Carrot Cake Baked Doughnuts


Delicate Baked Carrot Cake Doughnuts topped with cream cheese frosting and chopped walnuts will bring smiles to your brunch table as you sit down with your cup of coffee.

Carrot Cake Baked Doughnuts

Welcome back to Brunch Week, hosted by Susan of The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen and Terri of Love And Confections. If you missed day one, you will definitely want to go check out my Banana Coconut Milk Pancakes and enter to win some awesome prizes.

I don’t know about you, but when I hear brunch, I immediately think about pastries, especially doughnuts. I knew I wanted to develop a baked doughnut recipe, but what kind? Soon my mind went to these Baked Carrot Cake Doughnuts. Dipped in cream cheese frosting then sprinkled with chopped walnuts, these beauties belong on your brunch table next to your coffee. The best part? You only need 60 minutes from start to finish.

Carrot Cake Baked Doughnuts

My mind has been carrot cake obsessed for the past month – carrot cake cinnamon rolls, carrot cake drop cookies, even my carrot cake cheesecake from last year. Really though – what else do you immediately think of when you have a bag of shredded carrots, begging to be used? If you do use pre-shredded carrots, you may want to chop them into smaller pieces for this recipe so they are more evenly distributed in the batter. If you’re using whole carrots, shred them finely with either a grater or your food processor. Make sure you press out any excess liquid that may occur from shredding.

Normally with baked doughnut batter, you’d pipe it into the pan. However, I knew the raisins and walnuts would get stuck in the pastry bag, so I just carefully spooned in the batter. I remember the first time I made doughnuts with chocolate chips in the batter. 10 seconds after attempting to fill the pan, a chocolate chip clogged the tip. So unless your piping tip is huge, save yourself the headache. Trust me.

Carrot Cake Baked Doughnuts

If you’re looking for a fried doughnut recipe, please don’t use this recipe. Baked doughnut batter is meant to be “runny” like cake batter, not sturdy like bread dough that you roll out. That’s why you use a doughnut pan because the batter needs a mold of some sort. That also means these doughnuts have a cake-like texture, not a fried dough texture that you’d expect from a fryer. Some people argue that these aren’t true doughnuts. That’s ok – more doughnuts for us to eat.

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Yields 9

Carrot Cake Baked Doughnuts
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1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground clove
4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup finely shredded carrots
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
Cream Cheese Frosting
2 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon milk
1/4 cup chopped walnuts


    For the doughnuts:
  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Lightly grease two six-cavity doughnut pans*.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove.
  3. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and brown sugar until creamy and smooth. Beat in the egg and vanilla until fully incorporated then beat in the sour cream. Gradually add the flour mixture then stir in the carrots, raisins, and walnuts.
  4. Fill each cavity in the pans about half full with the batter. Bake 10-12 minutes or until firm and a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes in the pan then remove to a cooling rack. Cool completely.
  5. For the frosting:
  6. In a mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese, butter, and salt until creamy and smooth. Gradually add the powdered sugar then add the milk. Beat until smooth.
  7. Dip (or spread with a knife) each cooled doughnut into the frosting then top with chopped walnuts.


*If you only have one doughnut pan, bake the first six doughnuts, remove them from the pan as directed, then cool the pan in the refrigerator for 5 minutes before reusing.

Source: Adapted from Inside BruCrew Life

More Spring Dessert Recipes

Carrot Cake Cinnamon Rolls

Carrot Cake Drop Cookies

Carrot Cake Cheesecake

Carrot Cake Layer Cake

Baked Vanilla Bean Doughnuts

Double Lemon Glazed Doughnuts

Brunch Week Recipes

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  1. How did you know that I JUST got a donut pan? AND I love carrot cake? Can’t wait to faceplant into these! Happy Brunch Week! Pinned!

  2. I can imagine waking up to the aroma of these baking and pinching away at one with my coffee! Delicious!

  3. Between your carrot cake doughnuts and my carrot cake oatmeal, we’re gonna have some AMAZINGLY awesome eyesight when Brunchweek is over! :)

  4. Yum! Beautiful donuts-I would just go crazy for the cream cheese frosting alone.

  5. I LOVE carrot cake! These are adorable.

  6. I am behind anything that allows me to eat cream cheese frosting for breakfast!

  7. Carrot cake in a doughnut, topped with cream cheese icing and nuts? Who cares whether or not they are fried? Gorgeous confectionary, Carla! Perfect for brunch!

  8. Breakfast sweets are one of my downfalls- these doughnuts look fabulous!

  9. Yummm carrot cake AND a doughnut all in one – delicious!

  10. I totally agree, when I hear brunch I think pastries and carbs! I love carrot cake and these baked doughnuts look amazing! That cream cheese frosting is the perfect topping for them!

  11. I’ll take baked doughnuts. It means I can have seconds and not feel guilty. Also less filling. Also these have vegetables, so it becomes a legitimate meal correct?

  12. I am ordering a baked doughnut pan. I can’t wait to try it out. I just heard about baked doughnuts in the last month. I am trying not to over anticipate and recipes like this is NOT helping. Lol

  13. These only took 60 minutes? I would deem that TOTALLY worth the time and effort!

  14. Whaaaat?! These look amazing! I love love love carrot cake anything! haha

  15. I can’t believe all the ingenious ways you’ve incorporated carrot cake into different desserts, Carla. This is awe-inspiring! Your doughnuts look amazing and any fool who turns their nose up at this for not being a “real doughnut”, hell, I’ll take their share!

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