Carrot cake cupcakes are a favorite in our house! They are delicious with or without homemade cream cheese frosting.
Although not necessarily considered a healthy food, carrot cake cupcakes do contain more vitamins and minerals than a typical dessert. Plus, simple ingredient choices like the type of flour, oil, and sugar used makes a difference.
How do you make the tastiest homemade carrot cake cupcakes?
To make the most delicious carrot cake cupcakes, use fresh, quality ingredients. Think healthy oils and maple syrup. Plus, you’ll want to grate your own carrots. Avoid using store-bought pre-shredded carrots. These don’t contain the moisture of freshly grated carrots, thus resulting in a much drier cupcake.
And if you want to add frosting, make your own perfectly balanced cream-cheese frosting at home. There’s a reason why carrot cake is synonymous with cream cheese frosting. However, you can certainly enjoy these cupcakes with or without frosted tops. My kids and I can attest, either way is super tasty!
Once you’re done, there’s no denying that these cupcakes are moist, flavorful, and easy to make.
Are Carrot Cake Cupcakes Healthy?
Although not considered a healthy food, carrot cake does contain more nutrients than average desserts. Plus, homemade carrot cake gives you control of the ingredients. Focus on high-quality, local, real, whole-food ingredients.
Simple swaps like using healthy oils such as olive or avocado and maple syrup in place of brown and white sugar make a difference in nutrient content.
Carrot Cake Cupcake Main Ingredients
The ingredients for carrot cake cupcakes are broken into three categories: dry, wet, and fold-ins. However, you can add all of the ingredients into one bowl. No need to separate and then combine. This 1-bowl recipe makes baking and clean-up a breeze.
- All-Purpose Flour: You’ll use 1 1/4 cups of all-purpose flour.
- Spices: Cinnamon and nutmeg add just the right amount of spice.
- Baking Soda and Baking Powder: Both help these cupcakes rise.
- Fine Sea Salt: A little salt amplifies the flavors.
- Healthy Oil: You can use either olive oil or avocado oil.
- Maple Syrup: Use real maple syrup (not high fructose corn syrup).
- Eggs: You’ll need two eggs. You can also use two flax eggs.
- Vanilla extract: Enhances the flavor.
- Carrots: Finely grate 3-4 medium carrots. You’ll need one and a half cups.
- Walnuts: Chopped walnuts give these cupcakes texture and cut through the sweetness.
How To Make 1-Bowl Carrot Cake Cupcakes?
I love when I can make an entire recipe in one bowl. It saves on time and makes cleanup a breeze. These carrot cake cupcakes are no exception. Follow these four easy steps to make the best carrot cake cupcakes.
STEP ONE: ADD DRY INGREDIENTS
In a medium mixing bowl, add all of the dry ingredients and use either a fork to combine.
STEP TWO: ADD WET INGREDIENTS
In the same bowl, add all of the wet ingredients. Combine well using a spatula.
STEP THREE: FOLD-IN CARROTS AND WALNUTS
Lastly, you’ll want to gently fold in the carrots and walnuts until evenly combined.
STEP FOUR: BAKE AND ENJOY!
Coat a muffin pan with cooking spray or use cupcake liners. Evenly divide the batter, filling up the cups 2/3-3/4 of the way full. Bake in a 350℉ oven for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with moist crumbs.
Carrot Cake And Cream Cheese Frosting
If you want to add frosting, homemade cream cheese frosting is the way to go. With a few simple ingredients, you’ll have a perfectly balanced sweet topping.
- Unsalted Butter: Use 1/4 cup room temperature butter.
- Cream Cheese: You’ll need 2 ounces or 1/4 cup.
- Vanilla Extract: Add 1/2 teaspoon for extra flavor.
- Milk: Add 2 teaspoons of almond, oat or cow milk.
- Powdered Sugar: Use 1/2 cup.
- Using a hand mixer on medium to high speed, cream the butter and cream cheese together until smooth.
- Mix in the vanilla and milk until combined.
- Finally, add the powdered sugar and mix until well combined.
Check Out These Other Dessert Recipes
Looking for more dessert recipes? Try some of these others as well.
- Pumpkin Cookies (Soft & Delicious!)
- Deliciously Fudgy Black Bean Brownie Recipe (Vegan, Gluten-Free)
- Triple Chocolatey Chia Pudding (Healthy Dessert)
- Gluten-Free Chocolate Quinoa Cupcakes (3 Variations)
Delicious 1-Bowl Carrot Cake Cupcakes
- 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (Can substitute a gluten free all-purpose flour blend)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt (I use Redmond's Real Salt)
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 cup olive or avocado oil
- 2 large eggs (Can substitute with flax eggs)
- 1 cup real maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups finely grated carrots (About 3-4 medium carrots)
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
For the Cream Cheese Frosting (Optional)
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 ounces cream cheese, room temperature (Or 1/4 cup)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons milk (can use unsweetened almond milk or oat milk)
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 350℉
- In a medium mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients and use a fork to combine.
- In the same bowl, add the wet ingredients. Use a spatula to mix the wet and dry ingredients until well combined.
- Finally, gently fold in the carrots and walnuts until evenly disbursed.
- Either spray a muffin pan or use cupcake liners. Evenly divide the cupcake batter, filling each cup 2/3-3/4 of the way full. Transfer to the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with moist crumbs.
- If adding frosting, allow the cupcakes to cool completely. Then top each one with cream cheese frosting.
For the Frosting
- Combine butter, cream cheese, vanilla, and milk.
- Using a hand mixer, beat on medium-high until very smooth and the vanilla is incorporated.
- Add powdered sugar and mix on medium until well combined.