Carrot Cake with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
Prep Time: 25 min
Cook Time: 20 min
*Your Chef will lead you through all the techniques, so prepping ahead of class is optional
Ingredients for the cake:
- 1 ½ cups (232 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1 cup (151 grams) whole wheat flour
- 1/2 teaspoon (3 grams) kosher salt
- 3 teaspoons (17 grams) baking powder
- 1 teaspoon (5 grams) baking soda
- 1 ½ teaspoons (2 grams) ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 cup (152 grams) coconut sugar
- 3/4 cup unsweetened apple sauce
- 1/4 cup avocado, vegetable or canola oil (or ghee, melted and cooled slightly)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste or extract
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 3 cups (332 grams) freshly grated carrots (from approximately 4 medium unpeeled carrots)
- 2/3 cup (121 grams) raisins
- 3/4 cup toasted, chopped walnuts (optional)
Ingredients for the frosting:
- 1 pound (16 ounces) reduced-fat cream cheese, room temperature
- 1/2 cup 0% Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of kosher salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 13-inch x 18-inch rimmed sheet tray (a half-size tray) and line with parchment paper.
- In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the flours, salt, baking powder, soda and spices.
- In a large mixing bowl vigorously whisk the maple syrup, coconut sugar, applesauce and oil together until the coconut sugar is dissolved and the mixture is emulsified. Add the vanilla and eggs and whisk until combined.
- Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and, using a silicone spatula, stir until the dry ingredients are 50% combined. Tip in the carrots, raisins and walnuts (if using) and stir just until everything is evenly combined.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared sheet tray and smooth into an even layer. Bake for 20 minutes or until the top is firm and the edges are golden brown. Remove to a cooling rack for 5 minutes before taking the cake out of the pan and allowing it to cool completely directly on the rack.
- While the cake is finishing, make the frosting by beating all of the ingredients in a large bowl with hand beaters or in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment for 5 minutes, scraping down the sides and bottoms of the bowl as needed. The frosting should be thick and spreadable, similar to cream cheese’s original consistency. If you are making the frosting in advance refrigerate it, taking it out at least 40 minutes prior to frosting the cake so that it softens.
- To build the cake: Line a serving platter with torn pieces of overlapping pieces of parchment paper, arranged so that you can gently remove them after frosting the cake.
- Carefully slide the cake onto a cutting board and cut in half (all the way through the parchment paper) both lengthwise and widthwise so that you end up with 4 (relatively) equal-sized rectangles.
- Gently, using your hands or a large spatula, transfer one piece to the parchment-lined serving platter, paper side up. Slowly peel off the parchment paper and place 1/3 cup of frosting in the center.
- Use a small offset spatula or butter knife to spread the frosting evenly over the top, all the way to the edges.
- Top with the second piece of cake, gently pressing down in the middle, and repeat the frosting. Repeat until all four layers have been frosted. Use the back of the offset spatula to frost the sides with the remaining frosting – there should be just a knife for a naked look, not a fully frosted cake.
- Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.
This cake is great to make in stages: the cake can be made, cooled, cut and frozen for up to 1 month as long as it is wrapped well. Frost it while frozen and allow it to thaw in the fridge for at least 1 day before serving.
The frosting can be made up to 2 days in advance.
The cake can be refrigerated for up to 4 days, though it will dry out the longer it is in there. You can also slice it, wrap them individually, and freeze them for up to 1 month.