Put these kid-friendly banana carrot muffins into your weekly snack rotation. They are sweetened with maple syrup, oil-free and easy to freeze.
This one is going straight into my family’s regular rotation of muffin recipes. I make a batch every Sunday, which lasts for snacks throughout the week. Though I have to be quick about storing them in the fridge or freezer because they seem to disappear from the cooling rack when I’m not looking.
These muffins are light on calories (about 140 calories each) and are sweetened by the bananas and maple syrup. Guilt free snacking!
If you looking for a grab-and-go breakfast, pack one of these muffins along with a Strawberry Smoothie (without yogurt).
INGREDIENTS FOR BANANA CARROT MUFFINS:
These are the main ingredients needed for this recipe (affiliate links included)…
- BANANAS: The riper the bananas, the sweeter they are. That being said, avoid ones that are very overripe. I like to use one that have several black spots on the peel and feel soft, but not mushy, when pressed gently.
- CARROTS: While it’s tempting to use store-bought pre-grated carrots, I highly recommend peeling and grating the carrots yourself. They will have significantly more moisture.
- FLOUR: Whole wheat pastry flour (Bob’s Red Mill is my favorite) can be found in some regular grocery stores, most health food stores and online. It’s whole grain (fiber!), but has a lighter texture than regular whole wheat flour. Alternatively, substitute with a 50-50 mixture of white whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour.
- OTHER DRY INGREDIENTS: Baking soda, baking powder and salt.
- EGG: Use one large egg, whisked.
- APPLESAUCE: Use unsweetened applesauce, which can be found in most grocery stores.
- MAPLE SYRUP: Please use pure maple syrup, rather than the cheaper corn syrup versions. The flavor makes a difference!
- SPICES: Ground cinnamon and ground ginger.
- PECANS: Top each muffin with a pecan half. They get all nice and toasty as the muffins bake. However, they are completely optional. Leave them off if there’s a nut allergy or aversion.
- EXTRAS: If you like, add some chocolate chips or chopped nuts, such as walnuts, almonds or pecans.
See recipe card below for full ingredients list & recipe directions.
💙 What’s to love about banana and carrot muffins:
▪️HEALTHY: These muffins are sweetened with ripe bananas and maple syrup and made with whole wheat flour. Plus, the oil is swapped out with applesauce. But the texture is so tender!
▪️KID-FRIENDLY: Toddlers and kids of any age love these! They’re sweet without being cloying. And they’re a great way to sneak in some fruit and veggies.
▪️FREEZABLE: These muffins freeze really well. Make a double batch and pop the leftovers into the freezer for another day.
How to make banana carrot muffins:
This recipe follows the standard formula for making muffins. Stir together the wet ingredients, whisk together the dry ingredients, combine and bake. But let’s break down the instructions…
WET INGREDIENTS: In a large mixing bowl, smash the peeled, ripe bananas until almost smooth with a few small chunks. I like to use a mini potato masher, but the back of a fork works well. Stir the maple syrup, applesauce, whisked egg and vanilla extract into the mashed banana.
DRY INGREDIENTS: In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and ground ginger.
COMBINE: Pour the flour mixture into the banana mixture. Stir until just combined. Take care not to over stir the batter, otherwise the muffins will be tough.
ADD THE CARROTS: Fold in the shredded carrot with a rubber or silicone spatula.
SCOOP THE BATTER: Prep a muffin tin by lightly coating the cups with cooking spray. Using a measuring cup, large cookie scoop or spoon, scoop the batter into the prepared pan. If desired, top each muffin with a pecan half.
BAKE: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bake the muffins until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the muffins cool in the tin for about 5 minutes, then use a kitchen knife or offset spatula to remove the muffins from the tin. Cool on a wire rack.
SERVE: Serve the muffins right away, store for later or freeze them.
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Frequently Asked Questions:
What can I use instead of whole wheat pastry flour?
If preferred, substitute whole wheat pastry flour with a 50-50 mixture of all-purpose flour and white whole wheat flour.
How can I make these vegan?
Since these muffins don’t include butter or milk, they are dairy-free. The only non-vegan ingredients in this muffin recipe is the egg. Flax eggs are an easy substitute. Stir together one tablespoon of flaxseed and three tablespoons of water. Allow the mixture to rest for about 5 minutes before adding to the banana mixture.
Can carrot banana muffins be made ahead of time?
Yes! Cool the muffins to room temperature, then transfer to a ziplock bag or an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator for 4 to 5 days.
How do you freeze muffins?
Cool the muffins to room temperature, then transfer to an airtight freezer-proof container or a ziplock freezer bag. Squeeze out as much air as possible before sealing the bag.
When ready to serve, take out as many muffins as needed. Thaw them in the fridge or on the defrost mode in the microwave.
How long can you freeze carrot muffins?
When stored properly, carrot muffins can be frozen for up to 3 months.
Banana Carrot Muffins Recipe
- 3 ripe bananas mashed (about 1 ¼ cups)
- 6 tablespoons pure maple syrup (See Note 1)
- ⅓ cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 large egg whisked
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups + 2 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour (See Note 2)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup grated carrot (lightly packed)
- 12 pecan halves (omit, if preferred)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat a muffin tin with cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, stir together the bananas, maple syrup, applesauce, egg and vanilla extract.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ground ginger and salt.
- Stir the flour mixture into the banana mixture until combined. Stir in the grated carrot.
- Spoon the muffin batter into the prepared muffin cups. Top each muffin with a pecan half.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the muffins comes out clean, 15 to 17 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through.
- Allow the muffins the cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Remove the muffins from the pan and allow to cool completely. Serve.
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