Today is my step-mom’s birthday (Happy birthday, Judy!). Judy likes carrot cake — something I’ve made for her a couple times already. So I wanted to switch things up a bit and decided to make cupcakes to help her celebrate another spin around the sun.
If you have something to celebrate — or even if you don’t — you might want to give these a try too. You won’t regret it!
- 1 3/4 cups flour (8 3/4 ounces)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar (8 3/4 ounces)
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 2/3 cups grated carrots (10 ounces)
- 10 Tablespoons butter, softened
- 2 cups confectioners' sugar (8 ounces)
- 3 1/2 Tablespoons buttermilk powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 8 ounces cream cheese, chilled and cut into 8 pieces
- 1/3 cups pecans, toasted and rough-chopped
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Line cupcake tins with paper liners.
- Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and cloves together in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl, whisk sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla together until smooth. Stir in carrots. Fold in flour mixture until just combined.
- Pour 1/4 cup batter into each of 16 cupcake liners.
- Bake at 400 degrees for 5 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 and bake for another 15 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes. Remove cupcakes from tins and cool completely on wire rack, about 30 minutes.
- With a hand or stand mixer beat butter, sugar, buttermilk powder, and vanilla together until smooth, scraping bowl as needed. Add cream cheese one piece at a time, blending until smooth before adding the next piece.
This icing doesn't tend to hold up under hot and humid conditions. So if you make these on a warm day, keep them refrigerated until about a half hour before serving.