Carrot Cupcakes

As you know, we recently harvested the last batch of carrots from our garden. I have more carrots than I know what to do with, so I thought about making a cake. This recipeĀ from smitten kitchen seems easier than making a big cake so I tried it. I made a few changes and they came out good (in my opinion, with a few substitutes which I will explain below).

Freshly baked

Freshly baked. The kitchen was dark when I took this photo. All the light was provided by the speedlight (external flash)

carrot

Carrot walnut goodness. The orange pumpkin in the background is a jedi mind trick to make you want the carrots.

Freshly baked

Frosted with plain whipped cream cheese. I saw this cool plate at City Liquidators and I just had to get one.

Recipe adapted from smitten kitchen

Substitutions/options include:
– I made a half portion of the full recipe
– Used 3/4c sugar instead of 1 cup
– Added 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
– Used whole wheat flour instead of APF
– I used less cinnamon because I do not like it that much
– Grated fresh ginger instead of powder
– I used plain cream cheese for frosting

Notes:
– Grating the carrots really made a difference. The batter came out smooth even with whole wheat flour.
– The amount of canola oil scared me a bit but I followed the recipe anyway. The paper cups were stained with grease but eating the cupcakes did not feel greasy. They were deliciously moist. I read somewhere you can substitute apple sauce but I have not tried it myself.
– The sweetness is just right for me but may not be sweet enough for others.

Makes 12 cupcakes

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups grated peeled carrots
1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
A light dash of salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

Line 12 cupcake molds with papers, or butter and flour them. Whisk flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger in medium bowl to blend. Whisk sugar and oil in large bowl until well blended. Whisk in eggs 1 at a time. Add flour mixture and stir until blended. Stir in carrots and walnuts. Divide batter among cupcake molds, filling 3/4 of each. Bake cupcakes 14 to 18 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center of one comes out clean. Let cool in pans for five minutes or so, then transfer cakes to a cooling rack. Let cool completely before frosting.

At around 130 calories per cupcake (no frosting), these could very well be the “healthiest” baked goods made in my kitchen. Consider the monounsaturated fats from the canola oil and walnuts, the natural goodness of organically grown carrots, organic sugar, whole grain flour, and most of all freshly-hatched eggs from a friend who has a chicken coop in their backyard. Another winner from smitten kitchen.

This entry was filed under: Baking, Cupcakes, Foodie, Gardening, PDX local