Thursday, March 12, 2009

Carrot Orange Cupcakes

I've been marveling at a recipe posted on Sage Mommy's blog titled: "Super Moist Carrot Orange Cupcakes with Walnuts".The base for the recipe came from Ina Garten but I love how Sage Mommy adds in the zest of one orange. I made these yesterday and was little put off by how much orange flavor was in them but tried them again today, after being in the fridge all night, and was amazed at how well all the flavors melded together overnight. I would definitely recommend putting them in the fridge overnight before serving them, the icing had time to thicken up and the flavors really do taste much better after sitting together for a little while.


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 extra-large eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3 cups grated carrots (less than 1 pound)
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • Zest of one orange (or less)

For the frosting:

  • 3/4 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 pound confectioners' sugar


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Beat the sugar, oil, and vanilla together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the eggs, 1 at a time. In another bowl, sift together the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low speed, add 1/2 of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Add the grated carrots, raisins, and walnuts to the remaining flour, mix well, and add to the batter. Mix until just combined.
Line muffin pans with paper liners. Scoop the batter into 22 muffin cups until each is 3/4 full. Bake at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F and cook for a further 35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a rack.
***Mine took only 13 minutes to bake at 350, test with a toothepick!***
For the frosting, cream the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the sugar and beat until smooth.
When the cupcakes are cool, frost them generously and serve.
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  1. Thanks!! I changed the baking time a little while ago because people were having problems. Mine came great. I changed to 20 minuteswithout reducing the temp. and baked them again. The result was even better. I lovethe carrot pic!!

  2. i tried out a "canteen" cookie (basically choco chip cookie) recipe recenlty, n it also suggested using orange zest n orang juice au-lieu of vanilla extract. the combo of chocolate n orange, wow. i'm going to try ur version of carrot cake next. would it matter if ther's also walnut mixed in, will it b affected by the orange?

  3. Mini spice,
    I'm not sure how walnuts could be affected by orange zest but I didn't notice any ill effects in this recipe. Would you mind sharing that chocolate chip and orange zest recipe? Sounds delicious.

  4. I baked them at 400 degrees for 19-20 minutes. Made them for my BFs birthday and brought in the leftovers to my office. Huge hit on this sunny San Fran morning! Thanks for sharing, Karla

  5. Karla - I'm glad they worked out for you! Every oven is different and times will always need to be adjusted. I'm going to have to figure out which temp to cook everything now that we've moved AGAIN.


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