Easy Carrot Cake

Soft, creamy, rich, and easy carrot cake with a delicious mascarpone frosting. The perfect Easter dessert to satisfy your cake cravings!

If you have never tried this easy carrot cake recipe before, you’re just one taste away from falling in love with the best Easter cake ever.

There are so many reasons why we love this cake. It’s moist, rich, health-ish and such a breeze to make.

The combination of carrots, nuts, and cheese frosting paired together with a lightly spiced cake sponge makes it just an incredible dessert.

easy carrot cake with cream cheese frosting.

My family loves this cake so much that I bake it on a regular basis. It’s also my son’s most requested birthday cake!

CARROT CAKE INGREDIENTS

This easy and moist carrot cake recipe is incredibly delicious, gently spiced, and with some most-welcomed crunchy bits here and there.

To make these made from scratch carrot cake you’ll need less than 10 ingredients:

  • Flour: Just regular all purpose flour, you may swap 2 tablespoon of flour with 2 tablespoon of almond meal for an almond flour carrot cake if you like.
  • Baking powder: you can use baking powder and baking soda, or just baking powder.
  • Spices: A mix of cinnamon and nutmeg give a nice layer of flavor to this cake.
  • Sugar: I like to use demerara sugar, but brown sugar or caster sugar work just fine.
  • Eggs: Go for medium-sized eggs.
  • Extra-virgin olive oil: Use light olive oil with a subtle flavor.
  • Orange: The juice and zest of one orange add an amazing citrusy note, don’t skip it!
  • Carrots: Finely grate the carrots using the attachment on your food processor or a simple grater.
  • Walnuts: You can easily substitute them with pecan nuts or toasted almonds if you prefer.

CARROT CAKE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

This easy carrot cake recipe is delicious with or without frosting.

So if you want to make it healthier or you don’t have all the ingredients at hand, just skip the frosting altogether.

You can leave it plain or sprinkle a little powdered sugar on top and it will still taste amazing.

However, if you want to impress your guests, here are a few topping options:

  • Butter cream cheese frosting: this basic cream cheese frosting is a go-to option for many. It’s made with butter, cream cheese, powdered sugar, and orange juice.
  • Simple glaze: Simply mix 50 g of powdered sugar with 1 tablespoon of orange juice and drizzle all over the cake.
  • Mascarpone cheese frosting: Made with mascarpone cheese, this is my favorite frosting, it’s also a bit lighter and tangier than cream cheese frosting.
  • Ricotta frosting: Made with ricotta cheese, this lighter frosting is perfect if you want to make a healthy carrot cake. Simply follow the recipe below and swap the mascarpone cheese with well-drained ricotta.
  • Yogurt: To make dairy-free carrot cake use a dairy-free thick yogurt, like Skyr, instead of mascarpone cheese for the frosting.
easy carrot cake bars with cheese frosting.

As you can see, this super easy dessert is packed with healthy good stuff.

The nuts and veggies provide a great source of nutrients, making this cake on the health-ish side.

HOW TO MAKE CARROT CAKE

This easy carrot cake recipe couldn’t be easier. It’s ready in just a few simple steps and it takes less than an hour to make.

You’ll just need a couple of bowls and a cake pan!

carrot cake recipe collage: first images shows cake ingredients in a bowl, second image shows frosting ingredients in a bowl.

Dry ingredients

I like to mix all the dry ingredients in one bowl until well combined.

Wet Ingredients

I then mix all the wet ingredients in another bowl until they are nicely blended

Dry and wet ingredients together

Then I slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients a stir everything until combined.

Add carrots and nuts

Once the batter is ready, I fold in the carrots and nuts.

Pour and bake

Pour the prepared batter into two 9-inch round cake pans or one 9-inch tall cake pan or a 10-inch bundt cake pan or a 9-inch square pan.

Bake for 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let it cool.

Frost the cake

Mix all the frosting ingredients in a bowl, spread over the cake, decorate with chopped nuts and grated carrot and serve.

squares of carrot cake topped with mascarpone cream, sliced carrots and chopped nuts.

Before you know it, you’ll be indulging in a big slice of cake and making your own peace with the world.

HOW TO STORE CARROT CAKE

  • Serve: You can leave your homemade carrot cake at room temperature for up to 2 hours. 
  • Fridge: Cut the cake into slices and transfer them to a Ziplock bag or another airtight container to store in the fridge. They will keep well in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. 
  • Freeze: You can also make the cake ahead of time and freeze the slices. Slice into squares and freeze for up to 1 month.
    When you’re ready to serve, let them thaw in the fridge. Let them rest at room temperature for 30 minutes, then frost before serving.
What else can I make with this carrot cake recipe?

This moist carrot cake recipe gives you endless possibilities! here are a few desserts you can make using this recipe:
– Carrot cake cupcakes: You’ll need to reduce the baking time.
Bake for 14-16 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
Carrot cake bars: Use a 9-inch square pan or a 9×13-inch sheet pan to bake the cake, once ready, cut into slices. As you can see from my pictures, that’s my favorite version!
– Carrot cake loaf: Pour the batter into a classic 1 pound baking loaf.
Bake for about 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean. PS: you can also make carrot cake banana bread!

MORE EASTER DESSERT RECIPES TO TRY

DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

Please let me know how you liked it! Leave a comment and/or a rating below, and share a picture and tag @thepetitecook on Instagram! Reading your feedback and looking at your pictures always makes me smile *and super hungry*! 

easy carrot cake with mascarpone cheese frosting.

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4.8 from 5 votes

Soft, creamy, rich, and easy carrot cake with a delicious mascarpone frosting. The perfect Easter dessert to satisfy your cake cravings!

Prep Time5 mins

Cook Time40 mins

Total Time45 mins

Course: Dessert

Cuisine: American

Serving: 12

Calories: 388kcal

Ingredients

Wet ingredients:

  • 130 g muscovado sugar or brown sugar
  • 120 ml sunflower oil or extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 medium free-range eggs
  • juice and grated zest of one medium orange
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Dry ingredients:

  • 240 g all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 pinches sea salt
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 300 g carrots, finely grated
  • 3 tablespoon chopped walnuts
  • 3 tablespoon chopped almonds

For the mascarpone cream:

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 180°C / 360°F and arrange a baking tray onto the middle shelf. Brush with butter and line with parchment paper two 9-inch round cake pans or one 9-inch tall cake pan or a 10-inch bundt cake pan or a 9-inch square cake pan.

  • In a large bowl, mix all the wet ingredients.

  • In another large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients exept for the carrots and nuts.

  • Gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet ones. Mix until fully combined, being careful not to overwork the mixture.

  • Finally afold in the chopped carrots and nuts. Pour the carrot cake batter into the prepared cake pan, making sure that it does not exceed ⅔ of the pan.

  • Bake the carrot cake for about 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

  • In the meantime, whisk the mascarpone cheese with sugar, until you to get a smooth and rich cream. Add freshly grated orange zest and juice and mix until just combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.

  • When the cake is ready, remove it from the oven and let it cool on a cooling rack before removing it from the pan.

  • Spread the frosting over the surface. You can cover the cake entirely with cream or just the top of it.

  • Decorate with chopped nuts and grated carrot and serve.

Notes


Storage tips:

  • Fridge: Cut the cake into slices and transfer them to a Ziplock bag or another airtight container to store in the fridge. They will keep well in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
  • Freeze: You can also make the cake ahead of time and freeze the slices. Slice into squares and freeze for up to 1 month.
    When you’re ready to serve, let them thaw in the fridge. Let them rest at room temperature for 30 minutes, then frost before serving.

Here are a few other frosting options:

  • Butter cream cheese frosting: this basic cream cheese frosting is a go-to option for many. It’s made with butter, cream cheese, powdered sugar, and orange juice.

  • Simple glaze: Simply mix 50 g of powdered sugar with 1 tablespoon of orange juice and drizzle all over the cake.

  • Ricotta frosting: Made with ricotta cheese, this lighter frosting is perfect if you want to make a healthy carrot cake. Simply follow the frosting recipe here and swap the mascarpone cheese with well-drained ricotta.

  • Yogurt: To make dairy-free carrot cake use a dairy-free thick yogurt like Skyr, instead of mascarpone cheese for the frosting.

Nutrition

Calories: 388kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 75mg | Sodium: 221mg | Potassium: 218mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 20g | Vitamin A: 4550IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 112mg | Iron: 1mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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