Slices of yummy scrummy carrot cake on brown baking paper

Carrot cake

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(1092 ratings)

Prep: 1 hr - 1 hr, 15 mins


15 slices

Delight friends with an afternoon tea that includes this easy carrot cake. You can bake the cake, freeze it and just drizzle over the icing on the day

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable
  • Dairy-free

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal265
  • fat12g
  • saturates2g
  • carbs39g
  • sugars24.8g
  • fibre1g
  • protein3g
  • salt0.41g
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  • 175g light muscovado sugar
  • 175ml sunflower oil
    Sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil

    Sunflower oil is made from pressing sunflower seeds and extracting the oil. It's usually…

  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 140g grated carrot (about 3 medium)



    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…

  • 100g raisins
  • grated zest of 1 large orange



    One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

  • 175g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp grated nutmeg (freshly grated will give you the best flavour)



    One of the most useful of spices for both sweet and savoury

For the frosting

  • 175g icing sugar
  • 1½-2 tbsp orange juice


  1. Heat the oven to 180C/fan160C/gas 4. Oil and line the base and sides of an 18cm square cake tin with baking parchment.

  2. Tip 175g light muscovado sugar, 175ml sunflower oil and 3 large beaten eggs into a big mixing bowl. Lightly mix with a wooden spoon. Stir in 140g grated carrots, 100g raisins and grated zest of 1 large orange.

  3. Sift 175g self-raising flour, 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda, 1 tsp ground cinnamon and ½ tsp grated nutmeg into the bowl. Mix everything together, the mixture will be soft and almost runny.

  4. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 40-45 mins or until it feels firm and springy when you press it in the centre.

  5. Cool in the tin for 5 mins, then turn it out, peel off the paper and cool on a wire rack. (You can freeze the cake at this point if you want to serve it at a later date.)

  6. Beat 175g icing sugar and 1½ - 2 tbsp orange juice in a small bowl until smooth – you want the icing about as runny as single cream.

  7. Put the cake on a serving plate and boldly drizzle the icing back and forth in diagonal lines over the top, letting it drip down the sides.

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Comments, questions and tips

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27th Jun, 2020
First time making carrot cake as H2B loves them. Very easy recipe and it came out pretty well even when I replaced some ingredients (used fine brown sugar, pecan instead of raisons, vegetable oil instead of sunflower oil). H2B suggested not to mix too much and maybe grate the carrot abit bigger as the cake can do with more texture. Definitely gonna use this recipe again.
Steph Pew
6th Jun, 2020
Just made my 1st ever Carrot cake can’t believe how easy it was to make and it turned out perfect although had to use white sugar as ran out of brown and used Olive Oil 2/3 of quantity suggested. This lockdown has got me enjoying baking getting into practice from when I retire
30th May, 2020
A good carrot cake recipe all round. Very easy to put together, though I had to divide my mix into two small round tins as didn't have the square one as described above. Cooking times remained the same. From the above quantities a lot of icing is made, far too much for my liking and I think if I'd used it all it would've detracted from the sponge itself. But that's just personal taste. Went down well with husband who dislikes dried fruit too!
21st May, 2020
Finally made a decent carrot cake. Thank you! Delicious, light, not stodgy or soggy. Saved this recipe for future use.
16th May, 2020
Absolutely delicious and works perfectly with gluten free self raising flour too. So light & tasty!!
10th May, 2020
Easy to make and tastes delicious. Went down extremely well with the family, gone within a few hours of baking! Definitely bake again.
5th May, 2020
The carrot cake turned out amazing. We used sultanas instead of raisins. It was really easy to make and had a nice light and fluffy texture.
5th May, 2020
I cannot count how many times I have baked this cake. It always becomes great! I usually use a half amount of sugar and a half of olive oil instead of sunflower oil, also I skip frosting as I want a light version. I add walnuts and use double amount of cinnamon. Very simple to make with ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen I have already made this so many times and I know I will make even more in the future.
Sheepysheep's picture
30th Apr, 2020
Wow! So simple to make and tastes delicious. We’re never buying a carrot cake again!
28th Apr, 2020
As a thank you to my son I asked him what he would like. He said carrot cup cakes please Mum. It has been a long time since I made them and I gave my Granddaughter my recipe book to take to New Zealand when she and her husband emigrated. It had all the families favourite foods, desserts and cakes. She loves using it and shares the recipes with her new friends she has made in New Zealand. Now I am going to enjoy making a new recipe book for myself and sharing them with family and friends.


Ōkami Queen's picture
Ōkami Queen
6th Jun, 2020
I'm allergic to oranges, does it come out the same?
lulu_grimes's picture
8th Jun, 2020
Hi, You can leave the orange out, for the icing you could use water for a plain icing, or something like a fruit cordial to make a flavoured icing, o use a drizzle of caramel. You don't need the icing but it does look pretty. Lulu
1st Apr, 2020
I’ve made this cake before and it turned out great, I now want to make it again however don’t have any bicarbonate of soda. Would it be possible to substitute the bicarbonate of soda with baking powder? How much baking powder would I need to put in and would this likely affect the taste of the cake?
Barney Good Food's picture
Barney Good Food
3rd Apr, 2020
Hi, unfortunately as we haven't tested this ourselves we can't guarantee it would work and would hate for you to waste ingredients.
28th Mar, 2020
My little one is allergic to eggs. Is there an alternative?
Julia Rosemary
27th Feb, 2020
I'd like to make this as a larger birthday cake and have a 26cm diameter round tin (about 1.5 times larger than 18cm square). Any tips?
Barney Good Food's picture
Barney Good Food
27th Feb, 2020
As we haven't tested this in the Good Food kitchen it's hard to say but you could double the mix then add enough to fill your tin and make a smaller cake, which you can freeze, with any leftover batter. The timing will also vary on a larger cake so maybe cook it for 1hr then check every 5-10mins after that.
Bibi Baker's picture
Bibi Baker
16th Nov, 2019
just made this n it turned out amazing however the cake has green bits running thru it now ! possible carrot n I don't know why. they taste bit soap like. is it because i ditnt add orange peel ? .thank u
23rd Sep, 2019
Will it be ok to put the icing on top before freezing?
goodfoodteam's picture
24th Sep, 2019
Thanks for your question. Yes, you can ice beforehand, although for the best appearance we'd suggest doing so after defrosting.


23rd May, 2020
I didn’t have any sunflower oil to hand so I replaced it with 175g of melted butter- just as moist and delicious. I also only had a 22cm square cake tin, but that was quickly solved with two pieces of lightly rolled and crumpled tinfoil to make bars to fill in two sides of the tin and reduce it to 18cm before I lined it. Glad I did that as the bigger tin would have made the cake much thinner and probably not as soft and squidgy.
Jasy L's picture
Jasy L
29th Apr, 2020
I used 2oz walnuts instead of the raisins, medium eggs and divided to make 12 eggs - came out great!
Fionnuala Finlay
6th Apr, 2020
Delicious recipe and so easy to follow.I added some chopped pecans, nutmeg and dessicated coconut into the recipe and it was lovely.
12th Aug, 2019
Really easy recipe, i used rapseed oil instead doubled the recipe and made a four layer cake it took slightly longer in the oven as i used a deeper smaller diameter tin. I also added nutmeg along with the cinnamon. Lovely moist cake will definitely be making again!
MB seastar
24th Feb, 2019
Try adapting this to make a blueberry and pistachio cake. Sub the raisins for blueberries and add 50g pistachio and decorate with ground and whole pistachios and chopped blueberries - delicious!
29th Nov, 2017
I cut the oil to 140ml and that works out better for me.
CJHardy's picture
21st Nov, 2016
I have been using this recipe for quite some time as the basis for large muffins, this recipe will make 8 cafe-sized muffins. Really tasty recipe, but I would cut down on the oil, about 110-115ml is plenty. There is sufficient rising agent to increase the fruit content but care should be taken that too much will lead to poor temperature conduction. Similarly you can increase the number of carrots, I have successfully used up to 4 carrots including large ones. Don't over-stir though as they will break down thereby raising the liquid content
10th Apr, 2015
To really give this fantastic recipe some zing, don't use water with the icing sugar mix. Instead grate the zest of 4 limes. Squeeze the limes in to a bowl and use the juice to mix the icing (about 10 tsp) to the mix. Then sprinkle the grated zest on top for decoration. The sugar takes the bite out of the bitterness. This added to the orange in the cake makes a really fresh, zingy taste.
18th Sep, 2014
This works really well with Gluten Free flour instead. My favourite!
7th Mar, 2014
I used the mascarpone and lime to made the frosting. Still yummy,and fresher!


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