Carrot Cake with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

Carrot Cake with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting


Carrot Cake with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

This moist three-layer carrot cake is actually quite simple, but will truly impress your guests. My trick for a moist carrot cake is applesauce and coconut oil. And really, what's carrot cake without a cream cheese frosting? I add vanilla bean paste to the frosting for an extra kick of vanilla and for beautiful vanilla bean seeds.


  • 1 cup coconut sugar (or cane sugar)

  • 1 cup dark brown sugar

  • 1 cup coconut oil, melted

  • 4 eggs

  • 1 cup applesauce

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 2 1/2 cup all purpose flour

  • 2 tsp baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves

  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger

  • 1 tsp cinnamon

  • pinch of salt

  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans, plus more for topping

  • 4 cups grated carrot (about 8 large carrots)

For the Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 1 8 oz. package cream cheese

  • 5 cups powdered sugar

  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste (or 2 tsp vanilla extract)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

  2. Grease three round 9-inch pans with coconut oil.

  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugars, oil, eggs, applesauce and vanilla extract.

  4. In a another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon and salt.

  5. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing as you add.

  6. Add the pecans and grated carrot and mix until combined.

  7. Pour the cake mixture into the three prepared baking pans.

  8. Bake for 30 minutes. Let cool.

  9. While the cake is cooling, begin making the frosting.

  10. Using an electronic mixture, begin beating the the cream cheese while slowly adding the powdered sugar, one cup at a time.

  11. Beat in the vanilla until smooth and creamy.

  12. Once the cake has cooled completely, apply frosting in between each layer and on top. For the decorative frosting on top, place the icing in a large ziplock bag, cut out one of the corners, twist the bag to force out the frosting and make any design you'd like. I started from the center and swirled my way out.

  13. Finally, sprinkle with chopped pecans.

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