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+ servings
A closeup photo of a carrot cake cupcake with cream cheese frosting.
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4.5 from 2 votes

Carrot Cupcakes with Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

If you like carrot cake, you'll love Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting. It's the perfect dessert for fall, or anytime.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time22 mins
Total Time37 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: browned butter, cake, carrot, carrot cake, carrots, cream cheese, cream cheese frosting, cream cheese icing, dessert, easter, frosting, icing, sweets, vegetarian
Servings: 16
Calories: 315kcal


Carrot Cake

  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (or ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg)
  • teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup lightly packed brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 1 pound carrots, peeled and grated (about 3 cups)

Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, (softened and divided)
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, or neufchatel, or goat cheese, or a mixture
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 ½ cups powdered sugar (you will need to use more powdered sugar if you want a stiffer frosting)


  • Move oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350°F. Line 16 cups of 2 muffin pans with cupcake liners. (Or spray a 9x13" baking pan with oil and dust lightly with flour.)
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt. 
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the eggs, brown sugar and granulated sugar together on medium high speed until fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Turn speed to low and slowly pour in the oil. Mix for 1 more minute until the oil is emulsified into the mixture.
  • Add half of the flour mixture and mix on low speed until incorporated. Repeat with the remaining flour mixture. Remove bowl from stand mixer and add carrots. Stir with a spatula until combined. Using a ¼ cup measure, distribute batter among cupcake liners (or pour batter into prepared baking pan).
  • Bake cupcakes for 20-24 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean with crumbs attached, rotating pans halfway through baking time. (Bake cake for 35-40 minutes.) Cool for 10 minutes in pan, then remove from pan and allow to cool completely before frosting.

Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Add 2 Tablespoons of the butter to a small skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally until butter is golden brown and fragrant, about 5-7 minutes. Pour into a small bowl to cool completely. 
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the browned butter, softened butter and cheese together until smooth and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add vanilla and mix until combined. Add the powdered sugar, ½ cup at a time until you get the sweetness and texture you want (I used 1 ½ cups for a spreadable texture, you will need more if you want a stiffer frosting or plan to pipe it).


Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 315kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 46mg | Sodium: 237mg | Potassium: 182mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 4914IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 62mg | Iron: 1mg