Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

These carrot cake cupcakes make me think of Spring! I don’t know what it is about carrot cake, but I really think it makes the perfect Easter dessert as well. Maybe it’s the connection between carrots and bunnies? :) Whether that’s it or not, these carrot cake cupcakes are sure to be a hit anywhere you bring them. They are light and moist and full of good things like cinnamon, pineapple, walnuts and coconut. ┬áThe cream cheese icing has a faint orange flavor which pairs perfectly with the spices in the cupcakes. My mom sent me this recipe for carrot cake years ago and nothing I’ve had since has even come close. This is definitely a family favorite, and I hope it becomes your family’s favorite as well. :)

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

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Carrot Cake Cupcakes


2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup buttermilk
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
2 cups grated carrots
3 1/2 ounces shredded coconut (I somehow managed to estimate this out to be about 14 Tbsp ~3/4 cup?)
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

Cream Cheese Frosting:
1/4 lb butter or margarine, softened
1 1/2 packages of cream cheese (12 oz total)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp orange juice
1 1/2 tsp orange zest


For the cake: Pre-heat oven to 350. Place paper liners in muffin tins (enough for 24 cupcakes) and set aside.

In a medium-sized bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt and set aside. In a large bowl combine the eggs, oil, buttermilk, sugar and vanilla. Mix well. Add the flour mixture, drained pineapple, carrots, coconut and walnuts. Stir well. Distribute batter evenly between the muffin tins. Bake for 16-18 minutes or until top of one of the middle cupcakes springs back when touched. Cool 5-10 minutes in pan, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely

Make the cream cheese frosting. Cream butter or margarine and cream cheese until fluffy. Add vanilla, powdered sugar, orange juice, and zest. Mix until smooth.

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19 Responses to “Carrot Cake Cupcakes”

  1. 1

    Jamie | Thrifty Veggie Mama — March 25, 2013 @ 8:58 am

    I was going to make carrot cake for Easter but some of the family doesn’t like nuts :( I will have to make it soon though because now I am craving it!

    • megan replied: — March 25th, 2013 @ 6:28 pm

      Just leave the nuts out, no problem! :)

  2. 2

    Mary Ann — March 25, 2013 @ 10:43 am

    Love carrot cake, and these cupcakes look great! I was looking for one more sweet recipe to make for my family for the weekend… and this is it! Thanks!

  3. 3

    Eidilia Thomas — March 25, 2013 @ 10:43 am

    Megan, what would you suggest as a substitute for coconut? I’m very allergic to it even though I love the taste and texture. If I omit the coconut altogether, are there any other adjustments I would need to make?


    • megan replied: — March 25th, 2013 @ 6:28 pm

      I would just leave the coconut out, no other adjustments needed. Hope you like them! :)

  4. 4

    Charlotte Moore — March 25, 2013 @ 10:46 am

    These sound good. Love pineapple and coconut with the carrots. I also like buttermilk in cakes.

  5. 5

    sally @ sallys baking addiction — March 25, 2013 @ 10:47 am

    Carrot cake is my favorite kind of cupcake or cake, Megan! Well one of my favorites at least. These look wonderful! And yes, very moist!

  6. 6

    sarah k @ the pajama chef — March 25, 2013 @ 11:29 am

    i’ve never made carrot cake before so i’ve been looking for a good recipe. thanks for saving me the hunt!

  7. 7

    Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes — March 25, 2013 @ 12:56 pm

    I’ve been looking for a good carrot cake recipe to make for Easter….this one looks like a winner!! I hope I can make it without the nuts because my brother can’t have them.

    • megan replied: — March 25th, 2013 @ 6:27 pm

      Yep, just leave the nuts out, no problem!

  8. 8

    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — March 25, 2013 @ 2:34 pm

    Definitely my fav cupcakes!

  9. 9

    Kathy — March 26, 2013 @ 10:56 am

    These look delicious! Carrot cake is one of my favorites, but I have never made them into cupcakes.

  10. 10

    Nutmeg Nanny — March 26, 2013 @ 11:08 am

    Carrot cake is the best :) I am definitely going to be including it in my Easter spread! These are adorable.

  11. 11

    Jean b. — March 29, 2013 @ 11:00 pm

    These are FANTASTIC cupcakes!!!!! I made them exactly as instructed and took them to my jury group and they were gone in a flash! The cakes are a terrific not-to-sweet but mild carrot spice type that is beautifully complimented by the sweetness of the frosting. Absolutely delicious and by far, the best carrot cupcakes I’ve eaten!

  12. 12

    GS test demo — April 1, 2013 @ 2:40 am

    Carrot Cake Cupcakes | What Megan’s Making

  13. 13

    Irene — April 26, 2013 @ 5:02 pm

    Would like to make these without nuts and pineapple in a MINI cupcake.
    Would you know the baking time?

    • megan replied: — April 27th, 2013 @ 8:54 am

      I just made these as mini cupcakes actually! I think I started with 12 minutes, then checked them and added a minute at a time until they were done.

  14. 14

    Gloria — May 23, 2013 @ 2:01 pm

    I made these for my husband’s 65th birthday dinner. I was going to use a recipe I had for carrot cake that used crushed pineapple and was just looking for a recipe for the cooking time. But when I saw this with the crushed pineapple and the orange in the frosting I knew I had to try them. My family devoured them and couldn’t say enough about how delicious they were. I left out the nuts (daughter has allergies) and the coconut (I don’t like it) but they were wonderful just the same. Now I am making them for my in-law’s 70th wedding anniversary party.
    I know this recipe will become a party favorite!

  15. 15

    ski — July 23, 2015 @ 3:31 pm

    Can I sub fresh pineapple for canned? 8 ounces would be the size of the can,right? So how much do I put?

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