Carrot & cream cheese cupcakes

Carrot & cream cheese cupcakes

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(198 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 22 mins


Makes 12
This crowd-pleasing recipe turns the ultimate afternoon-tea favourite into delightful cupcakes

Nutrition and extra info

  • Can be frozen un-iced

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal442
  • fat32g
  • saturates14g
  • carbs38g
  • sugars26g
  • fibre2g
  • protein4g
  • salt0.7g
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  • 175g light muscovado sugar
  • 100g wholemeal self-raising flour
  • 100g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

  • 2 tsp mixed spice
  • zest 1 orange



    One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

  • 2 eggs



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • 150ml sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil

    A variety of oils can be used for baking. Sunflower is the one we use most often at Good Food as…

  • 200g carrots, grated



    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

  • orange coloured sprinkles, to decorate

For the icing

  • 100g butter, softened



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 300g soft cheese
  • 100g icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and line a 12-hole muffin tin with cases. In a large mixing bowl, mix the sugar, flours, bicarbonate of soda, mixed spice and orange zest. Whisk together the eggs and oil, then stir into the dry ingredients with the grated carrot. Divide the mixture between cases and bake for 20-22 mins until a skewer poked in comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack before icing.

  2. For the icing, beat the butter until really soft, then beat in the soft cheese, icing sugar and vanilla. Use a palette or cutlery knife to swirl the icing on top of the cakes, then sprinkle with decorations.

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Comments (302)

carmenmaranda's picture

Made these thismorning !went down a treat...cream cheese icing was fine, and did put a squeeze of orange in as suggested by others . Will top with some zest next time on top , delicious .

adele5050's picture

Has anyone tried freezing them? I need to make lots of cakes this week for an event next weekend but have never frozen cakes before.

slimmer's picture

I made these last night and they were really lovely - another batch will be following shortly. I did find the batter a little dry so as others had suggested, I added the juice of the orange as well as the rind and I also added 50g of chopped pecans for some crunch.

annaberty's picture

These are delicious and moist, and the icing is lovely. I sprinkled grated orange zest on the top. Lots of compliments!

bassec's picture

Love these, I make with gluten free flour and add sultanas or raisins and walnuts and add the orange juice and they are fab. No one can tell they are gluten free.

mindymoo62's picture

PS..........I have just read that a lot of people seem to be struggling with the Icing. I made mine and put it in the fridge for a couple of hours to chill down. It is much easier to pipe/spread it onto the cupcakes when chilled. Also if you are pushed for fridge space you can put your cupckes in an airtight container somewhere cool and keep the Icing in the fridge and pipe onto the cupcakes just before serving. Hope this worked well for me :-))

mindymoo62's picture

Yum Yum Yum!! I made 2 batches of these cupcakes with my step daughters at Easter. They are so easy to make, and taste delicious, really moist. The second batch was made with 50g less carrot and 50g of chopped pecan nuts. They both came out perfect, excellent for a treat with mini eggs added on top for Easter. One point, the cream cheese icing recipe is way too much for 12 cupcakes. We had enough to swirl over 26 cupcakes and we did not skimp!! Will definately make again. I had so many I gave some to family and neighbours and they loved them.

Fun to make and fab to eat........yum!

newtoonquine's picture

I used all s/r white flour and put in the juice of 1/2 orange instead of zest as my orange was not unwaxed. I totally forgot the vanilla extract.

I made 12 - they were gone within an hour! Everybody raved about them and I will be making them again this weekend as they make me appear to be an excellent baker! :-)

needy4cache's picture

Beautiful carrot cake, will attempt this recipe as a large cake before long. The icing was way too runny but that could have been due to my using low-fat alternatives to appease my conscience! Next time I'll just do an orange buttercream or vastly reduce the cheese and butter quantities. Saying that, my cakes attracted rave reviews from a younger friend :-)

rheahardy's picture

Added some zest of orange to the cream cheese ond orange juice to the muffin mix- delicious.

clairepicknell's picture

I just made the recipe it was delicious! I added a handful of raisins and pecan nuts nummy!! I didn't use the icing as I didn't want it to be too sweet. Loved them so did the hubby :-)

kyber1993's picture

Loved these, added in the orange juice as per other suggestions.

parkercip's picture

Easy recipe, taste amazing, loads of compliements. Only used half frosting which is adequate and cuts down on the calories! Have made a couple of times with perfect results, second time didn't have muscovado sugar so just used light brown sugar instead.

hazel1970's picture

love this recipe, been doing it for years, I dont bother with the creamy topping, as I find it too sweet, just call the cakes "carrot muffins", nobody complains, or drizzle with a bit of icing, I get more cakes as I make them a bit smaller


melissapinklady's picture

Kabl08 if your icing is sloppy, just add a little more icing sugar, works a treat :) ive made these s many times n ow and everyone loves them :)

grindlay54's picture

Made these again as they were so successful last time - added the extra orange juice again and the cakes were just as light & delicious as before - foolproof recipe for me! BUT the icing did not come out right again, I used full-fat philly this time, thinking that the low fat version may have caused it to be sloppy last time, but it still didn't work! Any tips?

blue_bubble's picture

I love this recipe so much!

I followed the tip of adding the juice of the orange but the cupcakes came out far too moist. Just adding the smallest squeeze to the mixture is more than enough..

Lovely :)

soed6668's picture

I also had difficulties with the icing - turned out sloppy and just didn't taste quite right. Not sure what I did wrong.

hectorhen1's picture

I added walnuts to the recipe. The texture was fab. So easy.

hectorhen1's picture

My first attempt at cupcakes and I am delighted. The cupcakes are absolutely delicious and so easy. Think they will be a firm favourite in our house.


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