We made orange and carrot muffins for this class. With this lesson we take a small orange tree to class. I usually wait until May when the orange trees bloom. We show the children the tree and the blossoms and that small oranges form once the flowers fall from the tree. We let them smell the blossoms and zest of the orange, talk about the different colours and then cut the orange in half.

I show and tell them that an orange cut in half forms two halves and not two oranges. This cements the idea of fractions in a very concrete way, as it is combined with fragrance, colour and the physical orange. We then squeeze the juice and taste. Some oranges are a bit sour and some are more sweet. We use our orange juice and zest in the following lovely recipe. Again, this introduces the picky eater to oranges and carrots.


100 g butter
225 g self-raising flour
Pinch of salt
100 g soft brown sugar
150 g coconut
2 eggs
2 tsps golden syrup or honey
1 carrot peeled and grated
Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
1 tsp cinnamon

Times can differ according to your own oven’s heat.

Method for orange and carrot muffins

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.


Place muffin cups in a mini or bigger muffin tin. Add the salt to the flour and mix until combined. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips.

Add the sugar and coconut and give it a stir. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and add the honey or syrup to that. Add the carrots, cinnamon and orange juice and stir together.

Remember , muffins do not need a lot of mixing, just stir until combined. Bake for approximately 10 minutes for the mini muffins and approximately 20 minutes for the larger muffins.

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*Recipe courtesy of Jane Bull.