I've got carrot cake on the brain with hints of spring rolling in and Easter around the corner. Growing up, my mother always loved carrot cake and I couldn't get past the concept of carrots in a cake. So, I never had it. It wasn't until the last 10-15 years or so that I took the plunge and ate some really well made carrot cake and was completely blown away by how amazing it was. To think of all those pieces of wonderful cake I missed for all those years.
One of my all time favorite carrot cake recipes is this recipe here by Mom On Time Out. It's pretty amazing. Today, I've made a healthier carrot cake muffin, but I think this recipe may blur the line between a muffin and a cupcake. We're using whole wheat flour, no refined sugars and the "frosting" is part cream cheese and part plain greek yogurt for a protein punch.
Here's what you'll need:
For the Muffin
- 1 3/4 cups shredded carrots (approximately 4 average size carrots shredded)
-1 x 8 oz can crushed pineapple
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/4 cups milk
- 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
- 2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
-1/2 tsp salt
- 1-2 tsp cinnamon
-1/2 tsp nutmeg
-1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
For the "Frosting"
-4 oz cream cheese at room temperature
- 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1/3 cup paleo powdered sugar or your sweetener of choice
-1 tsp vanilla extract
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and generously grease a muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray. Combine the shredded carrots, crushed pineapple, vanilla, eggs, milk and Greek yogurt into a large bowl and mix thoroughly. Add in the dry ingredients of the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg and mix together. Fold in the shredded coconut.
Scoop approximately 1/3 cup of the batter into each muffin well (you can also use paper liners in the muffin tin if you prefer). Bake at 350 degrees for 23-25 minutes. Test to ensure they are done baking by inserting a toothpick or knife into the center of a muffin and it should come out clean. Allow to cool in the muffin tin for 10 minutes and then transfer to a wire baking rack to finish cooling.
While the muffins cool, prep the frosting by combining the cream cheese and Greek yogurt in the large bowl of a stand mixer or you can use a hand mixer as well. Mix on low/medium until well mixed together. Add in the paleo powdered sugar and vanilla and continue to mix until fully mixed together. Place the frosting in the fridge to chill for approximately 20 minutes.
Once the muffins are cooled and the frosting chilled, top each muffin with some frosting and sprinkle some shredded coconut for a garnish. Enjoy! (These muffins should be stored in the fridge if they aren't being used all at once).
New England wife and mom. Faith, fitness, yoga, baking and constantly cleaning my kitchen.