Carrot Cake Lover or Hater?
When I mentioned to my friends that I was working on a vegan carrot cake recipe, to my surprise, I got a mixed response.
Some were very keen to try the recipe, but others were put off by the idea of eating veg inside cake.
Is Carrot Cake Healthy?
Just because carrot cake is made using vegetables doesn’t mean it is healthy. Yes, it has some healthy aspects. Carrot is a great source of nutrients. But I’d definitely recommend eating raw carrot to get those nutrients, rather than relying on it’s existence within a sweet sugary cake.
Why Make Cakes with Vegetables?
So, we know it isn’t necessarily because we are trying to make cake healthy.
Vegetables not only help to change the texture of a cake, but they also help to add their own unique flavour profiles.
Carrots are actually quite a sweet tasting vegetable and also help to bring an earthy savoury flavour to the cake.
Carrot Cake Tips
So, for all you carrot cake haters out there, I have some top tips for you so you too can enjoy this tasty cake.
? Grate the carrot a finely as possible to avoid biting into chunks of carrot
? Make the cake mix less sugary because it has a lovely natural flavour that would otherwise be hidden with empty sugary calories
? Cover the cakes in a yummy tangy frosting to complement the savoury notes
The Perfect GF & Vegan Carrot Cake
As many of you will already know, I am a big lover of Doves Gluten-Free Flour blends. I use them in most of my gluten-free recipes, like these Vegan & Gluten-Free American Pancakes – which I’m often told are better than the gluten versions!
Well, these GF flour blends work amazingly in sponges.
They keep the sponge light and fluffy and still allow for a good rise.
I’d even go as far as to say that you wouldn’t be able to tell that these vegan carrot cakes are gluten-free.
You may have different results if you use single gluten-free flours, like oat, or almond, rather than a pre-made blend.
How Do You Make Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting?
Cream cheese frosting is a vital component of carrot cake. And it is no different for vegan carrot cake.
However, cream cheese frosting is traditionally made using dairy cream cheese.
But, fear not! There are now so many amazing vegan alternatives out there that it is easy to replicate the tangy creaminess that can also be achieved with dairy.
We always have a tub of Violife cream cheese in our house and despite initial concern, it worked perfectly in the frosting.
I also added in a dollop of soy yoghurt to the mix and it helped to elevate the tang. Just be careful when mixing it in, adding too much liquid to buttery frosting can cause it to curdle. Always add liquids slowly and gradually.
The Gluten-Free Vegan Carrot Cake Recipe
This recipe is perfect for the autumn months when you crave hearty food. It is lightly spiced and goes perfectly with a pumpkin spiced latte.
What are you waiting for?! Get baking!
Vegan Carrot Cake Muffins With ‘Cream Cheese’ Frosting
- 9 tbsp aquafaba (the water from a can of chickpeas)
- 200 g light brown sugar
- 125 ml sunflower oil
- 240 g gluten-free self raising flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 230 g carrots finely grated
- 100 g pecans roughly chopped
- 200 g icing sugar
- 100 g vegan cream cheese
- 50 g plant butter
- 50 g plant yoghurt I use Alpro soy yoghurt
- Preheat oven to 180° (fan 160)
- Grease a muffin tray (the mix makes 6 large muffins or 12 smaller muffins)
- Start whisking the aquafaba with an electric whisk, you’ll want to whisk for about 10 minutes until the mix is stiff and has formed white peaks
- Gradually spoon in the sugar to the aquafaba mix whilst still whisking
- Set aside the aquafaba and sugar mix
- Sift the flour with the baking powder and spices into a large bowl
- Mix in the finely grated carrots and chopped pecans to the flour mix.
- Stir in the oil until well incorporated and then fold in the aquafaba-sugar mix
- Pour the cake mix into the greased muffin moulds
- Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes until golden brown
- Take out of the oven and leave to cool
- Whilst waiting, sieve the icing sugar into a bowl
- Whip up the butter and cream cheese together until smooth and well incorporated
- Whisk in all the icing sugar to the butter and cream cheese mix
- Gradually spoon in the yoghurt whilst mixing, take it slowly to avoid curdling.
- Once the muffins have cooled, pipe on the frosting – or simply spoon straight on top!
Looking for other Vegan & Gluten-Free Cakes?
Gluten-free baking can be an experiment, but it is also great fun. And when you get it right, the bake is amazing! We find that using the right brand of gluten-free flour blends can make the world of difference.
We use Doves Gluten-Free flour in this Vegan Victoria Sponge Cake recipe and it is delightfully moist and reminiscent of the real thing!
Enjoyed making these gluten-free vegan carrot cake muffins? Make sure to comment below!