Carrot Cake Orange Muffins

These muffins….. I don’t even know what to say. I’ve been toying with the idea of creating a carrot cake muffin recipe for a while now so last night I finally got myself up to do them and create some kitchen magic πŸ˜‰

And oh did I end up making something special! In fact, I boxed some up and sent them over as a gift to someone and they actually earned me a photo of it being eaten along with the sweetest voice message saying how ‘super’ and ‘top class’ they were! πŸ˜„

I think these are probably the best muffins I’ve ever eaten, I really loved the whole combination of lightly spiced carrot cake spiked with a hint of orange zest for that extra zing. I drizzled some creamy cream cheese glaze on top and that just took these muffins to a whole other world! 😍

For the muffin batter, I used one of my favourite, super simple, no mixer required base muffin recipes which I shared a couple of months ago. It’s my favourite muffin mix because it’s so simple and so incredibly versatile, anything can be added into it!

I spiced the flour mix with some cinnamon and ginger, cloves and nutmeg can be added too, and grinded some orange zest into the sugars. When you want to bring out a specific flavour of something in your baked goods, stir them well into the sugar to get it well incorporated allowing all the flavour to come out. I used both white and brown sugar for these muffins and ended the batter with some buttermilk. I didn’t have any buttermilk at home so I made my own using regular milk and vinegar, directions below. The end result was the softest most moist muffin on earth!

You can add some extra things to these muffins like nuts, dried fruit, raisins or even shredded coconut. It’s really the ultimate carrot cake muffin if you ask me, and I’m super proud of this particular recipe because it’s just so easy and so delicious!

Check out those muffin tops! Just like with these banana muffins, the way to get those beautiful sky high tops is to fill the cupcake cups all the way to the top. You also need to bake the muffins for the first few minutes on a higher heat to get that extra shot of heat making them rise. We then lower the heat to normal and continue baking until cooked through.

Absolutely delicious and one of the best muffin recipes around! Enjoy peeps πŸ’›

Carrot Cake Orange Muffins

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Recipe by Linda @thedutchbaker


Large Muffins
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  • 3 cups (375gms) flour

  • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon

  • 1 teaspoon ginger powder

  • Optional: 1/4 teaspoon cloves, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

  • 1/2 cup (100gms) white sugar

  • 1/2 cup (100gms) soft brown sugar

  • 1 tablespoon orange zest*

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 2/3 cup (160mls) oil**

  • 1 1/2 cups finely shredded carrots

  • 1 cup (250mls) buttermilk***

  • Optional: 1/2 cup nuts, dried fruit, raisins, shredded coconut

  • For the glaze
  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese

  • 1 cup (125gms) icing sugar

  • 2 – 4 tablespoons cream


  • Preheat oven to 200C. Line a muffin tray with muffin cups. In a bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and soda, salt and spices.
  • In a separate large mixing bowl, whisk together the sugars and orange zest untill well blended. Add in the eggs, vanilla and oil and whisk until well combined. Fold in half of the shredded carrots.
  • Stir in the remaining carrots to the flour mix and add to the batter along with the buttermilk by adding half if the flour/carrot mix then the buttermilk then the rest of the flour/carrot mix. Stit only until just combined, don’t overmix. Fold in nuts if desired. Batter will be thick.
  • Divide batter into cupcake cups filling each one to the top. Bake in the preheated oven for about 8 minutes then lower heat to 180C and continue baking until muffins cook through and a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs, about 15 minutes. Cool on a wire rack and glaze.
  • For the glaze
  • Whisk together cream cheese, icing sugar and cream until combined. Add more or less cream until desired consistency is reached. Add vanilla if desired. Drizzle tops of muffins and serve.
  • Store muffins in an air tight container.


  • *More or less orange zest can be added according to desired tastes.
  • **Substitute 1/3 cup of oil for a 1/3 cup of unsweetened applesauce.
  • ***To make your own buttermilk, measure 1 cup of milk into a cup. Remove 1 tablespoon of milk and replace with 1 tablespoon of white vinegar. Rest for a couple of minutes and use as stated.

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  1. I. Love. Orange. 🍊

    1. I love it paired with carrot too πŸ˜‰ thanks for your sweet comment xx

  2. Carrot and orange sounds amazing (:

    1. Thank you! πŸ™‚ These really were amazing! And you can leave out the orange to make it an authentic carrot cake muffin πŸ˜‰ thanks for your lovely comment xx

  3. Carrot and orange muffins! Yummy! Great combination! 😊😊😊

    1. Hi Lina πŸ™‚ this was such a wonderful combination! I absolutely loved these muffins, they were super delicious πŸ˜„ thanks for your sweet comment xx

  4. These really do sound yummy. I have pinned for later πŸ™‚ x

    1. These are the best! I’ve not been able to get them off my mind πŸ˜‚ I’m making them again but this time I’m going to omit the orange zest, up the shredded carrots, add some nuts and maybe drizzle with caramel πŸ˜‰ thank you for pinning! 😊 thanks for your sweet comment my friend πŸ’œ

  5. Sailee says:

    Hi .. These look amazing.. I am making them now 😊Can we use half orange juice reducing half amount of butter milk I don’t have orange zest..

    1. Hii I’m soo sorry for the late reply! Did you end up making these muffins with the orange juice? πŸ˜ƒ you can use a buttermilk substitute as written in the notes below and they muffins will be just as good 😁 thanks for your lovely comment, plz do let me know how they turn out xx

    2. Sorry I misread your question, you can totally substitute orange juice with half of the buttermilk. It’s totally fine and works well too! πŸ˜ŠπŸ˜€

  6. I love your site, it has good information, Thank you!

    1. Thank you so much! πŸ˜€

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