Healthy Pumpkin Muffins – Tender, lightly spiced pumpkin muffins filled with shredded apples and carrots. Similar to pumpkin bread and carrot cake – but healthier!
Hello, friends! I originally shared this recipe 2 years ago, and I decided to update the pictures and make a few minor tweaks to the recipe itself. As we approach the holiday season and the over indulgence that goes along with it, these healthy muffins are great for those times that you want to make a healthier choice. Thanksgiving breakfast, anyone?
These muffins are loaded with fall flavors – and you can eat them guilt free! I hesitate using the word “healthy” in the title of this recipe because I don’t want you to think for a second that any flavor or texture was sacrificed in order to make these nutritious. Check out all the good (and good for you!) ingredients going on inside these Healthy Pumpkin Muffins.
Healthy Pumpkin Muffins
- Pumpkin puree adds moisture, flavor and nutrients.
- Grated carrots blend right in with the pumpkin and make these muffins taste similar to carrot cake.
- Grated apple adds sweetness and fiber.
- Pumpkin pie spice or ground cinnamon add the warm cozy flavors of fall.
- Unsweetened applesauce keeps the muffins moist and allows us to reduce the oil without sacrificing texture.
- Wheat bran, ground flaxseed or oats bump up the nutritional value.
- A combination of all purpose flour and whole wheat flour makes these muffins tender yet sturdy enough to hold the apple and carrots.
If you’re a fan of pumpkin bread or carrot cake, you will love. I found they have similar flavors to both – with a lot less guilt!
These muffins are just barely sweet, but not so sweet that you’ll need to clock extra time at the gym after eating a couple. I give the option of drizzling the muffins with a little cream cheese frosting. My kids love them this way, and let’s be honest….I do too! Choose to add the frosting, or leave it off.
Nibble these Healthy Pumpkin Muffins for breakfast, snack on them throughout the day, or enjoy them as a healthy dessert.
NEVER MISS A RECIPE!
Healthy Pumpkin Carrot Apple Muffins
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 cup white whole wheat flour
- 1/4 cup wheat bran, ground flaxseed or old fashioned oats
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 cup brown sugar packed
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup pumpkin puree not pumpkin pie filling
- 1/4 cup melted coconut oil or canola oil
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 1/2 cups grated carrots (see note)
- 1 1/2 cups grated apple (see note)
- 1/2 cup raisins or chopped walnuts optional
Cream Cheese Frosting (optional):
- 2 ounces reduced fat cream cheese softened
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter softened
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-2 teaspoons skim milk
Preheat oven to 375°. Grease 15-18 muffin cups. Set aside
In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, wheat bran/flaxseed/oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and brown sugar.
- In a large bowl, whisk eggs, pumpkin puree, oil, and applesauce until combined.
- Stir the flour mixture into the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined. Add carrots, apple, and raisins and stir until evenly distributed, being careful not to over mix.
Evenly divide the batter between muffin cups, filling about 2/3 full. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffins comes out without raw batter on it. Cool in muffin pan for 10 minutes, then remove muffins from the pan to continue cooling.
- With a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat cream cheese and butter until smooth and creamy. Add powdered sugar, vanilla, and 1 teaspoon of milk. Beat for about 1 minute, until smooth. Add more milk of necessary. Drizzle frosting over the top of cooled muffins (I placed the frosting in a plastic bag, snipped the corner, and squeezed it onto the muffins).
I grate the apples on the medium holes of a box grater, and the carrots on the fine holes of a box grater.
Recipe adapted from Williams Sonoma