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!
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.
Why We Love Carrot Cake Cookies
- 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
Table of Contents
Ingredients in Carrot Cake 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!
How to Make Carrot Cake Cookies from Scratch
1. Dry Ingredients: Whisk the flour and baking soda in a small bowl.
2. Cream: Cream the butter and sugar for one to two minutes in a large bowl. Mix in the egg and vanilla until smooth.
3. Mix: Add the flour mixture and mix. Stir in the carrots and chopped nuts.
4. Scoop: 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.
5. Bake: 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.
Cream Cheese Frosting
This is a simple cream cheese frosting – the carrot cake cookies aren’t complete without it!
- Softened butter
- Room temperature cream cheese
- Powdered sugar
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.
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 Them
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.
- 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.
- My cookies didn’t flatten – help! 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.
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Carrot Cake Cookies Recipe
- 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
- 4 tablespoons (57g) unsalted butter, softened
- 4 ounces (112g) cream cheese, room temperature
- 1½ cups (170g) powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ⅙ teaspoon salt
- 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.
- 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!
Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate
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!
All text and images © DOROTHY KERN for Crazy for Crust. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe. Disclaimer: Nutrition information shown is not guaranteed to be accurate.
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Published on: February 21, 2021