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Carrot Cupcake Craigh na Dun

Carrot Cupcake Craigh na Dun


As the evening star began to glow among the black pines’ branches, I concluded that in this situation reason was of little use.  I would have to rely on something else; just what, I wasn’t sure.  I turned toward the split rock and took a step, then another, and another, and before I even knew that I had decided, I was halfway down the slope, scrabbling wildly at grass clumps, slipping and falling through the patches of granite scree.

When I reached the cottage, breathless with fear lest he had left already, I was reassured to see Donas hobbled and grazing nearby.  The horse raised his head and eyed me unpleasantly.  Walking softly, I pushed the door open.

Diana Gabaldon, Outlander (Chapter 25 – Thou Shalt Not Suffer a Witch to Live)

Claire has had a tough week — not to mention a killer past few months.

In just the last seven days, she’s been tricked into a thieves’ hole, put on trial for witchcraft, stripped to the waist in front of a jeering crowd, whisked away from certain death at the very last minute by her hero on his steed, and then dragged across the Highlands, exhausted and in shock, to a destination unknown.  And somewhere in all of that, she had a birthday!

But now that the decision has been made, and she is where she’s going to stay (for now), it’s time to give the woman a hug (JAMMF, I’ll let you take care of that), and a cupcake.


Cupcakes can cure a surprising number of life’s ills, especially these carrot cupcakes with cheese cream frosting.  The shredded coconut helps to keep them moist, and contributes a rich, natural sweetness.

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(Click on the title below for a printable version of the recipe.)

Carrot Cupcake Craig na Dun

Moist, tender cupcakes with luscious cream cheese icing that bring comfort after the worst of days – trials for sorcery, a birthday spent on the run, and maybe even a beloved first husband lost forever.

Yield:  12 Cupcakes


  • Sugar – 1 Cup
  • Vegetable Oil  – ¾ Cup
  • Vanilla Extract – ½ tsp
  • Large Eggs – 2
  • All-Purpose Flour – 1½ Cups
  • Cinnamon – 1 tsp
  • Baking Powder – 1 tsp
  • Kosher Salt – ½ tsp
  • Carrots, peeled and finely grated – 1½ Cups (2-3 medium)
  • Shredded Coconut – ½ Cup
  • Raisins – ½ Cup
  • Walnuts – ½ Cup


  • Cream Cheese, at room temperature – ½ lb
  • Butter, at room temperature – 5 oz
  • Vanilla Extract – 1 tsp
  • Powdered Icing Sugar – 2 cups

Preheat the oven to 350° F.

With a whisk, beat the sugar, oil, and vanilla together in a large bowl.  Beat in the eggs.

In another bowl, sift together the flour, cinnamon, baking powder and salt, then stir in the carrots, coconut, raisins, and walnuts.  Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until just combined.

Line muffin pans with paper liners. Scoop the batter by rounded spoonfuls into the cups until each is about ¾ full. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.  Cool on a rack.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, cream together the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla with a hand mixer on medium speed.  Gradually add in the icing sugar and beat until smooth.

When completely cooled, frost generously, using your choice of a pastry bag or knife.

To Serve:  Wonderful with a glass of cold milk or a cup of hot coffee.

To Store:  Once frosted, store covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.

carrot cupcake craigh na dun


  1. lindsck
    October 16, 2012 at 7:08 am

    These look very yummy! If I wanted to just make a cake out of this recipe would that change the cook temp and/or time?

    • Theresa
      October 16, 2012 at 7:23 am

      You’ll have to cook it longer…until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.

  2. driftwoodparkcc
    October 24, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    How much would it detract if I left out the raisins? I’m not a fan of cooked raisins (or raisins in anything – I’ll eat them plain/alone and that’s about it). I hope to try it this weekend. I had carrot cake someone made last week and the chunks of carrot were just too big and crunchy.

    • Theresa
      October 24, 2012 at 2:29 pm

      Just omit the raisins…it will be just fine. 🙂 I hope you enjoy them!

  3. Cherie Chilvers
    August 20, 2014 at 5:49 pm

    Love Carrot cake will try this one great for pot lucks.

  4. joyce
    September 14, 2014 at 9:10 am

    Could you freeze these?

    • Theresa
      September 14, 2014 at 11:57 am

      Most definitely!

  5. Mandy
    September 14, 2014 at 4:24 pm

    I have made this recipe twice, I do however substitute applesauce in place of 1/2 of the oil. They are soo good, everyone I have shared this with LOVE them!!

    • Theresa
      September 15, 2014 at 7:36 am

      Great tip, Mandy!

  6. Amy Trestman
    October 21, 2014 at 12:49 am

    Another substitution for a slightly healthier version: when I make this type of icing I use coconut oil (solid at room temp) in place of the butter. Adds a great flavor, and sometimes I add shredded coconut to the batter as well.

    • Theresa
      October 21, 2014 at 5:49 am

      Thanks, Amy! Fat is fat, and I’m not sure any frosting is “healthier” than any other, but options are always good. 🙂

  7. Carol Mackey
    March 3, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    Carrot cake is my favorite –after anything chocolate! I ran across one years ago with all of your ingredients plus pineapple that was “the Bomb!” I’ve always wanted to try and duplicat it, but have been a little unsure how to incorporate the pineapple. Do you have any ideas? Just dumping in (1/2 c) another wet ingredient seems kind of iffy to me. Any thoughts? How is the kitchen reno coming?? Exciting times!! 🙂

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