Cupcakes and the Corporate Team

We just wrapped up Day 2 of a three-day Corporate Retreat, our annual meeting where Stampin’ Up!’s corporate team hides away for three days and focuses on the future. We talk about where we are, where we want to be, and how to get there—it’s a wonderful few days that I look forward to every year

On Monday, the day before the retreat, I decided I wanted to do something fun for the wonderful people I work with (I feel so grateful to have such a talented, dedicated group of co-workers), so Sterling and I made a batch of cupcakes for me to take to the meetings.

The recipe I used is one that Shanna (who loves to cook) discovered, and I have yet to find anything to compare. I wasn’t surprised at all when one of the corporate team members commented that the cupcake was possibly the best cupcake he’d ever tasted. So naturally, I thought I’d share the recipe with you!

Let me know what you think!

Carrot Cupcakes

2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/3 cup vegetable oil (I use olive oil cause its healthier)
3 extra-large eggs at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups plus 1 Tbsp flour
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp baking soda
1 1⁄2 tsp salt
1 pound carrots, grated
1 cup raisins (optional)
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Frosting

3⁄4 pound cream cheese at room temperature (I usually just use 1 lb because its easier to measure, then I might add a tiny bit of everything else till it tastes good)
1⁄2 lb butter at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla
1 pound confectioners’ sugar

Decoration

2 Tbsp butter
1 cup grated or shaved carrots
3 Tbsp good maple syrup

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line muffin pans with paper liners.

Beat the sugar, oil, and eggs together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment until light yellow. Add the vanilla. In another bowl, sift together 2 cups flour, the cinnamon, baking soda, and salt

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Toss the carrots, raisins, and walnuts with the 1 Tbsp flour. Add to the batter and mix well.

Scoop the batter into the muffin cups until each is almost full. Bake for 10 minutes, then lower the oven to 350 degrees and bake for 35 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Let cool on a wire rack.

Makes approximately 3 dozen cupcakes.

For the frosting, mix the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until just combined. Add the sugar and mix until smooth.

For the decoration, melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat; add the carrots and maple syrup and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes, until the carrots are tender. Spread them on a paper towel to cool.

When cupcakes are cool, frost them generously and garnish with big pinches of sautéed carrots.