Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Carrot Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting (Gluten-Free Version)

Last week I got the nicest email from a lady who thanked me for including gluten-free recipes on the blog.  She was gracious and kind and relieved to find things that tasted "just the same" as items baked with regular wheat flour.  Truth be told I felt a little guilty--prior to last week I haven't really been posting a lot of gluten-free recipes.  It's easy for me, now 4 or 5 years in, to forget what a jungle it is to maneuver learning you have Celiac Disease or are gluten intolerant.  Very quickly you realize your limitations for homemade pizza crust, bread, cookies, cupcakes, muffins, pasta and the list goes on.

It has been wonderful to watch the shelves at Whole Foods and Sprouts fill with gluten-free options over the past year or so, in particular.  I can't help but think what a relief it must be to people in the early stages of diagnosis--especially those with young children who really want to be like all the other kids eating birthday cake or sandwiches.  Victory on the gluten-free front!

That being said, baking at home is still something I like to partake in--not only is it healthy, but also therapeutic.  Yesterday was just another in what's become a string of stressful days.  The first thing that popped into my head upon opening my eyes was carrot cake.  By mid-day I was fighting a losing battle. Truth:  gluten-free cakes aren't easy to make.  The flour concoctions can be tricky and you want that cake to rise.  I mean nothing is worse than a cake that sinks in the middle (believe me I've been there more than once since this journey began).  Throwing caution to the wind I poured over recipes before morphing several into one I hoped would work, crossed fingers and set out.

Voila friends--victory indeed!

Gluten-Free Carrot Cake Recipe
3          eggs
1C       grapeseed oil (you can use vegetable just as easily)
1-3/4C sugar
1tsp      vanilla
1tsp      salt
2tsp      baking powder
2tsp      baking soda
1tsp      cinnamon
2C        flour (Gluten-Free Blend here) + 1tsp xanthan gum
3C        grated carrots
1C        chopped pecans (optional)

*preheat oven to 350 degrees
1.   Mix xanthan gum into flour and combine with salt, baking powder, baking sold and cinnamon.  Set aside.
2.  Combine eggs, sugar, oil and vanilla, mix until smooth.
3. Stir in flour a little at a time until just blended.  Do not over mix gluten-free batters.
4. Stir in carrots and pecans.
5. Pour into greased 9x13 or 8 inch springform pan.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 to 55 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

I put this cake into the oven and crossed my fingers so tight!! It drooped just a tiny bit in the center because I didn't let my oven preheat enough, but it wasn't noticeable to anyone but me so I just flipped the cake over to ice.
~Fresh out of oven~
Cream Cheese Frosting
1/2C    butter
8oz.     cream cheese
2C       confectioner's sugar
1C       coconut

Mix first two ingredients, slowly add the confectioner's sugar blending after each addition, add coconut and stir to finish before icing your well-cooled cake.

Hello massive cake platter from Target dating back 5 years.  
You never know when things are going to come in handy.  
Some of the best $14 I ever spent--has a big glass dome to lower over as well.
You can find a similar one here.

Happy Tuesday people.  Let's eat cake!


Josie said...

First of all, that dessert plate is too cute for words. And Carrie, you're a genius. Carrot cake is my (gluten-free) sister's favorite -- I can't wait to make this for her birthday!
xo Josie

Anonymous said...

When my friend found out her son was allergic to gluten (that's not right is it? I've emailed you about this, anyway he has allergies and has to be gluten free), your blog was the first link I sent her. Ok, the only link because while I'm up on plenty of other health issues, gluten free wasn't one. I know she was happy to see first hand he doesn't have to miss out :)

Dancing Branflake said...

Oh yum! I have never had gluten free anything but I bet I would love this. I am a sucker for cream cheese. Thank you to that lady who emailed you!

marissa at the boot said...

mmm i can almost taste it! and it looks so beautiful! great job, dear!

RosaLovesDC said...

That looks delicious. Though I must say when I ordered dessert and the waiter/waitress mentioned that they will bring two forks/spoons, I usually say, "Not necessary, I am gonna eat this bad boy all by myself" (that usually when I am with my husband of course).

LyddieGal said...

Oh, it's never too early for carrot cake, thats practically breakfast.

Erika @ ~TiptoeButterfly~ said...

sAweet! - i know ALOT of people who have to eat gluten free - thinking i wanna jump on the bandwagon even tho it doesn't apply to me (i am lactose intolerant tho if i wanna play the game "oh yeah, but i have THIS" haha) ..

anyway this totally looks YUM - and i'm draggin' ASS - with the wake yesterday - my Mom took a hit for the worse - STUPID ass people - and today being last day of my cleanse - HOLY LORD i can't wait for some solid food - and gluten free cake - soundn' good - think u can fed ex that bad boy over to me, just a piece??????

*love ya girl* - now tell Chef to open a resterurant in NYC/NJ area!!!!!!!

Danielle (elleinadspir) said...

Carrot cake is one of my all time favs. Yum.

Closet Fashionista said...

It looks so tasty!! It makes me wish I liked carrot cake, haha

vivalablonda said...

How cool is this! I'm def gonna try it, great bloooog and the plate you used here is great.


Cara said...

I use to make my mom make me a carrot cake every year for my bdaywhen I was little- then I got sick of them and haven't had one in YEARS...maybe I should try it again..

Daisy said...

it must have been so nice to receive that email. what a fantastic looking cake. happy tuesday!

Courtney Erin said...

You're just a woman of many, many talents aren't you? That email sounds so sweet and props to you for these baking adventures - I'm a huge carrot cake fan and am now plotting a trip to the bakery (I'm far to lazy/untalented to try this at home).

xoxo ~ Courtney

Bonnie said...

I am a huge carrot cake person.
I could eat an entire one by myself.
I think I may have actually done this at some point ...

Twitter: @GlamKitten88

sherri lynn said...

This looks yummy! I made carrot cake the other week but it wasn't GF. I didn't realize that baking GF can be tricky!

Annie said...

Carrie, this looks INCREDIBLE. I personally love that it doesn't have raisins. And how cute is that plate! xo

Rachel said...

Anything with cream cheese frosting is good by me!


Grace said...

Yum! I am actually gluten intolerant, so I am going to need to try this one out!!!

xx Grace

April said...

Yes, thanks for the Gluten Free recipe! :) I'm definitely going to try this! Looks so yummmy!


Caroline said...


Lily said...

Looks SO yummy !!


Amber Blue Bird said...

I dont really groove on carrot cake but I bet I could eat bowls of that frosting.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful presentation!

Peetzi Jen said...

A few weeks ago, I tried to substitute a generic bought GF flour for the regular flour in a strawberry yogurt bundt cake. Yyyuuuuuccccckkkk! It was so mealy and crumbly. Everyone ate it trying to make me feel better but I felt so defeated and I was kicking myself for not using your flour recipe and taking the shortcut with the store bought version. Never again!

Bless you, Carrie for always coming through on my GF journey!! You know that I have struggled with this mess over the last year. And I've made plenty of "gluten mistakes" and paid dearly for them. But the delicious gluten item I've missed the MOST is the fantastic carrot cake I used to make.

So once again, you are my GF hero! Can't wait to try this one out for my little guys 3rd b-day. My family will be THRILLED!!


Lisa Griffin said...

This cake looks so delicious and while i don't need the gluten free it just looks tasty! i'm a bit frazzled today so anyone....please feel free to send one over!

Beckerman Girls said...

ummmm....there's a problem..I just drooled all over my keyboard!! lol! LOVE ALLLLL of these gorgeous cakes! They are almost too beautiful to eat! That icing looks sooo decadent and rich and yummmmmmy!!!!!!
xoThe Beckerman Girls


la petite coquine said...

This is helping make up for the last few days/weeks of hell, isn't it? Because just looking at it, I can feel an infusion of sugar and calm. Thank God.

little t said...

There is nothing in this world better than carrot cake with cream cheese frosting. Nothing.

My sister made Venetian Carrot cake for a picnic on Sunday and my mouth literally fills with saliva thinking about it :)

Leeann @ Join the Gossip said...

I have a carrot cake problem, I could eat the whole damn thing...in one setting...shh don't tell anyone lol!

drollgirl said...

nom nom, this looks so delicious! especially the FROSTING!!!! nom nom. i could eat a whole bowl of that frosting!


that looks scrumdidilyumptious! xo

PriscilaPetersDecor said...

Carrot cake!!! My mom bakes the best carrot cake... but I've never tried with cream cheese frosting. It looks good.

M.R. said...




Chic 'n Cheap Living said...

You are a genius. I'd love to try this some day when I can get some of the alternate flour!

Chic 'n Cheap Living

Anonymous said...


Kate said...

What substitute could I use for confectioner's sugar?

Anonymous said...

oh i need some carrot cake in my life. i saw some premade crap here and was like NO CAN DO. i need a recipe so i can make some of this stuff! so thankkkk you!

Val said...

Wow, this is beyond drool worthy!

Isabel said...

yummy! i just might make this :)

Cafe Fashionista said...

Ummm....hello, this looks amazing. Carrot Cake is actually one of the only cakes I will willingly eat - so yummy. And cream cheese frosting...swoon! :)

Anonymous said...

This looks so good!!! Gluten free must be tough to follow because it seems to be in absolutely everything! xo

modanista junkie said...

Seriously, this looks beyond amazing!! So yummy.


whoorl said...


Valerie said...

Carrie, this cake looks incredible! I wish I still lived in LA and could come over and share a piece with you! So true about the gluten-free world expanding so greatly in the past few years. I might have to go bake something now to satisfy my sweet tooth.


Lisa Lisa Lisa said...

This looks incredible! While 14 bucks sounds like a lot, it is way cheaper than 3 or 4 slices from a bakery.

Kristin said...

Ummmmmm...Yeah....I'm pretty sure I could eat that ENTIRE cake!

Mo Pie, Please said...

OH man, I want carrot cake SO BAD now!

Clara Turbay said...

carrot cake is my favorite !


Kavery said...

Fab cake stand. And I loved the lace blazer from the previous post. The F21 I went to in Singapore had 4 (four) floors. You could get lost and no one would know for days!

birdie to be said...

Looks & sounds delicious!

Wander.Lust said...

yummmmm this recipe sounds delicious!

Caca said...

your cream cheese frosting looks delish


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