Last August, our youngest daughter, Kimmons came home from Seattle for a little visit. She has become quite the baker- her Christmas wish list was pretty much Williams Sonoma cookware and a stand mixer. We love baking together and thought a carrot cake for Dad would be a special treat. Kimmons and I found a recipe and began experimenting with it. We tweaked it a bit and I think we came up with a great recipe for a gluten free carrot cake. The original recipe says it’s , “sugar free”, but there are raisins, Xylitol, carrots, applesauce- all which are sweeteners- either natural or processed, but it is a reduced calorie cake. It’s moist, fairly easy to assemble and has tons of flavor. I prefer Xylitol because it is more green than other sweeteners- it is made from birch byproducts and produces less waste than Stevia or Erythritol. Buy my prefereed brand here. Note- Xylitol is highly toxic to dogs, so do not share any of this recipe with your favorite pooch. Also, Xylitol is low carb, but not carb free.
There are a lot of gluten free dessert recipes out there on the internet. A lot! I wanted to try and create a recipe for Hunky Hubbie who loves carrot cake, but reduce the sugar and fat. Carrot cake is one of those desserts that seems like it should be healthy, but it is packed with sugar and fat- most recipes have at least one to two sticks of butter, cream cheese frosting, tons of oil, sugar, and eggs. Our recipe uses coconut flour, Icelandic yogurt and loads of spices- cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. I then added a touch of applesauce, golden raisins and loads of carrots. For the frosting- The Xylitol is too bitter unbaked so I opted to use powdered Swerve. Give it a try and ket me know what you think. Enjoy!
Kimmons Gluten Free Carrot Cake-serves 10-12
1 1/4 Cup plus 2 TBSP Coconut flour- sifted
4 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp fresh nutmeg, grated
1 TBPS fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup unsweetened apple sauce
8 large eggs
1 cup Xylitol sweetener – we used THIS
2 tsp vanilla
4 cups carrots, grated- about 6-7 large
3/4 cups pecans- chopped
3/4 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
16 oz light cream cheese- softened
1 cup plain, non fat Icelandic yogurt
3 tsp vanilla
1 cup powdered Sweetener- We like Swerve
1 heaping TBSP orange zest
fresh carrot peels for garnish
Kimmons' gluten free carrot cake- <br>prep time- 1 hour. Bake time- 40 minutes, plus chilling time (2 hours)
- Pre heat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 -8 inch cake pans with parchment round , coat parchment and inside of pans with cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, sift the flour with cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder and salt- set aside.
- In a stand mixer, beat eggs with sweetener, add in applesauce, yogurt and vanilla. Slowly add flour mixture until well combined. Fold in carrots, pecans, coconut. Let batter rest for 10 minutes. The coconut flour needs time to absorb the wet ingredients. Batter will be very thick.
- Divide the batter into equal parts and pour into the prepared cake pans. Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Remove cake from pans and let cool completely on a wire rack before frosting.
- For the frosting: Using a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, beat cream cheese & yogurt on high until fluffy and creamy.
Add in vanilla and orange zest. .
With the mixer on low, slowly add in the powdered sweetener. Once combined, increase mixer speed to high and beat 2-3 minutes until frosting is light and fluffy. You can use powdered sugar or icing sugar- it will just add calories.
- On a cake pedestal, place one layer of the cake. Place strips of parchment paper under the edges of the base layer of cake. This will protect the cake stand from messy frosting.
Spread approximately 3/4 cup of the frosting on the base layer.
Top with remaining cake layer.
Spread a thin layer of frosting all over the cake to form the crumb coat. Let it set for 3-5 minutes in the fridge. Ice the entire cake with remaining frosting. Remove the parchment strips from underneath the base layer. Chill iced cake at least 1 hour or overnight in the fridge. Garnish with carrot peels, or pecans halves.