Our family loves some carrot cake! My mom’s been making the best carrot cake ever for longer than I can remember. It’s always in the dessert line-up for Christmas and Thanksgiving (and whenever else we can talk her into it). Kinda like her famous pecan pie.
I finally got around to giving her recipe a try last month for my hubby’s birthday. I have no idea why I waited so long! It’s so stinkin’ easy. No grating carrots. No fancy-pants ingredients. Just yummy goodness in a reasonable amount of time.
Of course, being the recipe rebel that I am, I used the recipe to make cupcakes instead of a real-deal cake. My family was super impressed. And I was pretty proud of myself.
What you need for the cake:
2 cups self-rising flour, sifted
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 cups sugar
1 cup oil (I used vegetable, but olive oil might work too)
12 oz. baby food carrots
What you need for the frosting:
1 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
1/2 stick butter, softened
16 oz. powdered sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)
What you do for the cake:
- In a large bowl, mix sifted flour, cinnamon, & sugar.
- Add oil, eggs, and carrots.
- Stir until combined.
- Using mixer, beat for 2 minutes (scraping sides of bowl as needed).
- Pour into prepared muffin tins (use baking cups or butter the muffin tin).
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
- Allow to cool thoroughly before frosting.
What you do for the frosting:
- Using a mixer, combine cream cheese and butter.
- Add sugar and vanilla. Continue to mix until well combined.
- Fold in pecan pieces if using.
- Ice cupcakes using an icing spatula or a frosting bag.
Yield: 12 full-sized cupcakes and 36 minis.
Variations and notes:
This recipe can also be used to make a 3 layer cake or a regular sized sheet cake.
If you’re out of vanilla, don’t sweat it. Just omit the vanilla and you’ll be good to go.
Pecan pieces can sprinkled over the top of cupcakes/cake (or omitted altogether) if preferred.
Mini-cupcakes can be flash-frozen and saved in freezer bags for a quick snack. Perfect for adding to lunch boxes…by the time lunch rolls around, the cupcake should be thawed, but not mushy. 🙂