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Some days you have a whim and you decide you are going to make a carrot cake. With the Spring weather filling our weeks, and my kids begging for dessert every night after dinner, carrot cake seemed like a perfect choice!
You know how some flavors just feel like the belong in a certain season? A delicious carrot cake is quintessentially Spring. And if you ask my sister in law, it’s basically vegetable cake because it has carrots in it! So grab all your ingredients and embrace Spring flavors along with all the crazy Spring weather!
(Recipe and photos by Paula Iniguez of The Housewives of Riverton)
3 cups finely shredded carrots
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
4 eggs, room temperature
1 1/8 cup oil
2 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
Pinch of ground ginger
2 cups chopped pecans, plus a few extra whole ones for garnish
Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease three 8 inch cake pans. I personally like to line the bottom with parchment paper to double ensure that there is no sticking. Finely grate carrots. I used baby carrots because I didn’t have to peel them. In a stand mixer on low, combined flour, baking powder and soda, and all spices. Next, add in sugar, oil, and vanilla. Add in eggs, one at a time, mix for a couple minutes on medium until combined. Reduce mixing speed to low and stir in grated carrots until just combined. Divide batter between the three pans, for me it ended up being just under two cups in each pan. Bake at 325°F for 30-35 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a rack in the pan for 5 minutes, then turn out on cooling racks and let cool completely.
Cream Cheese Frosting
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 – 8oz package cream cheese, softened
1 – 1 1/2 lbs of powdered sugar
In stand mixer on medium/high speed, beat butter until smooth. Add cream cheese and continue to beat until smooth. Reduce mixer speed to low and add powdered sugar one cup at a time until desired consistency is reached. (I used about 1 1/2 lbs of powdered sugar) Mix for a minute or two on medium speed until smooth.
Layer cakes using frosting and then frost cake. Reserve about 1 cup for top decoration. While frosting is still tacky, press chopped pecans onto the sides of the cake. All the sides should be fully covered. Using a 1M frosting tip, create little swirls along the outside of the top of the cake, and top each swirl with a pecan. Sprinkle top with a little bit of ground nutmeg. Now invite all your friends and family over to share your beautifully delicious cake! Enjoy!
The only change I would make to this cake is to double the cake recipe to make my layers thicker. The frosting is so good, but the really wanted more of the cake! Now I want to hear all of your delicious carrot or Spring recipes! Share with me in comments!