These healthy beet muffins are incredibly delicious and full of nutritious ingredients, including shredded beetroot and apples, unsweetened applesauce, extra virgin olive oil, and whole wheat flour. They’re low in sugar, dairy free, and modifiable to become vegan. Making a batch of them is a wonderful way to add more veggies to breakfast or snacks for babies, toddlers, older kids, and adults alike.
I’m on a veggie-loaded muffin roll lately! My daughter Sydney LOVES muffins, and I love to make her different variations that include nutritious ingredients like fruits and vegetables. It’s a win-win!
I like to have a stash of muffins on hand at all times to warm up and serve to her for breakfast and snacks. At any given moment, you can find my Spinach Banana Muffins, Zucchini Carrot Oat Muffins, Banana Red Lentil Muffins, or these new beet muffins in our freezer! But in case you think my muffins are only for kids, I assure you they’re beloved by the whole family. Will and I can’t get enough either.
When I first set out to make a muffin recipe with beets, I considered using banana to add some natural sweetness to the batter. However, I realized that most of my muffins use banana and I wanted to mix it up. I knew beets paired really well with apples, thanks to my Red Cabbage Slaw with Beets, and I figured shredded apples and applesauce would be great companions to beets.
And BOY am I glad with how these guys turned out! They’re really flavorful, with the earthy hints from the beets perfectly complemented by the sweet apples. Plus, I use extra virgin olive oil to add richness and flavor too. There’s also not a lot of added sugar…just a few tablespoons of maple syrup. The applesauce and shredded apples provide plenty of sweetness already. If all of this is as appealing to you as it is to me, go on and get baking!
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Cooked beets: I like to use Roasted Beets in Foil or Instant Pot Beets for this recipe. To save yourself a lot of time and effort (and red hands), use pre-cooked beets like Love Beets or canned beets instead.
- Apples: I like to use Pink Lady or Honeycrisp, but any variety will do.
- Applesauce: Use unsweetened.
- Extra virgin olive oil: If you want a more neutral flavor, substitute avocado oil. You can also sub melted coconut oil or melted butter.
- Maple syrup: Swap in honey if that’s what you have. Do not sub honey if you are making these for babies under 1 year of age. On a related note, since added sugars aren’t recommended for babies under 1, you can omit the maple syrup and substitute extra applesauce instead.
- Vanilla extract: You can’t bake a muffin without it!
- Eggs: If someone in your family has an egg allergy or if you want to make these vegan, replace the eggs with 2 flax “eggs” instead. Mix 2 tablespoons of milled flaxseed with 6 tablespoons of water. Let it sit for about 10 minutes to thicken before adding to the batter.
- Whole wheat flour: I have not tested these beet muffins with any other kind of flour, so if you try it, please report back!
- Baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt
I highly recommend a silicone muffin pan. The muffins pop right out, there’s no sticking, and clean-up is a breeze. Silicone muffin liners that you can put in a regular muffin pan, in lieu of paper ones, are also a great option.
The full recipe card for beet muffins, including ingredient quantities, is at the bottom of the post. Here’s a preview of the steps with photos to guide you in the kitchen.
Cook the beets if you are not using pre-cooked ones. Grate the cooked beets and fresh apples using a hand grater.
Add the wet ingredients (unsweetened applesauce, olive oil, vanilla, eggs, and maple syrup) to a large mixing bowl. Stir until combined. In a separate bowl or measuring cup, stir together the whole wheat flour, baking powder and soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ones.
Fold the grated beets and apples into the batter.
Spoon the batter into a muffin tray, filling each cavity about ¾ of the way. Bake for 23 to 25 minutes at 350 degrees F.
Storage and Freezing
Beet muffins will keep in an airtight container on the kitchen counter at room temperature for up to 3 to 5 days. If you want to keep them fresh for longer, keep the container in the refrigerator.
To freeze these muffins, let them cool completely then wrap each one in plastic wrap. Transfer the wrapped muffins to a freezer-safe bag, seal tightly, and label. Store in the freezer for up to 6 months. Thaw muffins in the refrigerator overnight. To thaw them directly from frozen instead, remove the plastic wrap, place on a microwave-safe plate, and heat in 20-second intervals until warmed through.
More Muffin Recipes
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Apple Beet Muffins
- Muffin pan
- 1 cup shredded cooked beets - about 2 small cooked beets
- 2 cups shredded apples - about 2 apples, do not need to peel
- 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 2 eggs - beaten
- ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup - can sub honey or extra applesauce
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1.75 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- First, cook the beets if you are not using pre-cooked ones like Love Beets or canned beets (or beets you roasted or steamed at an earlier time). Keep in mind that the prep and cook time for this recipe does not take into account cooking the beets.
- Preheat the oven to 350℉. Line a muffin pan (if not using a silicone one) and set aside.
- Using a hand or box grater, shred the cooked beets and apples.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the unsweetened applesauce, beaten eggs, olive oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract.
- In a measuring cup or separate bowl, combine the whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.
- Add the dry to ingredients to the bowl with the wet ones. Stir to combine.
- Fold the shredded beets and apples into the batter. Mix until evenly distributed.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling each cavity about ¾ of the way.
- Bake for 23 to 25 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.
- Let the muffins cool for a few minutes, then enjoy!
- Leave a rating or review by tapping the stars on this recipe card (above) or in the comments section (at the end of the post)!
- I like to use Pink Lady or Honeycrisp apples, but any variety works.
- To make the muffins egg-free/vegan, use flax “eggs” in place of the eggs. Combine 2 tablespoons milled flaxseed with 6 tablespoons water. Let it sit for 10 minutes to thicken before adding to the batter.
- To freeze these muffins, let them cool completely then wrap each one in plastic wrap. Put the wrapped muffins in a bag, seal tightly, and freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight or in the microwave (with the plastic wrap removed) in intervals of 20 seconds until heated through.