Carrot cake

This recipe is perfect for a birthday cake and a great excuse to go to town on the decoration. If you want a bigger cake, bake two and sandwich them together with extra topping before covering the outside. If you’re looking for a nutritional reason to indulge, look no further than the fibre-rich carrots, wholemeal flour and calcium-rich mascarpone cheese topping!

  • Prep time:
    about 30 minutes
  • Cooking time:
    45-55 minutes


  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC/Gas Mark 4.
  2. Grease a  22.5cm x 32.5cm baking tin and line the base with baking paper.
  3. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices together in a large mixing bowl.
  4. Mix the oil, sugars, eggs and vanilla extract together in a medium mixing bowl.
  5. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix well until combined. 
  6. Fold in the grated carrots, pineapple and walnuts and spread the batter into the tin.
  7. Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.
  8. Remove the cake from the tin and set on a wire rack to cool (after around 45 minutes, put the cake into the fridge to speed up cooling).
  9. Mix all the topping ingredients together and cover the cake.
  10. Any leftover cake can be covered and stored in the fridge for up to five days. 


  • 300g flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon each ground cloves, ground ginger and ground nutmet 
  • 240ml grape seed or good quality vegetable oil
  • 250g dark brown sugar
  • 70g golden caster sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • 400g grated carrot
  • 200g diced ripe pineapple
  • 125g chopped or ground walnuts

For the topping 

  • 225g full-fat cream cheese, at room temperature 
  • 50ml double cream 
  • 60g golden caster sugar 
  • fine zest and juice of 1 lemon and 1 lime, more if you like it tangy

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