How to make carrot cake with cream cheese icing

I’m so happy because I volunteered to bring two carrot cakes to Thanksgiving (one with nuts, one without), and they turned out to be my best bakes yet! I adapted the recipe from Mary Berry’s Baking Bible, making a few substitutions here and there and adding some additional spices, and I’d say the cakes gave the pies a run for their money 😉

I love carrot cake because it’s just the right amount of sweetness without being too sugary. If you’re looking for a perfect carrot cake recipe, this is it.


  • Yield: one 9 inch round cake
  • Difficulty: Easy

Cake Ingredients

Get my handy baking conversion charts here!

  • 150 ml (5 fl oz) sunflower oil (I used canola oil)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 150 g (5 oz) light muscovado sugar (I used brown sugar)
  • 100 g (4 oz) carrots, coarsely grated
  • 225 g (8 oz) self-raising flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon – optional (I highly recommend this and the nutmeg even though MB’s recipe didn’t call for any spices)
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg – optional
  • 50 g walnuts, chopped – optional

Icing Ingredients

Get my handy baking conversion charts here!

  • 175 g (6 oz) full-fat cream cheese
  • 50 g (2 oz) softened butter
  • 100 g (4 oz) sifted confectioners’ sugar
  • few drops vanilla extract
  • walnuts for decorating – optional


Preheat the oven to 355 degrees F. Grease the sides of a 9 inch round cake tin and line the base with parchment paper.

Measure all the ingredients for the cake into a large mixing bowl and beat well until thoroughly blended and smooth. Turn into prepared tin and level the surface.

Bake in the preheated oven for about 50-60 minutes, or until golden brown, risen, and shrinking away from the sides of the tins. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

For the icing, put the butter, confectioners’ sugar, cream cheese and vanilla extract in a bowl and whisk using a hand or electric whisk until smooth and thoroughly blended.

Spread the icing on top in a swirl pattern. Decorate the top of the cake with walnuts (optional). Store in the fridge and chill before serving.

carrot cake 1carrot cake 2carrot cake 3


Tips for Success
Overall, things went really well and there’s nothing I’d change! My grandma mentioned she’d like to see more walnuts ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
If you want to make a cute little carrot shape on top like I did, draw a carrot onto parchment paper and use an xacto knife to cut out the pieces you want to show on the cake. Lay your stencil on the cake and sift a mixture of 1 part ground cinnamon, 1 part confectioners’ sugar over the stencil. Carefully remove the stencil, lifting from both sides so you don’t spill the excess powder onto the cake. In about an hour, the sugar will soak into the cake and leave the orange cinnamon shape behind!
Let me know if you try this delicious carrot cake and follow me on Instagram @beginnerbakes for more recipes and inspiration!

carrot cake 4



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