Apple Carrot Cupcake


These apple carrot cupcakes are what happens when you can’t decide between carrot cake and apple cake; they’re the best of both, combined. They are a little sweeter than a muffin, but with all of the texture and flavor from apples, carrots, coconut, and pecans, and topped with cream cheese frosting.

(Or not. Skip the frosting if you are being virtuous. You can pretend they’re muffins, nobody will know. But watch out, skipping the frosting just may give you an excuse to eat more of them than you should. Not that I would know anyone who would do that. Ahem.)

Apple Carrot Cupcakes

Recipe photos and method updated. First published 2008.

Apple Carrot Cupcake Recipe

  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: Makes about 2 dozen cupcakes


  • 2 cups (260 g) all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 (150 g) cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (236 ml) vegetable oil (light olive oil or canola oil)
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups packed coarsely grated carrots (about 3 medium)
  • 1 1/2 cups packed coarsely grated tart apples, such as Granny Smith (about 2 medium)
  • 1 cup (125 g) coarsely chopped pecans (or walnuts)
  • 1/4 cup (15 g) sweetened shredded coconut


  • 8 ounces (225 g) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (260 g) powdered sugar, sifted


1 Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C) and place rack in the center of the oven.

2 In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, granulated sugar, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt.

Stir in oil and eggs. Stir in carrots, apples, pecans, and coconut.

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3 Place cupcake holders in muffin tins. Spoon the batter into the cupcake paper cups, three quarters of the way to the top. Bake 20-25 minutes (testing after 20 min), or until a tester inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool completely before frosting.

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4 Beat the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla until smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Gradually add powdered sugar and mix until combined.

Once cupcakes are cool, apply frosting.

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Apple Carrot Cupcakes

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Showing 4 of 27 Comments

  • Alaa

    Wow these cupcakes look so good! I love how different this is than other cupcakes. And I bet they’ll taste just as good as they look since you’re combining two great things together. How many cupcakes does this recipe make? Is this your first time making this recipe or was it passed down to you? How can I make this recipe nut and gluten free?

  • Sarah

    This recipe looks so good! I would have never thought to combine carrot and apple into one thing! I’m going to have to make this now!

  • Kitty

    I want to reach out and grab all of these cupcakes!!! Love the idea of apple and carrot together!

  • Laurie Gathje

    Your recipe looks so yummy. Do you think it’s okay to use grape seed oil? I use it in your fresh apple bundt cake and like how it works. Your blog is truly my favorite, my main “cookbook”!! Thank you :)

  • Deborah

    These muffins are wonderful! I received compliments from all of my family members. I peeled the apples before grating. Would grating with apple peel on be okay?

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