffins will last for up to 4 days.