When it comes time for my friends birthdays, I usually get a call/text/facebook message wondering what I’m making them. Jeff is no exception. You remember Jeff right? My number one taste tester who wrote me this message? He’s one of the people that thinks that everything should have hot sauce on it. That’s why I try to bake him things rather than cook so he can’t put hot sauce on it. His birthday was last Friday, on the 16th, and I’d say by the end of August I already had a request for baked goods. He does not waste any time. He either wanted carrot cake or brownies. But the boy is very strict about his brownies.. so I didn’t want to disappoint. And I’ve already made him brownies so I wanted to try something new.
I had never even eaten carrot cake before so I was a little nervous to try these but I figured I like zucchini muffins so it had to be somewhat similar. Come to think of it, I’ve only had cream cheese frosting one other time. Weird. I really need to venture out more. Anyways, the cupcakes were AWESOME. They were extremely moist and perfectly spiced. I could not stop eating them. The recipe made 24 cupcakes and I gave Jeff 12, so that gave me the freedom to eat 12 myself. Not that I did. But I could have. I won’t tell you how many of those I ate, because it was a lot. And the frosting… oh the frosting. I went for a more rustic decoration job… aka slapped it on with a spatula because I’m lazy.. so I had quite a bit of frosting left over. You know what that means? My roommate and I were eating heaping spoonfuls of it. It was amazing. Jeff loovveedd the cupcakes and had a fabulous birthday.
Happy 22nd Birthday Jeff!
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ground ginger
2 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups canola oil
4 large eggs
3 cups grated peeled carrots (I used the thinnest hole on my box grater, but you can also use the food processor)
1 cups coarsely chopped walnuts (optional, I omitted)
1/2 cup raisins (optional, I omitted)
Cream Cheese Frosting
12 oz. cream cheese (not softened)
7 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tbsp vanilla extract
3 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a muffin tin with 24 cupcake liners. Set aside. In a medium sized bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger and whisk until blended. In a large bowl whisk together sugar and canola oil until well combined. Then, whisk in the eggs one at a time. Stir in the flour mixture. Add the grated carrots (and walnuts and raisins if using) and stir until combined.
Divide the batter into the muffin cups. Bake for 14-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the muffin comes out clean. Let cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
To make the frosting, in a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese and butter on medium high speed for 3 minutes, or until smooth. Mix in the vanilla extract. Gradually add in the confectioners’ sugar and beat on medium speed until incorporated. Then, increase the speed and beat until the frosting is smooth. Frost the cupcakes when they have cooled completely.
Makes 24 cupcakes.