I was looking to enter a contest on a blog to win a Vitamix or spatulas or something and part of the entry was linking to your favorite cookie recipe. I looked on TwoCleverMoms and I was surprised that I really haven’t posted a ton of cookie recipes.
Well, this has to be my most requested cookie recipe. Not the most requested cookie, but the most requested recipe.
Each batch of cookies uses about a pound of carrots. This doesn’t at all make these cookies healthy, but my 7 year old is my kid that doesn’t like fruits or vegetables so mentally the veggie content helps a little to think she’s ingesting something healthy. At the very least, I use it as my argument when she says she doesn’t like carrots in other situations: “Yes, you do! You love carrots! You eat half a carrot inside each carrot cookie!” She also is my kid who doesn’t fall for tricks, mind games, persuasion, bribery or peer pressure when it comes to food, but I feel like I’m chipping away at the vegetable aversion with each cookie.
These cookies are cakey, but not spicy or textured like carrot cake. They are light and moist. They are sweet enough, but not crazy sweet. There’s not really something I know to compare them too. My kids like top part of day old pumpkin or banana bread that they describe as “a little wet.” These are sort of like that, but not exactly wet, kind of like the top of a cupcake. They are fluffy, but then kind of compress in your mouth, not really melting away, but giving something sweet and satisfying to chew a little. I was eating one trying to figure out how to describe it and I want to say something like a thick moist pancake, but it’s not, maybe more like a soft and fluffy Belgian waffle without the waffling. I guess I’ll stick with a cupcake top.
When I give out the recipe to people, I get complaints that theirs don’t “turn out.” People say the cookies taste good, but are different. I’m not saying the way I make them is best, but I’m going to write out the recipe and steps here as I make them and we’ll hope they turn out how you want them to turn out. And if you’ve never tasted them before, they should taste good, even if they aren’t the same.
A lot of carrot cookie recipes call for mashing the carrots. I’ve tried this, but personally, one of the great things about these cookies is how light they are, you don’t need carrot chunks in them. Plus when making cookies for kids, it’s often best to hide the vegetables (in fact, I usually let kids take a couple bites before admitting they contain any carrots). I puree cooked carrots until totally smooth to add in, I also add in more carrots than the original recipe calls for, and cut back on the sugar.
We’ve had taste tests and my kids unanimously agree that these cookies are equally delicious with or without frosting. But I generally still put a buttercream-like frosting on top. Many similar recipes suggest orange (flavored) icing. I’ve never tried that as citrus is not popular with my 7 year old and I associate the cookies with her. The orange flavor might make these a little fancier.
These cookies are best the day that they are made. They are so moist that they start to sweat a little by the second day. If you have frosting on them, it will start to slide off. You could store them in the refrigerator, but then you might lose the texture. It’s the perfect excuse to make them, eat them, have a party, or give them out to friends on the same day.
- 6-8 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 3/4 cups butter, softened
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 2 cups flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Place the carrots in a saucepan and cover with water or place in a steamer basket. Boil or steam over medium to high heat until tender. Drain the carrots and put into a food processor or blender. Puree until smooth. Let cool for 20 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (or 350 degrees Fahrenheit convection).
- Place the butter and sugar in a mixer and whip on medium speed (about 5 minutes). Add the egg and mix completely.
- Add in 1 1/2 – 1 3/4 cups carrot puree and the vanilla and continue to beat for a few minutes.
- Stir flour, salt, and baking soda until combined.
- Drop the batter (I use a soup spoon and scoop a large heaping glop, it’s ~2-3 tablespoons of batter) a couple inches apart onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. I like when they aren’t particularly pretty because the 7 year old carrot cookie fan likes to pick at the little crispier tails that form. I also use the peaks and tails to tell when they are done (they start to brown a little).
- Bake just until firm, 8-12 minutes. The bottoms will just start to brown, but do not need to.
- Transfer to wire rack and cool completely. Top with buttercream frosting if desired.