I couldn’t work out whether to call these “Carrot Cake Muffins” or “Totally Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins”. Because – wait for it – these contain no butter, no oil, and are still moist and yummy. Plus, while most muffins contain a bucketload of sugar, these contain a grand total of ¼ cup of maple syrup (and that’s spread over 14 muffins).
And I don’t mean to sound like a maple syrup salesperson, but maple syrup is more nutritious than sugar – it’s low GI and contains iron, calcium, zinc, manganese and potassium. That being said, when you spread ¼ cup of maple syrup over 14 muffins, you’re really not going to be consuming much syrup at all (which is fabulous news for anyone concerned about their sugar intake).
So there we go, people: These contain a “healthier” version of sugar, and use very little of it. Win-win, if you ask me. And since you’re reading this, I’m just going to assume that you did ask me.
I’m over-the-moon to claim that these bad boys have the official seal of approval from eight-graders. Since I have a once-a-week job as a high school debating coach, I figured I’d start using the students as recipe testers. They get food on Friday afternoons, and I get to offload a batch of muffins – good for everyone involved.
Everyone claimed to really like the muffins, and some students had more than one (I’m pretty sure one girl ate three of them). Considering these are people who turned up late because they “had to buy some chocolate”, I’m very pleased.
So you might be wondering, “What’s the secret of these muffins?!” Well, wonder no more because I’ll tell you: the kitchen sink. No, these were not made in the kitchen sink! What I meant was that these carrot cake muffins that are loaded with everything.
Ok, not everything. But if you look at the ingredients list, you’ll notice that it’s awfully long for something made in one bowl. The carrots, crushed pineapple, grated apple, yogurt, eggs and raisins all add so much moisture and sweetness, which means that you don’t need to use any oil or butter, and only a small amount of maple syrup.
So I hope you’re like me and love it when carrot cakes are bursting with all kinds of fruit and nuts! And if you also share my hatred of cleaning, then you’ll agree that only needing one bowl is fabulous. Like, it-just-made-my-year fabulous.
If you would prefer to make Texas muffins (giant muffins), increase the cooking time to 22-25 minutes – and you’ll end up with seven, rather than fourteen. Due to muffin-pan constants, I made twelve standard-sized muffins and one Texas muffin. And who ended up having the Texas muffin? Me, of course!
Don’t you just love the name “Texas muffin”? It makes me laugh every time.
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup crushed pineapple*
- 3 carrots, peeled and grated (approx. 2 ¼ cups grated carrots)
- 1 Granny Smith apple, grated
- ½ cup yogurt
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/16 teaspoon ground nutmeg (a pinch)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup shredded coconut (unsweetened)
- ⅓ cup chopped walnuts (or pecans)
- ¼ cup raisins
- 1 ½ cups white spelt flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon rolled oats (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease a 12-hole muffin pan (plus two extra) with cooking oil spray.
- In a large bowl, beat the eggs together with a fork. Add the crushed pineapple, grated carrots, grated apple, yogurt, maple syrup and vanilla extract. Mix well with a wooden spoon.
- Mix in the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, salt, coconut, walnuts and raisins.
- Add the spelt flour, baking powder and baking soda. Mix until just combined.
- Transfer the mixture to the muffin holes, filling the holes almost the whole way up. Sprinkle over the rolled oats, if desired.
- Bake for 17-19 minutes, or until the muffins spring back when touched, and a skewer comes out clean (or with a few dry crumbs). Enjoy!