Spring Carrot Cake & Vanilla Bean Frosting
Happy Spring Equinox! I love planning parties, baking cakes, celebrating, wrapping presents... for friends, family, clients, anyone really.... But when it comes to my own birthday, I retract into my shell and down play the day as much as possible. This year I've decided to get over that silly habit and bake myself a cake. Happy Birthday to me. I find baking incredibly therapeutic and relaxing, and creating something that others are excited to dig into brings me immense joy; I should have been baking my own cake for years. Here's to a new tradition, a jovial birthday, and most importantly, the first sun soaked day of spring!
Frosting is the best part. Homemade, cream cheese frosting that is. Carrot cake has always been a favorite, and in all honesty a large percent of that love can be attributed to the silky, cheesy, vanilla streaked frosting. This recipe is a little healthier than most. I whipped the cream cheese and folded in thick, greek yogurt rather than butter. I also cut the sugar down quite a bit, but adjust this as needed depending on what yogurt you use. If you can get your hands on it, Wallaby's whole milk vanilla bean greek yogurt is a current obsession. I've only been able to find this brand at Whole Foods and a few local specialty grocers, but it's worth searching for. I'm generally not even a fan of yogurt, but their vanilla bean products are creamy, sweet, tangy and perfect for this recipe.
As Spring graces us with its presence I hope to load as many baked things, quick breads, sammies, pastas, pitas ... you get the point ... with an array of shredded vegetables. This carrot cake is just the beginning...
Whole Wheat Carrot Cake
- 1 cup AP flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup organic raw sugar
- 4 eggs
- ¾ cup coconut oil, melted
- 1 cup vanilla greek yogurt
- 3 cups carrots, grated
- 1 cup walnuts
- ½ cup raisins
- 2 t vanilla
- 1 t cinnamon
- 1 t baking powder
- 1 t baking soda
- 1 t salt
Pre heat you oven to 350 F. Line 2, 8” cake pans with parchment, grease and set aside.
Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside. Whisk eggs, and fold in remaining wet ingredients. When wet ingredients are mixed, add them to the bowl of dry ingredients, add carrots and walnuts and mix until evenly combined.
Divide batter between pans, and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick can be cleanly removed from the cake. Allow to cool completely before frosting.Vanilla Cream Cheese and Yogurt Frosting
- 8 oz organic cream cheese
- ½ cup organic whole milk vanilla greek yogurt
- 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
- ⅓ cup confectioners sugar
- juice of 1 lemon
Allow the cream cheese to soften at room temperature. When soft, smash with a fork, add in yogurt, vanilla beans, sugar and lemon and beat with a whisk until very soft and creamy.