Gluten-Free Carrot Cake with Soy Cream Cheese Icing

As a (perhaps slightly odd) kid, chocolate cake really didn’t do it for me, no matter if it was Barbie herself who dolled the enticing icing. However, I remember being at a friend’s birthday party where a duck-shaped cake was cut into by the birthday girl with fizzy drink high kids bouncing in anticipation…only for it to be an (ewwww! Gross! Stink!) raisin littered carrot cake. See ya! I kid you not, I sat and devoured half of that cream cheese covered duck’s body alone in the kitchen. Party on!

Gluten-free, dairy-free

Serves 10

Cake Ingredients:

2 cups of almond meal
1 cup of brown rice flour
1 teaspoon of sea salt
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 tablespoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of nutmeg or ginger
¼ cup of sunflower or grapeseed oil
½ cup of honey or coconut syrup
5 free-range eggs
3 cups of grated carrots
1 cup of chopped dates
1 cup of walnuts, coarsely chopped

Soy Cream Cheese Icing Ingredients:

250g soy cream cheese (or normal cream cheese is fine if you’re not trying to make it dairy-free)

Juice of 1 lemon

Zest of 1 lemon

1/2 cup of runny honey or coconut syrup

1/2 cup of cornflour

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180° and grease a 9-inch cake pan with oil and a dusting of almond meal. Grease two pans if you would like to make a double layer cake like the one in the pictures.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the almond meal, rice flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg or ginger
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, honey or coconut syrup, and eggs
  4. Stir the wet ingredients into the almond flour mixture and thoroughly combine
  5. Fold in the carrots, dates and walnuts
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin (or tins if doubling the mixture as per the photo) and bake for 35 minutes, or until a skewer comes out dry (if cooking two, the cake in the lower part of the oven generally needs about 5 minutes more on a higher shelf)
  7. Let the cake/s cool in the pans before removing to ice with the soy cream cheese icing
  8. To make the icing, whizz the cream cheese, lemon juice and zest, cornflour and honey or coconut syrup into a blender and then smooth onto the cake and let it dribble down the sides
  9. Enjoy!

Carrots: An excellent source of beta-carotene, which is converted in the body to vitamin A. The deeper the orange colour of a carrot, the higher the beta-carotene content. Vitamin A also benefits the skin and is great for the immune system.  With many vegetables, cooking destroys some of their vitamins, but you can absorb more beta-carotene from cooked carrots than from raw ones. Cook that cake.

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