Bakery-style vegan carrot muffins with high muffin tops and a delicious streusel topping. These muffins are easy to make and come together in one bowl.
Why you'll love this recipe
This recipe was closely adapted from reader-favorite recipes for vegan carrot cake cupcakes and vegan banana muffins. Those recipes have received loads of positive reviews including:
- "These were the best carrot cupcakes in my life."
- "Highly recommend for vegans and non-vegans alike."
- "A muffin I will make for forever!"
Ingredients you'll need
These vegan carrot cake muffins use common pantry staples including:
Notes about the ingredients
All-purpose plain flour for the fluffiest vegan carrot muffins. For more wholesome muffins, you can use whole wheat or spelt flour.
Brown or coconut sugar. The molasses from the brown sugar complements the spices and carrot! Coconut sugar is slightly less sweet and has a lovely caramel undertone which also complements this recipe.
Grated carrot. I recommend grating your carrot coarsely for the best texture and to make sure the muffins aren't too soggy. Finely grated carrot will leak more water so you may need to bake your muffins for longer.
Chopped walnuts which is optional but recommended for depth of flavor and texture! Alternatively, you can add raisins.
Ground cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger and LOTS of it! This recipe contains a little more spice than others as it's a quick and easy way to add flavor.
A complete list of ingredients, quantities and instructions are in the gray recipe card at the bottom of this post.
How to make vegan carrot muffins
These muffins come together in ONE BOWL! There's no fussing around with aquafaba, flax eggs or anything like that. You can mix the batter by hand, with an electric whisk or stand mixer.
First, add all the dry ingredients (except the optional walnuts/raisins) to a large mixing bowl and mix until combined. Make sure there are no lumps of sugar!
Add the rest of the ingredients (including the walnuts) and mix until just combined. Some lumps are fine, as long as they aren't lumps of flour!
Your batter will be very thick, but don't worry! By the time you've divided the muffin batter, the sugar will start to liquify and carrots will leak water so the batter won't feel as thick.
If you'd like to make the crumb topping but don't want to wash another bowl, divide the batter into your muffin tin at this stage.
Optional crumb topping
The crumb topping isn't absolutely necessary but it adds a wonderful layer of CRUNCH to these vegan carrot muffins.
It comes together in one bowl and, while it doesn't look like much, there's enough to generously top all 12 muffins.
TOP tips for high muffin tops
Similar to my banana muffins, I tested a few easy techniques to get cafe-style muffin tops.
The easiest and best method is to space out your muffins on the tray and bake only 6 at a time. If you have a 12-cup muffin tray, you'd space the muffins diagonally from each other and bake them in 2 lots.
My other tip is to make sure your oven is 180°C (350°F). I recommend buying and using an oven thermometer as it's the most accurate way to see the true temperature of your oven, even if it's new! Baking muffins at a lower temperature causes the muffins to spread out rather than up. Either way, it's not a big issue!
Extra tips and customizations
Substitute the flour with whole wheat or spelt flour and use coconut sugar. I do not recommend maple syrup as it may be too heavy for this recipe. Granulated sweeteners such as erythritol and stevia will work but will not add a lovely caramel flavor to the muffins.
Yes, you will get around 15 smaller muffins from this recipe (similar in size to my vegan carrot cake cupcakes). They'll take only around 20-25 minutes to bake. Or make them even smaller as snacks for kids!
I haven't tested this myself so can't 100% vouch for results. However, it should work though it'll make the muffins denser.
More vegan muffin recipes
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Vegan Carrot Muffins
- 3 cups (375g) all-purpose plain flour, whole wheat flour or spelt flour
- 1 ¼ cup (240g) packed brown sugar, or coconut sugar
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- Pinch of salt, optional
- ~2 ½ cups (250g) coarsely grated carrot, (around 3-4 medium carrots)
- 1 cup (250g) dairy-free milk
- ½ cup (125g) neutral flavored oil
- ¾ cup (85g) chopped walnuts, or ½ cup (75g) raisins (optional)
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar, regular vinegar or lemon juice, optional
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
Oat Crumb Topping (optional, note 3)
- ½ cup (65g) all-purpose plain flour
- ¼ cup (30g) rolled oats
- 3 tablespoons (45g) vegan butter, margarine or coconut oil, melted and cooled
- 2 tablespoons (25g) packed brown sugar, coconut sugar or granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Line a 12-cup muffin pan with liners.
To make the muffins:
- Add all the dry ingredients to a large bowl and mix until there are no more lumps. Add all the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.
- Use an ice cream scoop or a spoon to divide the batter into your muffin pan. The muffin batter should be close to the top of each cup (check the reference images above, note 2).
To make the crumb topping (optional):
- Using the same bowl, add all ingredients for your crumb topping. Mix with a spoon or your fingertips until combined and the mixture is flaky and crumbly.
- Generously sprinkle the crumb topping onto your muffins.
Baking and storing the muffins:
- Bake the muffins for 20-25 minutes or into you can insert a toothpick in a muffin and it comes out clean. These muffins are very moist so a few crumbs on your toothpick are fine.
- Allow the muffins to cool in the muffin pan for 15 minutes (or until they aren't too hot) then place them on a cooling rack.
- Enjoy the vegan carrot muffins warm or at room temperature. They're perfect by themselves or with some vegan butter.
- Store any leftover muffins in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month. If the crumb topping softens over time, you can reheat them in the oven for 10 minutes at 160°C (320°F) or until heated through.
- For healthier vegan carrot muffins, use whole wheat flour or spelt flour and coconut sugar.
For the highest muffin tops, I recommend baking 6 muffins at a time in a 12-cup muffin tray. Spacing apart the muffins allows the hot oven air to bake them faster, resulting in higher tops. This means you'll need to bake the muffins in 2 lots.
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excelent muffins. best ever tried. yumi
This is the best vegan muffin recipe I have found so far! All of my non-vegan friends/family/coworkers love these muffins! Healthy never tasted better than this! Thank you for the lovely recipe Anthea!
Aw, what a compliment! I'm stoked that you and everyone loved this recipe, thanks so much for leaving a kind comment Kayla!
Havent tried them yet but the batter was really tasty! Ill be eating one tomorrow morning and will update then. The only problem I had was with the crumb topping, i think i added too much butter so it wasnt crumbly enough. Added it on in slabs and they stayed slabs. Really neat though to be honest cant wait to try them!
Glad that you enjoyed the batter! How did your muffins go? Yes, it sounds like your topping had too much butter which can be easily fixed by adding a spoon of flour. I hope you enjoyed them!
Literally the best recipe I've tried!! The texture is perfect. Thank you for these delicious muffins
Leena Chan says
Made these muffins yesterday. First time using the recipe and they turned out well and DELICIOUS! Thank you very much for sharing the recipe! Much love.
Used whole wheat flour (except for the crumbs). Turned out perfect!!!! So in love with this recipe. This was my first time making muffins! Love it! Thank you!
I'm so happy that you loved these muffins with whole wheat flour!! Thank you so much for your feedback 🙂
I’m so glad I’ve discovered your website, and I’m very excited to try as much recipes I can lay my hands on
I was about to start baking this recipe till I noticed that you mentioned “3 cups” but only 375g.
I thought 3 cups would be 750g and I almost messed up the recipe 🙈
With the dry ingredients, would you advice we look at the “g” and not the cup’s measurement?
Hi Neo, welcome! I think the confusion is in the cups to grams conversion. 1 cup of water is about 240 grams (close to your measurement) but 1 cup of flour is about 125 grams. Either cups or grams will work for this recipe but I usually recommend using grams as it's more accurate and is the way I test my recipes. I hope that helps!
Do yourself a favour and double the crumble recipe! It's that good haha. Quick, simple, absolutely delicious.
Hi, I just made these and I was wondering if the crumb topping measurements were accurate? Mine was dry and didn’t crumble like yours.
1/2 c of flour seemed too much.
Otherwise they are yummy thank you
Glad that you liked the muffins. Yes, the topping measurements are accurate. It sounds like you may have overpacked your cup with flour. Even 2 tablespoons of extra flour will throw off the crumble texture.
These are delicious! Highly reccommend giving this recipe a try. You won't be disappointed. I added some chopped pecans to the topping.
Aw that's amazing Sandy! Thanks so much for your comment and review 🙂
How much of banana or applesauce should I use instead of oil? Or how much oil I can replace with that?
Hi Marta, I haven't tested it myself so can't 100% say. However, try substituting half the amount with applesauce or banana puree. Hope that helps!
Hi can I make this with gluten free baking flour?
I haven't tested it but normally I recommend a combination of 50% almond flour and 50% gluten-free all-purpose flour. Let me know how you if you make them!
These came out looking amazing! Sprinkled some oats on the top. So moist and sweet!
At first I was skeptical since there seemed to be so many dry ingredients compared to wet but everything mixed perfectly. The mix for me filled up to 16 cupcake papers to the brim instead of 12. Another little tip would be to take the muffins out on to the cooling rack as soon as you can because if they stay in the muffin tray the bottoms become soggy. Thank you for sharing this recipe, it’s absolutely perfect, will 100% make again 🙂 my mum approved as well
That's so wonderful to hear Maya! Glad that you found the muffins to be perfect, even with the thick batter. The grated carrot always gives the muffins back some moisture! Thanks so much for your feedback 🙂
These are amazing! I have made them twice this week, perfect snack for my toddlers, myself and for hubby to take to work. The crumb ontop is to die for! Will definitely be making these again and again!
I'm so happy you loved these Hanady! Thanks so much for your feedback 🙂
Hi, thank you for sharing this amazing recipe. I was wondering if I could sub the all purpose flour for oat flour?? Thank you
Hi Fer, from experience, oat flour needs to be combined with other flours or starches to work in muffins and cakes. I hope that helps!