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Naked Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Icing

  • Author: Britt Stager
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: Serves 18 1x
  • Category: Dessert


Nothing says “Spring” like a beautiful, dense carrot cake. Perfect for everything from Easter to Mother’s Day, this variation on the classic carrot cake take these “naked cake” trend to a whole new level! If you’re looking for a cake that is super impressive, make a double batch and stack it four layers high!

Makes One 9-inch cake, 2 layers


Units Scale

Carrot Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp each baking powder & baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 2 1/2 cups grated carrots, lightly packed

Cream Cheese Icing:

  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. Grease and flour 2 round 9-inch metal cake pans; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  4. In a medium bowl, using an electric hand mixer, beat together brown sugar, eggs and oil until smooth. Using a rubber spatula fold in flour mixture, about ½ a cup at a time, until incorporated. Fold in carrots, mixing just until combined. Divide among prepared cake pans, smoothing out the top.
  5. Bake for 40 minutes or until cake has risen and is firm, about 40 minutes. Toothpick inserted into centre should come out clean. Let cool in pan on rack before inverting to remove. Once cake is completely cooled and ready to assemble, prepare the icing.
  6. In a medium bowl, using an electric hand mixer, beat cream cheese and butter on medium speed until smooth. Beat in icing sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, until light and fluffy.
  7. Place one cake layer on a large plate or cake stand. Using an offset spatula, spread 1/2 of the icing into cake, keeping just to the top. Place second cake layer on top and gently press down until cream cheese icing starts to come out the sides. Add remaining icing to the top of the cake, spread evenly. Using offset spatula firmly scrape excess frosting away while smoothing it out at the same time. Sides of cake should appear just barely frosted.


  • Tip: Carrot cake can be baked and frosted ahead and kept, in an airtight cake dome or container, at cool room temperature, for up to 2 days.

Keywords: Carrot Cake, Naked Carrot Cake, Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Icing