Chocolate Beet Cupcakes with Low Fat Cream Cheese Frosting

I'm celebrating today! My one-year "blogiversary" is approaching quickly and I'm having a hard time believing that I've already been blogging for almost a whole year!! But before I hit my one-year milestone, I've hit another milestone first...my 100th post! That's right, The Busy Baker has posted 100 recipes this year and that is definitely a reason to celebrate! And what better way to celebrate than with cupcakes, am I right?? And in the spirit of making healthy choices, I've put a healthy spin on these Chocolate Beet Cupcakes so they're not entirely guilt-inducing. They're full of fresh beets, so they're incredibly moist and decadent, and the cream cheese frosting is super fluffy and sweet. They're a great Valentines Day treat but really, they're perfect for any occasion!

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This recipe was inspired by Anna Olson's Red Velvet Cupcake recipe that you can find here.

You'll need:
6 tbsp finely shredded beets
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg
3 tbsp canola oil
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt
3 tbsp cocoa powder
6 tbsp white sugar
4 tbsp brown sugar

For the frosting:
6oz low fat cream cheese, at room temperature
4 tbsp butter, at room temperature
2 1/2 - 3 cups powdered sugar
2 or 3 tsp milk

shaved dark chocolate for garnish (optional)

To make:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a 12-cup muffin tin with your favourite paper liners.

Add the finely shredded beets to a large bowl, along with the milk, vinegar, vanilla, the egg, and the canola oil. Whisk these ingredients together until they're combined.

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cocoa powder and sugars with a wire whisk until there are no visible lumps.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and using a rubber spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until no streaks of flour remain and everything is evenly incorporated (be sure the scrape down the sides of the bowl well!).

Divide the batter between the 12 paper liners. I used stiff paper cupcake cups (see photo below) because they're great for special occasions, but regular paper liners work well too. If you're using paper cupcake cups like I did, just place them on a baking sheet.

Bake the cupcakes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of one comes out clean.

The texture of these cupcakes is much more dense than a regular chocolate cupcake, however they're still light enough to spring back to the touch. Be sure to let them cool completely before you frost them!

To make the frosting, whip the cream cheese and the butter on high speed using a stand mixer (a hand mixer will do just fine too!). Add the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time and mix on high speed until the mixture achieves the texture of stiff frosting. Add the milk 1 teaspoon at a time as you mix on high speed just until the frosting softens in texture enough that it becomes creamy enough to pipe. The exact amount of milk and powdered sugar will vary every time because of the temperature of the butter and cream cheese, so feel free to add a little less or more milk or powdered sugar to achieve the perfect piping texture.

Add the frosting to a piping bag fitted with a large star tip and pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes in a swirl design once they've cooled completely!

Add some shaved dark chocolate for a garnish, and enjoy!!

Like this recipe? Try this showstopping Vanilla Bean Rosette Cake or these delicious Strawberry Swirl Cupcakes with Fresh Strawberry Buttercream!

These are beautifully rich-tasting cupcakes perfect for any celebration, and they're a great Valentines Day treat! No one would ever guess they're low fat and full of vegetables!!

These Chocolate Beet Cupcakes with Low Fat Cream Cheese Frosting are 14 Weight Watchers SmartPoints each (5 Smart Points without the frosting!), making them a great alternative to most full-fat buttercream-laden cupcakes that can be as many as 27 Smart Points each!

I really hope you enjoy this recipe! Let me know in the comments below, what's your favourite way to hide vegetables in sweet treats?

Like this recipe? Try these Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes or my Apple Caramel Cupcakes!


 Want to stay up to date on what's happening in my kitchen? 

Be sure to like my page on Facebook!


Hungry for more? Click here to get free recipes by email!


  1. People never believe me when I say you can use beets in chocolate cake, but they are so missing out! These look great dear!

  2. Congrats on your 100th post! And these cupcakes look and sounds delicious! Yum!

  3. Happy 100th post and nearing blogaversary! That's a big deal! These cupcakes are seriously cute! and wow i have to try this Veggies in cupcakes? New idea for me!

  4. I love when people put beets in a cupcake as I can feel like I can have two or maybe three without the guilt. Lovely recipe and photos.

  5. Congratulations! Such pretty cupcakes - I love sneaking veggies into sweet treats, especially when my kids haven't a clue.

  6. I bet these are delicious - we have beets in the fridge!


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