Carrot-Spice Snack Cakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
Servings: Makes 12 mini-loaf cakes
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Ah, carrot cake: everyone’s favorite way to enjoy vegetables! These snack-size spice cakes get a special kick of cardamom, the requisite slather and swirl of tangy cream cheese frosting, and the sugary crunch and chew of minced candied ginger. They’re perfect for tea time, after school snacks, or giving as homemade gifts.
¾ cup neutral oil (vegetable, canola, etc.)
¼ cup plain yogurt
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp fine sea salt
½ tsp cardamom
1 tsp cinnamon
2 cups finely shredded carrots
½ cup finely chopped walnuts (optional)
1 8-oz brick cream cheese, at room temperature
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups confectioner’s (powdered) sugar
1 tbsp whole milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
¼ cup finely diced crystallized ginger for topping
- Preheat your oven to 350oF and grease an 8-loaf mini loaf pan or muffin tin. You can line the pan with mini loaf or muffin papers if you want!
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer, whip the oil, yogurt, eggs, and brown sugar until thoroughly combined and creamy.
- In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt, cardamom and cinnamon, and then mix this with the oil/yogurt mixture until thoroughly combined. Fold in the shredded carrots and walnuts, then pour the batter into the mini loaf pan to fill each cavity halfway. (If you only have one pan you’ll need to do this in batches.) Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaves comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes.
- While the cakes are baking, prepare the frosting by creaming the cream cheese and butter together with a hand mixer. Add the powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla, and slowly turn the mixer on to prevent the sugar from flying everywhere. Slowly turn up the speed and mix until you have a fluffy frosting.
- Turn the baked cakes onto a cooling rack and allow them to cool for 30 minutes before frosting. You can spread the frosting on with an offset spatula or pipe it, whichever you prefer. Sprinkle the chopped candied ginger on top and serve. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature, and they’ll keep for two days.
Recipe and photo by Heather Arndt Anderson at voodooandsauce.com