Carrot Cupcakes With Cream Cheese Frosting

06/05/2015 02:43 pm ET | Updated Jun 05, 2016

Recipe: Merce Muse, Thrive Market

These gluten-free carrot cupcakes have a tropical twist -- sweet pineapple and nutty coconut add both flavor and moisture the batter. But don't worry, the carrots are still the star -- you'll taste them even under a thick blanket of rich, tangy cream cheese frosting.

Yield: 12 cupcakes
Active Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

3 cups almond flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground cardamom
5 eggs
1/2 cup light agave nectar
1/4 cup raw honey
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
3 cups grated carrots
1/2 cup chopped canned pineapple, drained
1 cup walnuts, chopped
1/2 cup shredded coconut

Cream Cheese Frosting
8 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon orange blossom water (optional)
Shredded coconut for garnish

Carrot cupcakes

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease muffin tins with nonstick spray or ghee.

In a large bowl, whisk together almond flour with the salt, baking soda, cinnamon, and cardamom to combine and break up any lumps in the flour.

In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, agave, honey, and oil.

Fold the wet ingredients into the dry. Sprinkle the carrots, pineapple, walnuts, and coconut over the batter and gently fold until incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared muffin cups, distributing batter evenly between all 12 cups. Bake until muffins are cooked through and lightly browned, 15 to 18 minutes. Let cool before removing.


Meanwhile, add the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and whip on medium-low to gently cream. While the mixer is still running, add in the cream cheese, little by little, then increase the speed to medium and mix for 2 minutes. Turn the mixer off and add in the powdered sugar, vanilla, and orange blossom water, if using. Mix on low, gradually increasing the speed to high, then mix an additional 3 minutes.

When the cupcakes have fully cooled, frost the tops and sprinkle with shredded coconut.

Photo credit: Paul Delmont