A delicious muffin recipe for the kids and adults alike, these Sugar-free Carrots Muffins are a healthier take on the classic carrot cake muffin with whole wheat flour, honey, applesauce – and a whole lot of carrots!
Sugar-free Carrot Muffin Recipe
Back when I was working outside of the home, one of my favorite on-the-go breakfasts was a McDonald’s coffee and carrot muffin. Extra butter.
Now, I knew those muffins were not healthy but I think I kidded myself into thinking that they couldn’t possibly be that bad. But at 430 calories, 16g of fat and 35g of sugar, those muffins were definitely not a great way to start my day.
But just because I knew those muffins weren’t good for me, doesn’t mean I stopped craving them!
Carrot muffins have that perfect combination of a soft cake-like crumb and delicious warm flavors – they are so comforting and pair perfectly with a cup of coffee. So, rather than try to quit cold-turkey, I decided to make a healthy carrot muffin recipe that I could indulge in – without the guilt.
These carrot muffins fit the bill perfectly. They provide whole grains, plenty of vegetable fiber, warm spices and are sweetened naturally with honey, so it doesn’t give you that sugar crash that a traditional sugar-laden muffin would. And at less than 120 calories per muffin and 3g of fat, you don’t need to feel guilty about treating yourself.
These carrot muffins have a slightly chewy exterior but the perfect soft and light interior. I personally recommend skipping the paper liners and just placing the batter directly in a greased muffin pan, or using silicone liners.
If you want to make these carrot muffins into carrot cupcakes, you can top them with a healthy cream cheese frosting like this one from Chocolate-Covered Katie.
If you want to make these muffins jumbo-sized, grab a jumbo muffin pan and be sure to grease the top of the pan to prevent the muffin tops from sticking. You can also make this carrot muffin batter into a healthy carrot cake, mini carrot muffins, or a carrot loaf. Whatever you find most indulgent and comforting.
The biggest secret to getting that gorgeous, fluffy muffin texture is to avoid overmixing the batter. A few spots of flour are okay! I tend to skip the electric mixer and just stick to a whisk or spatula.
For more sugar-free muffin recipes, check out:
- Sugar-free Lemon Muffins from In the Kids Kitchen
- Healthy Blueberry Muffins from Cookie and Kate
- Sugar-free Apple Muffins from Brooklyn Farm Girl
- Healthy Oatmeal Muffins from In the Kids Kitchen
Healthy Carrot Muffins Ingredients
- Applesauce – this helps reduce the amount of fat (oil) needed for the muffins
- Egg – an important “binding” ingredient for this recipe, it can be swapped out for a flax seed egg, if desired
- Honey – this is where the sweetness of the muffin comes from, I do not recommend substituting for maple syrup or agave syrup, but the muffins will still work with those substitutions
- Melted butter – while we’re still using butter, it’s still less than a normal muffin recipe and is so important for the moisture and flavor of these muffins
- Vanilla extract – always an essential ingredient in muffins, a good-quality extract adds great flavor dimensions
- Whole wheat flour – you can use all-purpose flour, if desired
- Baking soda – essential to helping this muffin be soft, light and airy
- Salt – helps balance the flavors
- Cinnamon – adds sweetness and warm to these cupcakes
- Ground nutmeg – perfect for rounding out the earthy, sweetness of the carrots and bringing more warmth to the flavor profile
- Grated carrots – I use a box grater to grate my carrots, but you can use a vegetable peeler or a food processor
Tip: add nuts, raisins or whatever other mix-ins you prefer.
Kitchen Tools You May Find Helpful
- Muffin pan
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Mixing bowl
- Spatula or wooden spoon
How to Make Sugar-free Carrot Muffins
Preheat oven to 350ºF.
In a large bowl, combine the egg, applesauce, honey, melted butter and vanilla extract. Stir until fully combined. Set aside.
In a small bowl, combine the whole wheat flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
Add half of the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, stir well, then add the carrots. Combine fully before adding remaining flour mixture.
Line a muffin pan with paper or silicone liners, and then portion 1/4 cup of batter into each liner.
Bake for 22-25 minutes, until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. (If they brown too much on top, place a sheet of tinfoil overtop to prevent burning.)
Let cool in the muffin pan for 2 minutes.
Best enjoyed once fully cooled.
Grab your free printable for our sugar-free carrot muffins recipe:
- 1 cup applesauce
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 cup melted butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups whole wheat floour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 cup grated carrots (approximately 3 carrots)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF.
- In a large bowl, combine the egg, applesauce, honey, melted butter and vanilla extract. Stir until fully combined. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the whole wheat flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
- Add half of the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, stir well, then add the carrots. Combine fully before adding remaining flour mixture.
- Line a muffin pan with paper or silicone liners, and then portion 1/4 cup of batter into each liner.
- Bake for 22-25 minutes, until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. (If they brown too much on top, place a sheet of tinfoil overtop to prevent burning.)
- Let cool in the muffin pan for 2 minutes.
- Best enjoyed once fully cooled.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 122Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 17mgSodium: 158mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 3gSugar: 10gProtein: 3g
Sugar, Spice and Glitter uses an auto-generate nutrition calculator. Nutrition information isn’t always accurate unless analyzed in a scientific lab, so these should be considered more of a guideline than medical information.
These healthy sugar-free carrot muffins taste indulgent but pack a nutritional wallop! They are the perfect way to satisfy a carrot muffin craving, without the unnecessary sugar, calories and unhealthy fats.