I am well aware that I should have had this recipe for Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting locked and loaded before Easter. But honestly, this quarantine thing had me in quite the funk. Guess what got me out of this funk? Making this scrumptious cake. Irony.
(This post contains affiliate links. I may make a commission from sales but your price remains the same.)

Triple Layer Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting on white plate

So Scrumptious! And Even Better the Second Day!

This beautiful carrot cake is a classic recipe in many respects. It has the usual: flour, eggs, sugar, shredded carrots, cinnamon and walnuts, but it also has a couple of unexpected ingredients: rich creamy buttermilk, grass fed butter, dried nutmeg, vanilla paste, sweet cranberries and a subtle hint of ginger. I am a huge fan of buttermilk in a cake. Not only does it add body to the cake but gives it a little bit of tangy flavor. And while I know many other bakers use vegetable oil, butter is my go to. You just can’t go wrong with butter. And while this cake is fabulous anytime, it’s even better the second day…if you can wait that long.

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting garnished with chopped walnuts on cake plate

That Cream Cheese Frosting Though…

Not to overstate the butter thing, but when combined with cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla paste, it’s about the best thing ever. Check out this gooey goodness between layers of moist, nutty cake. Oh! And by the way, you can make this cake two layers or three. If you make a double layer you’ll need to use two 9 inch non stick cake pans, to make it triple layer you’ll need three 8″ non stick cake tins.

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting on a cake plate with a slice of cake next to it


Gluten free followers, I have a wonderful suggestion to make this cake gluten free but just as good: Jovial Gluten Free Pastry Flour is fantastic and the grains in this flour are soaked for easy digestion! Many stores carry Jovial Baking Flours now, but you can also order online. 

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting garnished with walnuts


Need More Cake Recipes?

Try my Vanilla Buttermilk Cake with Strawberry Buttercream, my Molten Chocolate Lava Cakes, or my Lemon Blackberry Cake!


The Recipe: Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting!

What you need: You can make this cake two layers, or three. If you make a double layer you’ll need to use two 9 inch non stick cake pans, to make it triple layer you’ll need three 8″ non stick cake tins. I love my mini KitchenAid Mixer. Vanilla extract can be used in this recipe but I always prefer Nielsen Massey Vanilla Paste!

5 from 1 vote
Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
25 mins

A classic carrot cake with a hint of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.

Course: Dessert
Keyword: carrot cake, carrot cake with cream cheese frosting, gluten free carrot cake
Servings: 10 servings
Cake Prep:
  • 2 cups cake flour, all purpose flour or gluten free flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter, room temp
  • 4 eggs room temp
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste or 1/2 teaspoon extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk, room temp
  • 3 cups grated carrots
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts, divided
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries, chopped
Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup  butter, room temperature
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temp
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1-2  tablespoons  buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla paste of extract
The Cake:
  1. Place oven rack in center position. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Use a paper towel to wipe bottom and sides of non stick pan with butter. Coat with flour and set aside.

  2. In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg, set aside.

  3. Place sugars and butter in mixing bowl and mix until well combined.

  4. Add vanilla and eggs, one at a time, mix well. Alternate adding flour mixture and buttermilk until well incorporated. Add vanilla, mix well.

  5. Add grated carrots, mix until well combined. Add cranberries and 1/2 cup walnuts (reserving the rest for the top of cake) Mix very well

  6. Pour equal amounts of batter into pans, tap on counter to remove any bubbles. If using 3-8" pans bake for 25-30 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. If using 2-9" pans bake for 30-35 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

  7. Remove pans from oven and allow to completely cool. Very carefully remove one cake from pan, (these cakes are fairly fragile) Place first layer upside down in center of a cake plate, spread with cream cheese frosting, add second layer (again, upside down) frost, add third layer, frost, then frost sides. Sprinkle top of cake with reserved walnuts.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
  1. Mix together butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon buttermilk. Mix until smooth. If needed, add second tablespoon of buttermilk.



We small bloggers need all the help we can get. Subscribing and sharing on social media is very appreciated! 

STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE and Privacy Policy: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with The Organic Kitchen’s ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers.The Organic Kitchen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. View The Organic Kitchen’s Privacy Policy