Instructables

Perfect Carrot Cake

Picture of Perfect Carrot Cake
This is the most delicious carrot cake you'll probably ever have. Using fresh ginger and nutmeg add a little bite which plays perfectly off the sweetness of the carrots.
 
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Step 1: You'll need. . .

Picture of You'll need. . .
ginger.jpg
Hardware:
- large mixing bowl
- hand mixer or wooden spoon
- 3 9" cake pans
- micro-planer
- measuring cup
- box grater or food processor with a grating blade attachment

Software:
-Cake
- 2 cups sugar
- 1.5 cups vegetable oil
- 4 large eggs
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- .5 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
- .5 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
- .5 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups finely grated peeled carrots (about 1 pound)
- pecans and/or raisins can be added

-Frosting
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
- .5 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Step 2: Make the Cake!

Picture of Make the Cake!
batter.jpg
pans.jpg
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
2. Grease and flour 3 9"-diameter cake pans.
3. Grate carrots using a box grater or feed through the grating blade of a food processor.
4. Beat together sugar and oil until well combined.
5. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each.
6. Stir in flour, baking powder, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
7. Gently stir in carrots (and nuts and raisins if desired).
8. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pans.
9. Bake until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean and cakes begin to pull away from sides of pans, about 45 minutes.
10. Allow to cool in pans on racks 15 minutes. Turn out cakes onto racks and cool completely.

Step 3: Make the Icing!

Picture of Make the Icing!
cake.jpg
1. Beat together all ingredients until smooth.
2. Place one cake layer on a platter and spread with icing.
3. Apply another layer of cake and repeat.
4. Spread icing over top and sides of cake.
5. Enjoy!
mandymoo592 years ago
For the frosting it say 5 cups of unsalted butter, then it says 1 stick. You mean the big bar of butter?? the whole stick?... thx :)
shesparticular (author)  mandymoo592 years ago
I'm sorry if it's a bit unclear - it actually says ".5 cup butter" (or 1/2 cup) not 5 cups. A half-cup of butter is equivalent to 8 tablespoons or one stick of butter.
frollard4 years ago
I only used the icing portion, as i needed some cream cheese icing. Perfect! I used slightly less sugar...just as is said by brick top in Snatch: "I'm sweet enough as it is".
davethecook5 years ago
Wowser! I baked this following the instructions to the letter and boy, did it work. Took it into the office (there was a challenge on ... (another story)) and it went down a total storm. Seconds were had and it stayed moist for over 48hrs. The three layers provide the perfect cake/icing ratio per bite. The only observation was that I felt there was too much icing on the outside of the cake because it was particularly difficult to transport on the London Underground in the rush hour! Great recipe which produces a professional result.. Will certainly bake it again. For UK cooks, I would suggest that it's worth buying some plastic jugs with "cup" measurements - which is what I did, instead of trying to convert into other measurements.
shesparticular (author)  davethecook5 years ago
I'm so glad you and your office enjoyed it! I've also made it as cupcakes (bake them for a bit less time though) and it was really great - you can also pipe icing inside of them before you ice them.
This looks like a good recipe, but could you take some new shots to put in here?
shesparticular (author)  fungus amungus5 years ago
Sure thing, when I have some time to make another cake I'll make sure to take some.
wolft42925 years ago
It all looks real good. I have a question though. In your hardware list and the recipe you say 3 9" pans, but in the picture of the cake there are only two layers and in the pic of the pans there are only two. So, how many did you actually use? Inquiring minds would like to know. :=)
shesparticular (author)  wolft42925 years ago
Thanks. Not going to lie, the picture was actually taken after the bottom layer had been eaten (and some of it is near the fork).
dchall85 years ago
I believe it was back in the very late 1970s the Los Angeles Times Food Section posted about 30 recipes for carrot cake. Or course now with Google you can pull up more than that in a few key strokes, but the LA Times is a good resource for a carrot cake search.
shesparticular (author) 5 years ago
I use the Philidelphia brick sort usually, but mainly because I hate having to scrape all the other kind out of the tubs. I have found sometimes that the frosting can taste a bit too sweet, so thanks for mentioning that, Thetron, I should have.
Phil B5 years ago
When eating away from home I always take carrot cake when it is available. Too often I have seen luscious looking chocolate cakes that had less taste in them than the plate on which they sat. It is almost impossible to make a bad carrot cake, though. Thanks for the recipe. Now, if I just weighed what I should I could make yours and enjoy it.
AndyGadget5 years ago
I've spent YEARS searching for the perfect carrot cake as it is my favourite! Your recipe looks fantastic, but I'll let you know it lives up to its billing once I've tried it. (I am a carrot cake connoisseur ;¬)
What sort of cream cheese are you using in the icing. Is it the Philidelphia type?
Yup that's the one - Philidelphia cream cheese frosting is my absolute favourite. I used to make extra just to eat with biscuits and stuff... You can experiement with the amount of sugar to taste too - start with about half to 75% as much and go from there. Recipe looks great - can't wait till my oven is working again!