Date, carrot and apple muffins with cream cheese topping (refined sugar free)

Date, carrot and apple muffins.
It has been a while since I worked on a muffin recipe and I am rather pleased with this particular one. I was recently invited onto the Expresso Morning Show to present three different, easy recipes with one common ingredient. I chose dates as my star ingredient and wanted to include a baking recipe in one of the cooking segments. That was the inspiration behind these date muffins.

Date muffins with cream cheese topping.Refined sugar free date muffins with cream cheese topping.

These tasty muffins are sweetened with dates, honey and apple, making them a great refined sugar free snack for the family. It took a few trials to get the sweetness just right, and I am happy with where we ended up. (When I say we I am referring to myself and the kids who were my very thorough, very honest taste testers. 😉 ) The muffins have a lovely soft texture and a delicious flavour especially with cream cheese topping spread over the top.
Sugar free date, carrot and apple muffins.
 Date and carrot muffins with cream cheese topping.

You can the watch the video of me presenting this recipe on Expresso HERE. The other two recipes I made on the show were date and nut balls and sugar free chocolate mousse.

DATE, CARROT AND APPLE MUFFINS with CREAM CHEESE TOPPING

For the muffins:

  • 12 cupcake cases
  • 200g dates, finely chopped
  • 1½ cups plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 150g butter, melted
  • 100ml milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup runny honey
  • ½ cup finely grated carrots
  • ½ cup grated apple (skin on)
  • 1 tbsp finely grated orange zest

For the topping:

  • 125g smooth cream cheese
  • 1-2 tbsp raw honey, to taste
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp finely grated orange rind
  • chopped nuts, cinnamon or orange rind to decorate (optional)

1.) Preheat your oven to 180°C. Place the cupcake cases in a muffin tray.

2.) Place the dates in a small bowl. Cover with one cup of boiling water and leave to stand for 15 minutes. Drain the dates and blend them into a paste.

3.) Sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger and salt into a bowl. Add the eggs, butter, milk, vanilla extract, honey and date paste. Stir gently to combine.

4.) Add the carrot, apple and orange zest. Mix until just combined (don’t over mix!).

5.) Divide the batter between the cupcake cases. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Transfer the muffins to a cooling rack and leave to cool completely.

6.) Place all of the topping ingredients in a bowl and whisk gently with a fork until smooth. Spread over the cold muffins before serving.
Optional: sprinkle finely grated orange zest, chopped nuts or a little ground cinnamon over the muffins to decorate.

If you love muffins you may also like these recipes (links below):

Bran muffins and lemon muffins.

RECIPE: Bran and fruit muffins
RECIPE: Sticky lemon and poppy seed muffins

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