Carrot cake has long been one of my favorite desserts. As a baker though, I have never enjoyed carrot cake quite as much as I ought, knowing just how much oil goes into the typical recipe. Spoiler alert: most carrot cake isn’t really “good” for you! This recipe, to the contrary, isn’t really all that “bad” for you!
Using alternatives like fresh pineapple, coconut and yogurt, this recipe is as moist as you remember traditional carrot cakes, but not oily at all. With yummy fruit, honey and yogurt, it also doesn’t have as much sugar as you might expect. The price you pay for this healthier modification is only that the recipe works out better as cupcakes than in a large cake format. Not to say that you couldn’t bake this as a cake, but as with any lower fat recipe, it is far easier to control the bake time and add extra support (i.e. no sinking!) in a smaller format.
As you’ll see, these cupcakes are gorgeous, moist and tasty as can be. No one will suspect you’ve done a switcheroo on the ingredients (gluten-free or not!). So enjoy these carrot cupcakes knowing not only that they’re gluten-free and no one will know it, but that they are also far less sinful than ordinary carrot cake. (And by the way, they are delicious with or without the decadent frosting!)
- 2 cups carrots, peeled, grated and packed
- 1/2 cup shredded coconut (unsweetened or sweetened)
- 1/2 cup raisins or sultanas
- 2 cups crushed fresh or canned pineapple, undrained
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 cup honey or agave nectar
- 1/2 cup granulated cane or palm sugar
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil of choice
- 1/4 cup vanilla yogurt (dairy or coconut, soy or almond)
- 2 1/4 cups Jules Gluten Free™ All Purpose Flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. ground ginger
- 1 tsp. nutmeg
Preheat oven to 325° F. Line 24 muffin cups with cupcake liners.
Peel, then grate carrots. Pack to measure to 2 cups.
In a large bowl, combine grated carrots with coconut, raisins and pineapple. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs until light. Add honey and sugar, then beat until frothy. Stir in oil and yogurt. Gradually mix in the Jules flour, baking powder, baking soda and spices until well mixed. Fold in the carrot mixture.
Spoon batter into muffin cups, filling 2/3-3/4 full. Bake for 20 minutes, then begin checking with a toothpick for doneness. The cupcakes may require up to another 10 minutes of bake time, depending on size and how your oven bakes. Remove from the oven when the toothpick comes out mostly clean and the cupcakes spring back to the touch. Allow to cool completely on wire racks before frosting.
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