Muffins have kind of achieved an undeserved health halo. Honestly, most of them are just cupcakes without frosting! But these Whole Wheat Carrot Muffins are actually healthy! Boasting whole grains, no added sugar, and vegetables! But no one will ever know, because they're just as delicious, lightly sweet, and super moist as any other muffin!
Don't forget to grab my free list of heart health baking substitutions at the end of this post!
What else can I do with lots of carrots?
Carrots are pretty versatile. They are a delicious Fall vegetable, so they're found in many recipes this time of year. But they're also slightly sweet, so they are also great in a lot of desserts (hello, carrot cake!). But of course not all of those recipes are healthy. Here are some ideas for heart healthy ways to use carrots:
- In oatmeal. Grated carrots are an excellent addition to oatmeal! Try my Tropical Carrot Cake Oatmeal for a fun variation.
- In smoothies. A delicious way to add nutrition to your smoothies. Try Orange Mango Sunshine Smoothie.
- Roasted. Oh boy, do I love a roasted carrot! Alone or with other veggies, this is a perfect way to prepare carrots! Roasted Beets and Carrots is a great option!
- Raw with hummus!
- In soup. Either the star or an undertone, carrots go great in soup! Try my Thai Curry Pumpkin Soup with carrots instead of pumpkin!
- If you have carrots with the tops, consider a Carrot Top Tabbouleh Salad.
- Make fries! Yep, carrots are even great for making healthy Crispy Oven Fries.
- Fermented Carrots. If you're up for a bit of a science experiment that's delicious, try naturally fermented carrots! A bit higher on the sodium side, so watch that if you need to.
How do you shred carrots for muffins?
You can shred your carrots using several different methods. I suggest using a box grater, or a cheese grater, as in the pictures below. For muffins, you really want the shred to be small. Not like the bigger shreds you get in store bought shredded carrots and salad mixes. Larger shreds won't mix into the batter very well, and may also end up crunchy in the muffins.
Another good way to do this is with an attachment on your food processor if you have one. While that will mean another large appliance to clean, it will save you big on time and elbow grease, since you need 2 cups for these muffins.
Tips and substitutions for this recipe
In general, I try not to make too many substitutions in baking recipes, mostly because I'm less confident with baking! For more heart healthy baking substitutes, stop by the end of this post. But here are some tips and substitutions to consider for these muffins:
- Use pumpkin puree or plain yogurt instead of applesauce. If you do, you may want to add a bit of sweetener.
- Any nuts will work in this recipe, but my favorites are pecans or walnuts.
- You can use ground chia seeds instead of ground flax.
- Use fruit juice instead of milk. Apple cider or apricot nectar would both work great! If you can find it, carrot juice would be delicious in this recipe, too!
- Try adding ½ cup dried fruit, like raisins or cranberries, to the batter.
- Taste the batter before baking. If you think it's not sweet enough, add a little honey or maple syrup. These are not meant to be over-the-top sweet, and if you're still in the process of transitioning to a healthier eating plan, you may need a bit more sweetener. Go as light as you can.
- These are yummy plain, but I recommend serving them with Peanut Butter Sweet Potato Spread!
Heart Healthy Baking Substitutes
Baking can be tricky to make healthy! If you're looking for more tips, make sure to get my list of Heart Healthy Baking Substitutes:
If you try Whole Wheat Carrot Turmeric Muffins, don't forget to let me know in the comments!
Whole Wheat Carrot Turmeric Muffins
- 1 ½ cup Whole Wheat Flour
- 1 tablespoon Ground Flax
- 2 teaspoon Cinnamon
- 1 ½ teaspoon Baking Powder
- ¾ teaspoon Baking Soda
- ½ teaspoon Turmeric
- ½ teaspoon ground Ginger
- ¼ teaspoon Salt
- 2 cups grated Carrots
- ½ cup chopped Nuts
- ½ cup Unsweetened Applesauce
- ½ cup Date Paste (see notes)
- ½ cup Unsweetened Soy Milk, or choice
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Prepare muffin tin by either greasing the cups or using paper liners.
- In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients together well.
- In another bowl, combine the wet ingredients, and mix well.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and stir until just combined. Do not over mix.
- Divide the batter among the 12 muffin cups, filling each cup about ⅔ - ¾ full.
- Bake for 25-32 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.
- Store in an airtight container for a few days at room temperature, or up to a week in the refrigerator.