Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Week of Orange - carrots that is

Want to know what happens when I forget my grocery list? And have to go shopping with both kids in tow? I buy a humongous bag of carrots. And come home to see that we already have a bag in the fridge. So guess what this week's theme is? What to do with 3+ lb of carrots. The obvious came to mind first - carrot cupcakes.
First recipe was so amazing that I honestly did not want to try the other one I printed. It was sent to me by someone who is on the GFCF diet and said they were the best cupcakes she had tried ever. Two other factors led me to think that they would not be great. First, they were from Elana's pantry. And many of the gluten free blogs I've read all praise her genius so it's okay if you want to diss me. I had her cookbook way back when and tried many of the recipes and both E and I ended up not liking 99% of them. Secondly, the flour used was coconut flour. I like coconut flour as a gluten free option but in my experience it is better used for savory baked goods not sweet ones. Coconut flour needs a lot of moisture which often comes in the form of eggs and almost everything I ever made using it tastes like quiche. Imagine chocolate chip cookie 'quiche', or in this case, carrot cupcake 'quiche'. Yeah it doesn't make me warm & fuzzy.
Still, the fact that someone took the time to send me a recipe because they knew carrots was my theme made me print it out and make them. And I was right. Maybe there are better GF versions out there, but we like this recipe (with regular flour) so much I don't think I need to try them.
Carrot Patch cupcakes (from No Whine with Dinner)

Makes 12 Cupcakes


  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup 1% low-fat milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1¼ cups finely grated carrots (about 8 ounces) (I steamed my carrots & pureed them for this instead of using raw grated carrot)
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 ounces light cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners and set aside.
  2. Combine the sugar, oil, eggs, milk, and vanilla in a large bowl and beat at medium speed  until well blended, about 2 minutes. Add the carrots and stir to combine. Scrape down the sides of the bowl if necessary.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, and salt. At low speed, gradually beat the flour mixture into the liquid mixture until just combined.
  4. Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared muffin cups. Bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and cool for 5 minutes. Remove the cupcakes and cool completely before frosting.
  5. To make the frosting, beat the cream cheese and sugar at low speed until blended. Raise the speed to medium once the sugar is incorporated and continue to beat until creamy. Spread the frosting over the cupcakes and garnish as desired with a jelly bean, an M&M, sprinkles or nothing at all!
Tip: For a non cream cheese based frosting, whisk together 1 cup confectioners’ sugar and 1½ tablespoons lemon juice or 1% lowfat milk.
Nutrition Information per Serving (1 cupcake): 270 calories, 12g fat (2g saturated, 0.9g omega-3), 170mg sodium, 38g carbohydrate, 1.5g fiber, 4g protein, 40% vitamin A

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