The Fate of My Carrot Cake

We love baking for our families. It’s a show of love, a test of skills, and of course it involves great food. However, in the past year the weather has freakishly worked against every planned holiday trip to see family. At Christmas you’ll remember we were trapped by a snowstorm, and our initial Easter plans to head to Minnesota were dashed by our car accident in a “First Day of Spring” ice storm. This time around, even our planned trip back to Springfield (conveniently on Easter) to pick up our repaired Jeep was dashed when the body shop called to say our Jeep wouldn’t be finished until Wednesday. The problem was that we got the call in the car merging onto the highway and had already baked this beauty and had to instead offer it up to the neighbors to avoid eating it all ourselves.

What I love about this cake is that it’s low-fat, easy to make vegan (just switch from regular milk to soy, or use egg substitutes), and it has a rich carrot flavor that is loaded with vitamin A derived from the beta-Carotene. What I like best is that it’s not overly sweet, and is almost more of a bread than a cake. So here’s how I did it:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 cups finely-shredded carrots
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup applesauce
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 1/4 cups soy milk or 4 egg substitute (Ener-G)
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional, I opted to go without this round)

Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup nonhydrogenated shortening
  • 1/2 cup nonhydrogenated margarine,
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted if clumpy
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup plain soy milk

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 325 F.

1. Grease or flour a 10×9 or square baking pan.

2. Mix together dry ingredients and set aside.

3. Combine shredded carrots, milk/egg substitutes, oil, apple sauce and vanilla. Beat for 2-3 minutes or until ingredients are combined. Don’t overdo it, you’ve still got the dry ingredients.

4. Add dry ingredients to wet and combine again until thoroughly combined. Batter will not be attractive, so no fears you’re not doing anything wrong.

5. Bake at 325 F for about 40-50 minutes, or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.

6. Remove from oven and allow to cook on baking rack.

7. Once cake is cooled to room temperature, frost and enjoy!

So there you have it. My perfect for Spring Carrot Cake. Enjoy and share with your neighbors, I’m sure they’ll enjoy it as much as mine did!

11 Comments

  • Christa says:

    I saw you comment about your cake over the weekend some time and I have been craving carrot cake ever since. Thanks for posting the recipe – I will be trying this one!

  • YUM! Stephen loves carrot cake. Can’t wait to try out this recipe, Jessica!

  • Jessica says:

    Christa, if you want some, we still have some! Neil won’t let me bake anything until we finish it lol.

    Thanks Ashley, it’s my fav too!

  • i really want to try this! i love carrot cake and i’m intrigued that it’s vegan.

  • kathy says:

    I love carrot cake. I like your version already coz it’s low-fat you said. lol! Thanks for this! 🙂

  • jd says:

    That carrot cake looks obnoxiously delicious. I love it!

  • Brent Wambold says:

    I cut back on the sugar and liquid and added a small can of crushed pineapple and a handful of coconut…the cake becomes more like a moist blondie and then I used nonfat cream cheese to the frosting instead of shortning and topped it all with toasted walnuts. This will always be a favorite because you feel healthy after a dessert with carrots in it.

  • Jessica says:

    It tends to feel less sugar-sweet and more savory too. Neil and I both don’t have much of a sweet tooth for cakes and larger desserts, so carrot cake is always the better alternative. Believe me, if we could have gotten carrot cake as our wedding cake, we would have.

  • Gina says:

    Thanks for the recipe! Found it on foodgawker and your picture looks scrumptious.
    I tried this recipe yesterday and was not successful whatsoever. It was GOOOO, meaning complete and total liquid on the inside, even after baking for over an hour.
    Perhaps 2 1/4 cups of soy milk is a bit excessive?

  • Jessica says:

    Possibly. I apologize, I haven’t made this recipe in FOREVER and was actually thinking of a revamp as I don’t drink soy milk or use shortening anymore. If you try it again, back it off to a 1 1/4 cups. The tricky part is making sure there is enough moisture (no eggs in it). My batter was fairly thick.

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