Whip up this Cassic Carrot Cake recipe with a homemade cream cheese frosting! A spiced carrot cake that is layered, for an elegant presentation and a scrumptious tasting. If you are a fan of carrot cake, this carrot cake recipe is a no-fail tried and true recipe I have made for years.
It’s also very simple to make. It’s basically just making the two cakes and combining them into one at the end along with a layer of sweet icing. It tastes even better the next day!
Let me walk you through some tips and tricks to set you up. I am a huge fan of carrot cake. I will never turn down a slice.
Craving More Cake Recipes
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- Mayonnaise Cake | I know it sounds crazy, but this is one of the moistest cakes I have ever made. You don’t taste the mayo, it has incredible chocolate flavor.
- Oatmeal Cake | Oats is such a hearty and tasty ingredient to keep in your pantry. Make this oatmeal cake as a midnight snack, afternoon dessert, or even breakfast treat.
Carrot Cake Ingredients
- Canola or vegetable oil
- Brown sugar
- All-purpose flour
- Baking soda
- Baking powder
How to Make Carrot Cake
- Step One: Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease two 9″ cake pans.
- Step Two: Beat oil and sugars together in a large bowl of an electric mixer, until combined.
- Step Three: Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Step Four: Combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a separate large bowl.
- Step Five: Add flour mixture to egg mixture. Mix just until combined. Fold in carrots. Divide batter evenly into prepared pans.
- Step Six: Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in centre comes out clean.
- Step Seven: Cool in pans on wire cooling rack for 20 minutes. Remove from pans and cool completely on wire cooling rack.
Cream Cheese Frosting Ingredients
- Cream cheese
- Powdered sugar
- Vanilla extract
How to Make Cream Cheese Frosting
- Step One: Cream butter and cream cheese in a large bowl of an electric mixer. Add powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time. Beat well after each addition. Add vanilla. Continue beating until fluffy. Add 1 tbsp milk at a time to thin out (if necessary).
- Step Two: Place one cake on serving dish. Spread with icing. Top with remaining cake. Spread top with remaining icing.
Best Way to Grate Carrots
To be honest, you have a variety of options here. Buy pre-grated carrots, use a box grater, or reach for your food processor. You can also buy attachments for the stand mixer to use to grate your carrots fast. It is all about what tools you have on hand vs, how much you want to spend to grate the carrots.
Carrot Cake Variations
Looking for ways to add more flavor or variation to your cake? Here are incredible ideas to add to your recipe.
- Nuts| Nuts are optional where you can stir in 1/2 cup of chopped pecans, walnuts, or even hazelnuts. Then stir into the batter and then bake as directed in recipe card.
- Frosting | You can go an extra step and add in 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon to the frosting to add a hint of spice to match your spiced carrot cake.
- Raisins | Raisins are something you see in carrot cake on occasion. You can either leave these out or opt to place around 1/4 cup into your batter to bake.
Is it Hard to Make a Layered Cake
No! Don’t be intimated to make a layered cake. I was scared at first, but if you take it step by step before you know it you have an assembled cake. The main thing is to frost in between the layers, and slowly smooth on the frosting so it doesn’t pull at the cake. It is okay if your frosting skill is not on point. Just do your best and you can always dress it up with crushed nuts, coconut or even sprinkles.
Can I Make this as a 9×13 vs. a Layered Cake
Yes. You can make this cake using a 9×13 cake pan if you prefer. We love the layered cake since you have all the extra frosting in each bite. But, if you prefer 9×13 go for it.
Does Carrot Cake Need to be Refrigerated
Yes. Because of the cream cheese frosting, you will want to store your cake in the fridge. Place in an airtight container and tuck into a shelf of the fridge. The cake will store anywhere from 3-5 days. With each day it can become a bit drier in texture so take note of that.
Can I Make Carrot Cake in Advance
If you want to make your cake in advance, I recommend only doing 24 hours in advance. Anything after that you will run the risk of it drying out. I find that the next day has even more flavor to the cake. So make it and then store in the fridge in an airtight container until you are ready to serve.
Best Way to Know When Carrot Cake is Done
You can stick a toothpick in the center of your cake to see if the toothpick comes out clean. Another way I tell is looking at the edges of the cake, it will begin to slightly pull away from the edges of the pan.
Will Carrot Cake Freeze Well
I have not tried freezing carrot cake, we normally eat it way to fast. But, I would think it would freeze just fine. The key would be to make sure you get it placed in an airtight container that won’t get air to it. Then freeze for up to three months. When ready to serve it, just thaw in the fridge or place on the counter and allow it to reach room temperature to eat.
You’ll also like these Carrot Cake Cups, Carrot Cake Loaf and Easter Trifle.
Classic Carrot Cake
What’s not love about carrot cake? Warm spices, creamy frosting, the orange flecks of carrot…yum! For those that are fans of nuts and/or raisins, feel free to add some in.
- 1 cup canola or vegetable oil
- 1 cup sugar
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 cups carrots, peeled and finely grated
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1/4 cup salted butter, softened
- 1 cup cream cheese, softened
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon milk, if necessary
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease two 9″ cake pans
- Beat oil and sugars together in a large bowl of an electric mixer, until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a separate large bowl. Add flour mixture to egg mixture. Mix just until combined. Fold in carrots. Divide batter evenly into prepared pans.
- Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in centre comes out clean.
- Cool in pans on wire cooling rack for 20 minutes. Remove from pans and cool completely on wire cooling rack.
- For the frosting, cream butter and cream cheese in a large bowl of an electric mixer. Add powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time. Beat well after each addition. Add vanilla. Continue beating until fluffy. Add 1 tbsp milk at a time to thin out (if necessary).
- Place one cake on serving dish. Spread with icing. Top with remaining cake. Spread top with remaining icing.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 944Total Fat: 46gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 30gCholesterol: 138mgSodium: 915mgCarbohydrates: 128gFiber: 3gSugar: 99gProtein: 9g
Kirsten @ Treat Yourself Sweeter says
Oh, I saw the lil’ thumbnail of this and thought… I want THAT cake NOW! Love a good carrot cake 🙂
Audrey O. says
I made this yesterday because it was National Carrot Cake day. Did you know it was special enough to have its own day?
Well if I can be honest, no one in my house likes carrot cake except my husband, so I really made it just for him. Also, we did a pickup order from Target during Xmas time and they accidentally gave us somebody else’s bag. This bag must’ve been for a little girls bday because it was full of party favors and 3-4 cans of The pre made, Betty Crocker type vanilla frosting. We called the store and they asked us to return the party favors but told us to keep the frosting for the inconvenience. Lol! Anyway, instead of making the cream cheese frosting in this recipe, I opted to use up some of our free canned frosting, to my husbands dismay, I tell ya, but even with the canned frosting, my ENTIRE family LOVED this cake. I don’t know what made this one so special, but thanks for a recipe that allowed the 5 of us to enjoy carrot cake on National Carrot Cake day!
Today is National Homemade Soup day, and yesterday I saw one on your site that I was gonna use for today. It was highlighted at the bottom of the post, but it’s not there today, so I sure hope I can find it because it used ingredients I already had on hand, but If not, I’m sure I’ll find something else yummy.
I’m not a big fan of other cakes, but I LOVE carrot cake – will be trying this out soon! Great post
Follow me back? The Chic Cupcake
You had me at carrot cake. I wonder if I can get that flour here in the States. I need to investigate.
Gentle Joy Photography says
A beautiful cake… look delicious too. We love carrot cake here. Yum. 🙂
Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J!
Oh, carrot cake is my favorite! I’ve never attempted to make it, thought. Might be time to try…
Oh yum, this looks absolutely scrumptious! Now I’m craving carrot cake 🙂 Thanks for linking up at the Friday Favorites linky party!
Where do you find the flour ? Since it has cream cheese in the icing,do you have to refrigerate the cake?
Judy Cherry says
I’m looking for a recipe for cream cheese pasties made with cherry pie filling ( or you choice) and creascent dinner rolls. Can you help me?
I have these Caramel Apple Crescent Rolls (you could substitute other fillings): https://www.simplystacie.net/2021/04/caramel-apple-pie-crescents/
Can this be made ahead, and frozen??
Stacie Vaughan says
Yes, you can make ahead and freeze up to three months.