This tasty, easy Carrot Cake with Walnuts recipe is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser! It has an unbelievably moist sponge and is layered with a smooth, luscious cream cheese frosting. Serve on its own, with tea, coffee or during celebrations.
About this Recipe
Carrot cake is a popular dessert made with fresh shredded or grated carrots. It sometimes includes walnuts or pecans and spices like nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon. The spices in the recipe make carrot cake a wonderful cake to serve during the autumn/winter season although carrot cake can be served at any time of the year.
While carrot cake can be served plain, it is usually best to frost or decorate it with cream cheese frosting. Cream cheese frosting has a sweet and slightly tangy taste which pairs perfectly with the spicy notes of the cake. If you are not a cream cheese frosting fan, then you can frost the carrot cake with swiss meringue buttercream, vanilla buttercream or orange buttercream instead.
When it comes to decorating, you go super simple or get creative. Use a spatula to create a design with the cream cheese frosting and use a pipe and nozzle. I also love to crush walnuts and add them to the rim of the cake for some extra crunch!
Carrot Cake with Walnuts Ingredients
- Plain Flour: Regular plain flour works best for this recipe as baking powder and baking soda is added to make the cake rise when baking.
- Ground Walnuts: Ground walnuts add a wonderful crunch to the recipe. Feel free to take them out to make a nut-free version or replace them with other types of nuts if you are not a fan of walnuts.
- Cinnamon: Ground cinnamon adds sweet and warm spicy notes to the carrot cake.
- Nutmeg: Ground nutmeg adds nutty, warm and slightly sweet flavors to the cake.
- Ginger: Ginger adds spicy sweet notes to the cake. Use freshly grated ginger if possible. If you don't have any fresh ginger, you can use ground ginger instead.
- Salt: A pinch of salt to balance out the sweetness of the cake.
- Baking soda is a leavening agent added to help the cake rise.
- Baking powder: Is also added to help the cake rise.
- Eggs: Add room-temperature eggs to make the cake batter for the best results.
- Gold Caster sugar: Will add sweetness to the cake. You can also use brown or light brown sugar for this recipe.
- Carrots: Use freshly grated carrots for this recipe.
- Oil: Any neutral flavored oil such as sunflower or canola oil will work for this recipe.
How to Make Carrot Cake with Walnuts
- Preheat oven at 160C/320F. First, grease two 7-inch round cake pans with butter or oil, line them with parchment paper and set aside for later.
2. In a separate bowl, add the flour, ground walnuts, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, salt, baking soda and baking powder and mix until well combined.
3. In another bowl, combine the eggs and brown or gold caster sugar until combined.
4. Add the oil to the egg mixture and beat again for 2-3 minutes. Then, add the grated carrots to the egg mixture and stir well.
6. Then, add the dry ingredients and mix well. Pour the batter into the two prepared cake tins and bake in the preheated oven for 25 - 30 mins until done. A skewer inserted should come out clean once the cake is done.
7. Allow the cakes to cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes before removing them from the pan and allowing them to cool for 1 hour on the cooling racks.
8. Serve this incredibly moist carrot cake on its own or frost it with fresh cream cheese frosting.
Tips and Tricks
- Carrots: Use freshly grated carrots that have been grated at home. This is fresher and contains more moisture than pre-grated carrots.
- Dry ingredients: Sift all of the dry ingredients using a sieve first. This will remove lumps and any dirt.
- Sugar: Light muscovado sugar or brown sugar can be used instead of caster sugar. You can also use a mixture of dark and light brown/muscovado sugar to give the cake a deeper, toffee-like flavor.
- Cream cheese frosting: Be mindful if you are frosting the cake with cream cheese in warm weather. It is known not to hold shape for as long as buttercream.
It is called carrot cake because it contains carrots; with the carrots being the main and unique ingredient in most carrot cake recipes.
Yes. If you don’t like walnuts or prefer not to use walnuts in this recipe, you can swap them for pecans. You can also use a mixture of walnuts and pecans in your recipe. Just make sure the amount of nuts is the recipe as what the recipe calls for.
This could be due to too much oil or too many carrots. Make sure you are using the right amount stated in the recipe. For accuracy, use a digital kitchen scale to weigh out your ingredients.
If you don’t like nuts or would like to make this recipe nut-free, you can leave out the addition of any nuts and add raisins/sultanas instead. Since this recipe calls for ground walnuts, you can use the same amount of raisins to replace the nuts in the recipe.
Theoretically, melted margarine should work as a substitute for oil in carrot cake since melted margarine is the same liquid state as oil. That being said, if you find that margarine does not work as expected, try substituting the oil with applesauce.
Thanks for reading this recipe, comment below if you made this and let me know how it went! Follow @simshomekitchen on Instagram, take a photo, tag and hashtag it with @simshomekitchen.
Carrot Cake with Walnuts
- 2 Medium-sized bowls
- 2 baking tins 7"
- Measuring spoons
- 350 g Plain Flour
- 200 g ground walnuts
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon fresh or ground ginger
- 0.5 teaspoon of salt
- 1.25 teaspoon baking soda
- 1.25 baking powder
- 5 eggs
- 350 g brown sugar or gold caster sugar
- 320 g grated carrots
- 380 ml oil
- Preheat oven at 160C/320F and line two 7” baking tins with baking paper and grease the tins lightly with butter or oil. Add flour, ground walnuts, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, fresh or ground ginger, salt, baking soda and baking powder to a bowl and stir.
- Next, beat eggs and sugar in a separate bowl for a couple of minutes. Then slowly pour in the oil and continue to whisk for 2-3 minutes.
- Add grated carrots to the egg and sugar mixture and stir well. Then, pour in the flour mix and stir well.
- Pour equal amounts of the carrot cake batter into two 7” tins and bake for 25-30 minutes or until done. Check if the carrot cake is done by sticking a skewer into the cake. If the skewer comes out clean then it is done.
- Once the sponges are ready, tip them upside down on to a rack and leave them to cool for 1 hour or until cool before decorating with cream cheese frosting.