November 18, 2010

Chocolate and Carrotcake Cupcakes

The chocolate cupcakes are light and fluffy, and pair well with a saffron infused cream-cheese frosting. Yum. The recipe for carrot cupcakes is below.
Frosted Cupcakes

Chocolate cupcake
Chocolate cupcakes

baking goods

Baking chocolate
Baking chocolate

Baking chocolate
I used a box grater to grate the chocolate - voila - cocoa powder!

Chocolate cupakes
Naked choco-cupcakes

Chocolate cupcake

Chocolate Cupcakes with Saffron Cream Cheese Frosting
(adapted from a Cooking Light recipe)
Yield: 1 dozen

1 cup packed brown sugar
6 tbsp butter, softened
2 large eggs (I used 3 small eggs)
1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (about 5 ½ ounces)
½ cup unsweetened cocoa
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ cup low-fat buttermilk (I used yogurt instead)
1 tsp vanilla extract

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Place brown sugar and butter in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at medium speed 2 minutes or until well blended.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  4. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife.
  5. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl, stirring well to combine.
  6. Add flour mixture to sugar mixture alternately with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Stir in vanilla extract.
  7. Spoon batter into 18 muffin cups (I got 16 cupcakes). Bake at 350 for 12 minutes, or until cupcakes spring back lightly.
  8. Cool in pan 10 minutes, then move to a wire rack to cool completely.
Saffron Cream Cheese Frosting
1 tbsp butter
pinch saffron threads
1 cup powdered sugar
1, 8-oz block cream cheese, softened
  1. Warm butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Add in saffron and let steep over very low heat for 20 minutes.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Beat with a mixer at medium-speed until well-combined. Increase the speed, and continue beating until smooth.
  3. Spread about 1 tbsp of frosting over each cupcake.
Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
(carrot cake recipe adapted from Cooking Light)
Carrot cupcake
1 cup pastry or all-purpose flour
¼ cup whole-wheat flour  (the flours should total about 5 ¾ ounces)
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 cup granulated sugar
¼ cup canola oil
⅓ cup cooked mashed carrots
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 ¼ cups grated carrots (4 ounces)
½ cup walnuts, toasted and finely chopped

  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. Spoon flour into measuring cups and level with knife.
  3. Sift together flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large mixing bowl.
  4. Combine sugar, oil, mashed carrots, and eggs in a large mixing bowl, stir to combine.
  5. Add the sugar-oil-egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir together until just moist. Stir in the grated carrots and walnuts. Stir to combine.
  6. Spoon the batter into muffin cups. Should make 16 to 18 cupcakes.
  7. Bake at 325 for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
Cream Cheese Frosting
1 cup powdered sugar
1 8-oz block cream cheese, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Beat with a mixer at medium-speed until well-combined. Increase the speed, and continue beating until smooth.
  2. Spread about 1 tbsp of frosting over each cupcake.

Frosting and decorating cupcakes
Cupcakes ready for the final decorating
Cake stands at the ready
Diwali Party


  1. They look delish, Neeli!

    I'll take the eggless variety, though.


  2. Wow, these look great! I'm going to try to convince Allison to make some of them, she's a big cupcake fan - and I wouldn't mind helping out with the frosting, just like Karl seems to be happy to do as well :)

    But hey, on a side note, on that last picture, is that some of Karl's home made bread? It looks delicious!

  3. Zarna - the cupcakes could be baked eggless although you would need another kind of binding agent. There are so many vegan varieties available.

    Nico, you should totally make them - especially with the saffron. Karl did make both of those loaves. His bread skills are redonk these days.

    Thanks for the comments guys! I love your feedback!

  4. amazing! Wish we could do Diwali together again. Little Surina wants one too. Especially the ones with the saffron cream cheese frosting..although not sure the flavor would come across in breastmilk! Did you feel like the butter was sufficient? I have felt like it is often the case from cooking light recipes that their baked goods recipes turn out on the drier side 1+ day out. Did you feel like that or were these perfect?

  5. Kavi, I think the butter for the frosting was sufficient, but I'm sure you could always use half butter/half cream cheese. I know what you mean about the baked goods drying out, but I haven't noticed that much. The bakeries here (obviously, not light recipes) will not sell day-old sweets b/c they are dry and old. The carrot cakes ones were moister, but the choco ones were delicious too. Maybe it's just a fresh baked thing? You got to try the saffron frosting though. Lekker!