Classic Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting


 So I’m writing this post a good two weeks before you are actually going to be reading it. You by now must know that I’m in Europe for a little “I’m turning 30” hurrah and today I’m actually in Rome! Nothing like Easter week in Italy huh? Anyway- here are my thoughts on this lovely recipe from two weeks ago. :)

Easter is right around the corner!!! And when we think about Easter, we ultimately think about bunnies right? And bunnies like carrots…so like we make cookies for Santa- how about some delicious Carrot Cupcakes for Mr. Easter Bunny?


I’ve always loved carrot cake, as it was one of the few “cakes” that my Mom made for us when we were kids. Her recipe (which I will share with you all eventually,) was full of healthy things- whole wheat flour, natural sugar, pineapple and nuts.  Though I love that version, and will probably make if for my kids too, I was on the search for something a little different for these cupcakes.

I wanted a light and fluffy texture that was full of spice. Cream cheese frosting was, of course, a must- and I topped these with a generous dollop and a sprinkling of cake crumbs. (It turns out I find carrot cupcakes strangely hard to garnish. Maybe I need to learn how to make those cute marzipan carrots?)


This recipe didn’t fail and it has become my go-to carrot cake for my recipe collection. Feel free to add nuts and raisins if you dig that, (I really don’t!) I have a fun giveaway for you all on Wednesday, and I’ll be back and in my kitchen by the end of the week to begin the process of boring you with pictures from the trip. :)

Classic Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Classic Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Yield: 12 cupcakes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes


For the Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons buttermilk or yogurt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups grated carrots, from about 4 medium carrots

For The Frosting:

  • 1 package, 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup 1/2 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2-3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 12-cup standard muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg; set aside.
  3. In another large bowl, whisk together melted butter, brown sugar, egg, buttermilk, and vanilla. Stir in carrots. Gradually add dry ingredients to butter mixture mixing until well combined- but not over-mixed. Divide among muffin tin. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean.
  4. Remove from pan to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

For Frosting:

  1. Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese, butter, and confectioners' sugar until smooth; beat in vanilla. (If frosting is too thick, add a few drops of milk or cream.)
  2. Frost or pipe on cupcakes as desired.


Cupcake Recipe from Martha Stewart

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Unsaturated Fat: 0g

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram


  1. Boring? No way, I can’t wait to see those pics!! :) I love this classic combo – cream cheese frosting is the best!

  2. I love the way you decorated the tops of these cupcakes! I’ll be honest – I’ve never had carrot cake before but everyone’s been posting them these days and it’s maybe convinced me to finally try it and get over my fear of a veggie in a dessert!! I hope you’re having so much fun in Europe :) :)

  3. Can’t wait to try these! I like the crumb topping, then you really know what you are getting. I’ve also used a slice of a carrot about 1″ (cut in the shape of a carrot), and then you use a piece of mint or parsley to be placed at the top of the carrot to look like the green top. Looking forward to seeing your photos! Say Hi to Pope Francis for me!

  4. Carrot cake is my daughter’s favorite and these pretty cupcakes look just right. They are such a welcome change from over the top sweet. The crumble topping is perfect! I will be trying these soon. Thanks!

  5. I never tire of trying new carrot cake recipes since they are my absolute favorite! DEFINTIELY making these!

  6. These are such delicious and moist cupcakes! I
    I’m sure we have all had our fair share of carrot cakes that taste a little too much like you are eating some sort of “healthy” bran nut muffin that needs to be washed down with numerous cups of coffee!!!
    The density of the cake, and the light, yet perfectly rich frosting- just perfect!
    I love it!

  7. This is a great recipe and it tastes simply wonderful. You just want to lick the frosting over and over again and also the carrot cake- yum! It’s addictive.

  8. I loved making these but my frosting didn’t turn out the same lush white as yours did…..suggestions please?

    1. Hey Lyndsey- Did you use extra vanilla extract by chance? That’s the only thing in the recipe that could change the color. Some extracts are more concentrated brown than others- next time try using a little less!

  9. I’ve made this 4 or 5 times, even when my oven was kind of freaking out and burning and overcooking and undercooking and needing to be recalibrated the cakes come out PERFECTLY everytime. They are a tiny tiny touch too sweet&dense but people have been going CRAZY when I make it. I made 24 minis to take to a lunch the other day and 4 people devoured them all in under 10 minutes. YUM. Any way I could make it a little less dense??

    also, could you PLEASE tell me how you frost them like that?? it looks beautiful! almost looks piped, but not. perfect.

    will re-make these VERY VERY regularly

  10. Overall, I like this recipe. However, they turned out a little bit salty… I will top them with cream cheese frosting, but I would still reduce the salt.

  11. These are just lovely – and the kids really enjoyed them too – very light, but with a carrot cake-y background. Thanks for another great recipe!

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