by Ava Morlier, Culinary Arts Writer
Ah, Easter! The holiday everyone has been waiting for. The Easter dinner is all set up, everyone has brought a dish for others to enjoy, and everyone seems to be present. But, wait! What about the Easter Bunny? Isn’t he tired of the same old basic carrots? That’s where today’s recipe comes in: Carrot Cake Cupcakes!
Sweet, spicy, textured (thanks to the shredded carrot), and tangy (with a rich cream cheese frosting), this cake definitely gives carrots a good name.
Additionally, these carrot cake cupcakes are great for celebrations and Easter activities. Kids eagerly awaiting Easter can have a great time creating and decorating cupcakes with you. Easter Bunny meet-and-greets can be made all the sweeter with these small and portable cupcakes.
Enjoy creating these delectable cupcakes (whether alone or with a helper or two) and have a happy Easter!
Carrot Cake Cupcakes
For the Cake
1 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
¾ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. ginger
⅛ tsp. nutmeg
¼ tsp. salt
¾ c. vegetable oil
¼ c. apple sauce
½ tsp. vanilla extract
¾ c. brown sugar
¼ c. sugar
1 ½ c. shredded carrots
For the Filling
4 oz (1 c.) cream cheese
½ stick unsalted butter
1 c. powdered sugar
½ tsp. vanilla extract
Green food coloring
Orange food coloring
Liquid and dry measuring cups, 3 bowls, mixer and beaters, spatula, cupcake bag and liners, piping bag, tips, two small bowls, and two forks
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In 1 bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, and spices. Mix until well combined.
In a separate bowl, combine oil, eggs, apple sauce, and extract. Beat until well combined. Add sugars and shredded carrot to the wet ingredients and mix until well incorporated.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula; add the dry ingredient mixture to the wet ingredients mixture. Beat until everything is well combined, intermittently scraping down the sides of the bowl.
Line cupcake pan with liners (or grease the cake pan). Pour in batter.
Place in oven and bake 15-17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcake/cake comes out clean.
Meanwhile, make the frosting: Place butter and cream cheese in a bowl and soften them (the surface should give to pressure but should not be melted). Add sugar and extract and beat until smooth. Once done, take out and let cool.
Separate into 3 separate bowls: one bowl should have very little and the other bowls should split the rest of the icing equally. Put each color in a piping bag and fit with a tip.
In the bowl with the least icing, add green food coloring. In another bowl, add orange food coloring. One bowl should have completely white icing.
Icing the cupcakes: making sure the cupcakes are room temperature, pipe on (or put on with a knife) the white icing on the entire surface of the cupcakes (including the edge; this ensures the surface doesn’t dry out).
Pipe on an orange carrot (a simple triangle will work, but be as creative as you want!). Pipe on the green leaves at the top. Serve.
*You can also use candy to decorate the cupcake if desired.