Kiddie Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

My husband was out of town and my daughters were getting bored at home over the weekend.  I was not in a mood to take them out, so I came up with the idea of baking and decorating fun cupcakes together. They really enjoyed making these cupcakes along with me. In fact , ever since we made these together, Sofia has been waiting for her eighth birthday (which is still 3 years away) because that’s when I have promised her that she can have her very own Easy Bake set. I had a bag of carrots in my refrigerator which were about to expire soon, so I decided to try carrot cupcakes with cream cheese frosting.

I hadn’t heard of carrot cakes/cupcakes until a few years ago. At first, it sounded a bit strange to me…….veggies in a cake ???? Then I remembered our good old Indian “gajar ka halwa” and it made sense to me. Carrots contain more sugar than most vegetables which explains their use in desserts.

Carrot cupcakes with cream cheese frosting for kids
These incredibly soft and moist cupcakes are really quick and easy too. The only time consuming part was grating the carrots and apples since I had to do it manually with a grater ( made me wish for a good food processor). I used the side with the small holes for grating the carrots finely whereas for the apples I used the side with the larger holes. The apples melt completely in the baking process and you won’t even feel their presence. Actually, I just did the grating part and let Sofia and Aisha do the mixing and spooning part. I was amazed at how neatly my little baby spooned the batter into the baking cups (they really grow up so fast). The recipe has been adapted and posted with permission from Joy of Baking

Carrot cupcakes with cream cheese frosting for kids

I left out the nuts and raisins mentioned in the original recipe since my daughters don’t like them. Nobody in my family is a cinnamon fan, so I reduced the amount of cinnamon too. However, the subtle cinnamon flavor was a refreshing change from all the chocolate & vanilla cakes/cupcakes I have been making lately. The original recipe was for 20 cupcakes. I halved it to get 10.

Bitten Carrot cupcake with cream cheese frosting for kids

For the Carrot Cupcakes:

1 cup (130 grams) all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2  teaspoon  cinnamon powder 
2 large eggs (at room temperature)
1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated white sugar
1/2 cup (120 ml)  canola oil
1 cups (105 grams) finely grated raw carrots
1/2 cup grated apple (approximately 1 large apples)

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place rack in centre of oven.
2)  In a mixing bowl sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, and  cinnamon.
3) In another large bowl beat the eggs, sugar, and oil until slightly thickened.
4) Gently fold in the flour mixture until incorporated.
5) Fold in the grated carrots and apples.
6) Line a muffin pan with 10 baking cups and evenly divide the batter between  them. I have a 12 cup muffin pan , so I filled the 2 remaining ones with some water to avoid burning the bottom.
7) Bake about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of a cupcake comes out clean.
8) Remove from the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
1/4 cup  unsalted butter, room temperature
4 ounces  cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/2 cups confectioners’  sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Beat the butter and cream cheese until very smooth and creamy. Gradually beat in the powdered sugar until fully incorporated and smooth. Beat in the vanilla extract.

The most enjoyable part for the girls was the decorating one (it always is). Traditionally, carrot cakes or cupcakes are frosted with a base layer of cream cheese frosting and topped with marzipan carrots but Sofia and Aisha had different designs in mind. The cream cheese frosting tasted amazing , however I found it to be too runny for piping. I immediately realised my mistake of buying cream cheese that comes in a tub rather than the more solid  block one. However, later, I did some “research” on the Internet to know others’ experiences of piping with cream cheese frosting and most people opined that it’s not really meant for piping. However, some mentioned that it’s possible to make some simple swirls or borders with it. According to them the cream cheese should be softened but still cool when mixing. Some others suggested increasing the sugar (which definitely is not an option for me) whereas yet others suggested decreasing the sugar to make it stiffer ( ????). I plan to try the same recipe with softened but cool block cream cheese to see how it works out for piping. I’m also dying to try out a recipe for cream cheese frosting with white chocolate that I’ve read is both delicious as well as good for piping. If you have a good recipe/tip for piping with cream cheese frosting, please let me know.

Anyways, I somehow managed to make some simple designs on the cupcakes by chilling my frosting in the refrigerator for a while. I iced the cupcakes with a thin layer of the frosting and then used the following tips (all Wilton ones) to make the designs:

For heart : Use tip 12 and pink icing to pipe two side by side elongated beads.

For balloons: Use tip 12 to make green, pink and orange dot balloons . Use tip 3 to make the strings.

For flower: Use tip 12 and orange icing icing to pipe bead flower petals. Use tip 3 and deep orange icing to make the dot centre or simply put an orange M& M candy in the centre (like I did).

For teddy bear: Use tip 12 and pink icing to pipe dot head. Use tip 5 and pink icing to pipe dot ears. Use tip 3 and brown icing to pipe dot eyes, nose and mouth.

For fish: Use tip 12 and orange icing to pipe dot body. Use tip 3 and brown icing to pipe tail, fins, gills and mouth. Use tip 2 and white icing to pipe dot eye and tip 2 and brown icing to pipe dot pupil.

For worms: Use tip 5 and green icing to pipe increasing sizes of dots from tails to head. Use tip 3 and white icing to pipe dot eyes, tip 2 and brown icing to pipe dot pupils, nose and mouth. Repeat for the other worm.

The cutest cupcakes were the ones were the ones which didn’t require any fancy tips , just some sprinkles, candies and the enthusiasm of  a five year old and a two year old. It’s a pity that the master cupcake decorators didn’t let me capture their creations before licking up all the frosting.

These cupcakes can be eaten without the frosting for some guilt free pleasure and taste just as delicious . They can be dusted with some confectioners’ sugar for presentation (if you don’t mind the extra sugar).

This has been sent to to the following events:
Bake with your heart hosted by A girl’s Diary
Bake Fest 2 started by Zesty Palette and guest hosted by Spicy Treats
Holiday Baking hosted by Srav’s Culinary Concepts
Only Cookies and Cakes hosted by Foodelicious
Christmas Delicacy hosted by Erivum Puliyum

20 comments on “Kiddie Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. wow these look really pretty, do link them with my event lets cook for christmas green/red as I see you have decorated them beautifully with these colours and sprinkles.
    More detilas regarding event at

  2. this is quality time spent with kids at home..we often make cookies when we get snow holidays form work and school.
    Lovely cupcakes..
    Love Ash.

  3. Hi there, Melissa here from Food Bloggers of Canada. Just popping by to check out your blog and to let you know we’ve added you to our Membership Directory. Welcome aboard! These cupcakes are so sweet and pretty!

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