These gluten free carrot oat muffins have the fragrant flavour of cardamom and cinnamon, and the natural sweetness of carrots. Healthy carrot cake muffins are made with wholegrain oatmeal and are flourless, gluten free, with no refined sugar. Who would have thought eating vegetables for breakfast could be so delicious?
What you'll love about the recipe
- Carrot oat muffins are a healthy, on-the-go breakfast alternative to carrot cake!
- Filling and nutritious. Six muffins are packed with 2 cups of grated carrot and wholegrain oats. (You might also like these chocolate muffins with sweet potato)
- Gluten free, flourless, low in added sugar and low in saturated fat. These healthy carrot muffins are also dairy free
- Quick and easy, carrot oatmeal muffins can be stored for 2 or 3 days and freeze really well. Perfect for a healthy meal prep breakfast!
Healthy carrot muffins
Most muffins are made with refined flour and lots of added sugar. However, muffins can be a healthy option.
This gluten free carrot oat muffin recipe uses whole oats, which are ground to a flour-like consistency during the mixing process. Oats are a wholegrain, which means they are high in fibre, and a natural source of vitamin B. Baking cakes and muffins with oat flour is a good way to avoid wheat.
Many supermarket muffins contain over a tablespoon of sugar and fat per muffin, but this recipe has less than a third of that. Each of these wholesome healthy breakfast muffins with carrots contains a teaspoon of olive oil, a teaspoon of honey, lots of oats and grated carrot, plus some egg. That's a pretty healthy breakfast, or snack at any time of day:)
Gluten-free carrot oat muffins will also keep you feeling full and satisfied as they are high-fibre. The soluble fibre will also help to keep your blood sugar levels steady.
Oats. These muffins are made with all oats and no flour. You'll need porridge or rolled oats to make recipe. To make gluten-free carrot muffins, use certified GF oats. They are processed in such a way that they cannot become contaminated with other grains.
Carrots. Use any type of carrot to make carrot oatmeal muffins. Carrots are a great source of beta carotene, and they result in a beautiful golden coloured muffin. The natural sweetness of carrots means that the muffins are low in added sugar
Olive oil. A little oil helps to keep these healthy muffins moist. I use extra virgin olive oil as it has higher levels of nutrients. As there is only a small amount in the recipe, you will not really notice the flavour of the oil. If you prefer, you could use coconut oil, or melted butter
Eggs help to bind the muffin mixture, and add extra protein and nutrients
Honey: I find 2 tablespoons of honey adds the right level of sweetness to these gluten-free carrot oat muffins. If you prefer, use maple syrup. Other than the honey, there's no sugar in the muffin recipe.
Spices and flavourings. Cardamom is quite a strong spice, so just ¼ teaspoon will allow the flavour to come through. If you are using cardamom pods rather than ground cardamom, then you'll need 2-3 pods. Lightly crush the pods to remove the seeds, then grind the seeds in a mortar and pestle. Cinnamon and vanilla extract further bring out the natural sweetness in these low sugar muffins and complement the flavour of the carrots.
Of course, you can vary the warm spices in the muffins - allspice, ginger or nutmeg would also work well, or use a teaspoon of mixed spice. A little grated orange zest also goes well with the sweet flavour of carrots.
Raisins: these are entirely optional, but they go well in carrot oat muffins and add a little extra sweetness. Alternatively, you can add nuts such as chopped walnuts or pecans
Baking powder will give the muffins a bit of lift and make them more fluffy. But they do not rise a huge amount, so make sure to fill your paper cases to the top
How to make gluten-free carrot oat muffins
Place the oats in the bowl of the food processor and blitz until they turn to a coarse flour. Add the roughly chopped carrots, and blitz again until very finely chopped.
Add the oil, honey, eggs, spices, vanilla extract and baking powder.
Blitz until thoroughly mixed.
Stir in the raisins by hand so that they remain whole
Spoon into paper cupcake cases and bake for 20 minutes in a preheated oven at 180 degrees. Your healthy carrot oat muffins should be springy to the touch. And your kitchen will be cosy with the smell of warm spices!
What if I don't have a food processor?
If you don't have a food processor or blender to make the muffins, then it's best to use ready ground oat flour rather than whole oats. Finely grate the carrots, then mix in the other ingredients.
Serving and Storage
Carrot and oat muffins are ideal for an easy, healthy breakfast which is gluten-free. You'll feel very virtuous eating a muffin with vegetables! You could serve them with some cream cheese or thick Greek yogurt. Or enjoy simply with a cup of coffee.
They also make a good healthy lunchbox snack. If you prefer, make the recipe into snack-sized mini muffins for children or toddlers and cook for a couple of minutes less.
These moist healthy carrot muffins store well for 2-3 days in an airtight container. Alternatively, seal in a bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost at room temperature, or in the fridge overnight.
Frequently asked questions
One large muffin has 263 calories. They are nutrient dense and filling, and the wholegrain oats will keep you feeling fuller for longer.
Just because a flour is gluten free, it is not necessarily a healthy choice. Many gluten free flour blends are made of quick acting starches which will spike your blood sugar levels. Try to use a more nutrient dense flour which is less processed and higher in healthy fibre. Oat flour is an excellent choice, as is quinoa, almond meal and coconut flour.
Uncontaminated oats are gluten free. However, in order to ensure that your oats are uncontaminated you'll need to buy oats which have been grown and processed separately to other grains.
Have you tried this recipe? Please leave a rating and/or comment at the bottom of the page. Your feedback and questions are much appreciated.
You can also follow me on Pinterest and Facebook. Or subscribe to the newsletter to receive delicious healthy recipes straight to your inbox.
Other healthy muffin recipes
If you like to start the day with a healthy muffin, there are plenty to choose from. All of the recipes below are gluten-free and low in added sugar.
Carrot Oat Muffins
- 200 g porridge oats
- 200 g carrots washed and roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoon honey
- 2 eggs
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1½ teaspoon baking powder
- 80 g raisins
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees
- Place the oats in a food processor and blitz until powdery. Add the chopped carrot, and blitz until finely chopped. Add the olive oil, honey, spices, vanilla extract, eggs and baking powder and pulse until mixed. Stir in the raisins by hand.
- Spoon the mixture in a muffin tin lined with paper cupcake cases, and bake for 20 minutes until golden and springy to the touch.
Please note nutritional information is per serving and is provided for guidance only.