How to make the best and easy carrot cake recipe ever with creamy cream cheese frosting. This frosted carrot cake is very easy to make with freshly shredded carrots, a delicious spicy taste and flavor, and the crunchy texture of pecans.
If you don't like carrot cake it's simply because you haven't tried the right recipe yet! And that's exactly what I did before I made this delicious homemade carrot cake recipe made in cake layers with is fluffy cream cheese frosting.
The carrot cake is a very popular cake all over the world, although it is made with an ingredient that we are more used to cook in savory recipes, carrots.
But in baking, we are not too surprised to see this kind of mixture of vegetables with spices, like pumpkin or even zucchini because this combination gives an incredible tasty cake like in carrot cakes.
The grated carrots bring a lot of flavor to sweet recipes, it is loaded with water which gives a very moist texture in addition to adding natural sugar and it goes perfectly with fall spices like cinnamon, ginger, or nutmeg.
And who says carrot cake also means its deliciously sweet and salty frosting made with cream cheese that balances the taste of warm spices in this super easy carrot cake recipe.
The carrot cake is a delicious dessert with spices that changes from the usual cakes, it is made in fall or when Easter comes, and it can be declined in other ways as my carrot cake cupcakes or carrot bread it is still delicious.
Why use carrots in cake
So for all those who think otherwise, I assure you that the carrot cake has absolutely no taste of carrots. And it is certainly due has a rather neutral taste and the extra spices that the cooked carrot has a rather soft and sweet taste.
Like the banana in the banana bread, the shredded carrots has a wonderful action in the carrot cake, it brings at the same time of a soft and extra moist carrot cake texture, sweetness and natural sugar.
Fluffy cream cheese frosting
Carrot cake recipes are usually served with a creamy frosting made with butter and cream cheese to which heavy cream and powdered sugar are also added.
Cream chees is usually used to make cheesecake or as a glaze for cinnamon rolls. It has a slightly sweet and salty taste and goes well with all spice recipes.
This frosting is a bit creamier, like butter cream but it can easily be replaced by a lighter frosting like mascarpone whipped cream or even a classic vanilla buttercream.
Ingredient and substitutions
Carrot cake :
- Carrot: Use about 4 medium freshly grated carrots to make this recipe, you can use more or less depending on your preference.
- Flour: All-purpose flour or even you can also use cake flour. Measure quantities with a scale and not with measuring cups for more precision.
- Raising agent A combination of baking soda and baking powder is used to ensure good fluffiness.
- Spices: The most used are ground cinnamon, ground ginger, nutmeg, and cloves.
- Eggs: Use eggs at room temperature
- Vegetable oil: A neutral oil such as rapeseed oil, grape seed oil or walnut oil.
- Sugar: A combination of flavored brown sugar and granulated sugar.
- Salt and vanilla extract: Balances the flavors and perfumes the cake.
- Pecans: Add chopped pecans to add crunch to the texture of the cake, you can mix them with almonds and walnut kernels.
Cream cheese frosting :
- Cream cheese: use Philadelphia cream cheese spread full fat and cold.
- Butter: unsalted and softened butter.
- Powdered sugar: or icing sugar (confectioners sugar) to avoid the feeling of sugar grains in the mouth
- Cornstarch: as an option, it can be used to firm up the texture a little.
- Vanilla extract: essential for flavoring, pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean seeds.
⚠️ You will find the quantities and complete instructions in the recipe card at the end of the page.
How to make the best Carrot Cake recipe
1 - Carrot cake batter
- Preheat the oven to 347°F / 175°C and line 2 8-inch / 20 cm round cake pans with parchment paper.
- Peel and finely grate the carrots and set aside. (you can also use packaged pre-shredded carrots)
- Mix together in a bowl the dry ingredients, flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices, and salt.
- In a separate large bowl, whisk together eggs, granulated sugar and brown sugar, vegetable oil, vanilla, and shredded carrots.
- Gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients with a rubber spatula until the mixture is smooth and liquid.
- Finish by adding the crushed pecans.
- Pour the cake batter into your prepared pan.
- Bake for about 30-35 minutes until the top is golden brown and puffed up check with a toothpick inserted into the center and it should come out clean.
- Allow cakes to completely cool to room temperature.
Tip: Bake the cake in 2 batches using 2 pans of the same diameter.
2 - Cream cheese icing
- Place the chopped and softened butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes until creamy and smooth.
- Add cream cheese and continue beating on medium speed for another 2 minutes until thick and smooth.
- Add powdered sugar and vanilla extract and mix again for 2 minutes.
- Keep your frosting in the fridge until ready to assemble.
Tip: use room temperature ingredients, especially for the butter, to ensure a smooth, homogenous texture.
3 - Frosted cake
- Place the first layer of carrot cake on a serving plate and cover it with a thin layer of cream cheese frosting.
- Cover with a second layer of cake and cover the entire cake with the remaining frosting.
- Decorate the tops of the carrot cake with crushed pecans.
Tip: Let the cake chill in the refrigerator for about 1 houre before serving.
Storage and Freeze
In the fridge: If your carrot cake is covered with frosting, then you must keep it in the fridge covered with plastic wrap for 4-5 days. Otherwise, the cake can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container to keep the carrot cake moist.
In the freezer: You can freeze carrot cake for up to 3 months in the freezer, cut into pieces or covered with plastic wrap. To defrost, let it return to the refrigerator slowly.
More spiced cake recipes
- Gingerbread layer cake
- Chai tea latte with spices
- Gingerbread village layer cake
- Carrot bread with cream cheese icing
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Easy carrot cake recipe with cream cheese icing
- Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
- Yield: 15 servings
A soft and delicious carrot cake with an easy cream cheese icing (for a 8 inch / 20 cm diameter cake, about 12-15 parts)
- 225 g (2 cups) Carrots - grated - about 4 medium
- 240 g (2 cups) Flour - all-purpose
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 ½ tsp Baking powder
- 1 pinch Nutmeg ground
- 1 pinch Ginger ground
- 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 pinch Cloves ground
- 1 pinch Salt
- 3 Eggs - room temperature
- 165 g ( ¾ cup) Brown sugar
- 100 g (½ cup) Granulated sugar
- 190 ml (¾ cup) Vegetable oil - grape seed, hazelnut or rapeseed
- 2 tsp Vanilla
Cream cheese icing
- 200 g (1 cup) Butter - softened and diced
- 195g (7 oz) Cream cheese
- 200 g (2 cups) Powdered sugar
- 1 tbsp Cornstarch - optional
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- Preheat the oven to 347°F / 175°C and line one or two 8 inch / 20 cm round baking pans.
- Place and mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl, flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and spices, ground nutmeg, ground cinnamon, ground ginger and ground cloves.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, brown sugar and granulated sugar. Add the vegetable oil, vanilla and grated carrots.
- Fold in the dry ingredients with a spatula.
- Add the crushed pecans and mix until you have a liquid mixture.
- Pour the mixture into your pan and bake for about 35 minutes.
- Let the carrot cake cool completely at room temperature.
- Place the softened, diced butter in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat for about 2 minutes until creamy and smooth.
- Add cream cheese and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes until smooth.
- Stir in sifted powdered sugar, vanilla and cornstarch and mix again for 2 minutes until thick and creamy.
- Fill the inside and outside of the cake with the cream cheese.
- You can mix crushed nuts, pecans, almonds and walnuts
- Divide the recipe in 2 to make only one layer of cake
- Use room temperature eggs
- You can increase or decrease the amount of grated carrots according to your preference.
You can keep the carrot cake alone at room temperature for about 1 week, covered with a cloth or in a storage box.
It is also possible to keep it in the freezer for up to 3 months, by placing it in a storage bag or in a box.
For the cream cheese it is only in the fridge, if you use it on the cake then keep your cake in the fridge
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Category: cake, Dessert
- Cuisine: Américaine
- Calories: 287
- Sugar: 19
- Sodium: 278
- Fat: 16
- Saturated Fat: 9
- Carbohydrates: 46
- Fiber: 1
- Protein: 4
- Cholesterol: 75
Keywords: easy carrot cake, moist carrot cake, homemade carrot cake, carrot cake with cream cheese
Please turn the grams measurements into cup measurements
Hello Rebecca, ok I will do that
It's not in cups yet. Did you converted the recipe into US measurements?
Hi Jessica, it's done, you now have the measurements in cups but I still advise you to use a scale, it's always more accurate than cups.
It is a nice recipe. Thx
The recipe calls for baking sofa, but the directions mention both baking soda and baking powder. Are both in it? Wondering before I attempt... so excited to try this recipe!
Hi Sarah, indeed it's fixed the recipe card contains a mixture of baking soda and baking powder.