Happy (almost) Easter! If there’s one thing I know about Easter, it’s that carrot cake is frequently an honorary guest around the table. This makes me one happy girl. Carrot cake is, without a doubt, my FAVOURITE type of cake. It’s so moist, and that cream cheese icing just can’t be beat.
It’s actually ironic that I am such a fan of carrot cake, since I distinctly remember hating it; or at least, I thought I hated it. I left my job as a cashier at a drugstore when I was about 19, and I remember my manager rolling out the farewell cake and the sheer disappointment I felt when I realized it was a carrot cake; however, this moment was monumental because I did in fact have a piece, and my opinion of carrot cake was forever changed. It was SO good!
Now, when I’m presented with a multitude of cake options, I’ll almost always choose carrot. All of this backstory is really just getting around to the fact that I can’t have a food blog without a carrot cake cupcake recipe. I just can’t.
These cupcakes are pretty classic; everything you know and expect from carrot cake. I use oil and sour cream to ensure that they’re super moist, and a touch of nutmeg for that slightly spiced flavour. The chopped pecans are optional, but I personally love them!
Etienne sampled a cupcake while I was at the dentist the other day, and texted me to say that they were the best carrot cake cupcakes he’s ever had. Woot! I quickly rushed home from getting a filling to stuff one into my own trap. Cavities be damned!
The recipe makes 12 cupcakes; this can easily be doubled if you’re feeding a crowd, or you just want a “few” extra on hand for yourself.
The final touch to the cupcakes is obviously the cream cheese icing. Pile it on!! I used my Wilton 8B tip to pipe the icing on these ones, if you’re wondering. 🙂 The recipe makes quite a bit of icing, so if you have some leftover I suggest eating it with a spoon – OR – making some cinnamon buns for the next day and drizzling it all over… yum!
Oh – and the orange kisses in my photos are the Easter edition carrot cake kisses; they do live up to their name! I should not be trusted with a bag of kisses, of any flavour.
I can’t believe it’s been nearly a year since this post about spring and Easter. So much has changed!
I hope you have a wonderful Easter weekend, and you get to stuff yourself with all sorts of goodies. The Easter bunny delivers chocolate eggs to adults too, you know.
Carrot Cake Cupcakes
Yield 12 cupcakes
Soft, moist and slightly spiced carrot cake cupcakes swirled with that classic cream cheese icing. The perfect cupcake for any occasion!
- 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 1/2 cup oil (vegetable, avocado or grapeseed)
- 1/3 cup sour cream, room temperature
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup grated carrot (approx. 2 small carrots)
- optional: 1/2 cup chopped pecans
Cream Cheese Icing
- 8 oz cream cheese (1 block), room temperature
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3-4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 F and line a 12 count muffin tin with cupcake liners.
- In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg, and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk the brown sugar with the eggs until combined. Whisk in the oil, sour cream, and vanilla extract. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet, and use a large wooden spoon to gently combine; do not overmix! Gently fold in the carrots and pecans (if using).
- Fill the cupcake liners about 3/4 full. Bake the cupcakes for 19-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool the cupcakes completely on a wire rack before icing.
- Make the icing. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or using a handheld electric mixer, beat the cream cheese with the butter on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the vanilla, and one cup of the powdered sugar and mix on medium. Add the remaining powdered sugar, one cup at a time until you achieve your desired consistency. If you went overboard with the sugar, you can add a bit of heavy cream to thin out the icing. Decorate the cupcakes, and store any remaining icing in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Cupcakes can be kept at room temperature for 1-2 days, in an airtight container. I keep mine in the fridge! Cupcakes can also be frozen before icing, for up to 2 months.
If you love carrot cake like me, you should also try my orange-carrot cake!