Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes

These Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes make just 6 perfectly moist cupcakes, packed with fresh carrots and spices and topped with sweet, smooth cream cheese buttercream frosting. 

Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Easter is coming up this Sunday. While this Easter will look different in a lot of ways given that churches are closed and we won’t be able to gather with extended family, lots of us will still be celebrating at home with our smaller family units. Given the scaled down, smaller gatherings, I wanted to share this recipe for Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes!

This recipe makes just 6 perfect cupcakes. Made completely from scratch with a spiced carrot cake batter these cupcakes bake up in under 20 minutes and come out soft and evenly moist throughout. Top them with a generous amount of cream cheese buttercream for a delicious dessert!  

Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes

How to make Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes


Mixing up these carrot cake cupcakes is simple! Start with a mixture of dry ingredients – flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda and spices. Get the wet ingredients started in the mixer with oil, an egg, white sugar, brown sugar and vanilla. Then slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet to form the batter. Thin it out just a tad with a little bit of whole milk and then fold in the fresh grated carrots. 

The cupcake bake at 350°F for just 15-17 minutes until set. Be sure to cool the cupcakes completely before frosting! 


Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting 


Classic carrot cake is almost always make with cream cheese frosting. The combination of the carrots and the spices with the subtle, sweet cream cheese frosting is a match made in heaven.

Cream cheese frosting is often very soft. For these cupcakes I wanted to be able to pipe the frosting to make the cupcakes look extra pretty, so I needed a firmer frosting. This frosting is a compromise because it is firm and pipe-able like a buttercream, but flavored with cream cheese making it the perfect compliment to the carrot cake cupcakes. 

Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Why Small Batch? 


Especially given our current circumstance, we don’t want to be wasting food and given that we are not able to gather in large groups a small batch of 6 cupcakes is much more manageable. 

If you are making these cupcakes for a larger group the recipe can easily be doubled or even quadrupled to meet your needs! 


What if I don’t have a 6-tin cupcake tray? 


No problem! I actually don’t have one either, all of mine are 12-tin. I used the 6 cupcake tins in the center of my larger tray and left the outer 6 tins empty. This is no issue at all and does not alter the baking time. 


Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes

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Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes

  • Author: Laura
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 6 cupcakes 1x


These Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes make just 6 perfectly moist cupcakes, packed with fresh carrots and spices and topped with sweet, smooth cream cheese buttercream frosting. 




Dry Ingredients 

3/4 cup white all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp cloves

1/4 tsp nutmeg

Wet Ingredients 

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 egg, room temperature

1/4 cup white sugar

2 tbsp brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla

2 tbsp whole milk

1/2 cup grated carrots

Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting

6 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature

4oz brick style cream cheese, room temperature

1 tsp clear vanilla extract

4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted

1 tbsp heavy cream

pinch of salt

crushed walnuts, optional for garnish


Pre-heat oven to 350°F

In a small bowl whisk together all of the dry ingredients, set aside

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with blade attachment, add the vegetable oil, egg, white and brown sugar, beat

Add the vanilla, mix

Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet, mix until fully combined

Add the whole milk 1 tbsp at a time, mix

Fold in the carrots

Line a cupcake tin with 6 cupcake liners

Fill the liners 3/4 of the way full with the cupcake batter

Bake for 15-17 minutes until a toothpick when inserted in the center comes out clean

Cool completely

Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting

Add the butter and cream cheese to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with blade attachment

Beat on high until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a plastic spatula as needed

Add the vanilla extract, beat

Add the powdered sugar about 1/2 cup at a time beating in between

Add the heavy cream and salt

Pipe the frosting on the cupcakes*

Sprinkle with crushed walnuts (optional)

Beat on high for 5 minutes until smooth and fluffy


*You can also use an offset spatula to spread the frosting on the cupcakes

  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes

Keywords: #smallbatchcupcakes, #smallbatchbaking, #carrotcakecupcakes, #carrotcake

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Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes

If you make these Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes let me know how you like them! Leave a star rating and comment here! If you snap a photo, I’d love to see it – share it over on Instagram and tag me @sprinklesandseasalt!

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Recipe rating

  1. Shannon said:

    I was bummed this weekend not making my normal carrot cake for my family this year for Easter due to everyone staying home. I was craving cake but I didn’t want A whole cake for myself, then I stumbled across this recipe. It was perfect! I actually made it gluten free with cup4cup GF flour, I used coconut oil instead of vegetable oiL and added pecans. Other than that everything was the same. It came out really yummy and exactly what i was looking for! Thanks for the recipe!

    • Laura said:

      Hi Shannon! I’m so glad 🙂 Thanks for sharing your substitutions too! Hope you had a Happy Easter!

  2. Janice said:

    I love these CUPCAKEs, and everyone else who has eaten them loves them too! THEY’RE so easy, and i love that i can easily double the recipe. I make half the amount of frosting, as that’s the perfect amount in my opinion.