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Carrot cake muffins recipe

Carrot Cake Muffins

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x


This carrot cake muffins recipe is a showstopper! The muffins are moist and spiced, topped with a tangy cream cheese drizzle.



For the muffins

  • 1 3/4 cups [245 g] all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup [100 g] light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup [67 g] granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (or raisins)*
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 cup applesauce
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups peeled and grated carrots (4 to 5 medium)

For the glaze

  • 3 tablespoons cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon milk


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Spray a standard 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray or add muffin cup papers.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, light brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, nutmeg, baking powder, and kosher salt. Stir in the chopped pecans.
  3. In a separate medium bowl, whisk the eggs, then whisk in the applesauce, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract until smooth. Stir in the carrots with a spatula. Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix with a spatula until a thick, smooth batter forms. 
  4. Scoop the batter evenly into the muffin cups: the cups will be full to the top. 
  5. Bake the muffins for 23 to 25 minutes, until puffed and golden and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then transfer to a rack to cool fully, about 1 hour. 
  6. To make the glaze, place the cream cheese in a glass measuring cup or bowl and microwave for about 20 seconds until warm (alternatively, warm it in a small saucepan over medium low heat on the stovetop). Stir in the powdered sugar and milk and mix until a drizzlable glaze forms. Use a fork to drizzle it over the muffins. (If making the muffins in advance, store them un-iced and refrigerated; add the drizzle directly before serving.)
  7. Eat the muffins immediately. Or, store at room temperature in a sealed container lined with a paper towel to absorb extra moisture, about 2 days if iced or 4 days if un-iced. Store refrigerated for up to 1 week or more (allow to come to room temperature before serving). The glaze becomes soft during storage, but it holds its shape. You can also store frozen without glaze for up to 3 months.


*If you love raisins in a carrot cake, you can use them instead of pecans: or use 1/2 cup of both!

  • Category: Muffins
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Keywords: Carrot cake muffins, carrot cake muffins recipe, carrots muffin cake recipe