- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups shredded carrots
- 1 cup pureed canned red beets
- ½ cup orange juice
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 8 ounces unsalted butter (2 sticks)
- 2 cups sugar
- 5 large eggs
Preheat oven to 325° F. Line a cupcake pan with 24 cupcake liners. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl, add the shredded carrots, and set aside. Combine the beet puree, orange juice, oil, and vanilla and almond extracts in another bowl and set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is lighter in color and fluffy, about 7 minutes on medium-high speed. Lower the speed to medium and add the eggs, one egg at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition until fully incorporated, about 2 minutes. Turn the mixer to a lower speed, then add the flour mixture and the beets mixture, alternating between the two, beginning and ending with the flour. Fill the 24 cupcake liners two-thirds full with batter and bake for 20 to 22 minutes, until the cupcakes are baked through. Cool cupcakes completely.
Whip the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment at medium high speed until it is light and fluffy, about 7 minutes. Lower the speed and add the beet puree, orange and vanilla extracts, and salt and beat until fully incorporated. Stop the mixer and scrape the sides, then add the powdered sugar and beat for 3 more minutes. Stop the mixer and scrape the sides, then mix for 5 more minutes at medium-high speed. Put the icing into a pastry bag fitted with a large metal tip.
To assemble: Allow the cupcakes to fully cool, and pipe on the beet icing.