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Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins! (with secret ingredient)

Can I just say how excited I am about these healthy carrot cake muffins I made?

I know Easter is right around the corner and carrot cake is perfect for the holiday.

But seriously. Why I’m really excited about these muffins is because well, first, they are muffins. So, um, YUM! Second, they are healthy! As in two kinds of vegetables healthy! As in my children don’t even KNOW they are eating TWO kinds of vegetables in this yummy muffin they beg me for. Total super wife mom. I found a way for my children to eat vegetables! (I have to celebrate because that is rare for me in the kitchen.)

Way back when my mom made me a carrot cake for my birthday and it was soooo good. Little did I know that it was made with tomato soup. Yeah, you read that right. Tomato soup.

Yes, they still taste like carrot cake muffins. No, it doesn’t taste like tomato soup. The soup adds a hint of spice and it’s amazing.

So I found that old Taste of Home recipe and modified it to make it even healthier. I used white whole wheat flour instead of straight up all-purpose flour. I used applesauce instead of shortening. I crushed some almonds instead of walnuts because really all I had were almonds. Besides, the almond is king in the nut world.

My children and I will gobble these up plain. HOWEVER, I did find a nice pumped up frosting to go on top. It’s still made with cream cheese and powdered sugar because, come on, it’s frosting. But the pumped up ingredient is plain Greek yogurt. I’d say this more than makes up for the powdered sugar. I also use Neufchatel cheese instead of regular cream cheese.

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I think I need to go make a triple batch of these carrot cake muffins right now. I’ll freeze a bunch for later. Otherwise, we’ll eat them all in a matter of a couple days. Oh wait. That’s okay because these are HEALTHY carrot cake muffins! I can feel good about giving my children this treat.

Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Muffins:

  • ¼ cup applesauce
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 can (10.75 oz) condensed tomato soup, undiluted
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Dash salt
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • ½ cup chopped almonds
  • ½ cup raisins (optional – I left these out because I’m paranoid about our teeth and raisins are just sugar sticking to our teeth.)

Frosting:

  • 1 package light cream cheese, softened (or Neufchatel cheese as I use)
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 cups powdered sugar

Directions:

In a large mixing bowl, mix applesauce and sugar. Add the soup and egg. Mix this all well. Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; beat into creamed mixture. Stir in the carrots, almonds and raisins if using. Pour into a greased or lined muffin pan. Bake at 350⁰ for about 20 minutes or until tooth pick comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before moving to wire rack.

To make the frosting:

With an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and yogurt until well blended. Slowly add the powdered sugar and mix until smooth. I add about a cup at a time. Chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours before frosting muffins.


 

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