Carrot Cake Cupcakes are super moist with the addition of finely diced carrots and applesauce. The cream cheese frosting is the perfect topper for these little springtime (or any time!) delights!
Carrot Cake is the perfect Spring dessert, so I decided to make little carrot cake cupcakes, instead of the jumbo sized ones I normally make. That way, you don’t have to feel so bad if you eat two.
Another reason I made regular sized cupcakes is because I splurged and bought a new muffin tin. My baking pans have taken a beating over the years, because when I’m stressed, bored, happy, or sad – I bake. 🙂 Also, make sure you get these parchment paper muffin liners because they are perfect for cupcakes and muffins!
This recipe is NOT hard. You can do it, and I’m going to show you how.
Visible carrot chunks or not?
I love the little carrot chunks that are visible in these cupcakes. Don’t you? Zach thought they were too big…said the boy who inhaled a
couple LOT of them. You could shred them in your food processor or your veggie chopper, but I decided to just finely dice them.
One note…buy whole carrots for this recipe because the baby carrots and shredded carrots can be too dry. We want MOIST.
Do you like Cream Cheese Frosting? (say yes!)
The cream cheese frosting below demands it’s own recipe. It’s the PERFECT topper for these delicious cupcakes.
- cream cheese
- powdered sugar
- cinnamon (this gives the frosting a slightly tinted color)
I used my piping kit for the frosting and actually didn’t even use all the frosting I made. But you could just pile it up even higher and simply use a spoon. Both work just fine!
How to make your carrot cupcakes MOIST!
To make these cupcakes super moist, I added some applesauce to the recipe. I love to keep it on hand for baking, and sometimes I cut out some of the butter and oil because of it. This recipe has it all. Plenty of oil, eggs, carrots (the WHOLE carrots are best), AND applesauce for just the right texture and taste. The addition of cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg also adds an extra punch of flavor.
Storing and freezing
Carrot Cake Cupcakes are very easy to freeze. In fact, I made these in advance, put them in an airtight container, froze them, and then set them out the day I wanted to serve them. The frosting is a five minute deal, so they can be a quick dessert for company.
These cupcakes are fine on the counter for a day or so, but for best results, store them in the refrigerator and set them out a few hours before you want to EAT them.
What I posted last year: Chicken Fajita Salad with Fresh Salsa Dressing
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A classic carrot cake cupcake with the addition of applesauce for extra moisture! The cream cheese frosting takes it to another level!
- 1 cup canola oil
- 1/2 cup applesauce
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla
- 3 large eggs
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 1/2 cups grated carrots - I chopped finely by hand
- 8 oz. cream cheese - softened
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter -softened
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 12 cup muffin tin with muffin liners.
Add all the wet ingredients to a medium bowl - the canola oil, applesauce, vanilla, and eggs. Mix well.
Add all the dry ingredients to another medium bowl - the flour, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Mix well, and add to the wet ingredients. Stir to combine.
Gently fold the carrots into the batter.
Scoop batter into cupcake tins. Bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until done in the center. Remove cupcakes to cooling rack.
In a medium bowl, use hand mixer (or large standing mixer) to whip cream cheese and butter. Add in powdered sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon, and whip for two minutes, or until creamy.
Pipe frosting on top of cupcakes. Sprinkle with additional cinnamon, if desired.
These cupcakes can be frozen (unfrosted) for up to three months. Just place them in an airtight container or freezer bag.