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4.43 from 7 votes

Small Batch Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Brown Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

These small batch carrot cake cupcakes with brown butter cream cheese frosting are perfectly spiced, moist, and easy to make.
Prep Time50 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 35 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Western European
Servings: 7
Calories: 495kcal


Carrot Cake Cupcakes

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 5 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg lightly whisked
  • ¾ cup freshly grated raw carrots (about 1 large carrot)
  • ¼ cup finely chopped pecans

Brown Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 6 ounces full-fat cream cheese, room temperature
  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, browned and cooled to room temperature
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar


  • Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C). Place paper liners into 7 wells of a standard muffin pan and set aside.

Make the Cupcake Batter

  • In a small bowl, whisk together flour, cinnamon, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, combine vegetable oil and sugar and whisk to combine.
  • Add half of the flour mixture to the oil mixture and stir to combine. Then add half of the whisked egg, stirring to combine. Add the remaining flour mixture and stir before adding the remaining egg and stirring just until blended.
  • Add grated carrots and pecans and stir until blended.
  • Spoon batter into the prepared pan, filling each of the seven wells ⅔ full (about 2 ½ Tablespoons or 55 grams of batter per cupcake).

Bake the Cupcakes

  • Bake the cupcakes for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs (but no raw batter). The tops of the cupcakes will be just slightly domed, and they will flatten (but shouldn't sink down) as they cool. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely in the pan on a wire rack before removing.

Make the Frosting

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment (or in a large bowl using a handheld electric mixer), beat cream cheese and room temperature browned butter on high speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add vanilla and salt and beat to combine.
  • With the mixer running on low speed, slowly add confectioners’ sugar until all the sugar is added. Then beat on high speed until the mixture is well combined and creamy.

Frost the Cupcakes

  • Once the cupcakes have cooled completely, they're ready for frosting. Fit a piping bag with a large piping tip (I used Wilton 8B) and pipe a large swirl of frosting onto each cupcake. Or, if you prefer, use an offset spatula to spread frosting onto each cupcake.


Storage: Store leftover cupcakes in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. For best taste, let them sit at room temperature for 30 to 60 minutes before serving.
This recipe makes enough cream cheese frosting for generously piping onto the cupcakes. If you're planning to simply spread frosting onto the cupcakes, you can reduce the amount of frosting by as much as half.


Serving: 1cupcake | Calories: 495kcal | Carbohydrates: 68g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 52mg | Sodium: 266mg | Potassium: 151mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 58g | Vitamin A: 2640IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 119mg | Iron: 1mg