Chai Spiced Carrot Almond Muffins
February 14, 2017

Chai Spiced Carrot Almond Muffins | The Full Helping

Most of the recipes featured on Valentine’s day involve ribbons of chocolate, swirls of frosting, or heart-shaped cookie cutters. I love these recipes. I look forward to them every year. But if I’m being honest, they’re not the types of treats I make often in my home. When it comes to everyday sweet cravings, I’d almost always rather have something simple and versatile on hand, like a loaf of my classic vegan banana bread, or my snack-worthy oatcakes. I like to bake things that can serve as a light breakfast, a packable snack, or a sweet-but-not-too-sweet dessert.

So, as I was thinking about something to bake this year for Valentine’s Day, I decided to go with my gut, and whip up a batch of fragrant, chai spiced carrot almond muffins. In terms of wow factor, they’re no match for a dense chocolate torte, a towering layer cake, or a decadent batch of homemade truffles. But they’re just what I’ve been craving in the wintery weather, and that makes them the Valentine’s Day treat for me.

Chai Spiced Carrot Almond Muffins | The Full Helping

I’m a little biased here, since muffins are my favorite type of baked good. I like muffins so much that a friend and I have an ongoing joke that we’re going to collaborate on an all-muffin cookbook. Back when I had an office job, I used to bake muffins every single week, freeze them, and take them to work as snacks.

I’ve fallen out of this excellent habit, but I do still relish baking a batch of muffins and enjoying them as the week goes by. These particular muffins are especially cozy and fragrant, thanks to the chai-inspired spices. I also added a touch of almond extract, which I keep around for baking projects, to the recipe. I love how its nutty sweetness compliments the spice mixture. If you don’t have almond extract, that’s totally OK, because the vanilla goes a long way. But it’s a nice touch if you do.

Chai Spiced Carrot Almond Muffins | The Full Helping
Chai Spiced Carrot Almond Muffins | The Full Helping

You can definitely play around with the muffin mix-ins here: I used slivered almonds because that’s what I had, but walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds will all work well. I think chopped dates would be a great addition, personally, but so would currants or raisins. Even the amount of sweetener is variable–3/4 cup worked for me, but if you’d like to reduce it or you’re modifying the recipe for kids, 2/3 cup or even 1/2 is fine. So long as grated carrot meets ginger, cinnamon, and cardamom, the muffins will be right on track.

Chai Spiced Carrot Almond Muffins

Author - Gena Hamshaw
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Yields: 10 muffins

Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole wheat pastry or light spelt flour substitute all-purpose flour or a tried-and-true gluten free flour blend
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 + 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider or white wine vinegar
  • 1 cup almond or soy milk
  • 1 flax egg*
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil grapeseed, avocado, and olive oil all work nicely
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract optional
  • 2/3-3/4 cup brown sugar adjust to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups grated carrot
  • 1/3 cup sliced or slivered almonds plus more for topping

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 350F. Lightly oil or line a baking sheet with muffin liners. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, and salt.
  • In another bowl, whisk together the vinegar and non-dairy milk. Add the prepared flax egg, vegetable oil, extracts, and sugar. Mix to combine. Add these wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just evenly combined. Fold in the carrot and almonds.
  • Transfer the batter to the prepared muffin sheet. Bake muffins for 14-16 minutes, or until the tops are firm and just barely golden. Allow muffins to cool before enjoying.

Notes

*To prepare a flax egg, mix together 1 tablespoon ground flax meal and 3 tablespoons warm water. Allow the mixture to thicken, then proceed with recipe.
Muffins will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. They can be wrapped and frozen for up to 1 month.

 Chai Spiced Carrot Almond Muffins | The Full Helping

As far as sweets-for-my-sweet goes, these are actually a perfect choice. Steven loves muffins almost as much as I do, and he’s always happy when he can pack them up for a snack. (He’s also allergic to chocolate, which eliminates a lot of more traditional Valentine’s Day treats, anyway.) I’m excited to share this batch with him for breakfast with him this morning–and I wish you all very sweet day.

xo

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    27 Comments
  1. 5 stars
    These muffins are amazing. I looked forward to try the recipe, because I love carrots in baking. Well… no regrets! All my family say thank you:))

  2. i just made a batch, wonderul, they smelled as delicious as they tasted!!! Definitely inspired me to try different recipes and inspire myself to venture with food! And an individual can be very inspired to eat healthy, be healthy and live healthy! Hope you wont mind me addig your web/blog to share it with my bloggers and allow them to inspire themselves via your blogs!

  3. Just recently became vegan, and am always looking for new recipes to make it easier. These sound amazing. Will definitely be trying them as I love chai spice and carrots 🙂

    Thanks! And a lovely blog, btw.

  4. 5 stars
    CHAI SPICED CARROT ALMOND MUFFINS looks very delicious! How much did you spent for this serving? Thanks for this sharing.

  5. 5 stars
    I made these and they came out great. I wish I had baked them just a few minutes longer, but they were still delicious. I fed them to my non-vegan friends and they loved them! I will definitely make them again.

  6. 5 stars
    I love this recipe I can´t wait to try it out again this Sunday. I have a small vegan restaurant in Tulum, Mexico so I am always experimenting with new dishes that I can perhaps add to the menu. Thank you for posting!

  7. Looks amazing ! It has a lot of ingredients and does not sound very easy, but looks that good and I do love almonds so i will give it a try ! Fingers crossed !

  8. Gena, I am bookmarking this recipe to make this week! These muffins look wonderful!! I’m with you–I don’t usually do the whole frosting on cupcakes thing at home. I’d much rather eat muffins like this.

    (P.S. I’m so embarrassed to say that I completely missed the redesign of your website! I love it!)

  9. I’m totally making these / thanks for the recipe! An enthusiastic YES to the all muffin cookbook plan! Especially love muffins sweetened with maple syrup please.

  10. Muffins and quick breads are a total weakness of mine. In fact, I’d rather have them than a cookie any day. These look fabulous, Gena and you’ve captured them beautifully. Those warming chai spices are a welcome addition and ones that I crave when during the coldest months of the year. Thank you for this delicious recipe Gena!

  11. These look awesome!! My man fan and I also prefer something like this to a more decadent treat. It’s delicious to have a taste of some crazy sweet and frosted and time-intensive dessert, it’s just not something I really care to embark on making 🙂 Also, I would NOT hesitate to support (and recipe test) an all-muffin cookbook by the two of you!

  12. Just pulled a batch of these out of the oven 😀

    Followed exact but swapped the almonds for raisins and sprinkled shredded unsweetened coconut on top. (My mom can’t have nuts but almond extract is fine)

    I have the dreaded 11-7 shift today so I’m looking forward to this as a cheer up snack 🙂

  13. These look delightful! I have the same habit of baking muffins weekly and packing them for work! Saving this recipe for next weeks 🙂 xx Happy valentine’s day!

  14. This looks perfect for Valentine’s Day!! It may not be pink or heart-shaped, but it’s wholesome, nourishing and delicious – exactly what you’d want to give to a loved one to show them that you care 🙂 🙂

  15. I’m just going to throw out there that I see no issue with an all muffin cookbook! Muffins are my favorite food to play with, and the most versatile for adapting.