World’s Best Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Learn how to make the world’s best carrot cake! This recipe is so simple but has the absolute best flavor and perfectly moist texture, piled high with the most heavenly, fluffy and rich cream cheese frosting. 

World's Best Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | lecremedelacrumb.com

This is IT. Remember how I told you I’d be sharing a full-on totally from scratch yet super simple carrot cake to end your quest for carrot cake perfection? Yeah this is that cake.

World's Best Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | lecremedelacrumb.com

This cake is absolute perfection. Three moist layers of the best carrot cake you’ve ever tasted and the best part is that this cake is pretty much foolproof. Very forgiving with no crazy ingredients or tricks, just straightforward easy-to-follow steps and basic ingredients in the perfect balance.

World's Best Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | lecremedelacrumb.com

I took this cake to my parents house for a big pre-Easter get together last weekend and it was devoured except for two little slices I snuck away at the beginning of the party to save for my in laws. On the way home we dropped off the cake for my husband’s parents and before I even got the kids in bed, I had a text from my mother in law – the connoisseur of carrot cakes –  thanking us for the cake and swearing it was the best she’d ever had (even better than her trusty old recipe she’s been making for years!). I’m pretty obsessed with this cake myself and I am positive you will be too!

World's Best Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | lecremedelacrumb.com

What people are saying about the World’s Best Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

“Thank you for this recipe. I made this for a birthday and everyone loved it! So much so, that I have been asked to bake it again and take it on our Caribbean vacation.” – Jean

“Seriously the best carrot cake ever. I made this for Mother’s Day and everyone loved it. I did omit a lot of sugar. I promise the cake was sweet but not overly sweet. Highly recommend this for all your special occasions.” – Nina

“Definitely world’s best carrot cake ever! This is so delicious. I can have it all day long.” – Martin

“Hi, I am stuffing my face with this delicious carrot cake as we speak and just had to pass by to thank you for it in between the bites. 🙂 It’s heavenly light and moist.” – Edward

World's Best Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | lecremedelacrumb.com
5 from 3 votes
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World's Best Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Learn how to make the world's best carrot cake! This recipe is so simple but has the absolute best flavor and perfectly moist texture, piled high with the most heavenly, fluffy and rich cream cheese frosting.

Course Dessert
Keyword carrot cake, dessert, easter
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 12 people

Ingredients

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/4 cups vegetable or canola oil
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 6 large eggs
  • 3 cups shredded carrot
  • optional: 1/2 cup raisins and/or 1/2 cup chopped pecans

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 16 ounces cream cheese (2 8-ounce bricks), softened
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract OR 1 teaspoons vanilla + 2 teaspoons maple extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 cups powdered sugar, or as needed
  • chopped pecans for topping, optional

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour three 9-inch cake pans.

  2. In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. In a large bowl cream together oil, applesauce, sugar, and brown sugar. Mix in eggs, one at a time, then stir in carrots. (If adding raisins and/or nuts stir in now).

  3. Stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients until there are no more streaks of flour in the batter. Divide between prepared cake pans.

  4. Bake for 35 minutes or until an inserted toothpick into the center comes out clean.

  5. Turn cakes out onto cooling racks and allow to cool.

  6. Prepare the frosting while your cakes cool. In a sauce pan, melt butter over medium heat. Once completely melted, continue to cook 2-4 minutes longer until the color goes from pale yellow to a dark amber color. Remove from heat.

  7. In a large bowl cream together cream cheese and butter. Mix in vanilla and salt. Add powdered sugar, one cup at a time mixing after each, until frosting is smooth and fluffy.

  8. Assemble cake by spreading frosting on top of all three layers, then spreading around the sides of the cake. Top with chopped pecans if desired and store in airtight container until ready to serve.

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Comments

Perfect for Easter! Check out our post on littleblackdomicile.com tomorrow for our take on cake plates…you have a beauty here!-Laurel Bledsoe

I love carrot cake, but am allergic to citrus so most times it has pineapple and I can’t have any. So excited to see an easy, non pineapple carrot cake!! Yes, I am happy dancing in my chair. Have a happy Easter!!

These cakes are gorgeous! Looks like a piece of art 🙂 Can i use honey instead of sugar in this recipe?
Thank you!

    Hi Barbara, I haven’t tried honey in place of the sugar yet so I’m not sure how it would turn out! If you do try it, please let me know the results!

Can pineapple be added to this recipe?

Thank you for this recipe. I made this for a birthday and everyone loved it! So much so, that I have been asked to bake it again and take it on our Caribbean vacation. I had reservations about traveling with it BUT I wonder if I can use loaf pans instead? I would feeze the loaves and buttercream frosting with ice packs. I can frost when I arrive 5 hours later. What do you think? Any tips?
Thanks again Tiffany!

Would you be able to sub almond flour or coconut flour?

Seriously the best carrot cake ever. I made this for Mother’s Day and everyone loved it. I did omit a lot of sugar. I used one cup of sugar and 1 1/4 cup packed brown sugar. For the frosting I only used 4 cups of powdered sugar and I promise the cake was sweet but not overly sweet. Highly recommend this for all your special occasions.

Gorgeous recipe! Looks awesome. This is the best recipe for carrot cake I have ever seen.

Can you make this in gram instead 🙈 on from Denmark and we don’t use cups 🙁

Definitely world’s best carrot cake ever! This is so delicious. I can have it all day long.

Thank you for this recipe. I have been using one my sister gave me and this is so much more delicious. Will make this a ” favourite” from now on. Cheers for Australia.

Hi, I am stuffing my face with this delicious carrot cake as we speak and just had to pass by to thank you for it in between the bites. 🙂 It’s heavenly light and moist. Baked it in a 10x 15 inch dish for approx 30 mins. Thank you so much for the recipy, no return for me either! 🙂

Every year I make carrot cake for my husband’s birthday, and this is the best one so far! The frosting was excellent, and I got many compliments on how moist the cake was. I would recommend using baking paper on the tins instead of the listed method of greasing the pan then coating it in flour, as my cakes still had issues sticking. If using nuts, make sure to chop them coarsely, as the smaller pieces in the cake turned black (though I tasted no burnt flavor).I also would have left it in the oven for 5-10 more minutes than suggested–2 of the 3 layers started falling apart when I tried to take them out of the tin (even though the toothpick came out clean) and it turned out part of the bottom was still raw. I was able to recover one of the layers by baking it for 10-15 more minutes (after it had cooled down). My oven is a bit finnicky and inconsistent on temperature–I assume if we had a better oven the recommended time would leave the cake just barely baked.

I made this cake last night and it was a huge hiT!!
One thing i noticed was thAt the recipe calls for vanilla in the cake but the instructions do not say when to add it. I added with my wet ingredients (because, duh) but if i hadnt looked through the List of ingredients again to check maRk everything i would have forgotten to add it!

    Hi Judi- SO happy to hear that you loved this! It’s one of my most favorite cake recipes on the entire blog! Thanks for the heads up about the vanilla mistake- I will get it fixed ASAP! Thanks for sharing!

Made this cake for Easter. I added a tad of maple flavor to the icing. Absolutely amazing cake.

    That sounds delicious! I am a huge maple fan.. I should definitely try that! Thanks for sharing.

hi, this looks AMAZING & I adore carrot cake. It’s so beautiful too. I’m wanting to make this for Mother’s daY this Sunday & Would like to know if this could be made the night before?? i can’t wait to make it & eat it. 😉

    Hi Kati- this could be made the night before! Just be sure that you are storing it properly for the night before you serve it!! Gotta keep that freshness!! 😉 I hope that you love it!

This is some next level photography and a great recipe as well by the looks of it.

Do you have a post about your gear setup?

Thanks, Carl

Do I use cake flour or all purpose flour? And if so do I use the same Amount as all purpose?

    Hi Jenn- I use all purpose flour in this recipe. To be honest, I am not completely sure how much to increase (if any) if you are going to use cake flour instead. Sorry that I am no help for that one!! Hope you love the cake!

Looking forward to making this! Do I refrigerate the cake since it has cream cheese as the frosting? Or should i leave it on the counter overnight?

    Overnight on the counter should be fine! Any longer than that, I recommend that you refrigerate it in an air tight container. I hope that you love this cake! It’s my favorite! 🙂 Thanks, Priya!

HI BARBARA, I LOVE CARROT. most DAYS I EAT WITH MY MEAL BECAUSE OF MY DIABETICS.BUT NICE HEARING CARROT CAKE

The frosting was wonderful, and I obtained many compliments on how moist the cake was. I might suggest utilizing baking paper on the tins as an alternative of the listed technique of greasing the pan then coating it in flour, as my muffins nonetheless had points sticking. My oven is a bit finicky and inconsistent on temperature–I assume if we had a greater oven the really helpful time would depart the cake simply barely baked.

    Hi Rita! So happy to hear that you loved this recipe so much! I bet muffins out of this are fantastic!! Thanks for your feedback from your experience!! 🙂

Do you know ehat the conversion would be for 8 Inch pans (how many pans/how long to baKe)? Looks Amazing!

    Christianne- It is three layers even with 8 inch. It will take close to same amount of time, just check a few minutes early! Don’t use all of the batter.

      Thank you!!

As much as I love to have carrot cake, making one has not been very easy for me. It’s always messed up. But seriously, the last I made was exceptionally perfect and my husband’s birthday was lightened with it, thanks to this super-easy and well-explained recipe and Kitchen Witch Maven for her recommended cookware.
I had the best carrot cake ever

    So excited to hear that you finally had great success by using this recipe! And on your husbands birthday- way to go! 😉

Looks really delicious, can’t wait to try it and serve to my kids when I go on vacation this December. Thanks for this.

    I hope that they all enjoy it! It’s my most favorite carrot cake!

To a great degree lovely and interesting post. I was scanning for this kind of information and savored the experience of examining this one.