The BEST Carrot Cake I've Ever Made

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Hubby's dad and his wife (aka Goompa and Gooma as named by Little Sis when she was a wee little tot) were in town over the holidays. Goompa's birthday was the day before Christmas so I asked him what his favorite dessert was and carrot cake was in his top 3. Mmmm, carrot cake. I've always loved carrot cake, but good carrot cake is hard to come by. I decided to challenge myself to make one that was (hopefully) out of this world. It had been a good long time since I had made one  so I hit the net and came across a recipe at After reading the reviews as I always do, I settled down on which changes I was going to make. And let me tell ya, I chose right because this it is certainly the best carrot cake I've ever made. Never mind that it's only like my third or fourth one ever, but I know when I've done GOOOOD! :) It was moist and tasty and in my humble opinion, the frosting was just perfect - not too cream cheesy and not too sweet. Often times, I find that carrot cake is ruined by an overpowering, too sugary frosting. This one was juuuuuust right. :)

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Here's the recipe. I highly recommend that you add the nuts to the cake part, if possible, because I just LOVE carrot cake w/ nuts, but alas, this one was made nutless for my little girls who have nut allergies. As far as nuts in the frosting, though, I think I'd just as well leave 'em off...

Printable Recipe

The BEST Carrot Cake I’ve Ever Made!
Recipe from:
Using gneebeanie’s comments, Dec 8, 2006


4 eggs
3⁄4 cup vegetable oil
1⁄2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1⁄4 teaspoon nutmeg
3 cups grated carrots
1 8oz can crushed pineapples, drained
1 cup chopped pecans (optional)

1⁄2 cup butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 – 3 1⁄2 cups confectioners' sugar *
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup pecans (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9x13 inch pan (or two 9”
round pans).
2. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, white sugar and 3 teaspoons vanilla. Mix in flour, baking
soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir in carrots. Fold in pecans. Pour into
prepared pan.
3. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes for rectangular cake (25 to 30 mins for round
cake), or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for
10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely
4. To Make Frosting: In a medium bowl, combine butter, cream cheese, confectioners' sugar and 1
teaspoon vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Stir in chopped pecans. Frost the
cooled cake.

• The original frosting recipe called for 4 cups confectioners’ sugar – YIKES! The adapted
recipe used 3 1⁄2 cups but I further reduced it to 3 cups to make a just perfectly sweet (for me)
frosting. If you like it sweeter, add more sugar, but start with 3 cups and go from there.
• Note this frosting makes plenty to frost a two layer cake w/ frosting left over.
Makes one 9x13 rectangular cake or one 9” round, two-layer cake.


I haven't made a layer cake in a while, but I still remembered to put the bottom layer of the cake upside down on the plate and then placing the layers bottom to bottom to ensure that the top of the cake doesn't split.
Mmmm, for some reason, I just love that middle layer of frosting, even if it's the same as the stuff on the outside!
I'm not a fancy cake maker by any means, but I'm pretty happy w/ the way this turned out! :)
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Update: 4/9/2013:

Just have to add this variation I made for the NCAA finals last night. :) Even though we didn't win, it was still quite a sweet ride. and there's always next year. :)

Thanks so much for stopping by and please feel free to make my day by leaving me a comment, joining my blog in the top right corner or liking my on Facebook at MyEpicureanAdventures - the more the merrier! :)

Christine, aka happyvballgirl :)

This recipe has been shared at:
HungryLittleGirl PIN MEmeAnyonita Nibbles


Alexis AKA MOM said...

That looks fab!! Stopping by from Pin Me :)

Sarah said...

Okay, seriously? That looks SO good!!!

happyvballgirl said...

THanks Alexis! Just joined your blog back. :) didn't look like the GFC was broken! ;)

happyvballgirl said...

hee hee. Thanks Sarah! :)

Nici Higby said...

This looks so tasty! I love carrot cake. I am your newest GFC follower. I wanted to thank you for stopping by and leaving me a sweet comment on my Bowtie Pasta Salad. I hope you'll visit again soon and maybe even follow me back. Have a great weekend!

Diana - FreeStyleMama said...

I want some NOW!!!! I love carrot cake!!

Lenetta Carnes said...

 Hi, great post. I found you through the blog hop. Please stop  by and say hi when you get a chance.  .Be sure and check out my new Blog Hop that started. It's Weekly Goals Link Up. It's a great way to stay on track. Have a great day. :) Now following you.  Here's the link for it if you would like to check it out. Lenetta

happyvballgirl said...

Awww, thanks Nici! You're a sweetie! :)

happyvballgirl said...

haha! Thanks, Diana! I'll try to poof some your way! lol. :)

Bethany said...

Look delicious! Thanks so much for sharing at Wednesday's Adorned From Above Blog Hop.
Debi and Charly @ Adorned From Above
Bethany @ Whistle and Ivy

happyvballgirl said...

Thanks so much Lenetta! Checked out your weekly goals link up and they sound like fun! But I've got to get my act together (though that sure sounds like my first goal! haha) before I join you (ie lots of backed up posts), and my girls are tracking out next week for 3 weeks which means I may not be posting much during that time! Thanks so much for commenting!

happyvballgirl said...

Thanks Bethany! And thanks for co-hosting!

HungryLittleGirl said...

YUM! The applesauce in this cake is very interesting. I will try it this way for sure.
Thank you so much for sharing this at Wednesday Extravaganza - hope to see you there again next week - and don't forget the voting is today!

Jennifer said...

This looks yummy! Please share this in a new Linky Party --Weekend Kitchen Creations at Please join us, share your delicious creation and get other scrumptious ideas.

Angelique Ouellette-Tower said...

It was an amazing game but like you said there's always next year! You have a wonderful blog!! I'm your newest GFC follower from the “Adorned From Above” blog hop - this is my blog if you wanted to follow back:

happyvballgirl said...

My pleasure! Thank YOU for hosting! :)

happyvballgirl said...

Thanks so much for stopping by, Jennifer! Would love to share at your linky! Thanks for the invite! :)

happyvballgirl said...

Awww, thanks so much for the kind words, Angie! And thanks so much for stopping by. :)

Linda Bouffard said...

This looks so yummy! Wow. Thanks for the recipe, happyvballgirl. :)


Ellya Brill said...

Love love carrot cake. Pinning!


Kirsten said...

I liked your round carrot cake, but I think the M cake was brilliant!
Nicely done. The best carrot cake I've ever eaten was won by my daughter at the school Spring carnival Cake Walk. It was HUGE! I think 7 layers? The family who made it came up to us as we were touring the carnival and told us all about how they came up with the recipe and hoped we liked it.

I served it to company that night and it was amazing.

Thanks for that memory--I saw carrot cake on Tasty Tuesdays and had to check it out!

Jess said...

Carrot Cake is one of my favorites - yet I have never tried to make it. Definitely going to give this a try, looks great. Pinning! Thank you for sharing at Tasty Tuesdays. :)

Kathy Penney said...

Pinned this one too! It looked absolutely delicious!

anyonita green said...

I go weak at the knees for a good carrot cake! :) Lol. It's one of the few things that I can eat no matter what. Yours looks so moist and delicious! Thank you so much for linking up with me this week at Tasty Tuesdays! I’ve pinned this & shared it with my followers! Please be sure to stop back by the party and check out some of the other links!