Simple and generously topped with cream cheese frosting, this super moist Carrot Cake Loaf is simply perfect!
When it comes to my favourite cakes, Carrot Cake is right up there! And when it comes to my favourite carrot cake recipe, this is it. This is the one my Mom always made and all these years later, it's still the one I make.
My Mom always made this cake as a 9x13-inch sheet cake. Somewhere along the way, given my lack of restraint around it, I scaled back the recipe to make a smaller cake in loaf form. It satisfies the craving, without having too much sitting around to tempt me.
I have come to love the loaf shaped carrot cake. Even though it's a loaf, served thickly sliced, it's still a plate and fork kind of cake. The taller loaf also allows me to use a generous amount of cream cheese frosting, which is always desirable in my books :)
This time I made my carrot cake loaf plain (without nuts). Sometimes I add nuts (almost always walnuts). I never add pineapple (sorry pineapple in carrot cake lovers). No coconut or raisins, either. I always keep the spicing simple, with just some cinnamon. I find it simply perfect and I love that it stays fresh for days. Not that it lasts on my counter that long.
Cook's Notes for Carrot Cake Loaf
As noted above, you can use this basic recipe to make a sheet cake or a two-layer cake (by doubling the recipe) or turn it into a loaf, as I've done here, a single layer 8-inch round cake or just use the batter to make some muffins.
This loaf stays nice and moist for several days, wrapped well and stored on the counter. This loaf also freezes well (even when frosted).
Carrot Cake Loaf with Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 cups grated carrots well packed
- 1 cup walnuts or pecans, finely chopped (optional)
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- Pinch salt
Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 4 oz. cream cheese at room temperature
- 2 Tbsp butter at room temperature
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 1/2 cups icing/confectioners' sugar
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
- Line a 4 1/2 x 10-inch or 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl with an electric beater or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together the white sugar and oil. Add the shredded carrots and mix in. Add the egg and beat in. Add the nuts and stir to combine. Stir in the flour mixture and mix until well combined.
- Pour batter into prepared baking pan.
- Bake in preheated oven for 40-50 minutes, or until a tester inserted in the centre comes out clean.
- Cool 15 minutes in the pan, then lift out to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- To make frosting: Beat together the cream cheese, butter and vanilla. Add the icing sugar and beat until fluffy and smooth.