King Arthur's Carrot Cake

star rating (103) rate this recipe »
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King Arthur's Carrot Cake

star rating (103) rate this recipe »
Published prior to 2008

Much requested, with great customizability. Use any combination of add-ins you like, including raisins or coconut; just keep the total of any (or all) additions to 1 1/2 cups.

1 1/2 cups (10 1/2 ounces) vegetable oil
2 cups (14 ounces) sugar
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 cups (8 1/2 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
3 cups (11 1/2 ounces) finely grated carrots
1 1/2 cups (5 3/4 ounces) chopped pecans or walnuts

Cream Cheese Frosting
1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
one 8-ounce package cream cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla OR 1/2 teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia
2 1/2 to 3 1/2 cups (10 to 14 ounces) glazing sugar or confectioners' sugar
milk or cream to adjust consistency of frosting, if necessary

Cake: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease two 9" round layer pans, or one 9" x 13" pan.

Beat together the oil, sugar, salt, eggs, and spices. Mix the flour with the baking soda, and stir in. Add the carrots and nuts, and mix until just blended. Pour into the prepared pan(s).

Bake the cake(s) for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Allow the cake(s) to cool completely before frosting. (If you're using round layer pans, remove the layers from the pans after about 15 minutes, and place them on a rack to cool.

Frosting: Beat the butter and cream cheese together until smooth. Add the salt and vanilla. Beat in the sugar. Add a teaspoon of milk or cream if the frosting is too stiff to spread; add additional sugar if it's too thin.

Frost the sheet cake right in the pan. For the layers, frost the top of one layer, top with the second layer, and frost the top and sides of the cake. Yield: 1 cake, 16 to 24 servings.


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  • star rating 04/25/2015
  • Jessica from Fort Wayne, IN
  • Ten stars if I could. I've made it twice this week and it is amazing. If you love carrot cake, this is your new tried and true recipe!
  • star rating 04/10/2015
  • Lesle from Hunt, Texas
  • I made the cake exactly as directed. Fantastic! The perfect Easter dinner dessert.
  • star rating 03/25/2015
  • Vel from Northfield, OH
  • Perfect every time! I made this recipe for my friend's wedding on March 20th. She was ecstatic, and her guests were very impressed. I've made it in the past. It comes out just wonderfully. Thank you for this recipe. It is my go to for carrot cake lovers.
  • star rating 12/28/2014
  • Eileen from OH
  • Moist and delicious. Added 1/2 cup less sugar than called for.
  • star rating 12/21/2014
  • Anna from Boston
  • Best carrot cake ever. My co-workers rave about it and ask that I make it for all occasions,
  • star rating 11/27/2014
  • Katie from Louisville, CO
  • One of my "go-to" cakes. It's easy to make and always gets rave reviews. At altitude, I add a half cup of flour, and make 1 1/2 times the icing because my daughter's roommate in college likes it so much.
  • star rating 11/26/2014
  • norma from el paso tx
  • star rating 11/16/2014
  • conifera98 from Bakersfield, CA
  • The best recipe for carrot cake that I have tried. Moist, no too sweet, but just the right amount. Cake stays wonderful for several days(if it last).
  • star rating 10/14/2014
  • Reese from ohio
  • I omit the cloves & ginger. Add shredded coconut to batter. Get rave reviews. I toast the pecans for the frosting. YUM! Sometimes I cut the recipe in half & make an 8x8 pan.
  • star rating 07/06/2014
  • Alane from Olive Branch, MS
  • This was my first attempt at carrot cake, and now it is my family's new favorite dessert. In fact, I took it to a big family function, and everyone raved about it. I see in the comments that some are confused about the measurement of the oil. It's 12 oz. by volume, but 10 1/2 oz. by weight. We like butter, so I used 1 cup (6 1/2 oz.) oil and 1/2 cup (4 oz.) butter. (KAF taught me long ago to measure by weight whenever possible. It's easier, faster, and more reliable. If you bake much but don't have a scale, invest in one -- you won't be sorry!) I also used 2 tsp. cinnamon instead of 1 T, based on my family's preference. It was plenty of cinnamon for us. In fact, it was just right. I baked in a 9x13 glass pan & had to add just a few minutes to the cooking time for my oven. I cannot wait to make this again!
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