Donna Hay: Basics To Brilliance Kids

Donna Hay's to-die-for Carrot Cupcakes are perfect to make for kids or take as treats for your friends and family. Make some today!


  • 1¼ cups (175g) wholemeal spelt flour

  • 2½ cups (300g) almond meal (ground almonds)

  • 3 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of (baking) soda

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice

  • ? cup (120g) brown sugar 

  • 3 cups (420g) grated carrot (about 3 carrots)

  • ½ cup (125ml) maple syrup

  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten (whisk them gently)

  • 2/3 cup (160ml) light-flavoured extra virgin olive oil

  • Ricotta icing

  • 1 1/2 cups (360g) fresh firm ricotta

  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup


  • 1.

    Preheat oven to 160°C (325°F). 

  • 2.

    Place the flour, almond meal, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, mixed spice and sugar in a big bowl and mix to combine with a spatula.

  • 3.

    Add the carrot, maple, eggs and oil and mix until it’s all well combined.

  • 4.

    Divide the carrot cake mixture between 20 x ½-cup-capacity (125ml) muffin tins lined with paper cupcake cases. Bake for 25 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer.

  • 5.

    Wearing oven gloves, take the cupcakes from the oven and carefully move them onto a wire rack to cool completely.

  • 6.

    Spread the cooled cakes with ricotta icing (instructions below).

  • Ricotta icing:

  • 1.

    Place ricotta, vanilla extract and maple syrup in a large bowl and, using a whisk, mix together until smooth.*

Nutritional information

Nutritional analysis per serving (20 servings)

  • Energy 219kj
  • Fat Total 10g
  • Saturated Fat 2g
  • Protein 4g
  • Carbohydrate 28g
  • Sugar 20g
  • Sodium 90mg

Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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*Tip: For this icing, use the firmer fresh ricotta that you buy from your supermarket deli. If you want your icing super creamy, simply pop the ingredients in a food processor or blender and whiz until smooth.

For more recipes like this, purchase your copy of Donna Hay's new cookbook, 'Basics to Brilliance Kids' at or from your favourite book store.

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