Spicy Pesto, Asparagus, and Ricotta Pasta with Crispy Prosciutto.
Hydrangea Flower Carrot Cake Cupcakes!
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!
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.
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.
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.
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
Shop ingredients at your local Target store. Learn more
The happiest (most delicious) cupcake there ever was!
If I made this recipe as a cake would it fill a 9×9 round?
Yes, that would work well for you! Let me know if you give this recipe a try, I hope you love it! xx
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!
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
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!
Awesome!! I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for giving it a go! Have the best week:) xT
Could I make these without frosting and pass off as muffins? Look delicious.
Sure, that will work! Please let me know if you give the recipe a try, I hope you love it! xTieghan
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
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.
Hi Laura! Welcome to the HBH Family! Thanks so much for trying out the recipe, so glad to hear it was enjoyed! xTieghan
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!
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
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!
Thanks, I hope you love the recipe! You will measure the strawberries before you grind them. Let me know how they turn out! xTieghan
What can i use to substitute the buttermilk in this recipe? I can’t have sour cream either.
I would use whole milk. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan
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!
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
Trader Joe’s sells freeze dried strawberries
Can I substitute coconut oil for the canola oil?
Yes, this will work. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan
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!
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