The only other carrot cake recipe on my blog is this one, and it is so good that I thought I would never need another. It is also so huge that after that cake, I didn’t make carrot cake for four years until now.
This spring, I was having a massive craving for carrot cake. Like big time real deal. And I tried to like, not make it, which resulted in me trying every which way to deal with this craving. It led to some highly dissatisfying experiences including:
- Vegan carrot cake from Whole Foods (like, why even. the frosting was probably silken tofu. i’m shuddering remembering this.)
- Carrot cake protein powder pancakes (i scraped these into the sink, they were so bad.)
- Eating plain carrots (this was fine, but it didn’t make me want to shout or anything.)
Eventually, I was able to pull from my “bucket of spiritual truths that trickle down into everyday things” and realized that no carrot cake substitute will fill the hole that I feel for carrot cake, and all your striving to fill that carrot-cake shaped hole with other things is going to be ineffective, dissatisfying and likely damaging.
And it was a good place to process to, because then I just made the carrot cake and stopped wandering into grocery stores buying horrific cake slices, and now I’m good for a few more years. And here’s what I made.
There are actually carrot cake muffin recipes pictured above, so dial in for a second go later. The one at the bottom of this post is the better of the two. It’s carrot banana cake, so it’s a little bit low fat and a lot bit moist.
Plus, I topped them with this cream cheese silk. It’s like that boiled flour frosting that is so incredible, except I swapped in cream cheese for the butter. It’s a ridiculously creamy, not too sweet version of cream cheese frosting, and I know you’ll love it. A great option if you don’t have powdered sugar lying around.
Best of everything,
Carrot Cake Banana Muffins with Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting
Muffins adapted from Ambitious Kitchen
Frosting is an LH Original
For the muffins:
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons white whole wheat flour
1/8 cup quick oats
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 medium ripe banana, mashed
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup shredded carrots
3 tablespoons almond milk
2 tablespoons chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray six muffin cups with nonstick cooking spray or line with liners.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, quick oats, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together mashed banana, brown sugar, egg and vanilla until well combined.
Add in the olive oil and almond milk, then fold in carrots. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Gently fold in the pecans.
Divide into the six muffin cups and bake for 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean with a few crumbs attached. Don’t overbake. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool for a few mintues before removing from tin to cool fully.
For the frosting:
12 oz full-fat cream cheese, softened
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
Whisk the flour, sugar, and salt together in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisking constantly, slowly add the milk. Bring the mixture to a simmer, still whisking, and boil until the mixture thickens dramatically. Boil for a minute or so, then remove from the heat. Scrape the mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer and beat with the paddle attachment on high speed until cool. You can also put it in the fridge for a while to facilitate cooling. Stil mixing on high speed, drop in the softened cream cheese, about an ounce at a time, and beat until the frosting is light and fluffy. Spread or pipe onto cooled muffins.