No amount of summer heat can dampen my baking enthusiasm, which is exactly why I need healthy recipes like these Zucchini Carrot Muffins! Made with wholesome oatmeal, Greek yogurt, and no sugar (the muffins are naturally sweetened with honey instead), these fluffy muffins scratch my baking, breakfast, and snacking itch, all three of which are in full force at this moment…and let’s be honest—every moment.
Last week, as I was sneaking my fifth bite of Zucchini Brownies before 10 am (which would have felt slightly more excusable had I not enjoyed a duo of leftover Dutch Oven Peach Cobbler and Cherry Blackberry Crisp the night before), it occurred to me that shifting my baking energy into a healthy breakfast muffin might be a wise choice for the time being.
These scrumptious zucchini carrot oatmeal muffins turned out to be one of my very favorite zucchini recipes to date. Considering the plethora of healthy zucchini recipes on this site (like Blueberry Zucchini Bread), that’s a mighty statement, and one I stand behind.
Lightly spiced with cinnamon and nutmeg, loaded with a whopping 1 ½ cups of veg (I used a 50/50 blend of carrots and zucchini, though you can adjust the ratio as you like), and just the right amount of sweet, these muffins score full marks in every core muffin category.
These carrot and zucchini muffins are:
- Easy to Make. Muffins should be quick and easy. This recipe comes together quickly. You don’t even need a mixer!
- Actually Healthy. Let’s be real: most bakery muffins are cupcakes without frosting. Personally, when I’m reaching for a muffin, it’s because I want something more nutritious. These zucchini muffins with carrots are still absolutely yummy, but they won’t send you into a sugar coma before 9 a.m.
- Fluffy, Yet Substantial. While not dense or heavy in the slightest, these muffins have a texture that satisfies. They’re moist, but the oats give them structure and make them more filling.
- Adaptable. This recipe is adapted from my Apple Carrot Muffins. Carrot, apple, and zucchini work well in just about any combo in muffin recipes. You can make these zucchini muffins with zucchini only, or try all three for zucchini carrot apple muffins.
How to Make Zucchini Carrot Muffins
With its natural water content, zucchini is an ideal ingredient for healthy baking. It keeps these muffins moist, without the need for much additional fat.
Carrot works in a similar way, with the bonus of natural sweetness. You’ll love the two together. (Plus, more veg = more reason to eat bonus servings!)
- Zucchini. I love using this healthy ingredient in any way I can. It makes these muffins perfectly moist, and it’s packed with Vitamin-A and antioxidants (read more about zucchini health benefits here).
- Carrots. A sneaky, sweet veggie addition that not only makes these muffins more delicious, but it makes them more nutritious too. Carrots are rich in Vitamin-A and potassium (see other health benefits here).
- Flour. I used white whole wheat flour, which helps keep the muffins healthy without sacrificing the light, fluffy texture. White whole wheat flour is 100% whole grain but has a more mild flavor and lighter texture than regular whole wheat flour.
- Oats. Oats help give the muffins substance and makes them more satisfying.
- Greek Yogurt. For an extra punch of protein and moisture.
- Cinnamon + Nutmeg. A tasty and addictive touch of warmth.
- Honey or Maple Syrup. To keep these muffins wholesome, I chose to naturally sweeten them with honey. Maple syrup will also work well here.
- Vanilla. An extra flavor boost that pairs beautifully with the honey and warm spices.
- Mix-ins. Toasted nuts or dried fruits are both scrumptious additions.
- Toast and chop the nuts (if using).
- Dry the zucchini.
- Whisk the dry ingredients together.
- Fold in the carrots and zucchini.
- Whisk the wet ingredients together in a separate bowl.
- Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Be careful not to overmix!
- Add the nuts or other mix-ins.
- Scoop the batter into the wells of a muffin pan (this recipe yields 10 substantial muffins) and bake for 18 to 22 minutes at 350 degrees F. Let cool for a few minutes, then DIG IN!
I have not yet tested either of the below, but think they could be worth trying if you need to adapt this recipe for a particular diet.
- Vegan Zucchini Carrot Muffins. Make the zucchini carrot muffins with applesauce in place of the yogurt (or use a non-dairy yogurt); swap the eggs for flax eggs; use maple syrup in place of the honey. Be sure to check out this Vegan Zucchini Bread too.
- Gluten Free Carrot Zucchini Muffins. Use a 1:1 gluten free flour blend like this one in place of the white whole wheat flour. You’ll also love this Gluten Free Zucchini Bread.
Zucchini Carrot Muffin Storage Tips
- To Store. Muffins can be stored in a paper towel-lined airtight storage container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
- To Freeze. Individually wrap each muffin, and store them in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Thaw and enjoy muffins as desired.
- For more storage tips, check out my post on How to Store Muffins.
More Healthy Muffin Recipes
- Applesauce Muffins
- Carrot Cake Muffins
- Healthy Banana Muffins
- Healthy Blueberry Muffins
- Carrot Quinoa Muffins
Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe
- Muffin Pan. Make healthy muffin recipes anytime a craving strikes with this pan!
- Mixing Bowls. These bowls are easy to clean and store.
- Batter Scoop. For perfectly portioned, evenly baked muffins and those perfect muffins tops.
Zucchini overload is the way of life these next few weeks. These freezer-friendly muffins are an ideal way to alleviate the supply and keep a healthy breakfast and snack on hand at all times.
Zucchini Carrot Muffins
- 1/2 cup raw walnut or pecan halves or ¼ cup dried fruit such as golden raisins or cranberries
- 3/4 cup grated zucchini 1 small zucchini will be more than enough; no need to peel it first
- 1 1/4 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 ¼ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 cup grated carrot about 1 large carrot
- 2 large eggs at room temperature
- 1/2 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt at room temperature
- 1/3 cup honey or pure maple syrup
- 1/4 cup canola oil or light olive oil
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Heat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line 10 cups of a standard muffin pan with paper liners or lightly coat with nonstick spray. Set aside.
- If using nuts for the mix-ins, toast them in the oven now: Spread the nuts into an even layer on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F for 8 to 12 minutes (for pecan or walnut halves), until they are lightly browned and fragrant. Transfer the nuts immediately to a cutting board; roughly chop and set aside.
- Place the zucchini on a stack of paper towels. Pat dry and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
- Add the grated carrot and zucchini. Fold gently to combine.
- In a separate, medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, Greek yogurt, honey, oil, and vanilla until smooth.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and stir gently until just combined. Do not overmix.
- Fold in the nuts or any other mix-ins.
- Divide the batter evenly among the 10 muffin cups. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Place the pan on a wire rack and let the muffins cool in the pan for 4 minutes. Gently transfer the muffins to the rack to finish cooling. Enjoy!
- TO STORE: Muffins can be stored in a paper towel-lined airtight storage container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
- TO FREEZE: Individually wrap each muffin, and store them in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Thaw and enjoy muffins as desired.
- For more storage tips, check out my post on How to Store Muffins.
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