I have a little bit of a confession to make, these were meant to be whoopie pies. Do you remember them? For a while there they were really popular. I have only once had them on my site (Pumpkin Whoopie Pies) and I really like them, bigger than cupcakes but smaller than a slice of cake. It’s like having a mini cake all to yourself 😀 But when I popped these in the oven they spread like mad and became one big splurge on the baking sheet. But not one to waste anything I tried a bit and they tasted amazing! A bit of quick thinking and the remainder of the batter became these amazing carrot cake cupcakes.
I love a good bit of carrot cake, its sweetly spicy, wholesome and fulfilling especially if its topped with a lovely cream cheese frosting like these lovely treats are.
Soft, fluffy and creamy I find this combination of carrot cake and cream cheese frosting hard to resist. Even if these were meant to be whoopie pies they make a pretty darn good cupcake 😉
I have made a carrot cake for this blog before, check it out here its a lovely tray bake style cake and well worth checking out. These cupcakes here are a more traditional style carrot cake filled with carrot, cinnamon, nutmeg and walnuts. I also made them with buttermilk, I love buttermilk and use it all the time. It has become more widely available in the last few years here in the UK and would definitely recommend using it to any budding bakers out there. It really helps create a moist tender sponge. I use it in sponges, muffins, pancakes, breads and even cupcakes 😉
I used a dark brown sugar in these cupcakes, it has a deeper flavour than white sugar and it does help keep baked goods moist (sorry to keep using that word!).
You could interchange it for light brown sugar but I wouldn’t use white as you really would loose too much flavour and it might dry the sponge out a little bit.
Cream Cheese Frosting
Topping these cupcakes is a classic cream cheese frosting, which is so smooth and creamy I could happily eat it straight from the bowl with a spoon, actually I have in the past 😉
So they may have been failed whoopie pies, but I don’t mind because it meant I had a lovely plate of cupcakes to devour. So even out of a kitchen disaster things turned out okay in the end.
Have you ever had a kitchen disaster that turned out for the best in the end?
- 125 grams unsalted butter - at room temperature, (2/3 cup)
- 220 grams soft dark brown sugar, (1 cup packed)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 100 grams coarsely grated carrot, (1 cup once grated)
- 1 large Egg
- 300 grams Plain flour (All Purpose), (2 cups)
- 2 teaspoons Baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
- 150 millilitres buttermilk, (1/2 cup and ⅛ cup)
- 60 grams chopped walnuts, (1/2 cup)
- 75 grams unsalted butter - softened, (1/3 cup)
- 150 grams full fat cream cheese - just softened, (5 and ½ ounces)
- 185 grams icing sugar (confectioners sugar) sieved, (1 and ½ cups)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat your oven to 190C / 375F / Gas mark 5 and either lightly grease a 12 hole cupcake pan or fill it with liners.
- In either a stand mixer or a large mixing bowl cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
- Add in the vanilla extract, grated carrot and the egg. Gently stir till everything is mixed together.
- Sieve the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg together.
- Add half the flour mix to your batter and combine. Then add half the buttermilk and mix again and repeat. Gently fold in the chopped walnuts.
- Spoon the mixture into your cupcake / muffin pan filling each hole ⅔rd's full. Pop them in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Check on them after 20 minutes to see if they are ready, they should be firm to the touch and a nice dark golden brown. If they still fell a little soft give them an extra few minutes.
- Once baked take them out of the oven but leave them in their pan for 5 minutes. Then take them out and allow them to fully cool down on a wire rack.
- Once they are cool, its time to make the frosting. Beat the butter till it is very pale in colour.
- Fold in the cream cheese until they are fully combined.
- Add in the icing sugar and vanilla extract and gently mix until you have a smooth creamy frosting.
- Spoon or pipe the frosting on top of the cupcakes then serve.
- Because of the cream cheese in the frosting these cupcakes need to be kept in the fridge but I recommend bringing them back to room temperature before consuming. They will keep in the fridge for 5 days.