In the mood for some fall baking? Me, too! I’m cozying up with these apple carrot muffins and a cup of coffee. My dog, Cookie, is hoping for some crumbs.
My sweet publisher sent me a cookbook called Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow. a few months ago. The cookbook was co-written by Olympian/NYC Marathon champ Shalane Flanagan and chef/nutrition coach Elyse Kopecky.
I should confess that I hate running and only qualify for the “hangry” portion of the book’s subtitle, “Quick-Fix Recipes for Hangry Athletes.”
Nonetheless, the book is up my alley because it’s full of energizing, whole foods-based recipes. I haven’t been able to get this hybrid apple-carrot muffin recipe out of my mind. They didn’t disappoint!
The authors call these muffins “superhero” muffins because they are muffins that sustain. They offered three versions in the book, and I chose the muffins featuring grated fresh carrots and Granny Smith apples.
These muffins are very hearty and wholesome, which makes them perfect grab-and-go breakfasts or snacks. I think they would freeze well for several months, if you want to keep them on hand for hangry moments.
Bonus? These muffins are gluten free and naturally sweetened, and easy to mix up by hand. Apple carrot muffins for the win.
I have recipes for apple muffins and carrot muffins, but I love this combination of the two. Warming cinnamon brings the fruity apple and earthy carrot flavors together.
This recipe uses almond meal instead of whole wheat flour, which yields a nutritious and moist interior. These muffins are a little dense, in a good way, rather than light and lacking in substance.
Watch How to Make Apple & Carrot Muffins
You can easily change up the mix-ins, or leave them out if you’d rather. The authors suggest walnuts, raisins or chocolate chips, and note that Shalane likes to sweeten them up with chocolate chips. I opted for pecans in lieu of walnuts, and I think you could substitute any dried fruit for the raisins (chopped if large).
I easily grated the carrots and apple with this box grater (affiliate link). The authors suggested lining the muffin tin with paper liners, but I have full faith in the non-stick silicone finish on my muffin tin. It worked great.
The authors report that these muffins are a hit with kids, too. Please let me know how they turn out for you in the comments, and be sure to check out Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow. if it sounds like it’s up your alley.
Apple & Carrot “Superhero” Muffins
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 12 muffins 1x
- Category: Muffins
- Method: Baked
- Cuisine: Gluten free
This apple carrot muffin recipe is naturally sweetened and gluten free! These hearty apple-carrot muffins make a great grab-and-go breakfast or snack. Recipe yields 12 muffins.
- 2 cups packed almond meal or almond flour (10 ounces)
- 1 ½ cups old-fashioned oats (certified gluten free if necessary)
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- Optional mix-ins: ½ cup chopped walnuts (I used pecans), or raisins or chocolate chips
- ½ cup honey or maple syrup
- 3 eggs
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 cup grated Granny Smith apple (about 1 ½ apples)
- 1 cup peeled and grated carrots (about 3 carrots)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 12-cup standard muffin tin with paper muffin cups (I didn’t because I have full faith in my muffin pan, but use them if you’re uncertain).
- In a large bowl, combine the almond meal, oats, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and optional mix-ins, if using.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the honey, eggs and butter. Whisk in the grated apple and carrots. Pour the mixture into the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined.
- Spoon the batter into the muffin cups, filling each to the brim. Bake until the muffins are nicely browned on top and a knife inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Allow muffins to cool completely before storing.
- Store leftover muffins in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer. If you like them warm, reheat them on low power in the microwave.
Recipe from the Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow. cookbook by Shalane Flanagan and Elyse Kopecky.
Make them nut free: (The muffins will no longer be gluten free with this variation, which was provided by the recipe author.) Whole wheat pastry flour or whole wheat flour can be used as an alternative to the almond meal. Increase the butter to 8 tablespoons (1 stick), since wheat flour is much drier, and reduce the oats to 1 cup.
Whole wheat flour option: See above!
Make them dairy free: I haven’t tried, but I’m confident that you could substitute coconut oil for the butter. Please report back if you give that a try!
Egg substitution note: I don’t think you can successfully replace the eggs with any substitutes here. I tried with a similar almond meal-based recipe, and it was an epic fail. However, you can use flax eggs in my carrot muffin recipe (and you could even use half grated apple, half carrots to make those muffins more similar to this recipe).
I am trying this recipe today but don’t have oats. Could I use almond flour and whole meal flour and what measurements would you suggest?
Hi! I suggest this recipes as it and have notes how to change it otherwise. Taking out the oats and just using almond would change the recipe, sorry!
Thanks Kate. Tried as is and my kids love it. Thanks.
Do you have a healthy chocolate muffin recipe? :-)
Hi, I don’t. But I do know some have added chocolate to my Maple-Sweetened Banana Muffins
Ive made this recipe as is and its very good. Today I tried it with some subs and it was also delicious. I subbed 1 cup almond flour for All purpose flour, I used 3 T applesauce and 3 T coconut oil for the butter, I added mix ins of 1/2 cup each coconut , raisins and pineapple and made these more of a morning glory muffin. They turned out fabulous and moist!
Made these with almond flour and dairy free (used refined coconut oil)
They turned out delicious!
Another GREAT recipe from Kate! These healthy muffins are delicious and adaptable, too. I added some grated zucchini because I had an abundance on hand. I always add more cinnamon because I love it. I also added a little sugar-free applesauce for some added moisture. Tasty, as written, I’ll definitely be making these again!
Ava Ray Adams
This is not an original recipe from Kate; it is from the cookbook “Run FAST, Cook FAST, Eat SLOW. Read the intro.
Made these again today, they are so good! I make them with fine whole wheat flour, following your instructions, and they come out great. Only thing is, I get way more than I can fit in my twelve muffin tins, so I make a small loaf too. Not much of a complaint there! Oh, I do add raisins and walnuts, so maybe that explains the extra batter. Yum!
Thanks for a yummy recipe Kate. It definitely exceeded expectations!
Great to hear, Cindy!
Hi! I literally followed this recipe to a T and the muffins started to smell burnt around 22min in the oven. So I jumped off the couch and ran into check on them-they were definitely done! And dry! not moist. Oh I am so sad as a few friends recommended this recipe. NO IDEA what went wrong.
Oh no! I’m sorry to hear that. What type of oven are you using? This is meant for a conventional oven not a convection oven.
I followed this recipe exactly & I did not love it. I used local honey & pecans. The texture is ok, but they just don’t taste great. Maybe maple syrup would have been better than the honey. And I hardly tasted the apples.
I’m sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy this recipe, Mary. I appreciate your feedback.
These are incredible!!!!
I’m glad you enjoyed it, Faith! I appreciate your review.
These muffins are so moist, flavourful and delicious. Best recipe I’ve found
I love to hear that, Shirleen!
Your recipes are the best and reliable! This one didn’t disappoint either. I put in chopped pecans and added some nutmeg and allspice as well as the cinnamon. Made sure to pack the almond flour as that looked like a “pro-tip!”
I’m glad you have confidence in my recipes! Thanks for sharing, KM.
Excited to make this! I only have gala apples though, would that make much of a difference?
That should work too. I find some apples provide better flavor when used in baking purposes. Let me know what you think!
Absolutely delicious! I’ve been looking for a gluten-free, protein-rich muffin option for my kiddos and this delivered! I added the raisins, baked them in a silicone muffin pan for 30 minutes and they came out perfectly. I will definitely be making these again!
Can you substitute coconut oil for the butter?
I made it without raisins to reduce the sugar & my Grandson who is 1 1/2 loved them.
Next time I’m going to add coconut too
I haven’t tried, but I’m confident that you could substitute coconut oil for the butter. Please report back if you give that a try!
I made this exactly as directed. The muffins are dry and tasteless. I made a delicious carrot cake with almond flour last week! Im so disappointed.
This muffin is my super hero.
My 20 month old devoured it.
I devoured it! People I shared with devoured it. Amazing amazing muffins!
Just wondering if you or anyone has tried this with adding collagen?
Thanks a bunch!
These were the best gluten free muffins I’ve ever had. My kids thought they were cupcakes. My husband called me while I was at work asking what was in them because he couldn’t stop eating them. I used 2 applesauce cups instead of grating the apple because who has time for that after already grating carrots. Added in raisins and chopped pecans and took them out of the oven 5 min early. They were perfect! Gonna double the recipe next time.
Hooray! I’m glad these were a hit for your family, Ali.
I’ve made your muffin recipes for years and just wanted to thank you. They’re always so easy and delicious. <3 These have become a breakfast staple for me.
You’re welcome, Hannah! I appreciate your review.
I love this recipe. I have the cookbook, Run Fast, Eat Slow and the two that followed. I am a triathlete and appreciate the fact that the recipes from the authors are healthy and delish. It’s difficult to hit both marks. Great job.
I have an autoimmune disease and need to avoid flour, sugar and other items so your website has been a source of terrific inspiration to my family and me.
Absolutely amazing muffins. I make a lot of muffins & these are now at the top of the list.
Is the batter meant the be very dry?
It shouldn’t be dry. Are you sure you added all the wet ingredients?
Has anyone tried with honey crisp apples?
Yes,,,and they work out perfectly. I use whatever apples I have at home and they are always delicious.
I made these twice, and the second time increased the spices to 1 tbsp of cinnamon and 1tbsp of nutmeg, and I thought this made a massive difference.
Great to hear, Katsina!
oh these are sooooo good. I love your blog- it’s my #1 and i rave about all your recipes being the best.
this is no exception!!!!!
i followed the recipe exactly- i also added chocolate chips and raisins and pumpkin seeds- maybe 1/4c of each and i did 1/2c of walnuts like the recipe suggested.
I sprinkled cinnamon sugar on top before baking.
These turned out absolutely perfect and delicious oh my so good…
i was worried that the batter seemed a bit dry and almost added a couple extra eggs (which might have not mattered if i had?) but then stopped myself and trusted your recipe- knowing how great they always are, well i was right to trust.
They are fluffy and moist and a perfect texture, and a crispy topping.
They remind me of my mom’s sunshine muffins that were a childhood fave but by far these are a healthier option!!!!!!!!
next time i make these i will play around with using grated zuchini as an alternative
I’m excited you love my blog! Thank you for sharing how you made it.
Made this recipe today. Turned out to be 18! They were very delicious. Didn’t have any apple, but subbed extra raisins & some ground walnuts (because housemate can’t eat hard foods). Will be looking forward to adding apple next time. Great recipe!
I’m glad you love it, Laura!
Good basic recipe, needed tweaking. So… we ended up changing the recipe to this:
2 cups packed almond flour or almond meal
1 ¾ cups old-fashioned oats (certified gluten-free if necessary)
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
Optional mix-ins: chopped walnuts or raisins
¾ cup agave nectar or maple syrup
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1½ cup grated Granny Smith apple (about 2 apples)
1 cup peeled and grated carrots (about 3 carrots)
And yeah, that’s our recipe.
Thank you so much, Kate(and, of course, cookie).
These muffins are the best!!! My husband, who never likes muffins, always eats these and my 15 month old daughter loves them too. I make them with honey and add pecans and they are delicious! I make this recipe every couple weeks because we go through them so fast!
Made these today using ww flour and avocado oil. For add-ins I used the Nature’s Garden trail mix packs with cranberries (gently pounded before opening the bags). Yummy!