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 21 Comments

  • 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?

  • SkinnyMe

    Can I freeze them to make them last longer? I could like to give them as a gift to someone on the 12th. Can they last that long?

  • Penny

    I make muffins for my daughters for school and I’m always looking for new ones. These are going to be my go to for a while. They’re DELICIOUS. Being a neurotic mommy, I did change a few things – 1 cup oat flour, 1 cup WW flour and 1/2 cup whole oats, cut the sugar and oil (used coconut) to 2/3 cup and omitted the nuts (I just didn’t have them upstairs but I’ll alternate!!). These were great. I used 4 carrots and two apples and these were flavorful and moist and I think will be a HUGE winner with the girls. Thank you!

  • Kurt

    I need to make this in a loaf pan. Any advice?

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