Apple Carrot Cupcakes

AppleCarrotCupcake

It’s as if carrot cake and apple cake decided to get together and have babies. These apple carrot cupcakes are the best of both, and the cream cheese frosting is amazing!

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.

For more information on which apple varieties are best for baking, check out our Guide to Apples.

If you like carrot cake, you are going to love this apple carrot cupcake twist.

(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 these apple carrot cupcakes than you should. Not that I would know anyone who would do that. Ahem.)

Apple Carrot Cupcakes in baking tin

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How to Adapt This Recipe

This recipe yield about 2 dozen cupcakes, so if you do not want that many tempting you, you can bake it as written and share them, or you can cut the recipe in half.

If you want to make this as a cake, you can make the batter as instructed, and pour it into two greased 9-inch round cake pans or one 9×13 cake pan and bake for about 40 to 50 minutes.

Don’t like coconut? Leave it out. Want to use walnuts instead of pecans? Go for it!

Apple Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Keeping, Storing and Freezing Cupcakes

These cupcakes should keep for 2 to 3 days, frosted and covered. You can freeze them for longer if you have leftover cupcakes, but it’s best to freeze them unfrosted. Thaw on the counter, frost, and serve.

MORE FAVORITE CUPCAKE RECIPES:

Apple Carrot Cupcakes Recipe

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

Ingredients

For the cupcakes:

  • 2 cups (260 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 (250 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

For the frosting:

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

Method

1 Prep the oven: Preheat oven to 350°F and place the rack in the center of the oven.

2 Make the batter: 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 Bake the cupcakes: Place paper liners in muffin tins. Spoon the batter into the paper cups, three quarters of the way to the top. Bake at 350°F for 20 to 25 minutes (testing after 20 min), or until a tester inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool completely before frosting.

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

Once the cupcakes are cool, apply frosting.

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Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

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48 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Judy

    Can I substitute gluten free flour ? Whole wheat bread flour?

    Show Replies (1)
  2. Debonheiress

    I did it! And these came out so moist and soft on the insides. Thank you for your awesome recipe.

  3. Col

    These were really easy to make and came out so soft and tasty. Is there a way to reduce the sugar and substitute for something else so I can give it to my toddler? Thanks

    xxxxxyyyyy

    Show Replies (1)
  4. Cindy

    Ok, being honest,these were one of the best cupcakes I have ever tasted! Delicious! Thank you !

    xxxxxyyyyy

  5. Tricia M.

    These cupcakes were easy to make and are delicious. And they are healthy as a sweet treat. Definitely will be making them again.

    xxxxxyyyyy

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