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Carrot Cake Ice Cream Cupcakes


“This is one of the cutest recipes we've made yet. And, they'll absolutely impress everyone who is lucky enough to have one." —David

Tip: This is a weekend project little chefs would love to tackle. To make this a weeknight recipe, use store-bought carrot cake, vanilla ice cream, and mold cookie dough in the bottom of cupcake liners.

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  • Carrot Cake:
  • Adapted from David's Tropical Carrot Cake on
  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 1/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1/4 cup dry-roasted macadamia nuts
  • 1/8 tsp ground ginger
  • 7/8 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup carrots, peeled and finely grated
  • 1 (4-oz) can crushed pineapple, well drained
  • Cupcake Liners:
  • 8 oz white chocolate
  • Cream Cheese Ice Cream:
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg + 1 egg white
  • 2-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1-1/4 cup half and half
  • 5 oz cream cheese, room temperature, cubed
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • You will also need:
  • Store-bought orange icing
  • Toasted coconut flakes (optional garnish)


Adapted from


Step 1

To prepare the carrot cake, preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9” x 9” baking pan and line it with parchment paper. Combine 2 Tbsp of the flour, all of the coconut and macadamia nuts in a food processor and process until the nuts are finely chopped. Set aside.

Whisk the remaining flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, baking powder, salt, and baking soda in a medium-size bowl until the ingredients are well combined.
Beat the sugar and oil in a large bowl with an electric mixer. Add the egg and beat well. Next, add the vanilla. Add the flour-spice mixture and mix until all of the ingredients are well combined. Stir in the coconut-macadamia mixture, the carrots, and crushed pineapple.

Bake for about 20–25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Run a knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake. While the cake is cooling, make the cupcake liners. Start by melting the white chocolate in a small saucepan over low heat. Use a pastry or paint brush to paint the chocolate inside six individual silicone cupcake molds. Apply at least 3–4 layers per cupcake mold and freeze in between layers to help the chocolate set faster.

To prepare the cream cheese ice cream, whisk the sugar, eggs, and vanilla together in a medium-size mixing bowl. Combine the milk, heavy cream, and the half-and-half in a medium-size sauce pot. Bring the mixture to a simmer, and then remove the pan from the heat. Slowly pour the cream mixture into the egg mixture, whisking constantly to temper the eggs. Pour the mixture back into the sauce pot. Cook and stir over low heat until the mixture coats the back of a metal spoon, about 4 minutes. Whisk in the cream cheese until smooth. Strain the liquid through a fine sieve and then chill the mixture over an ice bath. After the mixture is completely cooled, stir in the lemon juice. Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze according to manufacturer's directions. Place the ice cream in the freezer and freeze for at least 4 hours before assembling the cupcakes.

By this time, the cake should be cool. Remove it from the pan and cut the cake into small circles so they'll fit inside the silicone cupcake molds you made earlier. Wrap the circles in plastic wrap and freeze until needed.

To assemble the cupcakes, place a cake circle inside each of the white chocolate molds. Then, scoop a small cream cheese ice cream ball and drop it on top of the cake. Finally, pipe the store-bought icing on top of the cream cheese ice cream and top the cupcakes with toasted coconut or carrot cake crumbs. Freeze until ready to serve.

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