Chai Carrot Cupcakes with Caramel Cream Frosting

National Cupcake Week starts today, September 15th 2014 (which is Monday) and lasts until September 21st (Sunday) 2014. This is more of a British holiday than an American holiday, however, I thought it would be fun to embrace it considering I love cupcakes and quite a few of you who read my blog are British.

To start National Cupcake Week, I decided to share one of my favorite cupcake recipes: Chai Carrot Cupcakes with Caramel Cream Frosting. It is incredibly perfect for the season approaching us, Fall. Are you ready to make these delicious cupcakes? First and foremost, you want to make sure you have the following ingredients… 

4 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour or Whole-Wheat Pastry Flour (if you prefer more natural, you can use Almond Flour)
 2 cups Granulated Sugar (if you prefer more natural, you can use Truvia or Stevia)
 3 teaspoons Baking Soda
 2 teaspoons Salt
2 teaspoons Cinnamon
2 teaspoons Nutmeg
2 cups Silk Very Vanilla Soy Milk (if you are allergic, just use Silk’s Vanilla Almond or Coconut Milk)
 1 cup Coconut Oil
3-4 TAZO Chai Tea Bags
 3 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
 3 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
1/2 teaspoon Cardamom
1/2 teaspoon Cloves
1/2 teaspoon of Ginger
1 pinch of Black Pepper  

For the frosting, you want to make sure you have the following ingredients…
 2 cup non-dairy, non-hydrogenated butter (I used Earth Balance)
1 cup non-dairy, cream cheese (I used Follow Your Heart)
3 cups Confectioners’ Sugar
 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
2 tablespoons Silk Very Vanilla Soy Milk (if you are allergic, just use Silk’s Vanilla Almond Milk or Coconut Milk)

Let’s Bake!

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare your batter by combining flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. As you continue you want to  fold in the remaining ingredients. So you want to add oil, milk, spices (cinnamon, clove, cardamom, ginger, i.e.), vinegar, vanilla, and mix until thoroughly combined.

As you prepare your batter, it is important to start creating your Chai tea. I love to do this on the stovetop, however; a microwave works efficiently if you are pressed for time. If you are making your tea on the stovetop, you are going to want to boil it and then use medium heat for about 5 minutes. Cool for 10. Add into the batter and mix again. 

Once you continue, it is important to prepare your cupcake pan and get everything ready for the oven. 

Let the cupcakes cook for about 20 to 25 minutes. 

Once 20-25 minutes have lapsed, you want to transport them onto a plate and then, onto a cooling rack. Set them aside. 

 Let’s Frost! 

I used my KitchenAid mixer to make the frosting. It is important to combine all of the ingredients, except the confectioners’ sugar (or powdered sugar), vanilla, and milk into the mixer and mix until it is smooth and begins to fluff. With the mixer on low speed, add confectioners’ sugar and fluff for another few minutes. Add vanilla followed by the milk. 

Once all ingredients are well-combined, beat on high until frosting is light and fluffy for about 5 minutes. Add 1 or 2 tablespoons more milk to achieve the consistency are you hoping to achieve. 

Take your cake and start to apply the vegan frosting. You an pipe this because of the consistency of it. Decorate the cupcakes however you choose. I like to keep things modestly simple because the simplicity of the icing and it’s unique flavor is brought out from the cake itself and not the other way around. 

Guess what?! You’re done! Congratulations! You have just made Chai Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting.