Friday, January 14, 2011


Fresh Cranberry & Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese & Butter Frosting

Birthday cupcakes for the birthday boy...

Growing up, my mom did not bake. Not a single cookie or a cupcake. She doesn't have much of a sweet tooth. But this didn't mean we lacked in the baked goods area. You see, my parents were members of Price Club or now known as Costco. And Korean Grocers and Bakeries, who needed to bake when you could go pick one up with not much effort.

My dad on the otherhand loves sweets and apparently I get that from him. And I didn't grow up with themed birthday parties or cakes with Rainbow Brite or the Smurfs (for you young bucks reading this, these are the cartoons I grew up with). But I always had ice cream cake on my birthdays. And I preferred this over cake.

Remember this post? Well, i'm ready to share more of what I made for my loves 3rd birthday party. When I asked my lil man what he wanted on his cake, he said, "Winnie the Pooh." Currently in his book rotation are some Winnie the Pooh stories, hence the request. And instead of regular cake, I decided on a ice cream cake from Carvel. Just like when I was growing up. Chocolate ice cream is my loves favorite and it's mine too!

And of course a birthday party is just not complete unless we're graced with the presence of cupcakes. And this time I made mini's and standard sized cupcakes with finely shredded carrots and fresh cranberries topped with a cream cheese & butter frosting. The perfect combination in my opinion.

Printable Recipe
Adapted from Martha Stewart
1 Cup Sugar
2 Large Eggs, Room Temperature
1/2 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Vegetable Oil
1/2 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
1/4 Cup Buttermilk (1/4 cup Fage yogurt and 2% milk mixture)
1-1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1-1/2 Cups Grated Carrots
1/2 Cup Raisins (I used 1 Cup Chopped Fresh Cranberries)

1. Preheat oven to 350º and line your mini muffin pan. Beat the sugar, eggs, oil, vanilla and Fage yogurt together using your stand alone mixer, or by hand until combined well.

My love said that this batter looked like...take a wild guess? Yep.
2. In a large bowl sift together the flour, cinnamon, baking powder & soda and salt. Add 3/4 of the flour mixture to the sugar mixture, mix well. Add carrots and cranberries to the remaining flour mixture, toss to combine then stir into batter and combine well. Fill 2 tsp of batter into each lined mini muffin pan and bake 10 to 12 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. I made 2 batches of 24 mini's. Cool completely before frosting.

At this time, there should be some batter left. I made some standard sized cupcakes and baked them for about 15-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Cream Cheese & Butter Frosting
2 Eight oz Philadelphia Cream Cheese
12 tbsp Butter, sliced at room temperature
1 Cup Confectioners Sugar, sifted
1 tsp Vanilla Extract

1. Place the cream cheese in your stand alone mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or by hand using a spatula or hand held mixture) and on medium speed, mix until creamy. Add the butter pieces one at a time until fully incorporated. Add the confectioners sugar and vanilla and blend well. Frost your cupcakes to your liking.

These cupcakes are light and dainty and they were a total hit with the guests. I made a little more than 50 cupcakes and only a few were left. I have one last birthday post to share with you. In the meantime, I hope all of you are having a great start to the upcoming weekend. Enjoy!

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37 Reactions to this post

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  1. I'm a full-time mummy said... January 14, 2011 at 7:36 AM

    Oh wow, they look so yummy! Love the frosting!

  2. Sommer J said... January 14, 2011 at 7:36 AM

    My parents baked boxed cakes, but I always got a Strawberry shortcake from Giant on my birthday. Not the character Strawberry shortcake but the ready made cake! I hated that cake!! I didn't know who strawberry shortcake was until college.

    Those mini cupcakes are just too adorable. I like how you used carrot/cranberry flavor. My daughter would love that. I hope the lil foodie enjoyed these as much as the chocolate ice cream cake!

  3. Fun and Fearless in Beantown said... January 14, 2011 at 9:04 AM

    The frosting job looks fabulous! What a lovely treat for a birthday party!

  4. jose manuel said... January 14, 2011 at 9:58 AM

    Se ven deliciosos.


  5. whatsfordinneracrossstatelines said... January 14, 2011 at 10:36 AM

    How funny, my mom never baked us theme stuff either! I think these sound great, carrot cake is one of my all-time favorites. I bet the kids gobbled these up! Have a great weekend!

  6. Satya said... January 14, 2011 at 10:40 AM

    cupcakes looks so cute soft and moist ...lovely


    Super Yummy Recipes

  7. aipi said... January 14, 2011 at 11:21 AM

    Such beautiful pictures! I bet this was super tasty as well..awesome job here!!

    US Masala

  8. Kim - Liv Life said... January 14, 2011 at 12:10 PM

    I'm not a huge cup cake, or even cake for that matter, fan. However, these really drew my eye! I really like your frosting on the top in the shape instead of the "blop". Nicely done! Happy Birthday to the little guy... they grow so fast, don't they?
    Smurf's huh? That would make you the young buck in my eyes!! ;)

  9. Hyosun Ro said... January 14, 2011 at 1:01 PM

    You make the cuttest cupcakes. My daughter would love these.

  10. cooperl788 said... January 14, 2011 at 2:04 PM

    I love carrot cake, and these mini cupcakes are adorable!
    I love love LOVE ice cream cake... what a great birthday treat!

  11. Federica said... January 14, 2011 at 3:00 PM

    mamma mia che bontà!!complimenti!un abbraccio!

  12. Newyorkerbyheart said... January 14, 2011 at 4:20 PM

    I love the tiny cupcakes - they look so good - I definitely have to try this combination :-)

    By the way - I'm going to make your panfried pork scallions mini buns next week - I hardly can't wait...

    Have a great weekend.

    My best,

  13. MYC said... January 14, 2011 at 7:08 PM

    I just came to your blog via your youtube video. It's really cute and I love your blog!

  14. ~Lisa~ said... January 14, 2011 at 8:10 PM

    Thanks guys!

    @ Kim, hehe I knew I was going to get in trouble when I wrote 'young bucks"

    @ Birthe, I can't wait for your to try it!

    @ MYC, yes the video hehehe, thank you so much.

  15. Kay Heritage said... January 14, 2011 at 9:17 PM

    Oh, dear me, Lisa! Being Korean and loving savory over sweets, I adore carrot cake because it is not so sweet. This looks fabulous!

  16. Swathi said... January 14, 2011 at 9:26 PM

    These cupcakes are awesome with delicious frosting. I usually make carrot cupcake for my little ones birthday.

  17. baking.serendipity said... January 14, 2011 at 11:42 PM

    I love the flavors in these cupcakes and the perfect amount of icing on the top :) What a perfect birthday treat :)

  18. Pioneer Cookerella said... January 15, 2011 at 11:02 AM

    Those look really, really good. Do you think Craisens would work in them? I have a Costco sized bag that I need to find uses for!

  19. ~Lisa~ said... January 15, 2011 at 11:16 AM

    @ Pioneer cookerella, yes dried would work here. Originally the recipe called for raisins.

  20. Dimah said... January 15, 2011 at 1:03 PM

    They look totally cute and delicious!

  21. said... January 15, 2011 at 2:53 PM

    Lovely! Mine is turning two next month. Was thinking of making her chocolate cakes since she is such a chocoholic.
    It's funny, my mom didn't bake either. I think as a result I over-bake now, to make up for all those cake less years. : )

  22. Tara said... January 15, 2011 at 4:47 PM

    Happy belated birthday to your little sous chef!! I need cupcakes now. :-\

  23. Tiffany said... January 15, 2011 at 11:00 PM

    This may be totally random but please do more videos with your little one. I just finished watching your chicken wings video and it was the cutest video ever!

  24. Globetrotting in Tokyo said... January 16, 2011 at 12:55 AM

    Aren't cranberries the best? It's hard for me to get fresh one's here in Japan, but for a fee... haha everything is for a FEE or extra... I think cranberries are indigenous to America, right?

  25. Medifast Coupon said... January 16, 2011 at 10:29 AM

    Aren't these just the picture perfect thing for a birthday? Wonderful recipe, cranberries are a great ingredient making the flavour burst! Nice job!

  26. Pacheco Patty said... January 16, 2011 at 1:54 PM

    Hi Lisa, I love the combination of cranberries and carrots in these sweet little muffins. The icing is too cute;-)
    Happy Birthday little guy!

  27. lynne said... January 16, 2011 at 4:06 PM

    They look so cute and tasty!

  28. said... January 16, 2011 at 5:30 PM

    Oh man, I wish I had one of these cupcakes now!! They look soooo delicious! I love the addition of cranberries into a carrot cake! Yummy!

  29. A little bit of everything said... January 16, 2011 at 5:43 PM

    your mini cupcakes look so good Lisa. Love the cranberry-carrot combo.
    love the decorations also, so cute.
    thanks for sharing.

    send you a Foodbuzz friend request.

    Have a wonderful week

  30. Lisa said... January 16, 2011 at 10:41 PM

    These sound like a healthy but delicious cupcake. I love how you piped the frosting on their tops.

  31. Zoe said... January 16, 2011 at 11:39 PM

    The mini cupcakes are very cute with this tiny star shaped frosting. My mum is not the baking or cooking sort of mummy. She is always busy working for our poor mummy. Seeing that, I have a different perspective of what kind of mum that I want to be and I would love to be the baking or cooking kind :D

  32. Monet said... January 17, 2011 at 12:27 AM

    I love making mini cupcakes. I find that they are so much more popular than regular sized. People like being able to try a small bite (and then once they've tasted their first...they usually go back for seconds!) I know I would have a hard time not eating five of these babies. They sound amazing! Thank you for sharing your recipe with me. I can't believe the weekend is already over...I hope you have a fabulous start to your week!

  33. Koci said... January 17, 2011 at 12:42 AM

    Those have to be the cutest cupcakes I've ever seen! I love those little dollops of frosting on top. Great addition with the cranberries, too!

  34. SUNFLOWERS8 said... January 17, 2011 at 11:27 AM

    Love Love Love ^_*

  35. naomi said... January 18, 2011 at 7:31 PM

    gorgeous and delicious, lisa!

  36. Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets said... January 18, 2011 at 11:13 PM

    Happy happy birthday to your boy! My mom never baked either and still doesn't, but she taught me to love vegetables to this very day by always cooking delicious Chinese meals at home. For this I'll always be grateful. Love both the flavors and decorations of your cupcakes. Too cute!

  37. CobornsDelivers said... February 28, 2012 at 5:21 PM

    These look delicious!