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Carrot Cake Cookies Recipe | The Stay At Home Chef

Carrot cake cookies are super simple to whip up, totally delicious, and they hit that sweet spot with a mix of spice and everything nice. They’re everything you love about the classic dessert—spiced, sweet, and oh-so-carroty—but in a fun, easy-to-grab cookie format. Perfect for Easter celebrations, snacking, or just because you deserve a delicious treat. So grab your apron, and let’s turn that carrot cake craving into a batch of delicious cookies!

If you can’t get enough carrot cake, make sure to try carrot cake cupcakes and the classic carrot cake itself!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Perfect for busy moms, this recipe comes together quickly with simple steps.
  • Option to serve them plain, with frosting, or as sandwich cookies.
  • Easily customizable with mix-ins or frosting.

Carrot Cake Cookies Recipe

Carrot cake cookies are a delightful dance of flavors, where the warmth of cinnamon and nutmeg meets the sweet, earthy notes of carrot, all nestled in a soft, chewy cookie with a lightly crisp edge. Each bite is a mosaic of textures, from the tender crumb of the cookie itself to the optional crunch of walnuts or the juicy burst of raisins. They’re a sweet treat that brings the classic carrot cake experience to your fingertips, no fork required.

Overhead view of a kitchen counter with measured out walnuts, flour, sugar, egg, butter, brown sugar, carrots, and spices.

Customizing Cookies with Add-Ins

Adding mix-ins to your carrot cake cookies is a fantastic way to customize them to your liking. Whether you’re a fan of chocolate chips, nuts, or dried fruit, here’s how to incorporate these tasty extras:

  • Chocolate Chips: For a sweet twist, stir in 1/2 cup of semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips into the dough. They add a melty, chocolatey goodness that pairs wonderfully with the spices.
  • Walnuts: If you enjoy a bit of crunch and nuttiness, 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts is a great choice. They not only add texture but also complement the flavors of the carrot and spices.
  • Raisins: For a classic carrot cake touch, add 1/2 cup of raisins. They provide bursts of sweetness and a chewy texture that enhances the overall experience.

Do not incorporate more than 1 cup total of add-ins.

Tips for Incorporating Add-Ins:

  • Mix Evenly: Ensure your add-ins are evenly distributed throughout the dough for consistent flavor and texture in every bite.
  • Prep Add-Ins: For nuts, toasting them lightly before adding can enhance their flavor. Raisins can be soaked in warm water for a few minutes and then drained to plump them up, making them juicier.
  • Experiment with Combinations: Feel free to mix and match these add-ins. A combination of chocolate chips and walnuts or raisins and nuts can create a delightful blend of flavors and textures.
A collage of four images showing ingredients in a mixing bowl at various stages of being mixed together, and an image of cookie dough balls on a baking sheet.

Frosting Your Carrot Cake Cookies

Cream cheese frosting is a delightful way to elevate the flavor of your cookies and make them even more irresistible. Whether you prefer a light topping of frosting or want to indulge in a cookie sandwich, here’s how to do it:


  • Choose Your Frosting: Cream cheese frosting is a classic choice that complements the spiced flavor of the cookies. You can use store-bought or homemade frosting.
  • Prep the Frosting: If using homemade frosting, ensure it’s at a spreadable consistency. If it’s too thick, you can thin it with a teaspoon of milk at a time until you reach the desired consistency.
  • Frosting Technique: Use a knife or an offset spatula to spread a thin layer of frosting on each cookie. For a more decorative look, you can use a piping bag fitted with your favorite tip to swirl the frosting on top.
  • Let Set: Allow the frosting to set for a few minutes before serving. This helps the frosting firm up a bit and makes the cookies easier to handle.

Making a Cookie Sandwich

  • Double the Cookies: For each sandwich, you’ll need two cookies of roughly the same size. Make sure the cookies have cooled completely before you start.
  • Filling: Spoon or pipe a generous amount of frosting on the flat side of one cookie. The amount of frosting is up to you, but about 1 to 2 tablespoons is a good starting point.
  • Assembly: Place the second cookie on top of the frosting, flat-side down, and gently press down until the frosting spreads to the edges. If you like, you can smooth the edges with a knife for a cleaner look.
  • Chill (Optional): If you prefer a firmer texture, chill the cookie sandwiches in the fridge for about 30 minutes before serving.


  • Dough is Too Sticky to Handle: If your dough turns out too sticky to scoop or shape, you can try chilling it in the refrigerator for about 20-30 minutes or add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time until it is easier to handle and scoop.
  • Cookies Aren’t Spreading Enough: If you notice the cookies aren’t spreading at all about halfway through baking time, and are instead staying in thick mounds, flatten them slightly with the back of a spoon or a glass before they finish baking. This can help achieve the desired shape and ensure even baking.
  • Cookies Baking Unevenly: If some cookies are baking faster than others, you can rotate the baking sheet from front to back and switch racks if you’re using multiple racks in your oven. This adjustment can help ensure that all cookies bake evenly and come out perfect.

Tips From the Chef

  • Rest the Dough: If time allows, let your dough rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before baking. This helps the flavors to meld together and can improve the texture of the cookies.
  • Use Parchment Paper or a Silicone Baking Mat: Not only do these prevent sticking, but they also make for easier cleanup and can contribute to more evenly baked cookies.
  • Customize Your Mix-ins: Adjust the mix-ins to suit your preference.
A stack of carrot cake cookie sandwiches with cream cheese frosting.

When are carrot cake cookies ready?

  • Color: Look for a light golden brown around the edges.
  • Texture: The edges should be slightly crisp, with a softer center.
  • Firmness: They should be slightly firm to the touch but will firm up more as they cool.

How to Store Carrot Cake Cookies

  • At Room Temperature (for unfrosted cookies):
    • Cool cookies completely before storing.
    • Place in an airtight container, separating layers with parchment paper to prevent sticking.
    • Store at room temperature for up to 5 days for best freshness.
  • In the Refrigerator (frosted or unfrosted cookies):
    • Cool completely and store in an airtight container.
    • Refrigerate for up to 10 days unfrosted, or 5 days frosted.
    • Allow to come to room temperature before serving, or warm slightly in the microwave for a few seconds if desired.

All cookies with cream cheese frosting need to be refrigerated.

Freezer Instructions

  • Freezing Baked Cookies:
    • Ensure cookies are completely cool to avoid condensation.
    • Place cookies in a single layer on a baking sheet to freeze individually, then transfer to a freezer-safe bag or container. This prevents them from sticking together.
    • Label the bag or container with the date. Cookies can be frozen for up to 3 months.
    • Thaw at room temperature or in the refrigerator overnight. Warm in the oven or microwave if you prefer them slightly warm.
  • Freezing Cookie Dough:
    • Scoop or shape dough as you would before baking.
    • Place dough portions on a baking sheet and freeze until solid.
    • Transfer frozen dough balls to a freezer-safe bag or container, label with the date, and freeze for up to 3 months.
    • Bake from frozen, adding a few extra minutes to the original baking time. No need to thaw.

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