Tuesday, July 17, 2012

David’s Carrot Cake

The carrot cake that makes carrot lovers out of carrot haters! The main ingredient is boiled then mashed, creating a moist cake without obvious carrot bits but loads of flavor. Top with cream cheese icing!

We call this David’s Carrot Cake because we were first introduced to it by my dear friend, Jacky, when she made it for her son’s birthday, way back when we were living in Brazil, probably circa 1996 or 1997. We made a lot of fancy cakes back then but this one didn’t need decorations or specially shaped pans to make it great. The cake, with cream cheese frosting, is enough. It has single-handedly converted more than a few non-carrot eaters to lovers. Jacky got so many requests for the recipe that I ended up printing it in the little school newsletter I put out periodically for parents and teachers. The title was, of course, David’s Carrot Cake.

If you have been reading along for a while or at least since last March, or June before last, you know that at our house the birthday girl or boy gets to choose the cake and the evening meal. My younger daughter has requested the carrot cake for every birthday for a very long time so this makes AT LEAST one appearance at our house every year. But it often makes many more. Today is the day that my baby begins her final year as a teenager. Happy 19th birthday, sweet thing!
She was so tiny once.  Just like a baby doll.  And that's her sister, smug smile and all, holding the real baby doll.

2 eggs at room temperature
2 cups or 400g sugar
1 cup or 240 ml light cooking oil (like canola or sunflower)
16 oz or 450g carrots
2 cups or 250g flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons allspice (We aren't fans of allspice so I skip it and add extra cinnamon.)
3 teaspoons cinnamon 
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup chopped nuts (optional) We never add nuts but feel free if your family likes them.

Peel and cut the very ends off of your carrots.  Cover them with water in a medium sized pot and cook until very fork tender.  

Drain the water off and mash them with a potato masher until there aren’t any lumps.  I do them rather fine so that haters don’t find a piece of carrot in the cake.  Transfer the mashed carrots to a bowl and leave to cool.

When your carrots are cool and you are ready to start mixing, preheat your oven to 350°F or 180°C and prepare your cake pan by buttering and flouring it or lining it with parchment paper.  I use a rectangular pan with internal measurements of 12.5 in x 8.5 in or 32cm x 22cm.  I give the pan a quick zap of non-stick spray to keep the parchment from moving about. 

Add all the ingredients to a large mixing bowl, including the cooled carrots and mix well.  

Scrape the bowl down with a rubber spatula and beat for about two more minutes on high.

Pour into your prepared pan and bake for 25-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.   

No, it did not get bitten by a snake.  I tested it twice for doneness. Second time's the charm.
Allow to cool completely before even thinking of adding frosting.  The cream cheese frosting recipe post is up.  Carrot cake cries out for cream cheese frosting.  


Update:  My baby girl has turned 20!  Of course, I baked carrot cake again.

And for her 21st, there were just three of us celebrating so I halved the ingredients and baked it in one round pan. Served with Champagne!


  1. looks so simple & yummy. Stunning. Thanks <3

  2. Most delicious cake and so easy to make! Thank you!

  3. Looks delicious but then I like anything with cream cheese frosting! And I didn't know you mashed carrots for carrot cake; thought they were grated...wil have to try your recipe. Picture of girls is so cute...that is just how I remember her from that summer in Paris when you were pregnant with #2...guess its been a few years. Maybe you should post a recipe for cherry wine too.

  4. Some recipes call for grated carrot but the mashed carrot makes this super moist and less obviously carroty.

    About the cherry wine, we still have one bottle! Occasionally we take it out and dust it off and discuss opening it, but just can't bring ourselves to do it. The last bottle we actually opened had turned into a sherry, like a fortified wine. If I ever have a cherry tree in my back yard again, I will certainly do that. That tree was one of my favorite parts about living in Paris. Wonderful sweet cherries for the picking!

  5. I love that this uses mashed carrot instead of shredded! Pinning this for my next carrot cake! NEXT WEEK for my mom's birthday!

  6. It's the best carrot cake recipe we've ever tried! Hope you had a great day and happy birthday to your mom, Carrie!


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