Easy Carrot Cake Recipe

Here’s An Easy Carrot Cake Recipe For You To Enjoy!

Are you a fan of carrot cake but not a fan of recipes with many layers and fancy ingredients? Try out our recipe for an easy carrot cake loaded with carrots and cinnamon and topped with a classic cream cheese icing. There is no middle layer of icing – so it’s easy to whip together in a pinch and it makes a reliable and delicious dessert. You just mix it, bake it, ice it, and eat it!

slice of easy carrot cake with carrot-shaped icing on blue plate
This carrot cake only has one layer – so it’s really easy to make.

Interestingly enough, the origins of carrot cake are definitely European – but there is much dispute around the matter. Early versions of a carrot pudding – which has ingredients similar to modern-day carrot cake – popped up in the Middle Ages in England and around Europe. The carrot was often used as a sweetener because sugar was expensive.

Searching for more cake recipes? Have a look at these:
Easy Lemon Cake
Classic German Marble Cake
Moist Chocolate Zucchini Cake
No-Bake Kalter Hund Recipe

To make matters more complicated, carrot cake was first put in a more formal cookbook by the French. Even the Swiss claim that the more modern version came from a later recipe of theirs – and that’s why it is a beloved cake in Switzerland! One thing is for sure: whichever origin story you believe, carrot cake is delicious and here to stay.

slice of yellow carrot cake on blue plate with cake behind
This easy carrot cake recipe crated a fluffy, rich cake!

Of course, we both grew up eating carrot cake, but very different versions. Lisa is used to a simple version of carrot cake (like the one in this recipe). A highlight was decorating the slices with little sugar carrots which are widely available in Germany. Unfortunately, we couldn’t find them where we currently live so we drew one on for fun!

Eric – having grown up in Canada – is used to the North American version of carrot cake which is generally layered, dense, sweet, often loaded with nuts, and glazed with a heavy cream cheese icing. While that version is good, it can be very sweet depending on who is baking it.

slice of carrot cake on blue plate with carrot beside and carrot shape on top
You can decorate your carrot cake how you like – we drew a carrot!

That’s why we really enjoy the recipe below because you get the simple flavors like carrot, cinnamon, and the icing coming through without the overly sugary blast to the palate. It serves well with a tea or coffee and makes a great dessert for after family dinners.

This version also stores well in the fridge for a couple of days – just cover the cake with foil or place the extra pieces in a container to keep it moist. We hope you enjoy this easy carrot cake as much as we do!

slice of carrot cake on blue plate with carrot beside and carrot shape on top

Easy Carrot Cake

Yield: 20
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Looking to make a carrot cake without the fuss? This easy carrot cake recipe is for you! Made with simple ingredients like shredded carrots and oil instead of butter, this cake turns out thick and fluffy. Of course, no carrot cake is complete without a signature cream cheese icing on top!

Ingredients

The Cake

  • 2 cups carrots, finely shredded (approx. 2 medium-sized carrots)
  • 1 cup oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 medium-sized eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups white flour
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • a pinch of salt

The Frosting

  • 1 cup (approx. 300g) cream cheese
  • 2 tbsp whipping cream (approx. 35% fat)
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 355 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Prepare your rectangular baking pan by greasing it or lining it with parchment paper.
  3. Peel your carrots and finely shred them on the "small hole" side of a 4-sided box grater. Then set the shredded carrots aside.
  4. In a large bowl, add the oil, sugar, and vanilla extract and beat everything with your electric (hand) mixer until well combined. Add the eggs and beat again.
  5. In a different bowl, combine white flour, almond flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Give the ingredients a good stir, then slowly add them to the wet ingredients in small increments while beating with your mixer on the lowest setting. Keep beating until your mixture is smooth.
  6. Set your electric mixer aside and fold the shredded carrots into the batter using a spatula.
  7. Spoon the cake batter into your prepared baking pan and spread it out evenly with a spoon or spatula. Bake it for approx. 30 minutes or the point where an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Since every oven is different, your baking time might vary slightly.
  8. After the cake is done cooking, remove it from the oven and let it cool.
  9. In the meantime, prepare the frosting by beating the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and whipping cream with an electric (hand) mixture until creamy. Then spread the frosting onto the cooled cake. You can optionally decorate the cake slices with small sugar carrots (depending on availability - they are popular cake decorations in Germany).

Notes

  • For this recipe, we used a 13.5 x 9.5-inch baking pan. If the dimensions of your baking pan are noticeably different, you will have to adjust the recipe accordingly.
  • We stuck to a classic rectangular baking pan (one that you might also use for brownies) for this recipe. Of course, you can also make it in a round springform pan, but the baking time will vary.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 20 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 241Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 36mgSodium: 111mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 1gSugar: 12gProtein: 4g

This nutritional information has been estimated by an online nutrition calculator. It should only be seen as a rough calculation and not a replacement for professional dietary advice. The exact values can vary depending on the specific ingredients used.

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