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Spiced Carrot Cake

This is a dlicious carrot cake with a touch of warm spices. It is incredibly moist and the orange cream cheese icing is the perfect way to kick it up a notch.

Spiced Carrot Cake With Orange Cream Cheese Icing

There are  2  kind of people in the  world –  those  who love  carrot  cakes  and  those   who don’t..  well  it  gets a  little  more  complicated  than  that .   Regardless , whichever group you fall into chances  are   you  will like  this   Spiced Carrot Cake .  It is  made   with  hearty  whole  wheat ,  with a  touch of  spices   enhancing  the  nutty  warm   tones.  The  cream  cheese   frosting  is  optional but  absolutely  delicious  when paired  with the  warm  tones of  the   cake .   Without   the  icing this   could  pass  for  a healthy breakfast  option .. .

Among  vegetables   carrots  have high  sugar  content .  Before  processed  sugar  became so common  carrots  were  used in  deserts  around  the  world .    The shredded  carrots   cooks in the   cake  and  helps retain   some  moisture . These  cakes  are  usually  moist   and denser and  many times  loaded   with  other mix ins  like  raisins  and  nuts . Many of  the   recipes  call for  copious  amounts  of   sugar  and  fat  robbing it of its  nutritional advantages  and  loading  it   with  empty calories .

It  does not have to be so .  Cakes  like   these  are perfect  when made   with whole  wheat  flour .  Sugar is not  the  star    here ,  there  are more  earthy ,  nutty  robust  flavors   for  the  adult  palate .  Cutting   back on the  sugar  allows  the robust   flavors  of  the  carrots  and  spices  shine   through . Slather on  the  icing   for  those  time  when  you need  a  sugar  high ,  but  for  me  I will have  these plain  any day   with  a hot  cup of  Joe .

Ingredients Spiced Carrot Cake

Preheat  the  oven  to  350°F (175°C).    Line  the  bottom  of a 9″  cake  pan  with  parchment paper  and   grease  and   flour  the  sides . Set  aside . Coarsely grate  the   carrots  and set aside.  Use  the  food processor or  the  grater .  The   goal is  to  get   thin  pieces  of   carrots about 2 mm  thick or  so . Sift  the   dry ingredients , and   spice  powders  –  Whole  Wheat  flour , cinnamon , cardamon , ginger , nutmeg , salt  and  baking  powder – together .  In another bowl  beat  oil  and  egg   until  uniformly blended .

Add  the  yogurt  and  vanilla  essence  to the wet ingredients  and  mix well until no lumps  remain and uniformly mixed . Sift  the  dry ingredients over  this  reserving  1 tbsp .   With a  spatula  or  wooden  spoon   fold  the  dry ingredients  into the   wet .   Toss  the   chopped  nuts  in the  reserved   flour  and  set aside .

Add   the  grated  carrots   to the   batter  and   fold in .   Reserve  about  1  tbsp of  nuts   and  fold  the   rest  into the  batter .   Of  course  you can  always   mix  in all the  nuts  at  this  time .

Pour  the  batter into the   prepared  pan  and  sprinkle  the  reserved nuts  on  top .   Bake  in the  preheated  oven for  30 to  35  minutes  until a  toothpick/tester  inserted in the center comes out clean .  Cool in the pan   for  a  few minutes before  inverting  into a  cooling rack to cool  completely

Making Spiced Carrot Cake

While  the   cake  is  cooling  prepare  the  icing .   The   quantity  given  here is  just   sufficient  for  a  smooth  spread over  the  top or  to make a  semi  clad   version .    Make  sure  that  the  butter  and  cream  cheese   are  at  room temperature (softened)  before   starting .   Take  butter  and   cream  cheese  in a  mixing  bowl and  beat  together  until blended . Add    about  2 C   sifted  icing  sugar  and  mix in   and   vanilla    and  beat  in  until   thick  and   creamy   and  soft  peaks   form  on the  beater . .  Taste  and add  extra  sugar  if necessary .

  Place  the  cake  on  a  serving  platter . Pile  the  frosting on  top .  Spread  using the  back of  a  spoon or offset  spatula .   Do not  worry about  getting  a smooth  finish .   Sprinkle a  dash  of  cinnamon on top  (optional)  and  decorate   with chopped  nuts .

A Slice Of Spiced Carrot Cake With Orange Cream Cheese Icing
Spiced Carrot Cake With Orange Cream Cheese Icing

Spiced Carrot Cake

By Syama
This  carrot  cake  is made   with  whole  wheat  flour   and  assorted   spices . The  spices add  warmth  and enhances the flavors.  The   sweet  and  tart  cream  cheese icing   perfectly complements the   warm  spices.  The  ingredient  list  might  look long  , but  this definitely qualifies as guilt free indulgence. 
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Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 6



  • 1 1/2 C White Whole Wheat Flour / Atta (180 g)
  • 1 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/4 Tsp Cardamom
  • 1/2 Tsp Ginger
  • 1/4 Tsp Nutmeg
  • 1/2 Tsp Salt
  • 2 Tsp Baking Powder
  • 3/4 C Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Egg Large
  • 1/3 C Oil Notes
  • 3/4 C Plain Yogurt
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 1/2 C Carrots Finely Grated
  • 1/2 C Walnuts/Peccans Chopped

Option 1 – Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
  • 1/2 C Cream Cheese
  • 2 – 2 1/2 C Icing Sugar
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla Extract

Option – 2 Orange Cream Cheese Icing

  • 4 oz Cream Cheese
  • 1 C Icing Sugar
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 2 Tbsp Orange Juice As needed (Notes)

To Finish

  • 2 – 4 Tbsp Chopped Walnuts
  • A Pinch Cinnamon – A Pinch


Make the cake

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Prepare a 9″ round cake pan or a  6 Cup bundt cake pan.  Place the chopped nuts on a cookie sheet and toast in the oven for 5 minutes. Set aside.
  • Finely  grate the carrots . Sift the dry ingredients – flour , salt , cinnamon , cardamon , ginger , nutmeg and baking powder – together. In another bowl beat the oil  and sugar together until blended well. Add the  egg  and  beat  well. Mix in  the yogurt and vanilla essence.   Fold  in the  grates  carrots. Make  sure  that  there are no lumps.
  • Mix 1 tablespoon of flour with the nuts. Add the remaining dry ingredients to the wet and gently fold in using a spatula .Add the chopped nuts  and  gently fold in. Pour the batter to the prepared baking pan. 
  • Transfer to the preheated oven and bake for 30 – 40 minutes. The cake is done when a tester inserted in the center comes out clean .Remove from the oven , let cool in the pan for 5 minutes .Invert onto a cooling rack and cool completely.  
    If  using  a  bundt pan  leave  the  cake in pan  and  place the  pan on the   cooling  rack  for  15  minutes  before inverting.  

If Making the Frosting

  • Sift the icing sugar and set aside .Place the softened butter and cream cheese in a bowl and beat together until blended .Add vanilla and about 2 cups of icing sugar and beat in until thick and creamy and soft peaks forms on the beater. Taste and add extra sugar if necessary. 
    Pile a  layer of  frosting  on top of  the   cake  and  spread  using  back of  an offset  spatula  or  spoon. 

If Making the Icing

  • Make  sure  that  the  cream  cheese  is at  room temperature.  Plac e it  in a  medium mixing  bowl and  mash  with a  spatula or  mixer  until soft.  Sift  the  powdered  sugar  on top  and  mix  in.  Add the  vanilla   extract. Mix  well and  thin  to  desired  consistency  by adding   orange  juice.  
    Pour  the  icing  over  the  cake and  let  it  drip  along   the  sides. 

Adding The Finishing Touches

  • Place  the  cake  on  the  serving  platter.  Sprinkle a dash of cinnamon and decorate with chopped nuts.


  • Any flavorless  oil or  flavors that  complement  can  be  used  in this  recipe.  

Important: Nutrition Values are estimates. Actuals vary based on ingredients and serving size.

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Spiced Carrot Cake With Orange Cream Cheese Icing

Originally published on May 09, 2016.

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