Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes

You may remember this recipe from last year, but these Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes are back and better than ever. Just in time for Easter! This recipe is absolutely one of my family’s favorites and I have literally been waiting for spring to roll around just so I could make and enjoy them again. These cupcakes have everything you want in a delicious carrot cake … that perfectly warm cinnamon flavor, a fluffy & moist texture, and an irresistible cream cheese frosting on top. Plus these cupcakes are a lightened-up, healthier version of the classic dessert! They are absolutely perfect to serve for Easter, either as dessert or even for breakfast. I made these last year for my family’s brunch and they were the perfect sweet treat to add to the table!

Ingredients need for Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes…

These Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes are lightened up with various swaps! Applesauce is used in place of additional butter or oil, coconut sugar instead of regular white sugar, and whole wheat pastry flour instead of all purpose. Your typical heavy cream cheese frosting is also replaced by a simpler, lighter version sweetened with only a touch of pure maple syrup! But trust me, absolutely no flavor is missing from these cupcakes … they are just as delicious as the classic!

Cupcakes

  • Carrots: You of course need carrots for carrot cake cupcakes! You will need 1 cup of shredded carrot.
  • Coconut Sugar: Coconut sugar is my favorite refined sugar free option. It helps to give these cupcakes a deliciously, rich flavor! Add 1/2 cup.
  • Butter: Melted butter is used in these cupcakes. Its a major part of that unbeatable carrot cake flavor! Use 1/4 cup.
  • Eggs: 2 egg are used in these cupcakes for binding and moisture!
  • Whole Wheat Pastry Flour: I love to use whole wheat pastry flour in my treats, especially cakes and muffins! It gives a nutritional boost but still makes for a light & soft baked good. You will need 1 cup for this recipe!
  • Applesauce: Applesauce is a wonderful replacement for extra butter or oil in baked goods. It also adds a subtle natural sweetness! This recipe calls for 1/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce.
  • Cinnamon: The key ingredient of these cupcakes is cinnamon. Lots and lots of cinnamon. Add 2 tsp or even more if you’d like!
  • Vanilla extract Add 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract for that classic taste we all know and love!
  • Baking powder: 2 tsp of baking powder is needed for these cupcakes to bake absolutely perfectly!

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Cream Cheese: You will need 1/3 cup of softened cream cheese as the base of this frosting!
  • Butter: You will also need 1/4 cup of softened butter.
  • Pure Maple Syrup: Pure maple syrup is my other favorite refined sugar free sweetener use. Just 1 tbsp adds the perfect sweetness to this frosting!
  • Vanilla Extract: Again use 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract to bring out that classic vanilla flavor!

How to make Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes from scratch…

Start by setting your oven to 350 degrees.

Then in a large mixing bowl combine the melted butter and coconut sugar with a hand mixer. You can also use a whisk if you do not have a hand mixer.

Next add in the eggs and mix again. Stir in the carrots, cinnamon, vanilla extract, and applesauce.

Then fold in the whole wheat pastry flour and baking powder until smooth.

Scoop the batter into a lined or greased muffin tin. The batter should make 8 or 9 medium sized cupcakes.

Bake for 17-20 minutes.

While the cupcakes are baking make the frosting. Using a hand mixer combine the softened butter, cream cheese, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. If you do not have a hand mixer, you can simply stir together with a spoon.

Remove the cupcakes from the oven and let cool.

Once the cupcakes have cooled, add a spoonful of the frosting to each cupcake and spread. Top with extra shredded carrot, coconut sugar, and cinnamon. Enjoy!

Serving & storing Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes…

Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes are best served fresh, but can be stored and served later! If you want to make the cupcakes the day before serving I would recommend still waiting to frost them until right before serving. You can even have the frosting ready to go in the fridge to make assembly even easier!

Once the cupcakes are fully assembled I recommend storing in the refrigerator to keep the freshest! They should be good in the fridge for a about 5 days to a week.

In need of other recipes perfect for Easter? I’ve got you covered!

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If you make these Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes or any of my other recipes I would absolutely love to know! Tag me @wellnessbykay on instagram, so I can see and share your recreations!!

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Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes

These Healthier Carrot Cake Cupcakes are the best sweet treat!  They’re full of warm cinnamon spice, perfectly fluffy & moist, and topped with a delicious lightened up cream cheese frosting.  These healthy cupcakes are made with several swaps like applesauce, coconut sugar, and whole wheat pastry flour … but are still deliciously indulgent.  I guarantee that the whole family will love, just like mine did!

  • Author: Kayla Berman
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 8 Cupcakes 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Ingredients

Scale

Cupcakes

  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 2 tsp baking powder

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup cream cheese
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup

Instructions

  1. Set your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Use a hand mixer to combine the melted butter and coconut sugar. You can also use a whisk if you do not have a hand mixer.
  3. Then add in the eggs and mix again.
  4. Stir in the carrots, cinnamon, vanilla extract, and applesauce.
  5. Then fold in the whole wheat pastry flour and baking powder until smooth.
  6. Scoop the batter into a lined or greased muffin tin. The batter should make 8 or 9 medium sized cupcakes.
  7. Bake for 17-20 minutes.
  8. While the cupcakes are baking make the frosting. Using a hand mixer combine the softened butter, cream cheese, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. If you don’t have a hand mixer, you could simply use a spoon to combine.
  9. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and let cool.
  10. Once the cupcakes have cooled, add a spoonful of the frosting to each cupcake and spread. Top with extra shredded carrot, coconut sugar, and cinnamon.
  11. Enjoy!

Keywords: carrot cake, carrot cake cupcakes, healthy carrot cake, healthy carrot cake cupcakes, cupcakes, healthy cupcakes, cream cheese frosting, healthy cream cheese frosting, healthy dessert, dessert, easter dessert

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