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Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes!

 Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes | #cupcakes #spring #easter

Because your Tuesday needs a good cupcake, and because Easter is this Sunday, and because I just could not wait to share these with you. I mean, do you see how cute these are? Of course, they taste great too, but I’m not going to lie, their cuteness is what has me so excited.

So you guys…I’m sure you have noticed, but I love flowers. The older I get, the more I love them. And the more I love having them in my house! This may sound so stupid, but they bring my mood up almost instantly. I figure if flowers can do that for me than they are worth the money spent to buy them for the blog. Don’t try and tell me otherwise.

For as much as I love having flowers in my house, I think I love using them in my photography even more. Anytime it makes sense to incorporate edible flowers into my recipes, I do.

Today’s cupcake however, do not involve any kind of edible flowers. But, they have been decorated to look like flowers. Hydrangeas to be precise. Don’t you see it? Come on now, they look like Hydrangeas, right?

If you think they don’t, just lie to me and say you agree!

Just kidding…

Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes | #cupcakes #spring #easter

Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes | #cupcakes #spring #easter

In all seriousness whether you feel these cupcakes look like a hydrangea flower or not, they are still fun and delicious, and the perfect spring cupcake. Just looking at them makes feel a little more cheerful inside, which I think we could all use a bit more of these days.

My mom sent me this video of a very brave high school student confronting her classmates during a gun control walk out. If you have yet to see this video, please go watch it now. It’s so empowering and she sends one very simple, but very important message.

“…be nice, and care, and love each other. It’s not hard!”

It’s the golden rule our parent’s taught us. So let’s try to incorporate her message into our daily lives. Try to go a little out of your way to say hello to a new person, listen to someone who might need an ear, help a neighbor bring in groceries. If you have kids, talk to them about accepting other’s differences, and that even the simplest act of kindness can go a very long way.

Bake up some of these cupcakes (or whatever you enjoy making) and gift a few away…a neighbor, a friend, your mom, another mom, or even a complete stranger on the street, it truly is as simple as that. Just do something nice for someone today. Trust me, it’s going to make someone’s day, and probably yours too.

Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes | #cupcakes #spring #easter

OK. Now some carrot cake cupcake details.

The base of these cupcakes is carrot cake, which is so very traditional around this time of year. What I love about them is that the cake is moist, soft, extra fluffy, and extra sweet. I have found most carrot cake recipes to be on the denser side, so I love that this recipe is light and airy, as cupcakes should be.

For the frosting, I kept things semi traditional with a mascarpone based frosting that I tinted with both freeze-dried strawberries and raspberries. I used the fruit mostly for coloring purposes, but they do add a slight fruity flavor to the frosting, which I think pairs nicely with the carrot cake.

Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes | #cupcakes #spring #easter

Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes | #cupcakes #spring #easter

The best part about these cupcakes? They are SO EASY. Yes, I promise! I know that piping a floral arrangement on top of a cupcake might seem hard, but it’s truly just a matter of using a star piping tip and applying a little pressure to your piping bag. If you can draw a line with a bag of frosting, you can make this cupcake design. I promise.

Originally, I had these in mind for Easter this Sunday, but as I mentioned above, I really think they should be made and gifted away as an act of kindness. It might seem like a stupid or silly thing, but I know for a fact, whoever is on the receiving end will greatly appreciate one of these sweet cupcakes. Of course doubling the recipe is an even better idea. Then you’ll have plenty to gift and plenty to enjoy. Because Easter just is not complete without a little carrot cake.

Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes | #cupcakes #spring #easter

Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes | #cupcakes #spring #easter

Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings: 18 cupcakes
Calories Per Serving: 414 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.


Mascarpone Frosting


  • 1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 18 muffin tins with paper liners.
    2. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.
    3. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or use a hand-held mixer) beat together the canola oil, buttermilk, eggs, sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Beat in the carrots. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients with the mixer on low until there are no longer any clumps of flour. Batter should be pourable, but not super thin.
    4. Pour the batter among the muffin tins and bake 15-18 minutes, until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove and let cool completely before frosting.
    5. To make the frosting, add the mascarpone and butter to a large mixing bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat another 2-4 minutes or until the frosting is light and fluffy. Beat in the strawberry powder or raspberry powder. If desired, you can divide the frosting between 2-3 bowls and color each a slightly different color for an ombre effect.
    6. Spoon the frosting into a piping bag fit with a star tip (I use a 1M wilton tip). Pipe around the edge of the cupcake and work your way in. Repeat with the remaining cupcakes. 
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Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes | #cupcakes #spring #easter

The happiest (most delicious) cupcake there ever was!

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  1. 5 stars
    I’ve made these twice & everyone raved about them! I pulverized the freeze dried fruit so it wouldn’t clog up the icing tip. Thank you so much!!

    1. Hey Beth,
      Amazing!! I love to hear that this recipe turned out nicely for you and I appreciate you making it! xT

    1. Hey Katie,
      Yes, that would work well for you! Let me know if you give this recipe a try, I hope you love it! xx

  2. Looking to make this as a cake version for an upcoming birthday but was wondering if there would be an changes needed if I used almond flour instead of all purpose? Also, everything I make of yours turns out amazing! Thank you for sharing these delicious recipes!

    1. Hey Morgan,
      For best results, I would probably use a gluten free flour blend rather than almond flour. I hope this recipe turns out amazing for you! xTieghan

  3. I made these cupcakes for my mom’s 92d bday. They were moist, light, and flavorful; frosting was a hit too. She loved them and had no issues eating them. Thank you!

    1. Hey Alison,
      Awesome!! I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for giving it a go! Have the best week:) xT

  4. Simple homemade for sure but nothing fancy. I was hoping for the rich dense dark colored sinful tasting carrot cake.
    The hydrangeas look for the icing definitely made it beautiful thank you for the tip

  5. 5 stars
    This was my first Half Baked Harvest recipe! I made these for my niece’s birthday lunch and they were a big hit. This may be the best frosting I have ever tasted. The kids all took turns decorating their own cupcakes and had a blast. Keep doing what you’re doing. Your pictures and stories on Instagram are art and I look forward to seeing them everyday.

    1. Hi Laura! Welcome to the HBH Family! Thanks so much for trying out the recipe, so glad to hear it was enjoyed! xTieghan

  6. Hi Tieghan!

    Could I add nuts to the batter? Would this change the cooking time at all? I love crunch in my carrot cake. Also could I sub cream cheese with marscapone?! Cannot wait to make for my birthday!

    Thanks 🙂

    1. Hey Joanna,
      Sure, nuts would be fine to add, no adjustments needed. Also, mascarpone should also work well for you. I hope you love the recipe. Happy Birthday!! xTieghan

  7. I am so excited to try these cupcakes! I was wondering though if I should measure the freeze-dried strawberries before or after I grind them down. Thanks so much!

    1. Hey Sarah,
      Thanks, I hope you love the recipe! You will measure the strawberries before you grind them. Let me know how they turn out! xTieghan

  8. What can i use to substitute the buttermilk in this recipe? I can’t have sour cream either.
    Thank you!

    1. Hey Brenda,
      I would use whole milk. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan

  9. Hi! I’m planning to make these beautiful cupcakes but can’t seem to find freeze dried strawberries or raspberries anywhere at the moment. Is there anything I can sub to colour the icing with?

    Alternatively, would it be ok if I just omit this from the recipe entirely?

    Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Emily,
      Yes that would be totally fine to omit or you could just use regular food dye. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan

    1. Hi Katie,
      Yes, this will work. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan

  10. Hi there!
    If I was to make this recipe into a cake, 2 round cake pans, how would this be modified? Should I double it?

    Excited to try!

    1. Hi Margaret! Yes, you should double the recipe and bake for 25-35 minutes per cake layer. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you!! xTieghan