The classic carrot cake has been given a makeover to become a deliciously spiced refined sugar and gluten-free beauty.
Carrot cake has to be one of my all-time favourite cakes, well alongside the good old Victoria sponge perhaps. My go-to recipe was a Paul Hollywood one, as I love the spice quantity and use of pecans instead of the traditional walnuts.
However, in this recipe, I wanted to make it refined sugar-free and gluten-free which was a little bit of a challenge. But through making a few swaps and lots of tasty trials and mostly errors, I think I have finally come up with a carrot cake recipe that doesn’t make you feel as if you have swapped out any of the key ingredients.
This carrot cake has a delicate orange flavour, complimented by the warmth of the different spices. These flavours are then offset by the deliciously zesty cream cheese frosting making it quite hard to stop at just one slice.
The recipe below is for one 1 layer of sponge and 1 layer of cream cheese so just double or triple it depending on the size of the cake you want to make.
Note on sweeteners
In this recipe, I have used Sukrin Gold as a substitute for soft brown sugar as it works really well with the spices and orange. A brown sugar substitute has a slightly more mellow flavour. It also uses a white sweetener, I suggest Xylitol or erythritol. Both are a 1:1 substitute for sugar and work brilliantly in cakes.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with different sweeteners and the quantities in sweet recipes. It may take a few attempts to find your preference as we all have a different palate.
What you will need to make this Carrot cake:
- Gluten-free flour
- I use a Doves farm white self-raising flour
- Almond flour/ground almonds
- Add an extra nutty flavour and are a great no carb-count option
- A combination of cinnamon, ginger and mixed spice gives this cake a wonderful warmth
- Baking powder
- I use Gluten-free
- Essential for adding air and lightness into your bakes
- Bicarbonate of soda
- an alkali that is used to raise full-flavoured cakes
- A switch from the usual walnuts
- Adds a rich buttery flavour
- Adds a wonderful zesty kick and compliments the spices
- Xylitol or erythritol
- Brown sugar alternative, I use Sukrin gold or NKD living Erythritol Gold
- see notes above on Sweeteners
- A key component to any bake and should be free-range
- Sunflower/vegetable oil
- using oil instead of butter makes this cake super moist
- Well, you can’t have a carrot cake without carrots!
- Full fat cream cheese
- I find there can be a big difference in the quality of cream cheese
- You may need to try a few before you find the one you like
- Essential for the smoothest of frostings
This cake is a wonderful low carb-count option. Because of the use of almond flour and sugar alternatives, the overall carb count is dramatically reduced.
We have found making some switches to reduce the carb count can help to avoid some of those dreaded blood glucose spikes.
Through trial and error, we in fact have found that we do not need to give insulin for this cake . However, when considering your carb counting requirements, you know best on deciding what aspects of this recipe to count.