This easy moist carrot cake is the only recipe you will need. It can be a single layer, two-layer, or even cupcakes if you choose.
I am fussy when it comes to carrot cake; not only does it need to be moist, the taste has to be excellent.
Winter is here, and for some reason, I tend to want to bake more during the cooler weather.
So I want to share my easy moist carrot cake with you. Covered with my delicious cream cheese frosting and chopped walnuts, you will never want store-bought again.
How to make this easy moist carrot cake
This recipe is done by hand, so no stand mixer or hand mixers are needed, just a whisk and spatula.
When grating the carrots, only a hand grater is needed and use the fine side to get melt-in-your-mouth carrots.
Use a 25cm or square or round cake tin. 2 if you want to make a two-layer cake.
- Plain Flour (All-Purpose Flour)
- Baking Powder
- Baking Soda
- Sea Salt (Kosha Salt)
- Ground Cinnamon
- Canola or Vegetable Oil
- White Sugar (Granulated Sugar)
- Brown Sugar
- Vanilla Extract
- Large Eggs (at room temperature)
- Butter (for greasing the cake tin)
Preheat the oven to 160°C or 320°F for fan-forced or 180°C or 356°F for conventional ovens. Make sure your oven rack is placed in the centre.
Melt the butter over the stove or in the microwave, grease the cake tin, and then line with baking paper for easy removal. You can also add some melted butter over the top of the baking paper if you wish.
Sift flour, baking powder, and baking soda into a mixing bowl. Add salt, cinnamon and nutmeg, then lightly stir with the whisk to combine.
Combine oil, white sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla into a separate bowl with the whisk. Add eggs one at a time and whisk to combine after each addition.
Using a spatula, add the dry ingredients in 3rds at a time. Fold through the wet ingredients after each addition until just combined.
Then fold through the carrots and the walnuts until everything is well combined.
Pour the cake batter into the greased tin and place it in the centre of the oven rack. Bake for approx 50 to 55 minutes or until the skewer comes out clean.
Once baked, remove from the oven and place the tin on a cooling rack. Allow the carrot cake to cool for 15 minutes in the tin before removing.
Then place the cake on the rack to cool completely before frosting.
Pro Tip: If you find your cake is sticking to your cake tin, gently slide a flat spatula or knife around the edges to loosen. Then allow gravity to do the rest for you while the cake tin is upside down.
Add cream crease frosting over the top of the cake. I like to sprinkle chopped walnuts over the top, but you can choose to use whole or halved.
You can also use candied carrot curls on top for an extra touch. There is an excellent recipe for making these on Martha Stewart’s website.
Other nut substitutions
If you are not a walnut fan, you can use pecan nuts. However, if you want a nut-free carrot cake, you can leave them out altogether.
Another option is raisins; you can add about ½ a cup to the carrot cake batter if you wish to add them as an alternative or along with the nuts.
Choosing the right oil to use in a cake
You must choose the correct oil to use. Oils such as canola or vegetable do not have a strong flavour. In comparison, Olive oil has a more potent flavour, which is more likely to overpower the flavours in the cake.
Oil Substitution for carrot cake
Oil is not only used to create an incredibly moist cake, but carrot cake is traditionally a dense cake. The oil helps create that.
If you need to substitute the oil, you can do so with melted butter. However, the butter will create more of a fluffy, spongy cake compared to using oil.
If you need to use butter for this recipe, you still use 1 ¼ cups or approximately 310gms melted butter (metric).
Making a two-layered cake or cupcakes
For a two-layered cake, you will need two 25cm cake tins. Pour equal portions of the batter into each greased tin and bake for approx 25 to 30 minutes, depending on your oven.
For cupcakes, this mixture will make 22 to 24 cupcakes. Depending on your oven, you can use a 6 or 12-cupcake tray and bake for approximately 18 to 20 minutes.
Always use a toothpick or cake skewer to test the centre of your cakes or cupcakes. If they come out clean, they are ready.
Other spices to add to carrot cake
There are a few other options of spices that you can add to your carrot cake.
Cinnamon is a must, but you can also add mixed spices or a little ginger to give your cake some extra zing.
How to store carrot cake
Carrot cake is one of few that needs to be kept in the refrigerator. Keep either in an airtight container or a cake container, even if it is not frosted.
The reason for this is the carrots in the cake can develop mould if the cake is stored in warm or humid conditions.
The other reason is that the cream cheese frosting will soften if left out of the fridge.
Frosted or unfrosted carrot cake can last up to 1 week in the fridge. You can also freeze unfrosted carrot cake for 2 to 3 months. This comes in handy if you want to make a layered cake and bake the cake part well ahead of time.
Looking for other baking ideas?
There is just something about baking at home. The achievement of a recipe turning out, the smell that wafts through the house and the enjoyment for other people when they are eating it.
Here are some other baking ideas that we have, that are sure people pleasers!
- Super Soft Raspberry Jam Doughnuts
- Perfectly Soft Homemade Mini Dinner Rolls
- Two-Layered Moist Chocolate Cake With Coffee
- Cream and Jam Long John Doughnut Recipe
Incredibly Easy, Moist Carrot Cake Recipe
- 2 cups Plain Flour All-Purpose Flour
- 2 teaspoon Baking Powder
- 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
- ½ teaspoon Sea Salt Kosha Salt
- 1 ½ teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
- 1 ¼ cup Canola Oil Vegetable Oil
- ½ cup White Sugar Granulated Sugar
- 1 ½ cups Brown Sugar Loosely Packed
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 4 large Eggs At room Tempeture
- 3 cup Grated Carrots 2 to 3 Large Carrots
- 1 cup Chopped Walnuts
- Melted Butter For greasing the cake tin
- Preheat the oven to 160°C or 320°F for fan-forced or 180°C or 356°F for conventional ovens
- Grease and line a 25cm square cake tin. Grate carrots using the fine grater side
- Sift flour, baking powder and soda into a mixing bowl. Add salt, cinnamon and nutmeg, then lightly stir with the whisk to combine.
- Combine oil, sugars, and vanilla into a separate bowl with the whisk. Add eggs one at a time and whisk to combine after each addition.
- Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients a 3rd at a time.
- Fold in the carrots and the walnuts until everything is well combined.
- Pour the cake batter into the cake tin and place it in the centre of the oven rack. Bake for approx 40 to 45 minutes or until the skewer comes out clean.
- Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 15 minutes, before turning it out onto a cooling rack.
- Decorate with cream cheese frosting and walnuts. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Did you make this recipe? Tag @justsoyum on Instagram or Facebook so we can find your masterpiece.
I tried these without walnuts and frosting (a personal preferance) and they were moist and with 1/8 cup sugar and it was still very delicious and nicely moist. Thank you for the recipe!
You are more than welcome. And thank you for the feedback on how this recipe turned out for you, I am so happy that you like it
Instead of just cinnamon I’m using pumpkin pie spice, because of the other warm notes from the other spices that are in it.
Thank you for sharing that, Annette, so that others can consider this as an alternative to cinnamon.