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These Carrot Cake Cookies are soft, tender, loaded with shredded carrots, and topped with a fantastic cream cheese frosting. They taste just like carrot cake but better because they’re individual cookies that are easy to make and share!

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Carrot cake cookies on metal cooling rack, some with frosting on top
Table of Contents
  1. Why We Love Carrot Cake Cookies
  2. VIDEO: How to make Carrot Cake Cookies
  3. Ingredients in Carrot Cookies
  4. How to Make Carrot Cake Cookies from Scratch
  5. Cream Cheese Frosting
  6. How to Store Carrot Cake Cookies
  7. Expert Tips
  8. FAQ
  9. Carrot Cake Cookies Recipe Recipe

Why We Love Carrot Cake Cookies

If it’s springtime, you can bet I’m going crazy for all the carrot cake recipes like these soft carrot cake cookies. They are a great way to get that fix without making and baking a whole cake. 

They have everything – freshly shredded carrots, cinnamon-spice, chopped nuts, and a dreamy cream cheese frosting to top them off.

  • First and foremost, these are Mel’s favorite cookies! He loves carrot cake anything and gives these five stars.
  • I love them because they are perfectly balanced – just the right amount of carrots, spice, and frosting. The texture is wonderful, too. They are soft and tender – almost like cake!
  • They are freezer-friendly! You can freeze them frosted or unfrosted for up to two months.Making this carrot cake cookie recipe 
  • First and foremost, these are Mel’s favorite cookies! He loves carrot cake anything and gives these five stars.
  • I love them because they are perfectly balanced – just the right amount of carrots, spice, and frosting. The texture is wonderful, too. They are soft and tender – almost like cake!
  • They are freezer-friendly! You can freeze them frosted or unfrosted for up to two months.Making this carrot cake cookie recipe 

VIDEO: How to make Carrot Cake Cookies

Ingredients in carrot cake cookies

Ingredients in Carrot Cookies

  • All-purpose flour, Baking soda, Salt: traditional cookie ingredients
  • Cinnamon: for that spice cake/carrot cake flavor
  • Unsalted Butter: make sure it’s softened
  • Brown sugar: I love the flavor brown sugar adds to these cookies
  • Large egg and Vanilla extract: again, typical for cookies
  • Shredded carrots: shred your own!
  • Chopped pecans or walnuts: optional for some crunch

Important Note: I highly recommend shredding fresh carrots. Don’t use the pre-shredded kind because they don’t taste as good and are usually dried out. Fresh is best!

process shots showing how to make carrot cake cookies

How to Make Carrot Cake Cookies from Scratch

  1. Whisk the flour, baking soda and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar for one to two minutes in a large bowl.
  3. Mix in the egg and vanilla until smooth
  4. Add the flour mixture and mix.
  5. Stir in the carrots and chopped nuts.
  6. Scoop two tablespoons of the dough to form each ball. Place them two inches apart on a prepared cookie sheet. Gently press each ball to flatten them.
  7. Bake the cookies for 13 to 16 minutes. The cookies are done when they are no longer glossy on top. Allow them to cool before frosting.
Carrot cake cookies stacked on eachother with top one covered in cream cheese frosting

Cream Cheese Frosting

This is a simple cream cheese frosting – the carrot cake cookies aren’t complete without it!

Ingredients in cream cheese frosting
  • Softened butter
  • Room temperature cream cheese
  • Powdered sugar
  • Vanilla
  • Salt
  1. Beat the cream cheese and butter in a bowl until smooth. Slowly add the powdered sugar and mix until combined. Add the vanilla and salt and beat at high speed until the frosting is smooth.
  2. When the cookies are completely cooled, top them with the frosting. I like to add a dusting of cinnamon and finely chopped nuts for decoration.

How to Store Carrot Cake Cookies

Room temperature: Keep them in an airtight container, and they will keep for three days.

Freezer: They will keep in the freezer for up to two months. You can freeze them plain and add the frosting later or freeze them frosted.

The next time you’re craving cake, you should give this easy carrot cake cookies recipe a try. Each one is like a little piece of carrot cake heaven. Share them with family and friends, or tuck them away in the freezer to enjoy whenever you get a craving.

Carrot cake cookies stacked on eachother with top one covered in cream cheese frosting and bite missing

Expert Tips

  • Use a cookie scoop to scoop the cookies so they’re uniform in size. Use any size cookie scoop you want.
  • Don’t forget to lightly press the cookie ball with the palm of your hand before baking. Don’t flatten too much but they need a little help to get started.
  • Swap out walnuts for pecans or omit the nuts entirely!
  • Don’t use pre-shredded carrots. Be sure to shred your own so they soften in the oven.

FAQ

Do I have to frost the cookies?

No, you can definitely leave them plain, but cream cheese frosting is SO good on them!

How do I store the frosting?

Store any unused frosting in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Can I make Carrot Cake Sandwich Cookies with this recipe?

Yes for sure! Just make the cookies 1-tablespoon size instead of 2-tablespoon size.

Do I have to add nuts?

No you can skip them for sure!

Can I make the frosting a color?

Yes you can tint the frosting any color you like. Or dust the tops with cinnamon instead of nuts.

Why didn’t my carrot cookies flatten?

Make sure you press them down a bit with the palm of your hand before baking. These stay puffy and soft – like carrot cake – and don’t spread much.

If you love this recipe, try these:

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Carrot cake cookies on metal cooling rack, some with frosting on top

Carrot Cake Cookies Recipe

5 from 9 votes
These Carrot Cake Cookies are soft, tender, loaded with shredded carrots, and topped with a fantastic cream cheese frosting. They taste just like carrot cake!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Yield 20 cookies
Serving Size 1 cookie

Ingredients
 

Cookies

  • 1 ¾ cups (217g) all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (113g) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup (150g) packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (90g) shredded carrots (see note)
  • ½ cup (56g) chopped pecans or walnuts

Frosting

  • 4 tablespoons (57g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 ounces (112g) cream cheese, room temperature
  • cups (170g) powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  • In a small bowl, whisk flour with baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
  • Cream butter and brown sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer 1-2 minutes. Mix in egg and vanilla until smooth.
  • Add dry ingredients to wet and mix until smooth. Stir in carrots and nuts.
  • Scoop 2 tablespoon size balls onto cookie sheets 2-inches apart. Lightly flatten with the palms of your hand.
  • Bake for 13-16 minutes or until no longer glossy. Cool before frosting.
  • To make frosting: beat butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth. Slowly mix in powdered sugar then add vanilla and salt. Beat on medium high speed until smooth.
  • Frost cookies as desired, top with a dusting of cinnamon or finely chopped nuts.
  • Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days or freeze (frosted or unfrosted) for up to 2 months.

Recipe Notes

  • Be sure to shred your own carrots – don’t use the pre-shredded kind. Also – don’t pack them in the measuring cup.
  • You can use walnuts or pecans in this recipe or omit them. Substitute/add raisins if you want!

Recipe Nutrition

Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 212kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 33mg | Sodium: 145mg | Potassium: 68mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 1371IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 1mg
Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Author Dorothy Kern
Keyword carrot cake
Lots of carrot cake cookies, some stacked on eachother with recipe title on top of image

Carrot Cake Cookies taste just like carrot cake but better because they are individual cookies that are so easy to make and even easier to share!

Last Updated on April 11, 2022

Dorothy Kern

Welcome to Crazy for Crust, where I share recipes that are sometimes crazy, often with a crust, and always served with a slice of life.

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6 Comments

  1. My dough set up quite firmly, as I’ve been trying to avoid overly soft butter as of late. At about 13 minutes I pulled them out and thought as I tasted them “Hmmmm. A bit dry.” Fast forward after cooling and they were unexpectedly more moist – perfect with the frosting. I may add some nutmeg and/or raisins next time but otherwise these were quite a treat!

  2. I thought these were GREAT! Super easy and very tasty. Making again now for company tonight!!

  3. These are fantastic! It´s true, the same satisfaction as eating a piece of carrot cake. I grated fresh carrots like you suggested (in my f. processor). My dough was crumbly, but came together nicely with a bit of milk. I baked for 16 minutes. Thanks for posting this fabulous recipe!