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Classic Carrot Cake Recipe

Loaded with carrots, pineapple, coconut, raisins and walnuts, this Classic Carrot Cake recipe is truly decadent. Finished with a thick layer of cream cheese frosting and toasted coconut makes this cake worthy of any special occasion.

Loaded with carrots, pineapple,coconut,raisins and walnuts,then finished with a thick layer of cream cheese frosting - this ultimate Classic Carrot Cake Recipe is truly decadent.

Hot Fudge Sundays are my favorite dessert. I am pretty sure all you fellow chocoholics can understand. Then comes cheesecake like Tall New York Cheesecake and Frozen Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake.  Regular old cake is pretty far down on my list of favorites, but at the top of the cake list is carrot cake. I admit, I have an ongoing love affair with nuts and coconut.

Classic Carrot Cake is something I have made over the years with mixed results. Sometimes it turned out dry and sometimes the carrots still tasted raw. My kids would accuse me of trying to hide “vegetables” in their cake! So anytime I would see a new recipe for carrot cake I got excited. Would this be the one that turns out just right? Well, here it is.

The Ultimate Classic Carrot Cake.  It has every classic ingredient , but uses oil to keep it moist. And I think the secret ingredient is using crushed pineapple that has been drained, but left just a little wet.

One of the reasons this cake is so delicious are the spices. I like to make my own spice mixes, like Pumpkin Pie Spice and Apple Pie Spice, but if you’re not into that, store bought is fine.

Loaded with carrots, pineapple,coconut,raisins and walnuts this ultimate Classic Carrot Cake Recipe is truly decadent. Finished with a thick layer of cream cheese frosting and toasted coconut makes this cake worthy of any special occasion.

 This recipe was developed based on a Carrot and Pineapple Cake  that was made by Ina Garten on  Barefoot Contessa.

INGREDIENTS TO MAKE THIS CLASSIC CARROT CAKE RECIPE

  • Granulated Sugar
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Flour
  • Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • Baking Soda
  • Cream Cheese
  • Raisins
  • Walnuts
  • Carrots
  • Crushed Pineapple    
  • Flaked Coconut
  • Butter
  • Powdered Sugar
Loaded with carrots, pineapple,coconut,raisins and walnuts this ultimate Classic Carrot Cake Recipe is truly decadent. Finished with a thick layer of cream cheese frosting and toasted coconut makes this cake worthy of any special occasion.

CAN I MAKE THIS CAKE AHEAD OF TIME?

The best part of Classic Carrot Cake is that the flavor is even better as they get a chance to blend together after baking. Over the hours and days after baking, the cake will taste even more amazing, with the pumpkin pie spices really settling in.  The cream cheese frosting will deepen in flavor and you might even find yourself swiping your finger thru it.

This cake can be made up to three days ahead of serving, stored in the refrigerator tightly covered. Frost right away or just before serving.

Loaded with carrots, pineapple,coconut,raisins and walnuts this ultimate Classic Carrot Cake Recipe is truly decadent. Finished with a thick layer of cream cheese frosting and toasted coconut makes this cake worthy of any special occasion.

Don’t let it’s good looks fool you. This cake is a beast. It is dense, packed with rich, delicious flavor and feels like it weighs 10 pounds. Really, you will need both hands to pick it up.

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4 from 2 votes

Classic Carrot Cake Recipe

Loaded with carrots, pineapple,coconut,raisins and walnuts this ultimate Classic Carrot Cake Recipe is truly decadent. Finished with a thick layer of cream cheese frosting and toasted coconut makes this cake worthy of any special occasion.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Cooling 1 hour
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Servings 16
Calories 586kcal

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INGREDIENTS

FOR THE CAKE:

  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups vegetable oil
  • 3 extra large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1-1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 pound carrots, grated (about 4 cups)
  • 20 ounce crushed pineapple, canned, drained but not dry
  • 1 cup sweetened flaked coconut

TO MAKE FROSTING:

  • 12 ounce cream cheese, 1-1/2 (8 ounce) boxes at room temperature
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter, (2 sticks) at room temperature
  • 1-1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, add more if frosting is too thin

TO DECORATE:

  • 1/2 cup flaked coconut, toasted

INSTRUCTIONS

TO MAKE CAKE:
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter 2 (8-inch) round cake pans. Line the pans with parchment paper, then butter the paper and flour the pans.
  • Beat the sugar, oil, and eggs together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until pale yellow. Add the vanilla and mix until just blended.
  • In another bowl, sift together 2-1/2 cups flour, the pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just blended.
  • In a medium bowl, toss the raisins and walnuts with 1 tablespoon flour , then add in the carrots, coconut and pineapple. Add to the batter and mix well.
  • Divide the batter between the prepared pans, and bake on the middle oven rack for 55-60 minutes. The cake is done when it springs back when you touch the center, or a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  • Allow the cakes to cool completely on a rack before frosting, at least 1 hour.
MAKE THE FROSTING:
  • Place the cream cheese, butter and vanilla into a mixer bowl, using the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed until until just combined. Add in the sugar and mix until the frosting is smooth.
  • On a plate or pedestal, place one of the cake layers flat side up. With an offset spatula or knife, spread the top with frosting. Place the second cake flat side down on top of the frosted layer, so the cake has the rounded side up. Frost the top and sides of the cake evenly.
DECORATION:
  • Press the toasted coconut up the sides of the cake, pressing slightly to adhere the coconut to the frosting. Distribute the coconut evenly around the sides of the cake.

NOTES

To bake the cake in a 9 x 13 sheet pan, reduce the baking time by 5 – 10 minutes. Start checking the cake after 45 minutes baking time. The cake will be done when it springs back after a light touch or a toothpick inserted in the enter comes out clean.

NUTRITION INFORMATION PER SERVING

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 586kcal | Carbohydrates: 75.82g | Protein: 7.05g | Fat: 30.08g | Saturated Fat: 16.68g | Cholesterol: 98.36mg | Sodium: 481.47mg | Potassium: 345.43mg | Fiber: 3.88g | Sugar: 49.26g | Vitamin A: 5458.16IU | Vitamin C: 5.65mg | Calcium: 60.99mg | Iron: 2.06mg

© Copyright Christine Mello for Must Love Home. We would love for you to share a link to this recipe but please do not copy/paste the recipe instructions to websites or social media. We are happy for you to share a photo with a link back to this website instead.

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Loaded with carrots, pineapple,coconut,raisins and walnuts this ultimate Classic Carrot Cake Recipe is truly decadent. Finished with a thick layer of cream cheese frosting and toasted coconut makes this cake worthy of any special occasion.

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10 Comments

  1. Hi Silvia, great question! I haven’t used fresh pineapple to make this, but if I were to, I would substitute 1-1/3 cups fresh grated pineapple for the 15 ounce canned (lightly drained) pineapple. You might need to add 2 – 3 tablespoons of additional sugar to the batter because canned pineapple generally tastes sweeter than fresh. I hope this answers your question. 😁.

  2. Can you use regular pineapple and not canned ? If so , how many cups of crushed pineapple

  3. Hi Pat, thanks for the question and nice comment. When I use this recipe for cupcakes, it makes about 18 cupcakes when the cups are filled 2/3 full. I also recommend using foil liners instead of paper ones because the batter is so heavy. Hope that helps!😀

  4. How many cupcakes do you think it would make? I use this recipe all the time and it is a favorite!!

  5. Yes Beth, you can definitely bake this as a sheet cake. Just reduce the baking time by 5 – 10 minutes. Start to check the oven after 45 minutes just to be on the safe side. Thanks for the great question.

  6. Can you make a 13 x 9 sheet cake?

  7. Hi Suzie, Yes, you can use this batter for cupcakes, with these changes.( I haven’t made cupcakes using this batter but here is what I would do)…. 1) I would bake for 35 – 40 minutes, starting to check for done at 35 minutes and if not done, bake in additional 5 minute increments, checking each time, until done. Test just like you would for the cake…insert a toothpick in the middle to see if it comes out clean. 2) If using cupcake liners, do not use regular paper ones, use foil or silicone cups. If using just a cupcake tin, then be sure to liberally grease and flour each cupcake well so the cake doesn’t stick. Hope this helps and let me know how they turn out if you make them!

  8. Can this be made into cupcakes? How long would they need to bake if so. Thank you

  9. Thanks for letting me know that the can size was missing! So sorry about that! I emailed you back that the recipe calls for a 20 ounce can of crushed pineapple and corrected the recipe! Take care – Christine

  10. the recipe calls for a can of crushed pineapple. what size can?

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