Healthy Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting are Flavorful, soft, and moist!
Today I will show you how to make it from scratch.
How To Make Carrot Cake Cupcakes
Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Then line a muffin tin with little paper cupcake liners. This recipe makes 24 cupcakes, so you’ll either need 2 pans or work in batches.
For the cupcake batter, you’ll start with 2 1/4 cup of all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 cups of sugar, 2 1/4 teaspoons of baking soda, 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder, and then our spices starting with 1 1/2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon, then 3/4 teaspoon each of ground cloves, ground nutmeg, and ground allspice.
The last dry ingredient is 3/4 teaspoon of salt, and then you just want to give the dry ingredients a quick mix to combine.
Then it’s time to start adding in our wet ingredients, starting with 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce, this is gonna add a ton of moisture to our cupcakes.
Then you’ll need 3/4 cup of canned crushed pineapple, and you just want to lightly drain that, there can still be liquids, but get rid of at least some of them.
Then we’ll add in 1/3 cup of vegetable oil, along with 3 large eggs, and then 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
Use a hand mixer to mix them together until combined. You can see that the mixture is rather thick, and it will not be smooth due to the crushed pineapple. Be sure to stop and scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl to make sure that everything gets mixed in.
Then add in 2 1/4 cups of finely shredded carrot, and you can see that is nice and fine. You actually want to shred the carrots yourself.
Then 1 1/2 cups of chopped walnuts, and you can always leave these out if there’s a nut allergy.
Another common addition to carrot cake is golden raisins, however, I’m not a big raisin fan, so I leave those out. But if you wanted to add those in, you’d add in 1 1/2 cups.
Use your rubber spatula to fold and stir all of those nuts and carrots in with the batter. You want the carrots and nuts to be fairly evenly distributed throughout the batter.
Then you’ll want to scoop the batter into the prepared cupcake liners and fill each about 2/3 of the way full.
You can always do a test run if you need to, it’s better to underfill than overfill. If you’re working in batches you will want to let the pan cool a little bit before re-filling.
Next, we’re gonna bake it in the 350-degree oven for 20-22 minutes.
While the cupcakes are baking it’s a good time to make your frosting.
You could really use any type of frosting you’d like, but when it comes to carrot cake, I like to use cream cheese buttercream.
That starts with 8 ounces of softened cream cheese, and 1/2 cup of softened butter.
Then use a hand or stand mixer to beat all together until it’s light and fluffy. I like to whip it for a solid 2-3 minutes.
Then add in about 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract, and give it a quick mix to combine.
Then start adding in our powdered sugar. You’ll need about 2 cups total, but you want to add it in about 1/2 cup at a time, mixing in between additions.
I keep it on a low speed until all of the powdered sugar has been added in, and then increase the speed once it’s all added in to get those last bits mixed in.
How much frosting you’ll need depends on how you plan on frosting your cupcakes. If you go bakery style and pile it high you’ll probably need to double the amount of frosting.
Once your cupcakes are done baking you’ll want to remove them from the pan and transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
You can just grab a butter knife and spread the frosting on, or if you’d like you can transfer it to a piping bag and use whatever tip you’d like to frost and decorate your cupcakes however you want.
Carrot Cake Cupcakes are moist, fluffy, and full of delicious spiced carrot cake flavor! This easy one-bowl cupcake recipe includes our favorite cream cheese frosting.
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 3/4 teaspoon table salt
- 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 3/4 cup canned crushed pineapple lightly drained
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 1/4 cups finely shredded carrots
- 1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts
- 1 1/2 cups golden raisins (optional)
- 12 ounces cream cheese softened
- 1/2 cup salted butter softened
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 1/4 – 3 cups powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners. Recipe makes 24 cupcakes so you may have to cook it in batches unless you have two muffin tins.
In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, allspice and salt.
Add applesauce, crushed pineapple, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla. Use a hand mixer to beat on a medium speed until smooth. This should take just 1 to 2 minutes.
Use a rubber spatula to stir in shredded carrots, walnuts, and raisins (if using) until just combined.
Fill each cupcake 2/3 full. Bake for 20-22 minutes until the cupcakes meet the toothpick test (stick a toothpick in and it comes out clean). Remove from tins and cool completely.
Use a hand mixer to beat cream cheese and butter together for 1 minute until light and fluffy. Add in vanilla extract and mix until combined, about 10 seconds.
Slowly add in powdered sugar, one half cup at a time until smooth, mixing between additions. Use to frost completely cooled cakes. Store frosting and/or frosted cake in the refrigerator.