This carrot cake is amazingly moist and bakes up beautifully. It doesn’t get much easier than a one bowl, mix-all-ingredients-at-once recipe and my secret carrot ingredient is next level genius. If you plan on making carrot cake for the Easter holiday, check this one out!
To me, Easter is just not the same without Carrot Cake. Actually, life isn’t the same without Carrot Cake. It has such a beautiful flavor, the cake is always supremely moist and I’ll pretty much eat anything topped with cream cheese frosting. But all that aside, Carrot Cake is a pretty unique thing. There are only a finite amount of vegetables that are acceptable to eat in cake form (hah, now my mind is going to a place it shouldn’t be going: i.e. broccoli cake :-P).
There are a lot of different versions of Carrot Cake out there. Some have shredded carrots, some have raisins…walnuts…I know that appeals to some, but for me, it’s a textural nightmare. I never liked ‘things’ in my cake. Stuff like, berries are passable, because they pop while baking. Those other things, nuts, dried fruit…don’t break down and to me, they take away from the actual cake part. Not trying to offend anyone that likes nuts & raisins!! I appreciate the fact we all have different tastes!
So, a lot of carrot cake recipes out there, errhmm, just aren’t for me. If you feel the same, then I’m happy to announce your favorite recipe has finally arrived.
Second, I know I said above that this cake is EASY to prepare. I don’t just mean easy, I mean EEZZEEE. My family recipe literally calls for you to just dump all the ingredients in a bowl, mix and bake. I do have to admit, the neurotic baker in me couldn’t really handle that though, hah! I started with wet then dry, and carefully mixed each phase of ingredients…as you should. But like, still, it was hella fast to put together! Hey, you can’t be wasting time fussing over a cake when there are Easter eggs to be found… 😉
Lastly, this Carrot Cake is just..omg insanely moist and flavorful.
I know I mentioned a secret carrot ingredient (I’m excited to tell you but also, please don’t be weirded out)…it’s carrot baby food. Yes, BABY FOOD. But, think about it, it’s literally just purreed carrots. Think about how easy that makes your life. No shredding or steaming or doing it yourself. Open a jar of pure, smooth carrot goodness and dump it into the bowl. Plus, I promise it adds more flavor than shredded carrots alone.
I frosted this cake with a simple cream cheese frosting. Carrot cake & cream cheese frosting are a match made in heaven.
For the Cake
- 1 1/2 c canola or vegetable oil
- 2 c sugar
- 4 eggs
- 2 large jars of carrot baby food large jars would be 4oz each
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 c all purpose flour
- 3 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp baking soda
For the Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1 brick cream cheese (8 oz) room temp
- 1 stick butter room temp
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 pinch salt
- 6 c powdered sugar
- 4-5 tbsp milk more or less depending on the thickness of the frosting.
For the Cake
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Mix all ingredients by hand in a large bowl. Preferably start with the wet ingredients and work your way to the dry (as listed in order here). Mix well after each addition.
- Pour into greased & floured cake pans lined with parchment (this cake has a tendency to stick). Makes enough batter for a sheet cake or 2 full, round cake pans.
- Bake time will depend on the pan you're using, but a round pan will take about 30-40 min or so. Cake is done when a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
- Allow to cool on a baking rack.
For the Frosting
- Beat cream cheese & butter in a stand mixer or using a hand mixer, until light and fluffy.
- Add the vanilla & salt.
- Slowly add the sugar. For every 2 cups of sugar you add, begin to add a tablespoon of milk. You may need more or less milk depending on the thickness of the frosting.
- Beat until fully combined; smooth and spreadable.
- Frost your cake and serve!!!