Sunday, January 31, 2010

Carrot Muffins with Cream Cheese

I absolutely love carrot cake! And what's the best type of icing for carrot cake? Cream cheese of course? When I ran across this recipe on Joelen's Culinary Adventures, I knew I had to give it a try. It was definitely easier than making a carrot cake (I think because I used my Ninja to chopped the carrots).

If you're going to give this recipe a try, I have a couple of comments. My cream cheese middle fell almost to the bottom. I used reduced fat cream cheese, which may be part of the problem, but I'm not sure. Do not try to mix things up and put the cream cheese between layers of batter (just plop it on top). I tried this for some, and the cheese definitely fell all the way to the bottom.

Also, I'd line the muffin pan with baking cups. With my left over batter I thought I'd make a couple mini-loaves. I sprayed the pan with baking spray, but this is what they looked like after I was able to pry them out of the pan.

Recipe adapted from The Delicious Life (with help from Joelen's blog, linked above)


Carrot Muffins:
3/4 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup white whole wheat flour (I had some on hand and figured I'd give it a try. I definitely couldn't tell there was wheat flour.)
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon (heaping)
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
2/3 cup vegetable oil (would have used apple sauce if my hadn't gone bad)
1 1/2 cup shredded carrots (about 8oz of baby carrots)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
1/2 cup raisins, soaked in hot water or rum for 10 minutes (optional)

Cream Cheese Filling:
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla


Preheat oven to 350. Place liners in your muffin tins.

Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and sugar; set aside. (Confession, I never sift!)

In separate bowl, beat the eggs and oil together until lightened. Stir in the carrots, walnuts and raisins.

In another bowl, cream together the cream cheese filling ingredients; set aside.

Fold the dry muffin ingredients into the wet egg/oil mixture and stir until just combined.

Fill each muffin cup about ¾ full. Top each filled muffin cup with a generous teaspoon of the cream cheese filling.

Bake about 20-25 minutes*, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake part comes out clean.

Makes about 18 muffins.

*If making standard sized muffins, bake for 17-20 minutes.
*If making jumbo sized muffins, bake for 23-25 minutes.


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