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Ultimate carrot cake with cream cheese frosting

Ultimate Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

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5 from 17 reviews


Source: Fine Cooking Magazine Article: “Carrot Cake, Perfected” by Gregory Case

Note: I have made some modifications to the original recipe. Changes include using a different method to mix the batter, using a different frosting, and using a different method to frost the cake. To find the original, click here.


For the cake:

  • Softened butter, for the pan
  • 1 lb. carrots
  •  2 1/4 cups (295 g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon (7 g) salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups (315 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) packed brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature, beaten
  • 1 1/4 cups (264 g) vegetable or grapeseed oil

For the frosting:

  • 8 oz  (226 g) cream cheese, cold
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
  • 2/3 cup (140 g) heavy cream
  • pinch sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


Make the cake:

  1. Position a rack in the bottom third of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9×13-inch heavy-duty metal cake pan or two 8-inch round cake pans. Line with parchment paper for easy removal. 
  2. In a food processor, using the shredder attachment, shred the carrots.  
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and sugars. Add the grated carrots and toss to coat. Add the beaten eggs and oil, and stir with a spatula until evenly mixed. 
  4. Scrape the batter into the prepared 9×13-inch pan or divide the batter among the two 8-inch pans. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 45 – 50 minutes for the 9×13-inch pan, about 30 minutes for the round pans. Let cool on a rack to room temperature.
  5. If you baked round pans, halve each one crosswise to make 4 round layers total.
  6. To make the frosting: Beat the cold cream cheese and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the heavy cream, a pinch of salt, and the vanilla. Beat again until light and fluffy. 

Frost the cake:

  1. If using a 9×13-inch pan: Scrape the frosting onto the center of the cake. With an offset spatula, if you have one, spread the frosting evenly over the surface. 
  2. If using round pans: Set one layer on a plate or cake platter. Top with one quarter (roughly) of the frosting, spreading to cover. Top with another layer of cake and repeat this frosting-spreading-layering process until each layer of cake has a nice layer of frosting.
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American