Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Carrot cupcakes are a delightful treat that brings together the earthy sweetness of carrots with the indulgent creaminess of cream cheese frosting. Each bite is a yummy blend of moist, flavorful cake and luscious frosting, ensuring a dessert that’s bound to be a hit.

three carrot cupcakes with orange wrappers on a table with more cupcakes on a platter in the background

Chef’s Tips

  1. Grate your own carrots: For the best texture and freshness, avoid pre-grated carrots and opt to grate them yourself.
  2. Room temperature ingredients: Ensuring your eggs, cream cheese, and butter are at room temperature will guarantee a smoother batter and frosting.
  3. Avoid overmixing: Overmixing the batter can result in dense cupcakes. Mix just until combined.
  4. Frosting consistency: If your cream cheese frosting seems too runny, you can add more powdered sugar, a tablespoon at a time, until you reach the desired consistency.


cups and bowls of ingredients for carrot cupcakes recipe


  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour: The foundation of your cupcakes, ensuring a tender crumb.
  • Baking agents: The combination of 1 teaspoon baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda provides the rise, making your cupcakes fluffy.
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt: Enhances the flavors of the ingredients.
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon: Adds a hint of warmth and spice.
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil: Offers moisture, resulting in a soft cupcake.
  • Sweeteners: 3/4 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 cup packed brown sugar lend sweetness while the brown sugar brings a caramel undertone.
  • 3 large eggs: Binds the ingredients together and adds structure.
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract: Introduces a classic sweet aroma.
  • 2 cups grated carrots: The star ingredient! They add natural sweetness and moisture.
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional): Add a delightful crunch and nutty flavor.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 8 oz (225g) cream cheese, softened: Gives the frosting its rich and tangy flavor.
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened: Contributes to the creamy consistency.
  • 4 cups powdered sugar: Sweetens and thickens the frosting.
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract: Complements the tangy flavor of the cream cheese.

Substitutions & Variations

  • Flour: Try whole wheat flour for a slightly nuttier taste and more fibrous texture.
  • Oil: Swap vegetable oil with coconut oil for a subtle coconut flavor.
  • Nuts: Almonds or hazelnuts can be used in place of walnuts or pecans.
  • Vegan version: Use flax eggs, coconut oil, and vegan cream cheese to create a vegan version of this recipe.
close up view of a carrot cupcake with the wrapper peeled back


  1. Preparation: Start by preheating your oven to 350°F (175°C). Prep your cupcake tin by lining it with paper liners.
  2. Dry mix: In a medium-sized bowl, combine your flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon, whisking them to ensure they’re well mixed.
dry ingredients for carrot cupcake
dry ingredients for carrot cupcake all mixed up in a bowl
  1. Wet mix: In a separate, larger bowl, integrate the vegetable oil, both sugars, eggs, and vanilla extract. Your goal is a smooth and slightly creamy mixture.
  2. Combining: Slowly merge the dry mixture into the wet mix, stirring gently. It’s crucial to avoid overmixing here, as this can affect the texture of your cupcakes.
  3. Final touches: Gently fold in your grated carrots. If you’re adding nuts, now’s the time to incorporate them, ensuring an even distribution in the batter.
wet ingredients for carrot cupcakes
wet ingredients for carrot cupcakes all mixed up in a bowl
  1. Baking: Pour the batter into your cupcake liners, filling each about 3/4 of the way. Pop them into the oven and let bake for 20-24 minutes. A toothpick inserted should come out clean, signaling they’re done.
  2. Cooling: Give the cupcakes a few minutes to cool in the tin, then transfer them to a wire rack so they can cool entirely.
carrot cupcake batter placed in cupcake wrappers in a cupcake baking pan
carrot cupcakes finished baking in the cupcake pan
  1. Creamy frosting: For the cream cheese frosting, use a mixing bowl to beat your cream cheese and butter. Once creamy, slowly incorporate the powdered sugar, ensuring it remains smooth. Round it off with the vanilla extract.
  2. Finishing touches: Once your cupcakes are cool, it’s time to frost! Whether you prefer a piping bag or a simple spatula, apply a generous amount of frosting to each cupcake. For an added touch, sprinkle some chopped nuts on top.
cream cheese frosting ingredients
using a frosting bag to put frosting on top of carrot cupcakes

Now, all that’s left to do is enjoy these delightful carrot cupcakes with your loved ones. Happy baking!

Storage and Freezing Tips

Storing Freshly Made Cupcakes: Leftover cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container. For the best quality, place them in the refrigerator due to the cream cheese frosting. They’ll stay fresh for up to 5 days. Before serving, allow them to sit at room temperature for about an hour, ensuring the frosting softens to its original creamy texture.

Freezing: Carrot cupcakes are freezer-friendly, making them perfect for future treats without the immediate commitment!

  1. Freezing Unfrosted Cupcakes: Once baked and completely cooled, place the cupcakes on a baking sheet and freeze them for an hour or until solid. Transfer the cupcakes to a zip-top freezer bag or an airtight container, separating layers with parchment paper to prevent sticking. They can be frozen for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to enjoy, thaw the cupcakes at room temperature and then frost them.
  2. Freezing Frosted Cupcakes: If you’ve already applied the cream cheese frosting, follow a similar process by placing them on a baking sheet to freeze until solid. Once frozen, wrap each cupcake individually in plastic wrap before placing them in a zip-top freezer bag or an airtight container. When you’re ready to eat them, thaw in the refrigerator for several hours, then let them come to room temperature for the best flavor and texture.

Note: It’s essential to ensure the cupcakes are entirely cool before storing or freezing, as any residual warmth can create condensation, affecting the cupcakes’ texture and the frosting’s consistency.

a carrot cupcake sliced in half on a plate

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Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Sea Salt Savorings
Carrot cupcakes are a delightful treat that brings together the earthy sweetness of carrots with the indulgent creaminess of cream cheese frosting. Each bite is a yummy blend of moist, flavorful cake and luscious frosting, ensuring a dessert that's bound to be a hit.
4.95 from 40 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 18 Cupcakes
Calories 232 kcal



  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar packed
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups grated carrots
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans optional

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 8 oz 225g cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Line a cupcake tin with paper liners.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the vegetable oil, granulated sugar, brown sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract. Mix until well combined and slightly creamy.
  • Gradually add the dry flour mixture to the wet mixture, stirring until just combined. Be careful not to overmix.
  • Fold in the grated carrots and chopped nuts (if using) until evenly distributed in the batter.
  • Fill each cupcake liner about 3/4 full of the batter.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 20-24 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.
  • Once baked, remove the cupcakes from the oven and allow them to cool in the tin for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Make the cream cheese frosting: In a mixing bowl, beat the softened cream cheese and butter together until creamy and well combined.
  • Gradually add the powdered sugar, one cup at a time, beating well after each addition. This will ensure a smooth and creamy frosting.
  • Stir in the vanilla extract and mix until incorporated.
  • Assembly the cupcakes: Once the cupcakes are completely cooled, use a piping bag or an offset spatula to generously frost each cupcake with the cream cheese frosting.
  • Optionally, you can sprinkle chopped nuts on top of the frosting for decoration.


Calories: 232kcalCarbohydrates: 49gProtein: 2gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 34mgSodium: 132mgPotassium: 32mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 40gVitamin A: 119IUVitamin C: 0.004mgCalcium: 26mgIron: 1mg

Nutrition values are estimates, for exact values consult a nutritionist.

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