Skinny Carrot Cake Muffins


I love carrot cake. Although I am a self diagnosed chocoholic, I think that, given the choice, carrot cake with cream cheese frosting would probably win out over chocolate cake any day. There is something awesome about making a sticky, sweet and unhealthy dessert out of a simple veggie like a carrot. I think I also associate carrot cake with Spring and Easter. I am currently desperate for spring, which seems like it will never arrive. In fact, the forecast for tomorrow is for more snow. I long for temperatures above 40 degrees!

Craving carrot cake the other day, I decided to try my hand at some healthy muffins instead. I figured I could take the good parts of carrot cake: shredded carrots, raisins, and walnuts and leave out the bad stuff like fat, sugar and frosting. I scaled back on fat using apple sauce and shredded carrots for moisture, and added just a bit of brown sugar for a hint of sweetness.


One of my issues with muffins in general is that they have morphed from a hearty breakfast food into dessert. I wanted to make something that would give me a good start to the day and had plenty of fiber, protein and vitamins. So this is not an overly sweet muffin. It has enough sweetness to satisfy, but is far from sugary. If you are craving something sweeter. I encourage you to up the brown sugar from 1/3 cup to 1/2 cup or even 2/3 cup.

Did I tell you the best part about these muffins? Each muffin has ONLY 210 CALORIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Take a deep breath and read that again: 210 calories EACH. And these are not mini muffins. Oh hell no – these are full size, super filling, make-a-meal-out-of-it muffins!!!


Skinny Carrot Cake Muffins
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 12
  • 1.25 cups white flour
  • 1.25 cups wheat flour
  • ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1.5 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • ½ tsp allspice
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ¼ cup olive oil (or canola oil)
  • ½ cup almond milk (or skim milk)
  • 2 cup shredded carrots (approx 4-5 carrots, peeled and shredded)
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened raisins
  • ¼ cup chopped walnuts
  • cooking spray
  1. Preheat oven to 375
  2. In a large bowl, combine flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg, set aside
  3. In another bowl, whisk together eggs, vanilla, applesauce, oil, and milk until frothy
  4. Add carrots, raisins and walnuts to wet mixture
  5. Create a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the wet mixture
  6. Using a rubber spatula, fold dry into wet ingredients. Be careful not to overmix
  7. Carefully spoon muffin mixture into greased muffin tin
  8. Bake for 20 minutes and allow to cool


Screen shot 2013-03-24 at 5.44.32 PM



15 Responses to Skinny Carrot Cake Muffins

  1. Jeff March 25, 2013 at 4:36 am #

    They look so good! I love the flecks of orange that pop up in here. Definitely a mouthwatering treat! I may be tempted to add a cream cheese topping to it as well, although that ruins the skinny part 😛

  2. Jenn and Seth March 25, 2013 at 3:40 pm #

    these look sooooo good Dara! they sound like such a delicious breakfast, i’ve gotta try them!

  3. Angie@Angie's Recipes March 25, 2013 at 6:21 pm #

    These are not only healthy, also so tasty!

  4. Stephanie @ Legally Blinde March 26, 2013 at 4:48 am #

    Oh yum, these looks so good! I didn’t see the brown sugar listed in the ingredients, though – did you end up using 1/3 cup in the recipe?

    • Dara March 26, 2013 at 6:21 pm #

      I made two batches, one with less and one with more. Found myself enjoying the less sweet version (1/3 cup) so I went with that for the recipe. I’ll fix this ASAP. Thanks!

  5. CCU March 26, 2013 at 8:50 am #

    I would love to devour these for breakfast 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  6. yummychunklet March 26, 2013 at 7:40 pm #

    I’m the only one in my family who likes carrot cake, so I’m making these for myself!

  7. You convinced me, first of all I love carrot cake, secondly I love food that has not to many calories :)

  8. Liz March 27, 2013 at 1:00 am #

    I feel exactly the same way about carrot cake! It would be my choice for a birthday cake 9 x out of 10! I love this healthy breakfast (lunch, dinner or snack) muffin!!! SO yummy!

  9. Mommypage April 1, 2013 at 6:41 pm #

    Yum! This looks like an amazing recipe. It’s a great alternative to carrot cake. Thank you for sharing!

  10. Terrano Spirit S3 April 17, 2013 at 4:17 am #

    My partner and I stumbled over here coming from a different web page and thought I might check things out. I like what I see so now i am following you. Look forward to looking over your web page repeatedly.

  11. sas5 May 25, 2013 at 3:05 am #

    These were really really good! I ended up not using any sugar at all and just drizzling a tiny bit of honey on top! Super tasty! I couldn’t stop from having two as a dessert…

  12. Angela June 6, 2013 at 4:03 pm #

    So to confirm you added sugar too??

    • Dara June 7, 2013 at 1:03 am #

      Hey Angela – I did. I used 1/3 cup of brown sugar. However, you could use raw honey, coconut sugar or stevia if you like. These muffins are designed to not be very sweet so some may enjoy more.


  1. Healthyish Carrot Cake Muffins! | teagzteagz - June 26, 2013

    […] I found this  un -iced version by Generation Y foodie,  […]

Leave a Reply

Rate this recipe: