These carrot cake cookies live up to their name! They have a soft, cake-like texture, a sweet, spiced flavor, and a tangy cream cheese frosting on top.
As I sat down to write this post, I remembered that I have a stash of these carrot cake cookies in the freezer. Just like carrot cake, they’re soft, moist, and filled with warm, spiced flavor. Walnuts or pecans add nutty crunch, and a tangy cream cheese frosting takes them over the top. Right now, I’m using all my willpower to resist running down the kitchen and devouring one on the spot.
But no! I want to tell you all about these carrot cake cookies first. They’re the perfect spring treat – wholesome enough for an afternoon snack, brunch, or (without the frosting) even breakfast, but still delicious enough for dessert. Jack’s picky about his carrot cake, and he can’t get enough of them. I think you’ll love them too.
Carrot Cake Cookie Recipe Ingredients
These carrot cake cookies taste just like their namesake – soft, spiced, and sweet – but they’re secretly healthy! Here’s what’s in them:
- Grated carrots, of course! Be sure to shred your own carrots for this recipe. Store bought shredded carrots are too dry and coarse.
- Ground flaxseed – Did I mention that these cookies are vegan? The flax replaces an egg, binding the cookie dough together.
- Oat flour, almond flour, and whole rolled oats – Together, they give these cookies an amazing soft texture. They also make this recipe gluten-free!
- Baking powder and baking soda – They help the cookies puff up as they bake.
- Cinnamon and nutmeg – They fill the cookies with spiced carrot cake flavor.
- Almond butter – It thickens the dough and adds rich, nutty flavor.
- Coconut oil – For richness.
- Maple syrup – It sweetens these cookies naturally and adds subtle maple flavor.
- Vanilla extract – For warm depth of flavor.
- Walnuts or pecans – They add a yummy nutty crunch! Use whichever you prefer – both are delicious.
- And sea salt – To make all the flavors pop!
If you like, finish the cookies with cream cheese frosting. I top mine with this vegan frosting made from vegan butter, vegan cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla.
Find the complete recipe with measurements below.
How to Make Carrot Cake Cookies
These carrot cake cookies are easy to make! Here’s what you need to do:
First, prepare the flax egg. Mix the ground flaxseed and warm water together in a small bowl, and set the mixture aside to thicken.
Meanwhile, combine the wet ingredients in one bowl and the dry ingredients in another. When the flax mixture has thickened, whisk it into the wet ingredients. Then, pour the wet ingredients into the dry ones.
Use a spatula to fold until the ingredients are just combined. Finally, fold in the walnuts or pecans.
Next, scoop the cookies! Use a large 1/4-cup cookie scoop to portion the dough onto two large, parchment-lined baking sheets.
Finally, bake. Transfer one sheet to a 350° oven and bake until the cookies are lightly browned around the edges. Allow them to cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining sheet.
If desired, top the cookies with cream cheese frosting, and enjoy!
Carrot Cake Cookies Tips
- It’ll be tempting to underbake them. Don’t! When you’re working with oat flour, it can be tricky to gauge when baked goods are done. These cookies might look nicely puffed and ready to eat after just 18 or 20 minutes in the oven, but in actuality, they may need a few minutes more. The best indicator here is their coloring. Make sure that they’re beginning to brown around the edges before you remove them from the oven. If the cookies are underdone, they’ll end up very soft and crumbly.
- Don’t reach for one right away. These soft-baked cookies are fragile when they first come out of the oven, but they firm up as they cool. Make sure to leave them on the baking sheet for at least 5 minutes to set up before you transfer them to a wire rack. Otherwise, the cookies will crumble!
- If you want to frost them, allow them to cool completely first. Just like when you make carrot cake, you need to allow the cookies to cool to room temperature before you top them with frosting. If they’re still warm, the frosting will melt!
- Freeze the extras. These carrot cake cookies freeze perfectly. I like to eat one right away and freeze the rest for days when I’m craving something sweet. To thaw, leave them in the fridge overnight, or let them sit for an hour at room temperature. Or, for a faster treat, pop them in the microwave for about 30 seconds.
More Favorite Cookie Recipes
If you love these carrot cake cookies, try one of these cookie recipes next:
- Perfect Oatmeal Cookies
- Chewy Molasses Cookies
- Thumbprint Cookies
- Almond Butter Cookies
- Peanut Butter Cookies
- Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
- No Bake Cookies
- Or any of these 17 Easy Cookie Recipes!
Carrot Cake Cookies
- 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
- 5 tablespoons warm water
- 1 cup oat flour
- 1 cup additional whole rolled oats
- ½ cup almond flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 cup grated carrots, (about 3 medium)
- ½ cup almond butter
- ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup chopped walnuts or pecans
- 1/2 recipe Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting, optional
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, combine the flaxseed and warm water and set aside to thicken for 5 minutes.
- In a large bowl, stir together the oat flour, the additional 1 cup rolled oats, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
- In a medium bowl, combine the carrots, almond butter, coconut oil, and maple syrup, and vanilla and stir well. Add the flaxseed mixture and stir well to incorporate.
- Add the wet ingredients to the bowl of dry ingredients and fold in just until combined. Fold in the walnuts.
- Scoop ¼ cup of batter for each cookie onto the baking sheets. Bake, one sheet at a time, for 20 to 24 minutes, or until browned around the edges. Cool on the pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
- When cookies are completely cool, pipe with cream cheese frosting, if desired.
These are awesome! I switched nuts for raisins. I haven’t tried the frosting, but they are delicious on their own. Love them!
I’m so glad you love the cookies! Raisins would be delicious 🙂
I’m really intrigued by this recipe and would love to give it a spin, but would you happen to have the nutrition information for this recipe somewhere? Or perhaps I’m blind and just can’t find it?
Hi Greg, we don’t calculate nutrition facts for our recipes. The best way to get a nutrition estimate is to use an online calculator like MyFitnessPal.
Made these as a Valentine treat today, and they were amazing! I made them with the cream cheese frosting, but I used regular cream cheese since I’m not vegan, and only about 1/2 a cup of sugar because I try to keep sugar as low as possible. They turned out perfectly! I would err on the side of cooking a little longer than shorter, making sure to get that browning on top. Mine were soft in the middle. It was fine though because there are no raw ingredients to worry about, and just gave them an even more “cakey” vibe. So good!!!
I’m ready to make these, but I don’t happen to have almond butter. Would peanut butter work in its place? Thanks
Hi Wendy, they will taste more like peanut butter cookies, which might not be terrible, but a more distinct flavor.
SO GOOD! Had to use sweet potatoes instead of carrots after I realized after I mixed all the dry ingredients… that my partner ate all of our carrots. I also made them a little smaller, got about 18 cookies out of the batch. baked for 13 minutes and they came out perfect. Will make this recipe again and again!
I’m so glad you loved the cookies!
I have a question, Due to high cholesterol my hubby and I can’t have oils, nut butters, nor tahini. What can substitute for these ingredients?
I’ve used unsweetened applesauce in place of the oil in baking, but what else could sub for these and get the consistency they provide?
Hi Joann, The almond butter is important in this recipe for creating the cookies’ soft texture and rich flavor. I might recommend making this carrot cake recipe instead of the cookies. You could use applesauce or mashed banana as a sub for the oil there.
Can I sub the flaxseed for real eggs? If so- how many? Is there a sub for almond butter (not nut butters)?
Hi Karen, we haven’t tried this with an egg, so I can’t guarantee the results, but I think 1 egg would work well instead of the flax. Again, we haven’t tried replacing the almond butter, but because it helps with binding here, I think you could sub in another egg. If you try this, let us know how it goes! Hope you enjoy.
All of your recipes are super.
But I didn’t find the recipe for chocolate
brownies. Please could you send it to me,
whenever it is possible for you.
Thank you so very much.
Hi Christina, if you scroll down in this post, the recipe is at the bottom: https://www.loveandlemons.com/brownies-recipe/
I hope you enjoy!
Can I substitute something for the oil? It already has healthier fats from the almond butter and the nuts. I try to avoid oils due to the impact on inflammation from m.s.
Hi Beth, I haven’t tried, so I’m not sure.
I have never seen a carrot cake type cookie recipe before. This is so intriguing for me! I’m not a cake-texture fan, so a cookie option with these iconic flavors I’m such is lovely.
What can I use as a substitute for almond flour? Making for someone with nut allergies.
I used whole wheat flour. They were super bland though! Ended up needing frosting.
Hi Michelle, the oat and almond flour is likely more flavorful than whole wheat.
These were so tasty! We made them to take to a group gathering for our anniversary and they were a delight.
(we didn’t frost them)
I’m so glad you enjoyed them!
Don’t want it to sound rude but your wont to measure everything in cups freaks me so much out! I’m not from US sadly so I just DON’T UNDERSTEND how much the ‘cup’ is! Here in Russia we use grams 😀
Could you please write down the recipe some more particular measurements?
Naah.. it is simple, just find a nice wide cup that is ~250ml… 1/4 litre. And voila! I got used to it to the point of prefering it that way. It is simple, no messing with the scales!
250 ml is about right for 1 cup of liquid, but I think 1 cup dry flour is about 125 grams. In the US using grams and liters is very uncommon. I think in cups and ounces, but use a scale and convert a recipe I love to grams and liters to more easily calculate calories and nutrients.
Hi! I love these so much I want to make them as birthday mini muffins for my 1 year old. How should I change the recipe so that they don’t crumble like a cookie and stay together like a muffin?
Cookies came out amazing! Wondering if you can freeze it with the frosting or better without?
Hi Mary, I froze them with the frosting and they were great.
Good to know. Thanks!
I made these today and they taste great but they didn’t flatten. Any advice?
Hi Barbara, how was the consistency of your almond butter? Was it runny or very thick. The cookies are kind of puffy, they’re not super flat. You could press the dough down gently on the baking sheet after you scoop them if you’d like them a bit flatter than they came out.
I make my own almond butter and it’s runny but I store it in the fridge so it was pretty thick when I added it. The dough was very stiff and it’s was hard to fold in the walnuts. I’ll try it again with room temp almond butter and see if that makes a difference. Thanks!