Signature Homemade Carrot Cake

Total Time:
2 hr 40 min
Prep:
30 min
Inactive:
1 hr 30 min
Cook:
40 min

Yield:
10 to 12 servings
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • 2 cups vegetable oil
  • 2 2/3 cups sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 2/3 cups carrots, grated
  • 1 1/3 cups walnuts
  • 1 1/3 cups pineapple, crushed and drained
  • 2/3 cup coconut flakes, sweetened
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/3 tablespoons baking soda
  • 1 1/3 tablespoons baking powder
  • 2 2/3 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 6 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons or 1/4 stick butter, unsalted, softened
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup walnuts, toasted
  • 1 cup coconut flakes, toasted
Directions

Grease 2 (10-inch) cake pans and set aside. Mix together in a large bowl the oil, sugar, eggs, carrots, nuts, pineapple, coconut and raisins. In another bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Add the carrot mixture and blend. Pour the batter into the cake pans and bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until done. Remove from oven and cool for 30 minutes. Release the cakes from the pans and cool completely before cutting and frosting. Cut cakes in 3 equal layers (a total of 6 layers). Assemble the carrot cake one layer at a time. Finish the carrot cake with a layer of cream cheese frosting on top. Do not frost the side of the cake. This gives the cake that special homemade country-style look. Garnish with toasted walnuts and coconuts.

For the frosting: Beat together the cream cheese, butter, and vegetable shortening for 15 minutes. Mixture must be very smooth and light. Add the confectioners' sugar and the vanilla and mix until smooth (about 3 minutes).

Professional Recipe: This recipe was provided by a chef, restaurant or culinary professional and makes a large quantity. The Food Network Kitchens chefs have not tested this recipe in the proportions indicated and therefore cannot make any representation as to the results.


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4.5 39
Made this cake today. Used 2 nine inch pans so it took about 45 minutes to bake. I loved the rise on this recipe. Most carrot cakes are very dense and need at least three layers to look decent on your cake stand. The cake is moist! I left out the coconut. I also doubled the icing since my family loves cream cheese isicng and I wanted to cover the entire cake. Will definitely keep this one. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This cake had everything I wanted in a carrot cake! I'd always heard baking needed to be so exact. But I made several changes to this and it was the best carrot cake ever! I used 1/2 cup oil, 1/2 melted coconut oil, and 1 cup of applesauce (my first time trying that - Excellent!) I also used about 1 cup of the sugar as brown sugar. I omitted the raisins, used a full can of pineapple as I was just a tad short on the carrots. One cup of the flour was whole wheat, and about 1/2 cup was coconut flour (I think the extra pineapple made up for any moisture loss from the coconut flour). Saving these notes for when I make this now standard carrot cake. BTW, I used coconut oil in my cream cheese frosting as well. Healthier than butter, and Love the flavor! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I had been looking for a great carrot cake recipe and I think I have found it. Modifications: whole wheat pastry flour for flour and substituted one cup of applesauce for one cup of oil. Oil substitution seemed to be a good decision because it was almost too oily even with only one cup of oil. A full three cups of carrots were still barely noticeable. I used an 11 x 15 pan at 350 for 40 min. It fit perfectly and cooked all the way through, but I would probably use two smaller pans in the future to better control the cooking. I did not make frosting, but cake was already really sweet and rich without it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Absolutely great cake...however I'd recommend listening to the two cake pan instructions as I set my oven on fire. Definitely don't over estimate the rising of this cake. 13x9 is a no go. : item not reviewed by moderator and published
This recipe rocks! I would like to be able to make a smaller cake and have it turn out the same. I took cake to everyone at work (about 30 people and had cake left over! Everyone wanted the recipe and raved about the texture, flavor and how great it was. Thanks this is a keeper. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Tried this cake today for the first time. LOVED IT!!!!! Made it with 3 layers and I only have 2-3 slices left. Lol..... They want another one for game day Sunday. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Best Recipe ever. This is a winner. Try it. You're like it. Everyone always wants me to make this carrot cake. Making one now!!!!!!!!!!!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This recipe was delicious! I am not a baker or a great cook but I was able to master this recipe after the first time. I made it for Thanksgiving and everyone devoured it! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I can only use 5 stars? I've have made this cake numerous times since I first found it (years). It has always turned out well, and people beg me to make it for them. It sold at my company's bake sale/auction for $56!! Today I am going to make it in a 13" x 9" pan for the first time. I usually partially freeze the layers before splitting them. I think that it would be too much frosting-to-cake ration, so I split into two, not three layers. Double the frosting recipe to cover the whole cake as others suggest. This cake is definitely worth the effort!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Excellent! It was a crowd pleaser. I did line the pans with parchment as I didn't want any sticking. I used three 8" pans since I didn't have 10" and that worked well. I agree with other comments that I like more icing. I did a double recipe. This recipe is going to be one I'll make often. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Everybody loves this cake. I get request every year for it.I use everything minus coconut. I know some southerners think this is not a real carrot cake but I am a southerner and carrot cakes do vary depending on the family. As far as the oil this recipe does have a lot of oil but it has not been a probably unless you do not mix well. The oil keeps the cake moist so if you don't want to use all the oil do half oil half applesauce. You will need to double the recipe if you like to cover the whole cake. The recipe is for just doing the inside of the cake. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is a wonderful cake and one of our family favorites. I have made it many times and it is always requested for special events. I have made it for wedding luncheons, family reunions, and birthday parties with great success and have given the recipe out many times. Over time I have made some changes-added some nutmeg and alspice and reduced the oil to 1 1/2 cup, but it is essentially the same and has stood the test of time. If you like carrot cake, you ought to try this one! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This cake was popular even among relatives who don't care for cream cheese much. I also doubled the frosting recipe, omitting the shortening. I used Baker's Joy spray to coat 3-8 inch pans and had some batter left over for 4 mini bundt pans. My round cake pans aren't really dark, but I lowered the temp. to 325 because they were getting too dark too fast and this worked well. I am trying it again today with lighter version--substituting half the oil with drained applesauce and substituting some egg whites for some of the eggs. I never use full fat cream cheese, but Neufchatel which tastes no different to me. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Not impressed by this recipe at all. Kind of bland. Not very interesting despite all of the different ingredients. Also of note is the recipe for the cream cheese icing. Not nearly enough. A six layer cake (as instructed by the recipe) would never be possible with the quantity made. item not reviewed by moderator and published
beutiful item not reviewed by moderator and published
I substituted 2 cups of oil for one cup of unsalted semi-melted butter plus 1 cup of natural chunky applessauce. I substituted 1 2/3 cup of the sugar for splenda. I doubled this frosting recipe. Icing: 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature 1/2 pound cream cheese, room temperature 2 cups icing sugar 1 tablespoon lemon juice 1t vanilla item not reviewed by moderator and published
This recipe conversion cannot be right! I followed to the letter and the cake was flat in the center and burned on the outside. Very oily as well! Does it really need 2 cups of oil?? item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was a great tasting cake, nice and moist. Watch the edges, they were a little dry. Makes enough cake for about 20 people! item not reviewed by moderator and published
My family says that this is the best cake that I have ever made!!! My husband says that it has replaced his all time favorite of yellow cake with chocolate icing, and I can make it for his birthday, too!!The recipe was easy to follow, simple to prepare, and only slightly difficult to handle after cutting layers. It's very moist and flavorful!!! Loved it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This carrot cake recipe is incredible! I also added 1/2 teaspoon of finely nutmeg. My family loves this recipe, specially at the Holidays. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This cake turned out very moist and not too sweet, with just the right blend of textures from the raisins and walnuts to the creamy frosting. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I love this cake. I make it for parties all the time and it's a big hit. The frosting though is not enough for the amount of cake this recipe makes, I usually double the recipe since cream cheese frosting is such a hit. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I've made this recipe 3 times. The first time the recipe made a 13x9 and an 8x8 cake. The second time I made 7 small "loaves" the third time I made the 10" cake pans. The majority said it was the best carrot cake they ever had. I do alter the recipe a bit. I add a cup of raisins and coconut, three cups of carrots and about two cups of walnuts. The cream cheese frosting I use 3 bars of Philadelphia cream cheese, 1-2 tablespoons butter, vanilla and 3-4 cups powdered sugar. It turns out perfect. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I have made this recipe to take to gatherings on numerous occasions. It always gets rave reviews as the BEST carrot cake the guests have ever tasted...and there are never any "left overs." I have also made it in a 9x13 baking dish which is a little bit more challenging to calculate the right baking time. It is awesome! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I have been looking for a "loaded" carrot cake recipe for a long time, and this is everything I wanted it to be. It's so moist and I love the coconut, pineapple, rasins and nuts. The frosting didn't work out as well, so I use a different recipe, that's the only reason for less than 5 stars. But the cake is out of this world, and a frequent request from friends and co-workers. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was the most delicious and moist carrot cake I've had! My guests demanded an encore... item not reviewed by moderator and published
this recipe makes a generous carrot cake and the icing is not too sweet. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I am from the south and there are four generations of my family still living. My great grandmother has a recipe that was passed down to her from her grandmother and no where in the recipe does a carrot cake has any thing other than carrots, cinnamon, and pecans in it. Now there is a cake that we make here in the south that has pineapples, bananas and raisins(optional) and it is called a humming bird cake but there is no one in the south that I have met that puts anything other than carrots, cinnamon, and pecans in their carrot cake. item not reviewed by moderator and published
very good~~~everyone loved it item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made this cake a few days ago after reading the reviews and it is REALLY good. I follwed another reviewers suggestion and substituted half the oil with applesauce and I also made it in 3 9-inch pans intead of 2 10-inch, it's easy to make 6 layers that way. Also, since some people complained about the frosting I used the frosting recipe from Gigi's carrot cake recipe by Emiril and used walnuts instead of pecans. It was so good I will definetly be making this again! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is the only carrot cake recipe i will ever use! I would double the cream cheese frosting though item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made this for a graduation party and everyone loved it! it was sooooo delicous. i only cut each cake into two layers because it was easier. i doubled the frosting recipe and frosted the whole cake. then itosted some coconut and put it on the sides of the cake. then i got some marzipan colored it and made little carrots to stick on the top. it looked perfect, like it was from a bakery and it tasted like it too!!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This cake is absolutely fabulous! I followed the advice of another reviewer by cutting the oil in half and adding about 1 cup of applesauce. I also recommend, as she did, that you make four layers instead of 6. Finally, this icing recipe was great. However, I added a little orange zest and ginger (to taste). Again, fabulous! I can't remember ever getting more compliments for any other cake I've made. I've also been asked for the recipe more times than almost any other thing I've made. I've made it twice in two weeks for the same people at work! They LOVE it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made it for Easter and my family was raving about it. I felt bad because my sisters all bought desserts and they didn't get eaten! I think a little more cream cheese frosting for my taste, but overall was SO GOOD! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Deliciously moist and rich. Exactly what a homemade carrot cake should be. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was a great recipe, though I would probably add more walnuts and pineapple as a personal preference. A little too oily. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This cake is very good.It says to cut it into 3 layers from each one totaling 6 layers. I found this impossible to do. It crumbled when cutting it. 4 layers total would of been fine. It is very moist, really good tasting. The frosting was good,but don't know if I would make the frosting again. I felt it was missing flavor. item not reviewed by moderator and published
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This cake is SO yummy! I made some alterations...I only used 1 c. of oil and substituted 8 oz. of apple sauce instead. I used half as much pineapple and increase the raisins a little. I was worried that the cake wouldn't be moist, but the texture was PERFECT. I also substituted pecans for walnuts. The cake flavor was WONDERFUL...I got RAVE reviews from my guests saying it was the VERY best carrot cake they have ever eaten!!! This cake EASILY makes a standard 10" 3-layer cake. I made a two layer cake and 12 regular sized muffins (my kids loved these, even WITHOUT the frosting!). 2-layers was JUST RIGHT because it is a dense cake, and 3 layers would be overkill in my opinion. I used standard cream cheese frosting (with chopped pecans added) for the filling and to frost the TOP only...and then decorated with pecan halves. Simply DELICIOUS. :o) item not reviewed by moderator and published
Do you also decrease the sugar when adding applesauce? item not reviewed by moderator and published
Please tell me how long you baked the muffins. Still at 350? nlyoung2@aol.com item not reviewed by moderator and published

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