Classic American Carrot Cake with Orange

Classic Carrot Cake with Orange

Serves 10
Prep time 30 minutes
Cook time 1 hour
Total time 1 hours, 30 minutes
Allergy Egg, Tree Nuts, Wheat
Meal type Dessert, Snack
Occasion Birthday Party, Casual Party
Region Indian
By author Tara Deshpande
"Please consult your doctor about any health restrictions or allergies before enjoying this recipe."


  • 3.5 cups finely grated carrots (squeezed a few times to remove excess water)
  • 2 Cups all purpose flour or maida
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1.5 teaspoons cinnamon (powdered)
  • 1.5 cups fine white sugar
  • 1/2 cup walnuts pieces skinned and toasted
  • 1.5 cups vegetable oil unflavored (not olive oil)
  • 2 tablespoons golden raisins pips removed
  • 4 eggs whisked
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • cup cream cheese frosting recipe
  • 1 teaspoon zest of lime and juice of half a lime
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1.5 cups fresh plain cream cheese
  • 4 tablespoons fresh cream light or heavy
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 8 whole walnuts skinned and toasted to garnish or 1 carrot shaved
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup good quality orange juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon zest of orange
  • 1 tablespoon orange liqueur like Cointreau or Grand Marnier
  • 2 tablespoons icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon corn starch


The secret to this carrot cake? I like to toast my carrots. I find it intensifies the flavor of the carrots and reduces the water content in the cake producing a much nicer crumb. If you want a lactose free recipe ice the cake with the orange glaze recipe provided below. You can also use powdered allspice and nutmeg instead of cinnamon. I also add powdered or crystallized ginger to the frosting sometimes. Some orange zest in the cake or frosting makes a nice change too.


Preheat oven 350F. Set rack in the middle tier of the oven

Grease and line with wax paper an 8.5 inch round cake tin at least 2 inches deep.

Toast the shredded carrots lightly in a non stick pan on low heat about 5 minutes until fragrant and a little dry. Cool

In an extra large bowl combine flour, baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt, cinnamon, walnut pieces and stir well.

Whisk the eggs, sugar, oil, raisins and vanilla in another bowl.

Combine carrots, dry and wet ingredients in the largest mixing bowl until well incorporated.

Pour into greased and lined cake pan and bake approximately 50-65 minutes until cake pulls away from sides of pan and a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

Cook cake in pan then invert and allow to cool on rack.

For the cream cheese frosting whisk the cream cheese, butter, cream, salt, sugar, zest and vanilla until fluffy. Ice cake and decorate with walnuts or shaved carrots.


Combine orange juice, zest, icing sugar and corn starch in a pan and heat until mixture thickens. Cool slightly and for a grown up version add orange liquor if desired. Pour over carrot cake.