These carrot cake cupcakes are fluffy and moist, and topped with creamy lemon cream cheese frosting. Whether you make them for Easter or Mother's Day, they're the perfect springtime cupcakes!
Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
I have a great carrot cake recipe, but it being my late mother-in-law's recipe that was passed down to me, and something very precious that my family wishes to keep within family, I can't share it. I've instead adapted that recipe and made them into fluffy carrot cake cupcakes.
The original carrot cake recipe is very moist and delicious, but definitely heavy, mainly because it didn't have an acidic ingredient to react with the baking soda. I've added some greek yogurt to the batter, and voila we've got fluffy cupcakes!
And what better frosting to top them with, than cream cheese frosting? I've added lemon zest to it to brighten up the warm spices in the carrot cupcakes.
How big or little do I grate the carrots?
I always debate how fine to grate carrots when making carrot cake. The first time I tested out the recipe, I used the smallest holes on the grater thinking it would be more camouflaged in the cake batter. And it ended up with a sunken cake that was mushy and the top of the cake was wrinkled from the excess moisture.
The second time around I grated the carrots using the regular holes. This was definitely more to my liking. They were fluffy, not overly moist, and kept their dome after cooling!
How to make carrot cake cupcakes
In a small bowl, combine cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and spices. In a separate bowl, combine the eggs, light brown sugar, olive oil, green yogurt, and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and grate carrots into the wet ingredients, and mix until the batter's just combined.
Scoop out the batter evenly in a 12-cup muffin pan, and bake in a preheated oven for 18 to 20 minutes at 320°F/160°C. Let them cool in the pan for a couple minutes before taking them out to a wire rack to cool completely.
How to make lemon cream cheese frosting
In a bowl, beat the unsalted butter until it becomes fluffy. Add the cream cheese and keep beating! Slowly add in the powdered sugar and lemon zest.
Put the frosting into a piping bag and frost the cupcakes with however much frosting you like. I used a large round piping tip to create simple domes, but you can use any piping tip you like!
How to store carrot cake cupcakes
These carrot cake cupcakes are best kept in an airtight container in the fridge. I wouldn't keep them on the counter at room temperature, because I'm not comfortable keeping anything with cream cheese out of the fridge. But don't worry, I had this cupcake almost a full 2 days after I baked them and they were still tender, fluffy, and moist!
I actually like them better the day after I make them. The flavors settle and meld, which makes this the perfect dessert for any springtime gathering! Make it a day ahead and enjoy the extra time with family or friends, or yourself because that's important too!
More cupcakes to try!
Carrot cake cupcakes with lemon cream cheese frosting
- 1½ cups grated carrots
- 1 cup / 120g cake flour
- ¼ cup / 31g all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cardamom
- 2 large eggs
- ¾ cup / 150g light brown sugar
- ½ cup / 120ml olive oil
- ¼ cup / 60ml greek yogurt
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 8 oz / 225g cream cheese
- ½ cup / 113g unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
- 1½ cup / 188g powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon grated lemon zest
- Preheat the oven to 320°F/160°C and line a muffin pan with paper liners, and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and spices. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, oil, greek yogurt, and vanilla extract.
- Add the flour mixture and grated carrots and mix until just combined.
- Scoop out the batter evenly and bake for 18 to 20 minutes. Let them cool in the pan for a couple minutes before taking them out to a wire rack to cool completely.
- In a bowl, beat the unsalted butter until it becomes fluffy. Add the cream cheese and continue to beat.
- Beat in the powdered sugar and lemon zest.
- Put the frosting into a piping bag and frost the cupcakes to your liking.