Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins

Healthy Carrot cake muffins made with less sugar than your average and more tender than any muffin you’ve ever had before! These are also loaded with tons of shredded carrots, coconut, and plump raisins. So easy, healthy, and delicious!

Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins - Made with less sugar than traditional muffins and packed with greek yogurt and apple sauce so there isn't a dry crumb in sight! #carrotcake #carrotcakemuffins #muffins #healthy | Littlespicejar.com

ORIGINAL RECIPE POSTED JAN. 20TH, 2014. UPDATED ON APR. 5TH, 2017 WITH NEW PICTURES AND MINOR RECIPE ADJUSTMENTS.


HEALTHY carrot cake muffins! 🎉

If I was ever forced to choose between a bagel or a muffin, first of all, that would be a major life decision, and secondly, i’d jump for the muffin. Can you tell i’ve given this a lot of thought? Don’t get me wrong. I have nothing against bagels. In fact, I heart them to the maxxx. Especially the sesame ones with a swirl of veggie schmear on it when it’s all toasty. Ohh yeahhhh, baby. Wait, weren’t we suppose to be talking about muffins? Just give me all the carbs, will ya?

But muffins like these healthy carrot cake muffins have a special place in my heart. Especially for breakfast. Am I the only one that rolls out of bed and wants something sweet to wake up my tastebuds? My husband is completely the opposite. He won’t even think about anything sweet until he’s had his ‘real’ also known as savory breakfast + coffee. And then he’ll proceed to ‘breakfast dessert’ as he calls it. He’s so kooky and I absolutely adore him.

There’s just something about a warm muffin. The sweet scent of bread. The way the heat radiates out of the paper lining. I’m easy to please; I’d take one that came in almost any flavor. Be it chocolate, lemon, blueberry, or banana.

Thank goodness I’ve never been forced to make such absurd decisions.

Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins - Made with less sugar than traditional muffins and packed with greek yogurt and apple sauce so there isn't a dry crumb in sight! #carrotcake #carrotcakemuffins #muffins #healthy | Littlespicejar.com

It’s been 3 years since I originally posted this recipe and it was time we updated the pictures. It worked out quite well as I always make these muffins in springtime around Easter.

I’m calling them ‘healthy carrot cake muffins’ because they’re made with half whole wheat flour and less sugar than traditional muffins. And friends, when I say these muffins are SUPER MOIST I mean it. I know, I know that word. But really, wait until you crack one open and take your first bite. They’re soft, fluffy and not a dry crumb in sight.

These carrot cake muffins are absolutely perfect.  Straight forward and super simple too. A whole heck of a lot better than the stale coffee shop version, perfect! And I don’t say things are perfect that often. <— toooootally not true. Ahem, needless to say I devoured a muffin while typing this (no really, I did). I wouldn’t be surprised if I found a few crumbs around the keyboard later.

Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins - Made with less sugar than traditional muffins and packed with greek yogurt and apple sauce so there isn't a dry crumb in sight! #carrotcake #carrotcakemuffins #muffins #healthy | Littlespicejar.com

Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins - Made with less sugar than traditional muffins and packed with greek yogurt and apple sauce so there isn't a dry crumb in sight! #carrotcake #carrotcakemuffins #muffins #healthy | Littlespicejar.com

What I love most about these muffins is that you don’t have to use mixing equipment to make them. Sometimes you just want to grab a whisk and do it the old fashioned way while you’re standing there lost in thought or in my case binge listening to podcasts. Is that a thing, binge listening?

Here’s a given, the carrots are the star of the show but then we use plump raisins, crunchy walnuts, and shredded coconut to add lots more flavor. One thing I love doing is sprinkling a handful of rolled oats on the bottom of my muffin pan before pouring in the muffin batter and then topping the batter with another pinch of oats. This provides a nice added crunch to the muffins plus it makes the tops look so much prettier, dontcha think?

As with most of my muffin recipes, I like to use coconut oil for these carrot cake muffins. Vegetable or canola oil will work as well but I find that the natural sweetness of coconut oil lends so much flavor to muffins. Have you tried coconut oil in baked goods? I swear by it.

You can feel good about serving your family and friends these because we’re using ingredients like unsweetened apple sauce and greek yogurt. Greek yogurt can be replaced with sour cream or even mayo if you want them to have that nice buttery richness, but I always just stick with my 0% fat greek yogurt to make these healthier. The apple sauce helps reduce the amount of sugar we add in these muffins and that’s ALWAYS a good thing.

Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins - Made with less sugar than traditional muffins and packed with greek yogurt and apple sauce so there isn't a dry crumb in sight! #carrotcake #carrotcakemuffins #muffins #healthy | Littlespicejar.com

Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins - Made with less sugar than traditional muffins and packed with greek yogurt and apple sauce so there isn't a dry crumb in sight! #carrotcake #carrotcakemuffins #muffins #healthy | Littlespicejar.com

You’re packin’ these muffins with 2 cups of shredded carrots + tons of crunchy goodness and i’m telling you, they pair beautifully with a cup of coffee in the morning. These also freeze well so if it’s just you and the cat (or in my case, just me on the weekdays) pop them in the freezer in zip top bags and just zap them in the microwave when that 3 o’clock hunger strikes. Or when you roll of out bed 2 minutes before you need to be on your way to work. They work well in all sorts of sticky situations.

Betcha can’t eat just one, it’s a good thing they’re good for you.

Super moist and healthy carrot cake muffins are my jam!

Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins - Made with less sugar than traditional muffins and packed with greek yogurt and apple sauce so there isn't a dry crumb in sight! #carrotcake #carrotcakemuffins #muffins #healthy | Littlespicejar.com

ORIGINAL RECIPE POSTED JAN. 20TH, 2014. UPDATED ON APR. 5TH, 2017 WITH NEW PICTURES AND MINOR RECIPE ADJUSTMENTS.

Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins

Healthy Carrot cake muffins made with less sugar than your average and more tender than any muffin you’ve ever had before! These are also loaded with tons of shredded carrots, coconut, and plump raisins. So easy, healthy, and delicious!

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour (I use 1/2 whole wheat and 1/2 AP)
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon EACH salt and ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon*
  • ⅔ cup melted coconut oil (see notes)
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1/4 cup greek yogurt
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups carrots, finely shredded
  • 1/2 cup EACH shredded sweetened coconut, raisins, AND walnuts
  • 1/4 cup oats, divided

Directions:

  1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350ºF. If you want, you can line your cupcake pan with paper liners. Or spray the insides with cooking spray. Sprinkle half the oats on the liners, set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour(s), baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and salt, set aside.
  3. In a large bowl with a whisk, hand mixer, or stand mixer, on medium speed, combine the brown sugar and oil. Beat in the yogurt and apple sauce until fully combined – about 1 minute. Mixture will be gritty and thin. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla. 
  4. With a spatula, manually stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined and all flour pockets are gone – do not overmix. Fold in the finely shredded carrots, shredded coconut, raisins, and walnuts. The muffin mixture will be thick. Pour into prepared cupcake pans. Sprinkle the remaining oats on top and shaved coconut too if you’d like.
  5. Bake for 20 – 23 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean or with just a few crumbs. Let cool for several minutes before devouring!

Notes:

  1. After making these muffins more than a dozen times after originally posting the recipe back in 2014, i’ve found that I prefer them with ⅔ cup of oil rather than the originally stated amount of ‘¾ cup’. However either amount will work.
  2. The original recipe also called for ‘½ tablespoon of cinnamon’ instead of the 2 teaspoons that i’ve updated it with.

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Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins - Made with less sugar than traditional muffins and packed with greek yogurt and apple sauce so there isn't a dry crumb in sight! #carrotcake #carrotcakemuffins #muffins #healthy | Littlespicejar.comNutritional facts are for 1/16th of the recipe using ⅔ cup coconut oil.

Super Moist and Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins - Made with less sugar than traditional muffins and packed with greek yogurt and apple sauce so there isn't a dry crumb in sight! #carrotcake #carrotcakemuffins #muffins #healthy | Littlespicejar.com