Carrot Cake

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There are two kinds of people in this world: people who like carrot cake and people who’ve never tried carrot cake.

Look, we get it. Carrots… in cake? It seems weird, but it’s absolutely amazing. Plus:

a) you don’t really taste the carrots

b) they give it so. much. moisture. 

And, putting a vegetable in your cake means it’s perfectly acceptable to eat this cake for breakfast. And who doesn’t want cake for breakfast?

You’ll need:

Carrots, of course (shred them yourself for the best outcome!)

Flour (measured correctly)

Brown sugar


Nondairy milk + ac vinegar

Vegan sour cream (we love THIS kind!)


Canola oil


Baking soda, Baking powder, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, & Salt

Vegan cream cheese (THIS is our favorite!)

Vegan butter (THIS is our favorite brand)

Powdered sugar

Vegan Carrot Cake

This cake will turn anyone into a carrot cake lover!
5 from 13 votes
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Dessert
Servings 10 slices


For the carrot cake:

  • 3/4 cup nondairy milk + 1 tbsp ac vinegar
  • 2 cups all purpose flour measured correctly*
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup vegan sour cream
  • 3/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups freshly shredded carrots**

For the buttercream:

  • 1/2 cup vegan cream cheese slightly softened***
  • 1/2 cup vegan butter slightly softened***
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • a splash of nondairy milk

For decorating:

  • Crushed walnuts optional


Make the cake:

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line and grease two 8″ pans.
  • In a measuring cup or small bowl, whisk the milk and vinegar. Set aside for 10-15 minutes.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add the brown sugar, sugar, sour cream, oil, vanilla, and milk mixture and mix. Add in the dry mixture and blend until combined.
  • Fold in the carrots.
  • Pour even amounts of batter into each of your pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.

Make the frosting:

  • In a large mixing bowl, add the buttery sicks and cream cheese. Beat until fluffy.
  • Slowly add the powdered sugar and beat.
  • Beat in the vanilla.
  • Add nondairy milk as necessary to reach desired consistency.

Assemble the cake:

  • Once the cake layers are chilled, pipe or spread buttercream on top of the first layer, then top with another cake layer. Top with a final layer of buttercream. Decorate with walnuts, if desired!


*Measure your flour using this method.
**We highly recommend shredding carrots yourself for this recipe rather than using pre-shredded.
***You want your butter and cream cheese to be soft enough so that they easily beat together. We recommend removing them from the fridge at least 30 minutes before using.
Keyword cake, carrot, carrot cake, cream cheese, frosting, plant-based, vegan
  1. Reply

    OMG!!! This looks heavenly!!! New vegan here who is very thankful for this…Merry Christmas!

    • Renee Fagan
    • February 12, 2020

    This looks so good. I need to make this.

      • Holly Dixon
      • April 19, 2020

      Will this recipe work in different sizes pans?

      • Silvia
      • May 20, 2020

      Is it possible using all purpose gluten free flour? Looks amazing I want to try it. Also instead of 1 cup regular sugar I’ll try using coconut sugar instead.

        • Kwiyoung
        • June 21, 2021

        5 stars
        Made with AP gluten-free flour and halved all sugar. It was amazing! Thank you!

        • Emily
        • August 15, 2021

        5 stars
        Sooo good! My first vegan dessert and it was a massive hit

    • Elaina
    • February 12, 2020

    5 stars
    Best carrot cake, vegan or not

    • Natalie
    • February 23, 2020

    I see the recipe calls for 2 tsp vanilla. Is that split 1&1tsp between the cake and frosting? Or is it 2tsp for the cake and then additional amount for the frosting. Thanks for the clarification!

      • Six Vegan Sisters
      • February 23, 2020

      hi! we just updated the recipe with more clear instructions — hope this helps! 🙂

    • Nicolette Harrison
    • April 6, 2020

    What nondairy milk is best for this recipe? And is it all purpose Flour? Thanks!

      • Six Vegan Sisters
      • April 6, 2020

      We like to use thicker milks for desserts so we typically use soy milk, but any should work! And yes, all purpose flour. Enjoy!

    • Valerie
    • April 11, 2020

    Can I replace the sour cream with something else?

      • Sharon
      • April 11, 2020

      Can you replace the sour cream for something else

        • Six Vegan Sisters
        • April 11, 2020

        Hi! You can use plain vegan yogurt instead 🙂

      • Six Vegan Sisters
      • April 11, 2020

      Plain vegan yogurt!

    • Anne
    • April 11, 2020

    That looks amazing! I would love to try this but my husband cannot do soy. Do you know of a soy-free vegan sour cream?

      • Six Vegan Sisters
      • April 11, 2020

      You could sub for soy free, plain vegan yogurt! 🙂

    • Tee
    • April 13, 2020

    5 stars
    This was HEAVENLY. It turned out AMAZING. I made it for Easter Dessert. All the meat and dairy eaters in my household loved it. My husband, who isn’t really into desserts, ate an ENTIRE slice. Thats huge praise. Trust me. It was so easy to make. I always thought making carrot cake would be so difficult. Thank you for the recipe!

    • Rechifam
    • April 20, 2020

    5 stars
    This was incredible! We did modify the amount of cinnamon, adding another teaspoon to our preference, and decreasing nutmeg to 1/8th teaspoon. We used three 8”pans instead of two and that seemed perfect. We had other frosting on hand, so next time we’ll try this recipe… it looked great though. (We always add coconut and pecans to the frosting and that might be something others would also enjoy.) Thanks sooo much for a fabulous recipe that worked at high altitude and produced the best carrot cake EVER!

    • Alexandria Delaney
    • May 21, 2020

    5 stars
    Hi! I was only able to find whipped cream cheese. Do you know how much of that I should use in the frosting??

      • Six Vegan Sisters
      • May 23, 2020

      Sorry, we’ve never tried that! We would recommend a 1-1 swap, though.

    • Sydney
    • July 25, 2020

    What brand of vegan cream cheese do you use? I’ve had an incredibly difficult time finding one that isn’t spreadable for bagels and the like, but rather the block to cook with (if such exists)? Any guidance would be appreciated. Thank you!

      • Six Vegan Sisters
      • August 2, 2020

      Hi there! We use a spreadable vegan cream cheese, such as Tofutti. Unfortunately we haven’t found a block version either!

    • Scarlet
    • September 29, 2020

    5 stars
    I’m on a mission to find the best vegan carrot cake so I tried 4 recipes side by side today and these were by far the best. Literally no contest between the other ones. This will definitely be my go to now.

      • Six Vegan Sisters
      • September 30, 2020

      Thank you so much for the kind review, Scarlet! We are SO happy you loved it!

    • Dennis Sidoti
    • November 26, 2020

    5 stars
    This was outstanding! Looked great and tasted even better! Thanks for this wonderful recipe! I sent pics to your instagram site.

    • Kayla
    • January 19, 2021

    How many 8 inch layers does this make?

    • Lutey Jones
    • March 4, 2021

    5 stars
    As with all of your recipes, this was a killer hit. Not overly complicated with unusual ingredients and perfectly moist. Thank you for doing what you do! The only thing I should mention is that I had to bake mine for 40mins using an 8″ round pan, so just keep an eye on it.

    • Elsie
    • April 3, 2021

    5 stars
    Delicous! Vegans and non vegans loved. I cooked it for an additional 5 minutes because it was not done.

      • Elana
      • May 1, 2022

      Can I make this info muffin pans

    • Trina
    • April 17, 2021

    Skip the milk and put a can of crushed pineapple, sooo moist!

    • Janice
    • May 7, 2021

    On Pinterest you show a picture of a 3 layer carrot cake, but on your website your pictures show a 2 layer bake. How did you get the 3 layers? And did you increase the amount of frosting?

      • Marjorie
      • March 2, 2022

      Can you substitue the canola oil with coconut oil?

        • Alana
        • June 7, 2022

        5 stars
        Tastes amazing!! I subbed melted coconut oil for canola and it definitely worked out, for anyone wondering.
        Thanks for the recipe was a big hit with non-vegans!

    • Angela
    • July 8, 2021

    This was SO yummy, thank you. It will definitely be our go-to carrot cake. I did cook mine for a little longer than suggested, but I think all ovens are just different.

    • Taylor Marie
    • April 4, 2022

    5 stars
    This was absolutely amazing!

    Are you able to provide nutrition facts for this recipe?

    • Erica M
    • June 17, 2024

    5 stars
    Best Carrot Cake I have ever had! Parents and Hubby raved about it….. and it was so easy to prepare. Shredded my whole carrots with the Vitamix Food Processer for easy shredding. I used 9 inch pans because that’s what I have and it was fine. I appreciate this delicious recipe. Thanks ladies 🙂

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