Apple Carrot Cupcake

It’s as if carrot cake and apple cake decided to get together and have babies. This apple carrot cupcake is the best of both!

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Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

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

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

Ingredients

  • 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

Frosting:

  • 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

Method

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.

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.

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

Showing 4 of 30 Comments

  • Sylvie Gauthier

    Could these be done with a streusel (sp?) topping, and if so, any thoughts how to go about it? Streusel and apple go so well together. I look forward to trying these!

  • Lana

    I did it as a cake with half of an amount of everything. Baked it for 55 min at 350F and extra 5 min with 335F in a round glass form. It came out pretty much perfect, family loved it. I changed frosting a bit –less cheese more butter. Favorite cake now. Lana.

  • Karen

    Have you tried this as a cake?

  • shannon

    A great recipe! I didn’t have coconut or nuts but had plenty of carrots and apples, I diced the apples which made for a nice texture! The dough was wet and glisteny! The cupcakes were DELICIOUS!! Super moist, even a few days later! I’m glad I found this recipe! , Thank you!

  • Jan

    Not a fan of coconut? Can these be made without coconut?

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