Walnut Carrot Cake

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February 28th is a special day, it’s Sarah’s birthday! Sarah is my good friend, roommate, AND coworker. This means that Sarah taste-tests essentially every baked good I make. Out of all the cake flavors I’ve made, carrot cake is her favorite. I used my go-to carrot cake recipe, and had some fun with the decorating. The ingredients include:

Cake Base:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 5 large eggs
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 1 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups finely grated carrot (use microplane or food processor)
  • 1 (12-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Frosting:

  • 16 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cup (4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 6 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • additional cup of chopped nuts for decorating

Yield: 20 servings

Prep Time: 30 minutes (if grating the carrots by hand)

Cook Time: 1 hour

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Begin by lining and lightly greasing four nine-inch, round, cake pans. Set the pans aside. In a very large bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Mix in the eggs, sugar, oil, buttermilk, and vanilla at a medium speed, until fully incorporated. Fold in the carrots, pineapple, coconut, and walnuts. Pour the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans.

Bake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 15 minutes. Remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks.

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While the cakes are cooling, prepare the frosting. Combine all ingredient in a mixing bowl, and mix at a low speed until combined. Once the cakes have cooled, spread Cream Cheese Frosting between layers and on top and sides of cake. Coat the exterior with a crumb coat, and place in fridge. Let the frosting harden for 30 minutes, then apply a thicker layer of frosting to the exterior of the cake.

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Everyone at work loved the cake. I think they like my carrot cake just as much as Sarah 😀

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