Carrot Cake

This three-layer cake is utterly delicious, with a not-too-sweet cream cheese frosting. It's a nice dessert to serve at holiday gatherings.

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Carrot Cake
Makes: 12  servings Prep 40 mins Cool 1 hr Freeze 1 hr Bake 350°F 35 mins


  • 1 cup  raisins
  • 2 cups  minus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon  unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 teaspoons  baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons  ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon  baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon  salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons  vanilla extract
  • 1 cup  granulated sugar
  • 1 cup  firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups  corn or vegetable oil
  • 4 cups  firmly packed grated carrots (1-1/2 pounds)
  • 1 1/2 cups  chopped walnuts
  • 2 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup  butter (no substitutes), softened
  • 1 teaspoon  vanilla extract
  • 2 cups  sifted confectioners' sugar


1. Adjust oven racks to center and upper third of oven. Heat oven to 350 degree F. Grease three 9-inch round cake pans. Line bottom of pans with waxed paper; grease and flour paper, tapping out excess. Set aside.

2. Arrange raisins in a strainer set over shallow water in a medium saucepan. Cover and bring water to boil; steam raisins 10 minutes. Set raisins aside.

3. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt in a large mixer bowl. Beat eggs in a large bowl on medium speed of electric mixer until blended. Beat in vanilla, granulated and dark brown sugars, and oil until well combined. At low speed, add flour mixture and beat just until blended. Stir in carrots, raisins, and nuts. Divide and spoon batter into prepared pans. Place 2 pans on 1 oven rack and 1 pan in the center of the other rack. Bake until tops of cakes spring back and edges just begin to pull away from side of pans, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool cakes in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. Unmold layers, remove paper and invert again onto racks; cool. Freeze layers 1 hour, until firm.

4. For frosting, beat cream cheese and butter in large bowl on medium-high speed of electric until smooth. At low speed, beat in vanilla and confectioners' sugar, until well combined. Increase speed to high and beat until mixture is smooth.

5. Transfer 1 layer to a large serving plate; spread top with one third of the Frosting. Repeat with remaining layers and frosting. Store, covered, in refrigerator. Makes 12 servings.

Make Ahead Tip

  • Prepare and frost Cake. Freeze uncovered 1 hour, until frosting is firm, then wrap well and freeze up to 2 weeks. Thaw in refrigerator overnight.

Nutrition Facts

  • Servings Per Recipe 12
  • cal.(kcal)865,
  • Fat, total(g)52,
  • chol.(mg)123,
  • sat. fat(g)15,
  • carb.(g)87,
  • fiber(g)4,
  • pro.(g)10,
  • sodium(mg)584,
  • Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet
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