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5 from 1 vote

Vegan Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Sweet Vanilla Frosting (Gluten Free Option)

If you're craving classic carrot cake, then these (amazingly) Vegan Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Sweet Vanilla Frosting are the treat for you!
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: plant based, vegan
Keyword: Carrot Cake Cupcakes, Vegan Carrot Cake
Servings: 12 - 15 cupcakes
Calories: 525kcal



  • 1/2 c. + 2 Tbsp. non-dairy milk (148 ml) such as almond, cashew or soy (avoid oat milk for this recipe)
  • 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar   (15 ml)
  • 1/3 c. + 1 Tbsp. canola oil (or other neutral flavored oil) (94 ml) nonGMO or organic, if possible


  • 1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour (210 g) OR gluten free all-purpose flour (240 g) (if your GF flour mix doesn't already contain it, add 1/4 tsp. of xanthan gum as well.)
  • 1 c. granulated sugar 230 g
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. + one pinch nutmeg


  • 1 1/2 loosely packed c. grated or shredded carrots, about 2 large carrots peeled and grated (148 g)
  • *Want to add raisins or walnuts? Go for it! Add 1/4 c. of either one.

For the Vegan Vanilla Frosting:



  • Preheat your oven to 350°F/177°C.
  • Then, line 12 spots of a cupcake pan with paper liners. (But have a second pan on stand by just in case! I'll explain later...)
  • In a small bowl, combine the WET ingredients and set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, add the DRY ingredients and stir to combine.
  • Then, add the WET ingredients as well as the grated carrot to the bowl with the DRY ingredients and mix well by hand.
  • Fill your cupcake liners with batter until just 2/3 full. Be mindful not to add too much, since we don't want those cupcakes to overflow as they bake! Use a second cupcake pan with a couple extra cupcake liners, if needed.
  • Bake in your pre-heated oven for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted down the center comes out free of batter. Be sure to test this on several cupcakes.
  • After 10 minutes out of the oven (or until cool enough to handle), very carefully and slowly turn the cupcakes out onto a cooling rack, and then immediately turn them right side up to finish cooling.
  • Cool completely before frosting, but in the meantime, bask in the glory of your beautiful carrot cake cupcakes!

Vegan Vanilla Frosting

  • Using an electric stand or hand mixer, cream the shortening on a medium speed for about 30 seconds.
  • Then, add half of the powdered sugar and half of the milk and mix on high for about 30 seconds.
  • Next, add the salt, vanilla, and remaining sugar and milk.  Mix on high again for another 30 seconds. If you feel the frosting should be slightly thicker, add a spoonful or so more of powdered sugar.  For slightly looser frosting, add another splash of milk – but be careful – a little goes a long way!  Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Frost your cupcakes the old fashioned way with a butter knife or offset spatula, or, put your fancy pants on and place the frosting in a pastry bag fitted with a decorating tip!


  • Be sure to let the cupcakes cool completely before frosting. Try using pastry piping bags and tips to make them look picture-perfect.
  • It's important to only fill each muffin cup 2/3 of the way with batter. Otherwise they might overflow as they bake.
  • For something extra special, try topping your cupcakes with a dusting of cinnamon.
  • Not big on frosting? These cupcakes are so delicious on their own and can certainly be served as carrot cake muffins for breakfast, brunch or a sweet snack, instead.
  • For reusable liners, consider baking your cupcakes in silicon cupcake liners 


Serving: 15g | Calories: 525kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 10g