Monday, April 9, 2012

lip-smacking good: vegan carrot cake cupcakes

Carrot Cake Cupcake Chickadees
One of my favorite desserts to make is carrot cake.  I have a recipe passed down to me from my mom, who got it from my grandmother.  It is, hands down, the best carrot cake I've ever had and it never ceases to receive compliments from everyone.

I'm trying to use fewer dairy products in my baking and when I eat at home, and I wanted to attempt a healthier version of the cake and cream cheese frosting so I modified the recipe in several ways to create vegan carrot cake cupcakes for Easter this year.  While the frosting was a little less fluffy than it's non-vegan counterpart, it tasted as good and everyone was surprised when I told them (after they ate a few cupcakes) that the recipe was vegan.

cake ingredients:

1 and 1/2 C wheat flour
1 and 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1 and 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup agave nectar (substituted for 1 and 1/2 cups of sugar)
3 tbsp whole ground flaxseed
7 tbsp water
1 and 1/8 C vegetable oil
1 and 1/2 C grated carrot (finely as possible)
8 and 1/4 oz can pineapple
3/4 C chopped walnuts

frosting ingredients

8 tbsp vegan butter or margerine (softened)
1 8 oz pack of vegan cream cheese
3 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup coconut (optional)
yellow, green and orange food coloring

To make the cake:
Mix first 5 ingredients well with mixer.
In a separate small bowl, combine flaxseed and water and stir until the mixture starts to have an egg-like consistency. 
Add flaxseed mixture and remaining ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well with spoon.
Oil cake pans and bake at 350 for approx 35 - 40 min (less time for mini muffins - check after about 20 minutes)

To make the frosting:

Mix together well with mixer.
For extra frosting to cake ratio, do one and a half this frosting recipe and you'll have plenty for the cake and some leftover :)



  1. Oh these look adorable! How long does it take you start to finish to make the cupcakes? My problem is that I always want to make yummy things like this that I see online but then it ends up being way harder than I thought it'd be!

    I found your blog through Nicole's girl party. So glad I did. You're adorable and I look forward to following along!

    new follower :)

  2. P.S I was going to tell you that I loved your about on Nicole's blog. SO cute and clever!

  3. Thanks! You know, while it takes a little time to do these start to finish, it really isn't hard or complicated. Most of the time is time spent having the cupcakes bake, and obviously you can be doing other things while this happens. If you have more than one cupcake pan, that reduces time, too, since you can bake all the cupcakes at once. I'd say it takes about 10 minutes max to make the batter and less than 10 to make the frosting (which you can do while the cupcakes bake).

    I made all the frosting, dyed it yellow and then put a few spoonfuls in two bags and dyed the frosting in one bag orange and the other bag green for the beak and eyes of the chicks. Then i cut tiny slits in one corner of each bag. If you wanted to cut back on time for this, you could buy little tubes pre-made frosting in those colors (but they probably wouldnt be vegan). The design on the cupcakes is so simple that it really doesn't take too long to frost them. I used a frosting dispenser to put the yellow frosting on the cupcakes, but you could also make a third bag of frosting with the yellow frosting in it and just cut a larger slit one of the corners to make a dispenser of your own.

    I hope this is helpful. I don't bake everything from scratch since a lot of homemade baked goods just don't taste that different to me than their "boxed" counterparts, but these cupcakes are definitely an exception, and I think you'll findthat they are worth it. ( I also recommend baking them when your significant other wants to watch baseball or another long sport so you can double brownie points for "watching" from the kitchen and making something delicious for the two of you to enjoy).


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