Jeremy loves carrot cake. He requested a homemade one for his first Birthday that we were together. I was excited to make it, but I had no clue how to make a carrot cake from scratch. Growing up, if we had a carrot cake, it was always from a box. I gave it my best shot, but my first attempt at a homemade carrot cake was a complete failure. There were a few things I didn’t understand at the time
- When you shred your carrots, make sure you use the larger holes on your shredder – the one you would use for cheese. This results in less waste of carrots and less moisture.
- Squeeze your carrot shreds after shredding to eliminate excess moisture
- Always, always, always let your cake properly cool prior to adding the icing
The first attempt resulted in a cake that did not taste very well and icing that literally turned into a liquid because I did not let the cake cool (Jeremy was on his way home and I wanted it to be ready when he got in, so I put the icing on shortly after taking it out of the oven).
Fast-forward 4 years and I attempted another carrot cake. This one, if I do say so myself, was DELICIOUS. Thankfully, I’m not the only one who thought so. 3 year-old Magoo liked it so well that I had a hard time keeping her out of it – even without the frosting on it! Jeremy loved it and and his co-worker said it was the best carrot cake he had ever eaten. The entire 9 x 13 cake lasted less than 48 hours, so I’d say it’s a hit.
Technically, this one is a carrot-pineapple cake because there is 8 oz of crushed (and drained) pineapple in the cake. This adds to the moisture and leaves the cake’s texture a little less dense than some of your traditional carrot cakes. Below is the recipe. Print it, laminate it, save it to your favorites, pin it…you need this cake in your life!
What is needed:
- 4 eggs
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup applesauce
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup white granulated sugar
- 3 tsps vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsps baking soda
- 2 tsps baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 tsps ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 3 cups grated carrots
- 1 8 oz can crushed pineapple (drained)
- Pecans or walnuts (optional – I did not include these)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease a 9 x 13 pan.
- In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, applesauce, brown and white sugar, vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Stir in carrots and pineapple. If you’re choosing to add nuts, add either pecans or walnuts at this time. Pour into prepared pan.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then either turn out onto a wire rack (which I do not have, so I did not use this option) or place a folded up towel in your freezer and place the cake (while still in the pan) in the freezer to speed the cooling process.
To make frosting:
- 4 oz unsalted butter
- 4 oz cream cheese
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- In a large bowl, beat together the butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer. With the mixer on low speed, add the powdered sugar 1/4 cup at a time until smooth and creamy. Beat in the vanilla extract.