Chai Carrot Pear Muffins – Vegan & Gluten Free

by Marla on December 27, 2011 · 60 comments

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Gluten Free Carrot Pear Muffin Recipe on Family Fresh Cooking Do you remember that Chai Carrot Pear Sauce recipe I posted a few months ago? There was such a great response to it which made me really happy because it was soooooo tasty! You know what is even better….enjoying that sauce as is and then using it in these muffins!

With 2012 around the bend you know I will be sharing a slew of healthy recipes to keep your taste buds happy and your waistline slim. Let’s go make some muffins!

Breast Cancer Awareness healthy muffin recipe with orange carrot ribbon.

Originally (back in October) I styled these with that little ribbon because October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This awareness month was originally created to promote mammography as a tool for early cancer detection. Later on the  Susan B. Komen foundation further branded the issue with the pink ribbon and all kinds of charity events.

Gluten Free Carrot Pear Muffin Recipe on Family Fresh Cooking

According to me, each and every month we should be aware of finding a cure. I bet that you would agree with that too.

So these muffins were made with BIG flavor and styled with awareness in mind. Together we can take action no matter what month it is, yes?

Fresh pears, healthy muffins topped with pistachios on pink background.

Let’s take a look at the stunning color and glow of that pear carrot sauce…

It is oh so healthy too! Nothing but sweet fruit, carrots and some spices. That’s all it takes for a healthy snack.

Homemade Apple, Carrot, Pear Sauce | ©

The cupcake liners are something kinda special too!

Pretty Cupcake Liners |

I love making muffins. They are perfect for Project Lunch Box. Speaking of which I have lots of new recipes coming up that you can pack to-go for work or school. Stay tuned for those.

Did I mention these muffins are gluten free, refined sugar-free and vegan? That’s a lot of bang for the buck!

Gluten Free Carrot Pear Muffin Recipe on Family Fresh Cooking

What is your favorite muffin recipe? Do you like to have them for breakfast, brunch, snacks or all the time?

Do you pack them in your lunch box?

Chai Carrot Pear Muffins – Vegan & Gluten Free

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 12 standard sized muffins

Serving Size: 1 muffin

Chai Carrot Pear Muffins – Vegan & Gluten Free


  • 1 cup Gluten Free Oat Flour or Quinoa Flour
  • 1 cup blanched Almond Flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine Sea Salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground Cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
  • 1 cup Chai Carrot Pear Sauce
  • 1 cup light Unsweetened Coconut Milk
  • 2 tablespoons unrefined Coconut Oil, melted
  • 1 teaspoon Almond or Vanilla Extract
  • 3-4 droppers full of Vanilla Stevia Drops Adjust to taste
  • 1 large Carrot, peeled and finely shredded
  • Optional Toppings
  • Your favorite nuts
  • Raisins
  • unsweetened Coconut Flake


  • Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F with the rack in the middle. Prepare standard sized muffin tins with liners or cooking spray. Whisk together dry ingredients in a bowl. Stir together wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Combine the wet and dry ingredients, stirring well. Fold in the shredded carrots last. Adjust spices and sweetness if desired.
  • Fill muffin cups evenly with batter. Top with pistachios or other nuts if desired. Bake for 26-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out virtually crumb free.
  • Enjoy with whipped cream, thick yogurt and/or coconut flake.
  • Notes
  • You can also use homemade or store bought pear or applesauce in this recipe. The spices add the chai flavor.

Healthy Muffin Recipe Links

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{ 57 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Rosa December 27, 2011 at 2:43 pm

Gorgeous! A great choice of flavors.




2 Marina {} December 27, 2011 at 3:22 pm

Oh this is just so so pretty, food stylist/photographer extraordinaire, Marla :) Love the pink. And of course the muffins look amazing.


3 Marla December 27, 2011 at 3:41 pm

Marina, you are way to kind. Thanks and I am glad you like my latest creation!


4 Kiran @ December 27, 2011 at 3:52 pm

Your food styling and most importantly, philosophy is so addictive!! Drool-worthy muffins for sure :)


5 Kristi Rimkus December 27, 2011 at 6:46 pm

I keep meaning to find chai seeds, but they aren’t readily available where I shop. Time to google them and see if I can find them online. I’d love to make these muffins, they sounds fantastic. Have a good new year!


6 Marla December 28, 2011 at 4:58 am

Hi Kristi! There are two different things “Chia” is a seed and “Chai” is a blend of spices & seasonings. Here is a bit more info on chai. It is traditionally an Indian tea most commonly flavored with cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and pepper. These days people use the seasonings in all different combinations to flavor lots more than tea. I hope you can give it a whirl sometime. It is a fragrant, tasty and relaxing mix of ingredients.


7 Amy Tong December 27, 2011 at 8:16 pm

What a lovely recipe. I gotta try making these soon for my friends who are one a Vegan & Gluten Free diet. :) Thanks for sharing.


8 Alyssa @ Everyday Maven December 27, 2011 at 9:25 pm

Yum! My son would love these and I love the ingredients – so clean!


9 Sparkle and Co December 28, 2011 at 2:27 am

I couldn’t eat it because I don’t eat pear. But I could replace it with apple!!! i’ll try this way and i’ll come back to tell you 😉 Thanks for the recipe and Merry (belated christmas!!!)


10 Marla December 28, 2011 at 4:48 am

Yes! Applesauce will be the perfect adaptation & you will not miss a thing! Enjoy & let me know if you try them :)


11 Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga December 28, 2011 at 3:27 am

second picture, with the orange curly thingey on top of the muffin = stunning image.

The color, the light, the reflective and flat surfaces, the tones, just everything…stunning.

Hope you’re having a blast…just got home after a 24 hour travel day. Oh, the joy. It’s cold here, too. Lol Havent felt anything this cold in a month!


12 Marla December 28, 2011 at 4:47 am

Thanks Averie! It is always difficult to figure out which photo to put first in the post. I suppose you would have put #2? I was a bit conflicted on this one, but something about the mood in picture #1 grabbed and tugged at me. Edits & choices….a daily battle of love :)
24 hours is a crazy long travel day. Especially with a little kid in tow. Glad to hear you made it home safe and sound. Now back to the So Cal lifestyle (even though a tad chilly right now) Can’t wait to see you in 2012! xo


13 Allison [Girl's Guide to Social Media] December 28, 2011 at 4:49 am

I am a muffin fan too. These look great!


14 Kitchen Belleicious December 28, 2011 at 5:16 am

not only did you say chai but you got me at carrot and pear. How amazing those flavors must be together. I love this!


15 Hector December 28, 2011 at 6:27 am

Great recipe! However, the Breast Cancer Awareness Month wasn’t created by Komen, but by the American Cancer Society in partnership with AstraZeneca in 1985 to promote mammography as a tool for early cancer detection. The Susan G. Komen came up with the pink ribbon motif, which is a great branding/awareness idea.


16 Marla December 28, 2011 at 7:47 am

Thanks so much for that information Hector. I will add to the post!


17 Leanne @ Healthful Pursuit December 28, 2011 at 6:39 am

Gosh, your photography just gets prettier and prettier! I love that you combined the sauce with muffins, great call!


18 Amanda December 28, 2011 at 6:42 am

I just have to tell you … this post makes me so happy! The healthy food and the bright, cheery pictures… its all just a big dose of all natural JOY!

Thanks for all you do~


19 Shaina December 28, 2011 at 8:28 am

Absolutely gorgeous, Marla. I am going to have to make these for the winter break going on. I even have the same liners. 😉


20 Marla December 29, 2011 at 9:04 am

Shaina, I have quite the collection of liners these days. I am obsessed with finding new ones.


21 Cassie December 28, 2011 at 9:30 am

These are absolutely gorgeous muffins. I love the combination, and that they are vegan. Great recipe, Marla!


22 Marla December 29, 2011 at 9:04 am

Thanks Cassie. I am happy these are vegan too so more people can enjoy them :)


23 HeatherChristo December 28, 2011 at 9:40 am

While not typically being a nut and fruit/baked goods kind of girl- these look so amazing. I love the flavor combo!

And wow with the photography Marla. I mean- you really have a gift.


24 Marla December 29, 2011 at 9:02 am

Heather, you just made my day. Really :) Thanks for your sweetness day in and day out. xo


25 Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. December 28, 2011 at 10:29 am

these look so good! Headed to pin it in a second


26 aida mollenkamp December 28, 2011 at 10:36 am

I liked the idea of that pear sauce and love how you’ve used it in these muffins!


27 Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers December 28, 2011 at 11:05 am

Marla, these look wonderful! I love a healthy muffin! My favorite muffin has always been your basic blueberry muffin! They can be healthy, not healthy it doesn’t matter I just love them! But with the new year upon us, I am definitely sticking with healthy! I can’t wait to see what healthy recipes you have in store for us!

Now I need to check out your carrot and pear sauce, it sounds yummy!


28 Marla December 29, 2011 at 9:05 am

Jennifer, it is awesome that “Healthy” can also mean decadent & filled with flavor. Certainly not bland and boring. Oh happy days! I hope you get to try these muffins. I love blueberry ones too!


29 Lauren December 28, 2011 at 3:03 pm

How pretty are these!! And, love that they are uber healthy.


30 Liz December 28, 2011 at 4:27 pm

Oh, these look outstanding, Marla…so moist and flavorful. And your carrot pear sauce is amazing, too! Hope your Christmas was wonderful…and sending you wishes for a joyful new year!!!


31 Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen December 28, 2011 at 5:30 pm

Yes I do remember your Chai Carrot Pear Sauce recipe, loved it! And I’m loving these muffins as well.


32 Heather | Farmgirl Gourmet December 28, 2011 at 10:10 pm

Goodness. These muffins sound incredible. The Chai Carrot Pear sauce……swooon!!!


33 Kulsum at JourneyKitchen December 28, 2011 at 10:38 pm

Beautiful Marla. Such great combination of flavors, all in a little muffin. Certainly on my to try list!


34 Sommer@ASpicyPerspective December 29, 2011 at 6:26 am

Brilliant idea! And what a perfect way to dress them with those gorgeous muffins liners. :)


35 A Southern Bee Diary December 29, 2011 at 6:59 am

I love the gluten free recipe ! I am always looking for new recipes that are gluten free for my father in law ! They delicious from the photos!


36 Jeanette December 29, 2011 at 7:03 am

Love all the flavors you mixed together in these muffins, and i love your muffin liners, all for a wonderful cause.


37 Brooke @ Food Woolf December 29, 2011 at 8:50 am

I love this colorful recipe. I bet the flavor is just as big and bright (like you)! Happy New Year, darling!


38 XL @ 6 Bittersweets December 29, 2011 at 2:42 pm

I love the light in the 1st photo! And the flavors sound fabulous!


39 Heather Lynn December 29, 2011 at 5:30 pm

Those look delicious!!!! I just need to find a new muffin tin, as mine died a terrible death haha.


40 Krista {Budget Gourmet Mom} December 29, 2011 at 5:47 pm

Love this idea Marla! And there’s that table…it makes me smile every time I see it! 😉


41 Sue @ Cakeballs, cookies and more December 30, 2011 at 5:50 am

They sound wonderful!


42 Aggie January 3, 2012 at 5:08 pm

These sound awesome Marla! I would love to start experimenting with different types of flours this year. I need to bookmark this recipe to try. My kids would love these in their lunchbox.


43 Marla January 3, 2012 at 7:48 pm

Aggie, I have so much fun experimenting with different flours. Especially the lower carb ones like almond flour. My kids can’t even tell the difference. These still have the cake crumb that we all know and love!


44 Ryan January 9, 2012 at 9:00 am

This looks like a very nice recipe!


45 Julie @White Lights on Wednesday January 25, 2012 at 7:30 am

Stopping by from That’s What We Said. I’m just discovering your site now and I can’t wait to start looking around. These muffins look fantastic!


46 Marla January 26, 2012 at 1:48 pm

Hi Juile, I am so happy you found me. These muffins are really good. I think it is time to make another batch like now!


47 Cathy @ What Would Cathy Eat? February 7, 2012 at 7:37 pm

What an unusual recipe – congrats. Thanks for the shout-out to my blueberry oat muffins, too!


48 Lia March 5, 2012 at 5:22 am

Hi Marla,
Just saw the photo of these muffins at Rosas’s blog and couldn’t resist to have a peak at the recipe. Delicious!!


49 Marla March 5, 2012 at 5:23 am

Thanks so much Lia. Very glad Rosa could make the introduction :)


50 Melissa Upham April 21, 2012 at 8:41 am

I made these this morning and they wouldn’t cook in the middle. I cooked them for almost an hour. I used almond meal, could this be why?


51 Marla April 22, 2012 at 5:27 am

Hi Melissa, I used 1/2 oat flour in this recipe. Using only almond flour would certainly change the behavior of how these muffins would bake. I did not test them like this. If you are looking for a muffin recipe that only uses almond flour you can try my Mango Muffins.


52 Michelle Schneider April 28, 2012 at 1:13 pm

I made these for my family two weeks ago and they were an absolute hit! I’m definitely making these a go-to breakfast and snack.


53 dennis September 14, 2012 at 12:42 pm

What a cool recipe! Can you replace the coconut milk with almond or soy milk, or is that a poor choice?


54 Marla September 14, 2012 at 3:32 pm

I am not sure Dennis, the coconut milk I use is generally a bit thicker and I think more fat than the almond or soy milk. I say give it a try and see what happens ~ be sure to report back. OK :)


55 Petra January 8, 2013 at 12:02 pm

Hi!! I love your recipes but I have made these muffins twice now and both times they did not cook even tho I had them in the oven for double the amount of time. Any suggestions?


56 Cat October 27, 2013 at 8:26 pm

I just made these as well, using flour exactly as the recipe calls for and I had the same problem, the middle is still raw? Wondering what I did wrong? :(
I made the pear/carrot sauce right before I made the muffins so it was still hot….should it be cold?


57 Marla October 28, 2013 at 7:46 am

I have not tested these again for some time ~ i’ll try to soon. Sounds like some have had success ~ others not so much.


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