Spiced Carrot Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting

We raised horses for many years. That meant we always had carrots on hand. And what better way to use carrots than in an a delicious, moist spiced carrot cake!

This is a great winter dessert: dense and heavy with a wonderful carrot flavor, redolent with the spices of the season, and the coconut cream cheese frosting even looks a bit like snow. It's practically a meal in itself with fresh eggs, fresh grated carrots and raisins.

This recipe is so easy and whips up in just minutes. The cake batter can be made by hand with just a whisk and large bowl, but for the frosting you'll want to use a handheld or stand mixer. Enjoy!

Spiced Carrot Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting

For the Cake

Whisk or stir together in a small bowl - 

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground ginger

Whisk in a medium bowl -

4 eggs
1-1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)

In a stand mixer, or a large bowl, combine the wet and dry ingredients and mix until the batter is smooth, then add -

3 cups coarsely grated fresh carrots (about 4-5 medium carrots)
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup coarse chopped walnuts

Mix until ingredients are combined.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour two 8- or 9-inch cake pans.  Pour batter evenly into the two pans. Bake for 40-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Cool on wire racks for ten minutes, then turn cakes out of pans onto racks to cool completely.

For the Frosting 

In a stand mixer, combine -

2 sticks butter, at room temperature
16 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
4 cups confectioners sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream

Add ingredients one at a time, beating until well blended. Frost the cake, stacking one layer on top of the other with a nice, thick layer of frosting in the middle (be generous with the frosting, there will be plenty). 

For Garnish

Press shredded coconut onto the top of cake.

-Whisk dry ingredients-
-Whisk eggs-
-Whisk sugars and oil into the eggs-
-Add some vanilla bean paste-
-Mix wet ingredients into the dry, using your whisk or a stand mixer-
-Grate fresh carrots-
-Mix the carrots, along with raisins and nuts into your batter-
-Bake until lightly browned and a toothpick comes out clean-
-Cool on a wire rack-
-Remove from pans and cool completely-
-Frost the first layer-
-Top with the second layer and frost top and sides-
-Garnish with shredded coconut-

-Slice and enjoy-

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