Rating: 5 stars
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All of the best flavors of a carrot cake without as much of the guilt.


Credit: Micah A. Leal

Recipe Summary

40 mins
15 mins

While many muffins are simply cake batter poured into a muffin tin, this recipe pairs back the sugar and butter to make a muffin that you can feel reasonably good about enjoying for breakfast. The flour is enriched with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves to make an aromatic crumb. The addition of molasses to the wet ingredients lends a strong syrupy sweetness that offers as much complex flavor as it does richness to the batter. The vegetable oil in the batter keeps the muffins moist and tender, and a touch of vanilla also lightens the flavor with its familiar taste.

The real stars of these muffins are the final three ingredients: freshly shredded carrot, unsweetened coconut, and plump golden raisins. As the muffins bake, each of these three ingredients is hydrated, with the carrot and coconut becoming tender-chewy and the raisins sitting as juicy pockets of sweetness strewn throughout each muffin. Since the muffins themselves are not overly sweet, a light dusting of powdered sugar after they've cooled makes for a welcomed finish.


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners; set aside.

  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices until well combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together milk, oil, molasses, eggs, and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredient mixture into the dry and whisk until no pockets of flour remain and batter is smooth. Fold in carrot, coconut, and raisins.

  • Divide batter among muffin cups, filling each almost to the top. Bake until lightly browned and until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before dusting with powdered sugar and serving.