Carrot cake is something almost everyone loves. But it’s something that really polarizes people. With raisins? With pineapple? With nuts? Without any/all of the above? It’s safe to say that a simple, warmly spiced cake without too many mix-ins will win most hearts. In the case that this cake was destined for an office birthday party, I wanted to bring just that.

I had some farmer’s market carrots in the cupboard and some apple butter in the fridge that I knew would add a nice moistness (sorry, if you’re one of those people who hate the m-word) while letting me sub out some oil from the original recipe. Right on!

Even though I was able to skimp out a bit of the oil, don’t kid yourself, folks…this ain’t no weight-watchers recipe. It’s sweet (but not overly so), decadent, with a tight crumb and is fantastic even a day or two after it’s made.  I made some cream cheese frosting and sprinkled the whole cake with chopped walnuts. Next time I’m going to add them right into the batter for a little texure; other than that, I will come right out and say this is a DAMN good carrot cake! Bookmark it! You will thank me.

Perfect Carrot Cake


  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup apple butter (or applesauce)
  • 1.5 cup sugar (up to 2 cups if using unsweetened apple sauce)
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2.5 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 3 cups grated carrots (about 4 large carrots)
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and foil-line your baking pans, whether 2 8 or 9 inch rounds or a 9 x 13 inch pan.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. In a large mixing bowl, with an electric mixer, combine vegetable oil, apple butter/sauce, eggs, granulated sugar and vanilla. Slowly stir in dry ingredients and mix until well blended. Stir in grated carrots and nuts. Bake cakes in preheat oven for 37-39 minutes for the rounds or 40-50 minutes for the rectangle, or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool 5 minutes in cake dishes before removing to a wire rack to cool. Slather with a good dose of cream cheese icing and another sprinkle of nuts! You can keep it in the fridge for 2-3 days.

Simply Awesome Cream Cheese Frosting


  • 1 block (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 2-3 cups icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla in a bowl until fluffy. Slowly start adding icing sugar, testing along the way (I know, the horror...) until it\'s to your preferred sweetness.

One comment to “Perfect Carrot Cake”

  1. lysa says:

    your right this carrot cake looks so perfect !!

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