Healthy Banana Carrot Muffins

After making those very yummy, but not exactly healthy blueberry muffins I felt a bit bad. I though I oded it to you, my readers whoever you may be, a healthy portable breakfast option. The portable part was the hardest box to tick. You see, I had just proclaimed in my blueberry muffin post that healthy muffins always turned out dry and disappointing and didn’t want to completely contradict myself by coming up with a healthy, low fat muffin that actually tasted pretty good. But (as you can see) I am a hypocrite when it comes to muffins. I simply could not think of another breakfast form that you could grab and easily eat in the car or while walking to work. Sure you could make scones, but those usually require some kind of spread on top that is just asking to be dropped facedown onto the road or your car’s interior. Granola requires two hands to eat (one wielding a spoon no less) so that was out. There are homemade breakfast bars, but they are usually uber sweet due to the amount of honey or maple syrup required to make them stay together. And so, I came back to the muffin: the very elusive tasty healthy muffin that has managed to evade me so far in life.

Since I had attempted (and failed) nutritious muffins so many times before, I knew what I didn’t want. I didn’t want to have to go to the grocery store to buy all these niche ingredients like agar syrup that I would probably never use again. I didn’t want a recipe that called for a lot of full-fat yogurt since that would kind of defeat the whole ‘healthy’ part. Yes, yogurt is yummy and very good for you, but its one of those things in baking that can ramp up the fatty factor pretty quickly. Note: usually I’m all for the fatty factory, but this time, for you dear readers, I avoided it like the plague. Since fat is what makes baking moist, I knew I would have to look for other ingredients that lend a lot of moisture that wouldn’t get evaporated out during the baking process. For that I turned to bananas. Bananas have this wonderful property that they are moist not matter what you do to them. Apple sauce is pretty good too, but a lot of it’s water gets boiled off in the oven. So in my searches I targeted recipes that included bananas. I also knew that some veggies can help to keep baked goods moist. For example, I have heard of adding beets to devil’s food cake to keep it moist and velvety. Based on that, I though a banana-beet muffin might be good; however, upon looking in my fridge and finding no beets but carrots instead, I decided to use the carrots (I think zucchini would have worked as well). Similar to the beet, carrots are also used in cakes so I thought I’d give it a go.

And what do you know? It worked! These muffins aren’t half bad. They aren’t anything like the sweet muffin concoctions I’ve made before, but they are good. Most importantly, they are moist! No butter needed here. I wasn’t even temped to cut the muffin in half and slather it on. The best part about this recipe is the fact that it only requires 1 bowl, 1 spoon, and a few measuring cups. Godda love minimal washing up! Basically, I have successfully proved myself wrong. I would happily grab one of these muffins while running late out the door and munch on it while walking to work knowing that I wasn’t going to have a sugar crash and that none of these muffin would be found on my hips. Win win situation!

Makes 9 muffins:

  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup raw sugar
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup large flake oats
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/2 tbsp milk
  • 1 over ripe banana
  • 1 carrot peeled and grated

UPDATE: I just made these with half zucchini grated instead of a carrot and a 1/4 cup of dark chocolate chips instead of raisins. Deelllliissshhhh

Also, these freeze really well! Just take them out of the freezer the night before you want to eat them and let them thaw on their own.

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F (200C).
  2. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg in a medium size bowl.
  3. Add the egg, milk, and oil and mix well.
  4. Grate in the peeled carrot.
  5. Add the banana (mine had just been thawed from the fridge where all brown, slightly mushed bananas go).
  6. Give everything a good mix and enjoy the fact that this recipe only requires one bowl.
  7. Use butter or a spray oil to grease the muffin tins.
  8. Fill each muffin cup with about 1/4 a cup of batter.
  9. Bake for 18-20 minutes.
  10. Allow to cool slightly, but try one warm. Enjoy :)
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