I LOVE carrot cake. I have tried lots of different recipes in the past and enjoyed them, but never felt they were quite right. This final recipe is a combination of 4 different carrot cake recipes I’ve tried over time. I took the bits and pieces I liked from each recipe and combined it into one awesome final product. I did make these gluten-free, but have used equal parts whole wheat pastry flour and regular flour when baking for others who do not need to eat gluten-free. I prefer cupcakes themselves to not be too sweet due to the sweetness of buttercream frosting. These cupcakes are incredibly moist, flavorful and can assure you they will not disappoint!
Prep Time 30 Minutes
Cook Time 15 Minutes
Total Time 45 Minutes
Servings 16-18 Cupcakes
• 2 cups grated carrot
• 6 ounces crushed pineapple, drained and chopped
• 1/2 cup coconut flakes, unsweetened
• 3 eggs (at room temperature)
• 1/2 cup coconut sugar or brown sugar
• 1/2 cup granulated sugar
• 2/3 cup coconut oil, melted & cooled
• 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
• 1 1/2 cups gluten-free all purpose flour
• 1/2 cup almond flour/meal, blanched (see recipe notes)
• 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
• dash of nutmeg (shy 1/8 teaspoon)
• 1/2 teaspoons salt
• 2 teaspoons baking soda
• 2 teaspoons baking powder
Cream Cheese Buttercream
• 8 tablespoons softened butter, unsalted
• 6 ounces cream cheese, softened at room temperature
• 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
• dash salt
• 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
• 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease the top of two 12 cup non-stick muffin tins with softened butter or coconut oil. This will ensure the cupcakes do not stick to the sides in case they rise and brim over the sides of liners when baking. Line with parchment baking cups. Set pan aside.
3. Melt 1/3 cup coconut oil in a microwave safe bowl or in saucepan on stove top. Set aside to cool.
2. Peel carrot and grate on box grater until you have 2 cups. Set aside in a small bowl. In a large bowl whisk eggs, brown or coconut sugar, granulated sugar, oil and vanilla. Stir in grated carrot, coconut flakes and drained pineapple.
4. In a medium size mixing bowl combine almond flour, gluten free all purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Stir with wooden spoon until evenly combined.
5. Add dry ingredients to wet by folding ingredients together with a spatula.
8. Use a large cookie scoop to transfer batter into muffin tins. Fill cups only 3/4 full, as they will rise some.
9. Place into preheated 350 oven and bake for approximately 15-18 minutes. Baking time may vary with different ovens. I always check my baked goods a few minutes earlier than baking time to ensure they do not over bake. Cook until toothpick comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs. Allow to cool in baking pan for 10 minutes. Remove by lifting out with offset spatula.
1. Sift 4 cups powdered sugar with sifter or fine mesh strainer into large bowl. Set aside.
2. Beat softened butter and cream cheese via stand or hand mixer until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add vanilla bean paste, pinch of salt, and cinnamon (if using). Beat for 30 seconds.
3. Add sifted powdered sugar 1 cup at a time until combined. Once all combined beat for another 2 minutes over medium- high speed until light and fluffy.
• If you do not need to bake gluten- free you may use 2 cups of regular all-purpose flour, or 1 cup all-purpose flour and 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (WWPF). I like WWPF because it makes your baked goods extra soft and fluffy. I have also tried these with only gluten-free all purpose flour (2 cups)…I replaced the 1/2 cup almond meal with gluten-free flour. These are still excellent. The almond meal just adds a little more moisture, but are still absolutely moist when only using standard flour.
• You may add 1/3 cup of raisins if preferred.
• Almond flour and almond meal can be used interchangeably as long as it is “blanched”. This means the almonds are without the skin. This combines differently than non-blanched, which tends to have a more coarse texture.
• I decorated mine with chopped dried rose petals, coconut flakes and sprinkles. Sky is the limit with decorating. You could go seasonal with your decorations, or incorporate carrot or pineapple to showcase the main ingredients. BONUS – when you experiment with different design ideas you’ll need to eat those few extra who do not match your final design :). I linked the rose petals in my baking products page.