Cupcakes, Food, Recipes

Carrot Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Icing

This month’s theme on SABH is Cake & Three Veg. I toyed with the idea of a chocolate-beetroot cake or a chocolate and avocado mousse but after eying off the lonely carrots rattling around the bottom of my fridge I decided to perfect my carrot cake recipe.

The initial plan – a two layered dense and moist carrot cake sandwiched together and covered in coconut cream cheese icing. If you are making a cake, then why is there a photograph of cupcakes Swah? I am sure you are wondering. Well, there was a little disaster.

I find a lot of dessert blogs consistently produce profesional looking, beautifully shot and styled desserts without ever touching on the inevitable situation of a dessert-related-complete-freaking-disaster. I must admit I rarely encounter anything too disastrous in my kitchen. I am organised and meticulous when baking and generally escape unscathed. Not this time.

I followed my tweaked recipe to a T, baked the 2 cakes in the oven and let them cool down over night. I whipped up a batch of my cream cheese icing with coconut essence, it tasted delicious. I put my first layer down onto my pretty cake stand, then spooned over 1/3 of the icing. Wonderful. I then placed my second layer on top. The perfectionist in me noticed it was slightly off-centre and I stupidly trying to gently lift it up and readjust. One of the great things about this carrot cake is how moist it is, however this worked against me when trying to shift things.

“Icing will fix everything!” I thought as worrying cracks started forming in the top layer. I had iced the top of the cake and was working my way around the sides as carefully as possible when slowly but surely, my beautiful cake started collapsing in slow motion. Sob!

But don’t worry this delicious cake didn’t go to waste! The remnants were piled into a tupperware container and promptly devoured.

Carrot Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Icing

5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Cake
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 12
Author: Swah


Carrot Cake

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp bicarb soda
  • 2 cups self raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 cups finely grated Carrot about 4 large carrots
  • 1/2 cup pecans finely chopped

Coconut Cream Cheese Icing

  • 600 g sifted icing sugar 4-5 cups
  • 100 g butter at room temperature
  • 250 g cream cheese at room temperature
  • 2 tsps coconut essence
  • Shredded coconut to decorate


Carrot Cake

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line the bases of 2 x 20 cm cake tins with bake paper and grease the sides with butter.
  • Beat the brown sugar and oil together until combined. Add the eggs in one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Sift in flour, spices and bicarb, and add grated carrot and pecans. Stir to combine.
  • Divide the batter evenly amongst the 2 cake tins.
  • Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
  • Allow the cakes to cool slightly in their tins before turning out onto a tray to cool completely.

Coconut Cream Cheese Icing

  • Cream the butter and icing sugar together until well mixed.
  • Add the cream cheese in cubes slowly until incorporated.
  • Add in the coconut essence and continue mixing for 5 minutes until the icing is light and fluffy.
  • Using an offset spatula, spread 1/3 of the icing on top of the first cake layer.
  • Place the second cake on top (upside down) and dollop the remaining 2/3 of the icing on top of the cake. Using the offset spatula, begin to smooth the icing out across the top and over the sides of the cake.
  • Decorate with shredded coconut.

Have you had any complete disasters in the kitchen recently? How did you manage to salvage it?

Previous Post Next Post

You Might Also Like


  • Reply Natalie November 19, 2012 at 10:46 am

    This sounds incredible. A moist carrot cake it my absolute favourite. Definitely giving this a try!

    • Reply Swah November 19, 2012 at 11:35 am

      Thanks Nat!! It was incredibly delicious and the actual cake is quite healthy. Next time I might halve the oil and substitute the remainder with apple sauce. Just gotta figure out a healthier version of the delicious coconut icing…. haha

  • Reply vegeTARAian November 19, 2012 at 11:38 am

    I love that you salvaged something gorgeous out of a disaster! Well done, I probably would have chucked a tanty and given up

    • Reply Swah November 19, 2012 at 12:10 pm

      I very nearly chucked a tanty Tara! But I hate wasting food and time so I knew I had to salvage it somehow ;)

  • Reply Claire @ Claire K Creations November 19, 2012 at 6:28 pm

    I can actually imagine sitting with a fork and that tupperware container full of cake and slowly making my way through it. Seems like a nice way to enjoy it to me and you’d get a good icing:cake ratio!

    • Reply Swah November 20, 2012 at 9:57 am

      Oh Claire it was SO dangerous eating it straight out of the container… suddenly half of it had disappeared!!

  • Reply Christine (@cookingcrusade) November 19, 2012 at 8:53 pm

    Mmmm delicious looking cake! Hard to believe that you have cake disasters too (I have them all too frequently… lol) but at least you were able to salvage it and make some lovely lil cupcakes too :)

    • Reply Swah November 20, 2012 at 9:57 am

      Haha I think we ALL have cake disasters. They are fickle creatures.

  • Reply JJ @ 84thand3rd November 20, 2012 at 11:16 pm

    I am still laughing just a bit at your cake disaster but that container looks like the perfect way to consume a pile of delicious mess. And coconut cream cheese icing – oh goodness yes please!

    • Reply Swah November 21, 2012 at 2:07 pm

      Haha it was quite the disaster! And the coconut cream cheese icing was amaaaaaazing :)

  • Reply Nic@diningwithastud November 21, 2012 at 3:50 pm

    Naww booo to the collapsing. It looks delicious though and thats the main thing :D Thanks for joining the hop!

    • Reply Swah November 22, 2012 at 5:31 pm

      Thanks Nic, I always love the challenge each hop!

  • Reply Nic November 21, 2012 at 6:36 pm

    Oh no! Sorry to hear you had a disaster, the cupcakes look really pretty though. You could have made carrot cake pops with the not so perfect one, although eating out of the Tupperware does sound fun!

    • Reply Swah November 22, 2012 at 5:33 pm

      I considered cake pops but I was so frustrated with the damn cake I just shoved it all in the tupperware container haha!!

  • Reply Christina @ The Hungry Australian November 21, 2012 at 11:09 pm

    Oh!!!! What a shame about your cake but luckily cake still tastes good when it’s in pieces. You could always put some on a plate with some couli and cream and call it ‘deconstructed’ I guess ;)

    • Reply Swah November 22, 2012 at 5:34 pm

      Christina you’re a genius! Next time I destroy a dessert I will serve it as “deconstructed’ haha!!

  • Reply Monica (@gastromony) November 23, 2012 at 6:34 pm

    There’s something totally irresistible about carrot cake with cream cheese icing, even when smooshed up… Delish!

    • Reply Swah November 26, 2012 at 9:25 am

      It’s one of my fav combos! Although anything with cream cheese icing is probably my favourite combo ;)

  • Reply K-bobo @ Gormandize with A-dizzle & K-bobo November 28, 2012 at 9:23 am

    If anything, I think your cake disaster looks even more delicious as a big pile of yummy cakey mess in a container! I’d love to get my fork stuck into that! Haha, your cupcakes are very cute though. I like the idea of coconut cream cheese icing.

    • Reply Swah November 28, 2012 at 11:08 am

      There is something very decadent and naughty about eating cake straight out of a Tupperware container haha!!

  • Reply David Crichton July 18, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    Hi Swah,

    Do carrot cakes work with parsnips?


    • Reply Swah July 18, 2013 at 5:35 pm

      Hi Dave, I have never tried it myself but they definitely would be a good substitute as they are a similar texture and density. Would love to hear how it goes! Cheers, Swah

  • Reply Tiana October 21, 2013 at 12:21 am

    One of the cakes I was making for my Father’s birthday had gone terribly wrong! I was making blueberry cake with cream cheese frosting (we were throwing him a brunch party), and when i took the cake out of the oven, it was awful because I had forgotten to put the eggs in the batter!

    • Reply Swah November 12, 2013 at 10:28 am

      Oh no what a nightmare! Was it salvageable?! Baking disasters happen to the best of us :(

  • Reply Tim Tam & Milo Truffles – Happy Australia Day! May 4, 2015 at 11:10 am

    […] up rolling my Tim Tam & Milo truffles in coconut for the effect (and to satisfy my ongoing coconut […]

  • Leave a Reply

    Recipe Rating