When springtime comes around, I always think of carrot cake. This could be tied to a slightly superstitious belief on my part that this offering will appease and please the Easter Bunny, and there will be more chocolate bunnies for me. Be that as it may, I have a SCRUMPTIOUS carrot cake cupcakes recipe for you, and some really GOOD news, too. Ready for the good news? Carrot Cake COULDN’T BE EASIER!
It came to me like an Easter morning epiphany, while I was making this cake. Carrot cake is really just like making banana bread. Only different. 😀 (You know, banana bread is that quick bread that everyone makes to get rid of their overripe bananas.) Hold the bananas, grate the carrots, and you’ve got a carrot cake.
Most cakes are made by creaming butter and sugar until they are light and fluffy. Often, that means beating them in the mixer for upwards of five minutes. And then you have to alternately add the dry and wet ingredients. It’s a process that’s a little more complicated. But carrot cake is practically a “dump and run” kind of a cake. In essence, it’s a quick bread. Measure the dry ingredients and whisk together, pour in all the liquid ingredients, barely mix till all the dry ingredients are moistened, and you’ve got a cake in record time, with minimal effort!
Because the fat in carrot cake is vegetable or canola oil, the exterior cake develops this crispy edge that, to me, is swoon-worthy. Couple that crispy texture with the sweetness and slightly tanginess of the cream cheese frosting, and my knees start to buckle. This dessert is that easy, and that good. Go make a carrot cake! Go make THIS carrot cake.
The Easter Bunny will be pleased, and you may have Easter candy favor.
I made cupcakes, so that’s how the recipe is written, but you can certainly use this to make a layer cake, instead. To make a layer cake with 3 layers, grease and flour three 9″ cake pans, divide batter evenly between the three pans, and bake at 350 degrees, for 30 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center of each layer comes out clean.
Once you have poured the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, mix only until all dry ingredients are moistened. You don’t need an electric mixer to do this cake, at all. Mixing too much will cause gluten to develop, making a tough cake. Mixing only till all the dry ingredients are moistened will yield a more tender cake.
Carrot Cake Cupcakes
3 c. grated carrots
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 t. baking powder
2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
2 c. sugar
1 t. ground cinnamon
4 eggs, beaten
1 1/4 c. canola or vegetable oil
1 t. vanilla extract
Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe follows)
Combine first 7 ingredients – the dry ingredients – and whisk together in a mixing bowl.
Stir in the beaten eggs, oil, and vanilla – the wet ingredients – and mix until all dry ingredients are moistened.
Spoon batter into paper lined muffin tins, filling each about half full. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove from pans, and let cool on wire racks. When completely cool, frost with Cream Cheese Frosting. Yield: 2 dozen.
Cream Cheese Frosting
1 8 oz. package of cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. (1 stick) of butter, softened
1 16 oz. package powdered sugar
1 t. vanilla extract
Combine cream cheese and butter, beating until smooth. Add powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy.
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