I have something BIG for you today.
And I’m just going to throw it out there.
These cupcakes are my second favorite thing that I’ve ever made. Ever.
I know, I know…second favorite thing? So wierd, but just stay with me because I won’t hold out on you for much longer.
I promise you my MOST favorite, my tip-top, the best of my best in the very near future. Just trust me, its a fall thing ;)
Anyways, back to these here cupcakes!
I’ve had the pleasure of making them recently for a few of my favorite carrot cake lovers. And they were head over heels! Their reactions were priceless, and needless to say they definitely passed their carrot cake expert status test ;) It was awesome. There are few things better to me than sharing delicious food with the people I love! It makes me beam.
I really wish that I could bake a zillion of these little cakes right here, right now, so you could all taste them. Because guys, they are just that ridiculously amazing. And I like feeding you.
But for now, I think ya might have to give them a go on your own…
You start off with fresh carrots, which you then peel and grate by hand, as opposed to the simpler route of shredding them. And I will tell you right now, this step is oh so worth it! Hand grating creates smaller, more juicy pieces of carrot, which results in a silky, smooth batter and an unbelievably, moist cake.
Then you mix, mix, mix together the rest of cake ingredients, adding just the right amount of spice. Cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg are the perfect touch, accentuating the bright flavor of the carrot, which gets gently folded in last.
AND FINALLY. Its bakin’ time. You pour that bright orange batter into the ready and waiting muffin tins. And you pop them into the oven. And you wait. And you smell. You smell the best thing you’ve ever smelled in your life.
The extremely agonizing part comes next. When you have to take them out of the oven. And wait. And stare. And wait. And stare. And drool? Maybe that is just me…UGH. Eventually they will cool, promise.
And when they do, its frosting time!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Maple cream cheese frosting time. As if cream cheese frosting isn’t already the greatest frosting to ever exist, ya add some pure maple syrup to it. There are really no words. Except for maybe “mmmm” or “ITS SO FLUFFY.”
So there you have it. My numba two!
CARROT CUPCAKES WITH MAPLE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
makes 24 cupcakes
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups canola oil
4 large eggs
3 cups grated, peeled carrots
maple cream cheese frosting:
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
16 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
3-4 cups powdered sugar
3-4 tablespoons pure maple syrup
For the carrot cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350. Line two standard 12 cup muffin tins with cupcake liners.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. Set aside.
In another large bowl, stir together sugar and oil. Beat in eggs.
Then, slowly stir in the flour mixture until thoroughly combined. Fold in carrots.
Pour batter evenly into lined muffin tins, filling each cup 3/4 full. Bake for 15-18 minutes. Cool completely before frosting.
For the maple cream cheese frosting: Beat the butter for 1-2 minutes on high, until smooth. Add in the cream cheese and beat for 2-4 minutes until completely smooth. Mix in powdered sugar one cup at a time, starting off at a low speed and increasing to the speed to medium as the ingredients start to combine. Beat in the maple syrup and mix until the frosting is a light and fluffy consistency.
Pipe or spread on cooled cupcakes.
Devour that deliciousness!
TINA’S TIP: Feel free to add in some walnuts or pecans or raisins or coconut to your batter if you are craving some crunch!
Inspired by Smitten Kitchen.