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Award-Winning Carrot Cake Cupcakes

BIRD Bakery Award Winning Carrot Cupcakes recipe
Courtesy of BIRD Bakery

Chef notes

This nostalgic family recipe is carrot cake done right. The cupcakes have just the right spices and an irresistible cream cheese frosting. 


Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 1 cup European-style unsalted butter (such as Plugra)
  • 1 1/2 cups cream cheese
  • 5 3/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 tablespoon very high quality vanilla extract
  • 1 small orange
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 3 organic brown eggs
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cups fine sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon very high quality vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped pineapple
  • 1 1/4 cups shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup shredded, sweetened coconut
  • 3/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, extra for garnish


Make the frosting: In a large mixing bowl, beat butter until smooth, and then add cream cheese. Be sure to scrape the bowl before adding the powdered sugar, one cup at a time. Fully incorporate the powdered sugar before adding the liquids and the zest. Beat for three minutes until fluffy. Cover and refrigerate.

Make the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350° F. In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, beat together the eggs while adding the oil, buttermilk, sugar and vanilla, one at a time. Mix until well incorporated. Slowly add the flour mixture into the large bowl to combine. Stir in the pineapple, carrots, coconut, raisins, and walnuts. Scoop the batter into pre-lined cupcake pans, about 3/4 of the way full. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes, rotating the pan after 10 minutes. Let the cupcakes completely cool before frosting them with cream cheese frosting. Garnish with additional chopped walnuts, if desired. Enjoy!