Carrot Cake Cookies

This Carrot Cake Cookies recipe is so amazing with a tender, puffy cookie and the perfect cream cheese frosting! Easy carrot cookies are moist cookies that are easy to make and fun to eat! Make these gorgeous healthy carrot cake cookies for a special occasion or any day of the week!

A stack of frosted carrot cake cookies sits in front of more cookies.
Carrot Cake Oatmeal Cookies are served with a tasty cream cheese frosting!
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You know I’m a big fan of the desserts with carrots, right? If you need a quick refresher, well, first there’s my Vegan Carrot Cake recipe. My, My, My. It’s so delicious! You can see my tips on that post for how to shred carrots for carrot cake. I use the same process for these cookies too!

And then I made a Healthy Carrot Cake recipe too. Because sometimes we want indulgent and other times we want things healthier!

So, now I’m coming at you with a recipe for Carrot Cake Cookies. Impressive tenacity, eh? Actually, the thing is, this might be my favorite!

What’s so special about the carrot cookie? I love that it’s a bite-size version of a carrot cake! It’s easy to make these cookies and they’re full of nutritious nuts and carrots. It’s a whole flurry of goodness!

Of course, I wanted to make my carrot cake cookies healthy too!

How to Make Carrot Cake Cookies

It’s so fun to make carrot oatmeal cookies recipes, so let’s get started. Let’s begin with how to make this carrot cookies recipe, because that’s where it’s at! Making these soft carrot cake cookies starts with this list of ingredients: pecan halves, raw carrot, vegan butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, vanilla, ground flaxseed, plant-based milk, whole wheat pastry flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, ground ginger, rolled oats.

Step One: Toast the Pecans

Look, you can skip this step if you’d like. I’ve definitely been in the “skip the nut toasting” camp myself. But I do find that a few minutes in the oven (it’s warming up anyways) can bring out the flavor of the pecans.

You may think: won’t the pecans be baking in the cookies anyways? I’ve asked that question before too! Basically, pecans toasting in the oven by themselves for a few minutes rather than surrounded (and insulated) by cookie dough, is different.

So, if you’re going to join me in the “toast the pecans” camp, then place pecans on one of the prepared pans and bake for 5 – 6 minutes, until lightly toasted. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

Step Two: Prepare the Carrot

Prepare the carrot by cutting off the root end. Then wash the carrot and pat it dry. No need to peel it. Roughly chop it and place carrot pieces in a food processor or blender and pulse several times until finely grated. Measure out into a 1 cup measuring dish. Set aside.

Grated carrots are in the bottom of a food processor bowl.

Step Three: Mix Butter + Sugar + More!

In a mixing bowl combine the vegan butter and sugars and beat on medium speed until combined. Use a spatula to scrape down sides of bowl and then beat on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add ground flaxseed, vanilla and milk. Beat again for up to one minute. Set aside. 

Butter and sugar have been mixed together in the bottom of a mixing bowl.

Step Four: Mix Dry Ingredients + Oats

In a separate bowl stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices, and salt. 

The dry ingredients are being poured into a mixing bowl with the butter sugar mixture.

Add rolled oats to a blender and pulse until it resembles a course flour, leaving some larger bits of oats in the mixture. Add the pecans and pulse a few more times until the pecans are broken down into small bits. Add the oats/pecan mixture to the flour mixture. Stir to combine. Pour the flour/oats mixture into the mixing bowl with the butter mixture. Beat on medium speed until just combined. 

Carrots are being added to cookie batter in a mixing bowl.

Add the shredded carrots to the batter. Stir until just combined. 

Cookie dough batter in the bottom of a mixing bowl with a spatula for stirring it.

Step Five: Roll the Dough and Bake

A cookie dough dispenser is being used to drop cookie dough balls on a cookie sheet.

Use a cookie dough dispenser to distribue cookie dough batter in balls roughly 2″ apart on the prepared baking pans. Use a spoon to lightly flatten the tops of the cookie dough balls. 

A cookie sheet lined is full of rows of unbaked cookies.

Bake 12 – 14 minutes, until the cookies turn a golden brown. Slightly underbaked cookies are preferred because they stay soft on the inside. Once done, remove pans from the oven and allow the cookies to cool slightly on the pan before transferring cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

Two frosted cookies are stacked with this text above it: Carrot Cake Cookies

Cream Cheese Frosting Carrot Cake Cookies

Now, you could serve these cookies without the vegan cream cheese frosting. They’re pretty outstanding as is! However, adding a dollop of cream cheese frosting is pretty special! And it’s a pretty simple recipe too.

Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make your carrot cake cookie cream cheese frosting: vegan butter, vegan cream cheese, powdered sugar, ground cinnamon, and vanilla.

Add the vegan butter and cream cheese in a mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed until combined. Use a spatula to scrape down sides of the bowl. Then beat on medium speed until smooth and light in color. Add cinnamon and vanilla and beat again until combined. Then add powdered sugar, one cup at a time.

Vegan cream cheese oftentimes can be a bit soft at first, so that’s why I’m not adding any plant-based milk to the frosting. However, if yours is thick (some vegan cream cheeses vary), then go ahead and add a 1/2 teaspoon of plant-based milk. You want a spreadable consistency!

After the carrot cookies have cooled completely, add a dollop of frosting to each cookie. Set aside for the frosting to set.

Storing Cookies

Store cookies in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 10 days. To freeze, place cookies on a tray and place the tray in the freezer. Once frozen, transfer cookies to a freezer bag. These will keep in the freezer for up to 2 months.

A hand grabs the top cookie from the stack of several unfrosted cookies.
This recipe makes delicious carrot cake breakfast cookies!

How many calories are in one carrot cake cookies with cream cheese frosting filling?

For this carrot cake cookie recipe, each cookie topped with cream cheese has approximately 172 calories.

Several frosted cookies are sitting on a white counter.
Cream Cheese Frosting Carrot Cake Cookies are easy to make and tastes amazing!

Expert Tips

Here are my favorite tips and suggestions for making these vegan carrot cookies with cream cheese filling perfect every time:

  • This recipe calls for vegan butter: I used Earth Balance buttery sticks
  • For the vegan cream cheese, I used Tofutti. However, Daiya makes a nice vegan cream cheese too.
  • You can substitute walnuts for pecans to make Carrot Walnut Cookies
  • Add 1/2 cup raisins to the batter to make carrot raisin cookies
  • If you want to make carrot cake sandwich cookies, simply flatten the cookie dough balls a little more before baking. Then add the cream cheese frosting in between two cookies. Carrot cake cookie sandwiches are delicious!
  • Should you peel the carrots? I don’t! In fact, I’m with The Kitchn when it comes to Not Peeling Carrots!
  • I’m using ground flaxseed as an egg replacer in this carrot cookie recipe. You can substitute a similar amount of chia seeds if you prefer.
  • For easy carrot cake cookies, skip the frosting and serve these cookies au natural (without frosting)
  • Make gluten free carrot cake cookies by substituting gluten free baking flour
  • Add 1/4 cup crushed pineapple to make carrot cake cookies with pineapple
  • To make carrot cake pumpkin cookies, leave out the ground flaxseed and add 1/4 cup pumpkin puree instead.

These iced carrot cake cookies are the best — but they’re pretty good served without frosting as well!

A stack of cookies with the top cookie having a bite taken out of it.
These are the best carrot cake cookies!

That’s it for these vegan carrot cake cookies!

I hope you love this recipe as we do! Have you tried it? Be sure and leave a comment and a rating of this recipe below and then take a quick photo and share it with me using #namelymarly on Instagram. I love seeing your creations!

Two Carrot Cake Cookies are stacked on top of each other.

Carrot Cake Cookies

Make these delicious carrot cake cookies and enjoy! If you're looking for a cookie that's both healthy and tasty, this is the one for you!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: Carrot Cake Cookies
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 44 minutes
Resting Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 9 minutes
Servings: 37 cookies
Calories: 172kcal
Author: Marly

Ingredients

Carrot Cake Cookies

  • 1 cup pecan halves
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 cup vegan butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
  • 1/2 cup plant-based milk
  • 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 cups rolled oats

Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1/2 cup vegan butter
  • 4 ounces vegan cream cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar

Instructions

Carrot Cake Cookies

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Line two cookie sheets with silpat or parchment paper.
  • Place pecans on one of the prepared pans and bake for 5 – 6 minutes, until lightly toasted. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. This step is optional, but does add flavor to the finished cookies.
  • Cut off root end of carrot, wash and pat it dry. No need to peel. Chop and place carrot pieces in a food procesor or blender and pulse several times until finely grated. Measure out into a 1 cup measuring dish. Set aside.
  • In a mixing bowl combine the vegan butter and sugars and beat on medium speed until combined. Use a spatula to scrape down sides of bowl and then beat on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add ground flaxseed, vanilla and milk. Beat again for up to one minute. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices, and salt.
  • Add rolled oats to a blender and pulse until it resembles a course flour, leaving some larger bits of oats in the mixture. Add the pecans and pulse a few more times until the pecans are broken down into small bits. Add the oats/pecan mixture to the flour mixture. Stir to combine. Pour the flour/oats mixture into the mixing bowl with the butter mixture. Beat on medium speed until just combined. 
  • Place pecans in a food processor or blender. Pulse in short bursts until pecans are broken down into small bits. Add pecans to cookie dough batter and beat on medium speed until just combined.
  • Add the shredded carrots to the batter. Stir until just combined.
  • Use a cookie dough dispenser to distribue cookie dough batter in balls roughly 2" apart on the prepared baking pans. Use a spoon to lightly flatten the tops of the cookie dough balls.
  • Bake 12 – 14 minutes, until the cookies turn a golden brown. Slightly underbaked cookies are preferred because they stay soft on the inside. Once done, remove pans from the oven and allow the cookies to cool slightly on the pan before transferring cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Prepare the vegan cream cheese frosting by adding vegan butter and cream cheese in a mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed until combined. Use a spatula to scrape down sides of the bowl. Then beat on medium speed until smooth and light in color. Add cinnamon and vanilla and beat again until combined. Then add powdered sugar, one cup at a time. It will be thick at first, but will soften up.
  • After cookies cool completely, frost each cookie.
  • Store cookies in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 10 days.

Notes

Don’t melt butter because this will cause the cookies to spread when baked. Set vegan butter on the counter about 30 minutes prior to using to allow it to soften.
Be sure to use instant or quick oats. Old fashioned or rolled rolled oats won’t work for these cookies. However, if you do not have instant oats,  place whole oats in a food processor and pulse several times until they’re broken down to the consistency of instant oats.

Freezing Carrot Cake Cookies

Follow these steps to freeze carrot cake cookies.
  1. Cool cookies completely. Either frost or freeze cookies unfrosted and frost before serving.
  2. Place cookies on a tray and place the tray in the freezer for about 30 minutes, until cookies are mostly frozen.
  3. Transfer cookies to a freezer bag and seal.
  4. To serve, remove cookies from freezer bag and allow cookies to thaw on the counter for 15 minutes. 

Enjoy!

Updated by Marly · Permalink