Carrot cake is a fall staple for me. The hearty texture, the warm spices, and the dense cream cheese frosting make eating a slice of carrot cake a true fall experience.
After a long day of work, this is what I crave!
The carrot cake recipe below is vegan. I use all of the typical techniques: aquafaba, vegan cream cheese and vegan butter. I was a bit worried about this cake not having enough bounce and lift, but the apple cider vinegar, along with the baking powder and baking soda, do the job perfectly! The batter is very dense and thick, but fear not, the cake will rise beautifully.
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp cinnamon
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp all spice
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
6 tbsp aquafaba (the liquid from a can of chickpeas)
3/4 cup canola oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp almond milk
3 cups (packed) shredded carrot
16 oz vegan cream cheese
1 1/2 cups vegan butter
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
In a medium bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and all spice.
Using a food processor with a grating disk attachment, or a standing grater, grate the carrots until you have 3 cups of packed carrot. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whip the sugar and aquafaba together. You can do this with a whisk by hand or with a hand mixer. The mixture will thicken a bit and turn a shiny bright white. To this, add the canola oil, vanilla, apple cider vinegar, and almond milk. Mix.
Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture 3/4 of a cup at a time, gently mixing the batter in between each flour addition. When all of the flour is mixed in, fold in the grated carrot. Mix together gently and efficiently to evenly spread the carrot throughout the batter without over mixing it.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.Generously coat three cake pans with vegan butter, using 1-1.5 tbsp of butter / pan. Evenly pour the cake batter into the 3 pans. You can eyeball it or weigh it. The batter is thick and won’t look like much in the pan, but the cakes will rise significantly.
Bake the cakes for 26-30 minutes. The cakes are done when a toothpick comes out clean from the center of each pan. Move the pans to a calling rack for 15 minutes. When the pans are cooled, remove the cakes from the pans and let them cool on the rack for 2-3 hours.
Using a hand mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together. Add the sugar and vanilla extract and beat until the frosting is airy and light.
Frost as desired and store refrigerated.