Muffins are always a breakfast savior; don’t you agree? My stomach is growling from just looking at these carrot muffins. These hearty baked, wholesome lemon carrot muffins have a soft and spongy texture and loads of flavor. Each muffin has only 145 calories and 5 grams of fat.
My 2-year-old, Leo, never rejects any kind of baked goods: muffins, breads, scones, and of course, cookies and cakes. However, he is still not a big fan of vegetables (is that quite common for kids, Moms?). I often will add vegetables into his meals by incorporating them into other foods, such as soups, veggie burgers, and pasta salads. These carrot muffins allow me to add more carrots into his diet, and the best thing is, he really enjoys these healthy and flavorful muffins. Because the carrots are grated so small, he can’t pick them out. Woohoo!
I am sure you know carrots have loads of health benefits. Besides that, they also add moisture into your gluten-free baking. It’s a win win. In order to add some fluffy and light texture into the muffins, I used some fresh squeezed lemon juice that can react with the baking soda in the dry flour mix. By the way, since I was going to use lemon, I collected some lemon zest and combined it in the dough at the end. It really intensifies the flavor of these muffins and gives them a strong and pleasant refreshing taste.
Most of you don’t have the luxury, in terms of time, to make fresh baked muffins. For those of you who have a day job or are stay at home moms like I am, it is possible to enjoy some toasty muffins in your busy morning. You can do half of the preparation the night before.
Here is how I made my lemon carrot muffins.
- Mix all dry ingredients in a bowl the night before baking.
- Prepare grated carrots, lemon zest, and lemon juice the night before baking and refrigerate them in tightly sealed containers.
- Gather the rest of wet ingredients and measuring spoons and cups you need.
- Line muffin pan with paper liners and set on the counter.
This will make the next mornings baking go much smoother, easier, and quicker. While the muffins are in the oven, you can get yourself or the kids ready for the day.
Let’s start a healthy and luxurious morning with these tasty and toasty warm lemon carrot muffins.
- 2 cups gluten-free flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 baking flour)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pure stevia extract powder (Now brand)
- 1-1/2 tablespoons ground chia seeds
- ½ cup coconut milk (I used Silk Brand)
- ¼ cup oil
- 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest (from 1 medium lemon)
- 1-1/2 tablespoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed from a half lemon
- 2 medium carrots, grated or finely chopped
- (optional) 12 pieces half pecans
- Preheat the oven to 350 °F. Line the muffin pan with paper cup liners and then lightly spray with canola oil.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together dry ingredients. Set aside.
- In another mixing bowl, combine together the ground chia seeds and 4 tablespoons of lukewarm non-dairy milk. Set aside for 5 minutes and then add the remaining wet ingredients except carrots into the mixing bowl. Mix briefly.
- Mix dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined. Stir in carrots and mix.
- Fill the prepared muffin cups ¾ full with the muffin batter. Garnish with a pecan half on top of each muffin. Bake for 25 minutes until the muffins are springy. Let the muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes, and then transfer to a wire cooling rack. Serve warm.