Carrot Muffin

Back again with our monthly recipe column Francesca McKay shows us how to spice up the humble carrot.

Carrots are such a versatile and delicious vegetable for every meal.  Whether you are growing them at home or picking them up from the local shop, we have two fabulous recipes for your carrot, tops and all!


Carrot Cake Breakfast Muffins

Lighter in sugar, high in fibre, protein and nutritious vegetables, these carrot cake breakfast muffins are a lovely way to start the day.  Full of zesty orange and autumn spices, they’re a great way to use up the current beautiful bounty of carrots.  The sweetly spiced streusel topping adds an interesting and sweet finishing touch that will leave you wanting to have just one more… However if you do happen to have any left over they keep for 2 – 3 days in an airtight container (though the streusel topping will soften up and lose its crumbly texture) or they freeze well.  

Carrot Cake Muffins

Carrot Cake Muffins

Preparation time: 15 mins  

Cooking time: 25 – 35 minutes 

Serves: makes 12 muffins 


  • 225g wholemeal flour 
  • 1.5 tsp ground mixed spice 
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 50g walnuts or pecans, roughly chopped
  • 300g carrots (unpeeled weight) 
  • 100g light brown sugar
  • 75g unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 2 eggs
  • 150g natural yoghurt 
  • Zest of one unwaxed orange 


  • 45g unsalted cold butter, cubed 
  • 75g all-purpose flour
  • 50g sugar
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  •  Pinch of salt


  1. Turn the oven on to 180°C and line a muffin tin with 12 paper liners
  2. Make the streusel topping.  Mix the flour and cinnamon together then using your hands rub in the butter until it resembles breadcrumbs
  3. Add the sugar and salt then mix to combine and put aside in the fridge until ready to use 
  4. Mix all dry ingredients into one large bowl
  5. Wash the carrots then top and tail, peel and grate.  Mix into the dry ingredients
  6. In another bowl, whisk together the sugar, cooled butter, eggs, yoghurt and orange zest until well combined then fold into the dry ingredients and divide equally between the paper cases
  7. Smooth with a teaspoon and sprinkle the streusel topping across the top then bake for 25 – 35 minutes until a light golden brown and a thin skewer pushed into the sponge comes out clean 
  8. Cool on a wire rack then serve.


Roasted carrot with salsa verde

Roasted Carrots with Salsa Verde

Transitional eating is all about eating fresh seasonal food that is in abundance and easing into warmer, heartier food while retaining some of the lightness of the summer months.  These roasted carrots are sweet and comforting with a bright, zingy salsa verde that minimises waste by using up the nutritious and vibrant carrot tops.  Tarragon is also a nice herb to include if you have it available.  


Earthy yet packing a flavour punch, this dish is lovely as a side to fish or even a roast chicken, or you can have at room temperature as part of a hearty autumnal salad.

Preparation time: 15 mins  

Cooking time: approx 30 – 40 mins 

Serves: 4 as a side 


  • 750g carrots, washed and topped/tailed but left unpeeled
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper  

Carrot top salsa verde:

  • Saved carrot tops (washed thoroughly!)
  • handful fresh mint leaves 
  • handful fresh basil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced 
  • 1 tbsp capers
  • 5 anchovies
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 75ml olive oil
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar  
  • salt & pepper 


  1. Turn the oven on to 200°
  2. After washing the carrots, top and tail then slice into large chunks.  Particularly large carrots may need halving vertically but keep them fairly large
  3. Toss them in olive oil, salt and pepper then in a deep roasting tray, roast them for 30 – 40 minutes shaking them two or three times throughout until they’re beautifully golden brown and caramelised and you can easily push the tip of a knife through
  4. To make the salsa verde, using roughly equal parts of the carrot tops, basil and mint, pick the herb leaves off the thicker parts of the stalks and finely chop.  Place into a food processor or pestle and mortar with the capers and anchovy and a pinch of salt then pulse
  5. Transfer to a bowl and mix in the lemon zest, garlic, vinegar and olive oil.  Taste then season with salt and pepper.  If very earthy or it has a slightly bitter taste you can add a tiny pinch of sugar
  6. Place in a bowl and cover with clingfilm so it touches the sauce and set aside until ready to serve