The original recipe was first published in Gourmet magazine in November 1981.
Legend has it that it was Chef Pam McKinstry who created these muffins in 1978. The recipe was for her restaurant, the Morning Glory Café, on Nantucket Island in Massachusetts.
I lived on Nantucket Island from 1988-1990. It was an amazing two years that I cherish to this day. I was lucky enough to get to visit the Morning Glory Café from time to time and to have these muffins firsthand.
If we’re being honest, I was obsessed with them from the first bite.
There are many versions of this recipe on the internet that claim to be the original. Most, like mine, include pineapple. Some include ginger, or orange juice. Others include wild and crazy ingredients such as flaxseed or jammy bits (yeah I had to figure that one out too).
When I was in college and working in the culinary library, I came across an original copy of the Gourmet magazine from 1981 and was thrilled to find the recipe. I had since lost it, but recently I acquired a full set of 1981 Gourmet magazines and was very excited to find this very recipe in the November edition.
Here at MommiesNommies.com we worked hard to bring you the actual original recipe as well as the version I have updated to add a little more pizzazz. No offense to Chef McKinstry.
I’ve since made it my own, adding pineapple and changing the all carrots part to include not only carrots, but also zucchini and yellow summer squash to liven things up and get a few different types of nutrients in there.
You’re, of course, welcome to keep it as originally intended: all carrots, no pineapple, and a lot of vanilla.
Here is the recipe, as it originally was written:
Into a large bowl sift together 4 cups all-purpose flour, 2½ cups sugar, 4 teaspoons each of baking soda and cinnamon, 1 teaspoon salt. Stir in 4 cups grated carrot, 1 cup each raisins, chopped pecans, sweetened shredded coconut, and 2 apples, peeled, cored and grated. In a bowl beat 6 large eggs with 2 cups vegetable oil and 4 teaspoons vanilla and stir the mixture into the flour until the batter is just combined. Spoon the batter into well-buttered ⅓ cup muffin tins, filling them to the top, and bake the muffins in a preheated moderate oven (350° F.) for 35 minutes, or until they are springy to the touch. Let the muffins cool in the tins on a rack for 5 minutes, turn them out onto the rack and let them cool completely. Makes about 30 muffins.