Recipe courtesy of Lasheeda Perry

Vegan Rainbow Carrot Cake

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 4 hr 25 min (includes cooling time)
  • Active: 45 min
  • Yield: 12 servings
This carrot cake is so light, fluffy and flavorful that even your meat-loving friends won't know it's vegan.





  1. For the cake: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a 9-by-13-inch metal baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang on all sides. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk together the vegan cane sugar, coconut oil, applesauce, vanilla and orange zest in another large bowl until smooth. Fold in the carrots until just combined. Slowly fold in the flour mixture in 3 batches, alternating with almond milk and ending with the flour. Fold in the 1 cup walnuts.  
  3. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 50 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 30 minutes, then use the foil overhang to remove the cake to a wire rack to cool completely, about 2 hours.  
  4. For the frosting: Just before serving, beat the butter in a large bowl on medium-high speed with a handheld electric mixer until light and smooth, about 1 minute. Reduce the speed to low and add the vegan confectioners' sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, and mix until well combined after each addition. Add the vanilla and mix until combined. If the frosting is too thick, add 1 tablespoon of the almond milk at a time and mix until it reaches your desired consistency.   
  5. Place 1/4 cup of frosting into 4 small bowls. Add 3 to 4 drops of green vegan food coloring to one bowl and mix to combine. Transfer to a small piping bag fitted with a round piping tip. Repeat with the remaining 3 bowls of frosting and the magenta, orange and yellow vegan food coloring.  
  6. Spread the remaining white frosting on top of the cake leaving a 1-inch border around the edges. Use the colored frosting to pipe small magenta, orange and yellow carrots with green stems all over the cake. Sprinkle with the remaining finely chopped walnuts.

Cook’s Note

To toast the walnuts, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, spread the nuts in an even layer on a baking sheet and roast, shaking halfway through, until toasted 8 to 12 minutes.