Chai Carrot Cupcakes with Spiced Maple Frosting
Oct 18, 2018, Updated Feb 04, 2024
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I’m currently in the middle—what I like to call—autumnal chaos. I am busy editing photos every night until 10pm, which also means I’m consuming a large amount of reality television. I’m incredibly embarrassed to admit that I have watched every.single.episode of Shahs of Sunset and I have so many opinions about them. The other day I went to their neighborhood (West LA) and I was like, “If I run into one of them…I won’t be able to control myself!” I was bummed I didn’t see them.
One recipe that was at the very top of my to-make list this season was to fall-ify carrot cupcakes. This is inspired by some ras al hanout carrot cupcakes in Casablanca: My Moroccan Food.
Carrot cake is already filled with spices but with these cupcakes we’re just adding WAY more, while also adding some other spices in the mix.
These cupcakes are glorious to freeze. And then thaw in the fridge when you’re ready to eat and serve.
This frosting is delicious and buttery, filled with a spike of maple and topped with cinnamon.
In other news, I’m going to see Drake tomorrow night and am incredibly excited. Two years ago I went to a Kanye concert and loved it (RIP KANYE). I had to add a disclaimer to this chicken & dumplings recipe because people kept sending me messages on Instagram asking me how I could support him. Haha. It was 2016—it was a different time! We were so innocent.
Anyway, I hope you find some time to make these cupcakes because they’re bomb. Also, if you want to see a step-by-step on Insta Stories, hop on over to the app.
Masala-Chai Carrot Cupcakes with Spiced Frosting
Carrot Cake Dry Mix:
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon salt
Carrot Cake Wet Mix:
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup white granulated sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 2 1/2 cups grated carrots
- 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
- 3/4 cup pepitas/pumpkin seeds
Spiced Maple Frosting:
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, sifted over each cupcake
To Make the Cake:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two (12-cavity) cupcake tins. I used cooking spray. You can also line them with cupcake liners.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, black pepper, cloves and salt. Set the dry mixture aside.
- In the bowl of a stand-up mixer, with the paddle attachment, add the butter, white sugar and brown sugar; beat until nice and fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in the oil and eggs. Beat until combined.
- Alternating between the buttermilk and the dry mix, add them to the butter mixture, until just combined. Lastly, add the carrots and walnuts and mix until thoroughly distributed throughout the batter.
- To fill up the cupcake tin, I used a cookie scoop to make it easy on myself. Fill each cupcake tin about half way. I baked these in batches because doing two at the same time didn’t end well for me. Transfer the first cupcake tin to the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Repeat with the second batch of batter.
- Allow them to cool in the pan for about 5 minutes and then transfer them to a cooling rack to cool before adding the frosting.
To Make the Frosting:
- To the bowl of a stand-up mixer, sift in the powdered sugar, add the vanilla extract, salt and heavy cream. Beat the frosting for about 3 minutes. The fluffiness from the heavy cream really lightens up this frosting so be sure to beat it for the full 3 minutes. If the frosting is too loose, feel free to transfer it to the fridge to chill for about 10 minutes. Then beat it one last time.
- Decorate the cupcakes however you like! Garnish with sifted cinnamon.