Dishing Up the Dirt

Spiced Parsnip Muffins with Maple-Cardamom Cashew Cream

A few weeks ago I traded my dirty farm clothes for a fancy top and nice shoes. It was a special occasion after all.  My amazing mother turned 65 and my sister and I wanted to do something really awesome for her. We decided the best way to ring in her 65th year was to spend a girls weekend in Seattle. We really did it up and indulged in massages, amazing champagne and some pretty awesome food. It was a lovely trip spent with two of my favorite women.

One of the highlights of our time together was the incredible dessert we shared at Sitka & Spruce. “Parsnip cake with cardamom cream”. It was heavenly and we’ve all been talking about it ever since. Naturally, I really wanted to create my own version at home and I’m so happy with how these muffins turned out.

I wanted to switch things up and make more of a “breakfast” baked good so Taylor would be into them (he’s not a big dessert person). I incorporated almond flour as the base since I’ve really enjoyed how my recipes turn out using it and I topped these muffins with a cashew cream for a different twist on traditional frosting.  Luckily, we still had a few leftover parsnips storing in the barn from the farm season and they added such a unique flavor and paired really well with the spice of the cardamon.

If I’m being honest I’ll admit that I had to hide the leftover maple-cashew cream while I took photos of these muffins since I couldn’t stop dipping my finger into the bowl. It’s truly an amazing!

These muffins are rich, moist and give traditional carrot cake a run for its money.

Since I’m not a natural born baker (cooking is more my jam) I researched a lot of almond flour recipes to make sure I got the dry/wet ingredient ratio correct. I’m so happy with how these turned out that I can’t wait to hear what you all think if you give them a whirl. My mom and sister already enjoyed these over Thanksgiving weekend and we all agreed they were just as delicious as the dessert we ordered in Seattle. These muffins obviously taste best when enjoyed with a few of your favorite ladies (or guys) and a glass of champagne. Cheers!

Spiced Parsnip Muffins with Maple-Cardamom Cashew Cream

Prep Time: 30 minutes    Cook Time: 30 minutes    Serves: 10 muffins

  • 2 cups blanched almond flour (I use Bob's Red Mill)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 cup grated parsnip
  • 2 farm fresh organic eggs
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, softened
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Maple-Cardamon Cashew Cream:
  • 1 cup unsalted raw cashews (soaked in warm water for 30 minutes)
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)+ additional to thin if necessary
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • pinch of fine sea salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Lightly grease (standard size) muffin tins with a little oil. If you decided to use muffin liners lightly spray them with cooking spry so the muffins don't stick to the paper.
  3. In a large bowl combine the almond flour, baking soda, salt and cardamon.
  4. In a separate bowl whisk together the parsnips, eggs, oil, maple syrup and vanilla. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until well combine.
  5. Scoop batter into greased muffin tins and bake in the oven until golden brown. About 25-30 minutes. Start checking on muffins after 20 minutes.
  6. Remove the muffins from the oven and use a knife to loosen them from the pan. Cool muffins completely before frosting.
  7. While muffins cook prepare your "frosting". Drain the cashews from the soaking water and rinse under cold water. In a food processor or high speed blender combine all the ingredients and process until smooth. Taste test and adjust seasonings if need be. Add a little more milk or water to thin if necessary. Refrigerate until your ready to frost the muffins.


*Almond flour tends to "stick" to the pan or paper liners. Be sure to oil your pan and liners before filling. *Cooking times will vary depending on your oven and the size of your muffin tins. * The consistency of the muffins will vary depending on the brand of almond flour you use. * The cashew cream will last in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.

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39 thoughts on “Spiced Parsnip Muffins with Maple-Cardamom Cashew Cream

  1. You are the only other person I’ve ever seen make a parnsip muffin! I made parsnip walnut muffins a couple of years back on the blog and they were out of this world. I love everything about your recipe, especially that cardamom cashew cream — these are so special, pinning!

    1. Andrea says:

      I’m happy you’ve already tried a baked parsnip muffin! I hope you give these ones a whirl too. The cashew cardamon cream is out of this world!

  2. I’m so intrigued by the parsnips in these muffins. I cannot wait to try it! Happy birthday to your mom!!

    1. Andrea says:

      Let me know if you give these muffins a whirl! And thanks for the birthday wish to my mom 🙂

  3. Your recipes ALWAYS look great and this is no exception.
    I’ve just pinned it and shall let you know how I get on.
    Thanks for sharing and congrats to your mom.

    1. Andrea says:

      Thanks Kimberly! And yes, please let me know how you like these when you make them!

  4. Ally says:

    I love the idea of using parsnips in muffins! I’m obsessed with carrot cake, but parsnips seem more versatile for baked goods. Can’t wait to try these.

    1. Andrea says:

      I hope you enjoy these muffins as much as we do!

  5. Gorgeous photos, lady! And I love the idea of parsnip cake instead of carrot cake. Also a big fan of baking with almond flour. I need to give these a try!

    1. Andrea says:

      Isn’t almond flour great!

  6. What a fun girl’s weekend. Can’t wait to try these–and happy birthday to your mama!

    1. Andrea says:

      It was such a lovely weekend Robyn! Moms are the absolute best and deserve weekends like this! I hope you try these muffins soon! XO

  7. What a unique use of parsnips, especially as this is a modern spin on carrot cake. Fabulous! And I really enjoy almond flour as the base for baked goods too. Can never go wrong with it.

    1. Andrea says:

      Glad you’re an almond flour lover too! I love the nutty flavor and consistency of it in baked goods.

  8. I’ve never baked with parsnips before but always have wanted to. Thanks for sharing the recipe, I definitely will be making it!

    1. Andrea says:

      I really hope you give parsnips a whirl. They are one of my favorite root veggies. Even if you don’t get around to making these muffins purchase a few and roast them with a little olive oil, rosemary and salt. Perfection!

  9. Alexis says:

    I just had one…. and then a second. Because it was too good to stop after one. These are going to be a staple in my house!

    1. Andrea says:

      Alexis I’m so happy you enjoyed them too! They really are dangerously good aren’t they 🙂

  10. Francesca says:

    Your mom looks damn good, especially for 65 🙂 (so do these cupcakes :))

    1. Andrea says:

      I will pass along this comment to my mom. She really is gorgeous and I love her to death. Thanks for the lovely comment!

  11. I am seeing a lot of parsnips in desserts lately, and I am very curious. These muffins looks so delicious. Cardamon is one of my Favorited flavors.

    1. Andrea says:

      I love cardamon! It is the best! Glad you agree. It pairs really well with parsnips. I hope you give this recipe a whirl.

  12. What a unique idea for muffins! I just made these and they turned out wonderfully! I made them vegan by using a flax egg and they still turned out great! I love the flavour of them too! Great recipe 🙂

    1. Andrea says:

      I’m so happy you tried these! Thanks for letting me know how the flax “egg” worked. I’ve gotten quite a few emails from readers wondering how they will turn out with a flax egg. I’ll pass along your comment. Thanks again!

  13. Andrea says:

    I made these tonight and they were amazing! One problem though – they completely crumble when I remove them from the tray. I used 2 flax eggs and my muffin tray makes 6 larger muffins so I baked them for 30 minutes. They seem cooked through. Any thoughts?

    (I also used cinnamon instead of cardamom and added walnuts. So good.)

    1. Andrea says:

      I’m so happy you loved these too! I didn’t have any trouble with mine crumbling so I’m wondering if it has anything to do with the flax eggs. Another issue could possibly be that the muffin tins weren’t oiled enough. Almond flour tends to stick to the pan so properly oiling the pan is a must! Let me know if this was helpful. Thanks for the comment and feedback!

  14. Emily says:

    made these! loved them!

  15. liz says:

    Okay I finally made these for a party that my neighbor ladies (young and seasoned) came to in order to celebrate neighborliness. These were a big hit along wth those thumb print cookie. The frosting had people blown away.
    Very yummy.

    1. Andrea says:

      So glad you loved them liz!

  16. Helen says:

    I made these and the batter was really moist, is that expected? And when I cooked them they didn’t rise and burnt on top. Not sure what I did wrong but would love any tips you might have 🙂

    1. Andrea says:

      Hi Helen! I’m sorry these did not turn out for you. The batter is a moist batter and the muffins are definitely moist muffins but they should still rise and not burn on the top. I’m not sure what went wrong for you. You didn’t by chance miss the baking soda did you? Please let me know, we love these muffins and make them often in the winter months.

      1. Helen says:

        Thanks for your reply. I did put the baking soda in, but maybe I used too much parsnip (I found it hard to measure a cup full!). They were still yummy (albeit in pieces as I couldn’t get them out of the tin!!) and I will definitely try them again soon and hope for better luck.

  17. Paula Jordan says:

    hi andrea! so happy to see your cookbook(i work on a farm in concord ma and my co worker mad efarm lunch yesterday from it and i a dessert for tomorrow. however, the recipe for these called “cupcakes” in your book says to use 1 cup all purpose flour and 3/4 cup of brown sugar. is that a misprint? they are in the oven now..though only 6 so there may be a farm fight…thanks and my best to you.

    1. Andrea says:

      Hi there! Thanks for the comment. No misprint, these are two different recipes.the one in the book does indeed call for all purpose flour and brown sugar . These cupcakes are different.i hope you enjoy them!

      1. Paula Jordan says:

        they were great! (did followed recipe in book, however they only make 6). cashew cream was super yummy.

  18. Rhea N. says:

    Hi there! These muffins are freakin good. I have made them three times in the last month! I’ve been bringing them to my friends and I can’t stop talking about them. Thank you so much! Question: Do you have Nutritional info per serving? I’m wondering how many calories, sugar, carbs, and protein their is per muffin. With the almond flour I imagine the protein content would be higher than regular muffins..?

  19. Lane Callahan says:

    Another huge fan of these muffins! Our parsnips haven’t gotten the cold they need to sweeten up so this recipe is a perfect application for them. Added a little dried lavender cuz I love it and then mayo right at the end to make them extra moist and they are unREAL! I’m wondering if I could make them with regular flour, any changes you think I might have to make?

    1. Andrea says:

      So happy to hear!!! I wouldn’t swap this recipe exact as the all purpose flour acts differently. I’d follow this recipe as a base and adapt the spices to match this recipe.

  20. Esther says:

    Have you ever made these in a loaf pan? I don’t have patience for muffins! Lol!

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