Carrot cake was the very first gluten free cake that I made, back in 2006 when I was incorrectly diagnosed with coeliacs disease – before I went to a second gastroenterologist who agreed to do a colonoscopy/gastroscopy and then the breath tests for fructose and lactose.
I love carrots, which are a naturally sweet vegetable, and combining carrots and cake is a dream come true to my palate. Throw in some cream cheese icing and you have yourselves a winner, in my books. I adapted this recipe from Stephanie Alexander’s ‘Simple Carrot Cake’ recipe, found on p. 224 of her book, The Cook’s Companion. It is moist, sweet but not too sweet and delicious – everything a good carrot cake should be.
- Carrots are low FODMAP in “9 slice” servings – not entirely sure how big a slice is but I imagine that a slice of this cake would be safe.
- Cream cheese contains lactose, so the icing would not be suitable for those following a lactose free diet.
- Adding almond meal to a cake batter can help with moisture, something which some gluten free cakes lack in. If you cannot tolerate almonds, even in the small amount per serving of this cake, sub in your regular gluten free plain flour.
- The cake featured in the photos used twice the recipe to make a double layered cake.
- 100 g gluten free plain flour
- 25 g almond meal
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 2/3 cup coconut oil
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups grated carrot
- Optional – 50 g roughly chopped walnuts
Preheat your oven to 180 C/350 F and grease and line a 9″ cake pan.
Cream the oil and sugar together for 2-3 minutes on a low speed before adding in the eggs and combining well. In a separate bowl, combine the flours, baking powder, xanthan gum and spices.
When the eggs have been thoroughly mixed into the oil/sugar mixture, add in the dry ingredients bit by bit, allowing each portion to combine well before adding in the next. Once the wet and dry ingredients are mixed together, gently stir in the grated carrot and walnuts.
Pour into the prepared cake tin and bake for –
- A large cake: 45-60 minutes at 180 C, or until the cake tests clean. Remove it from the oven and let it sit for 15 minutes before upending it onto a cooling rack and allowing it to reach room temperature before icing it.
- Muffins: 15 minutes at 180 C, or until a muffin in the centre of the tray tests clean. Let them sit before removing from the muffin tin and then allow them to cool completely before icing.
There are a couple of options to ice this cake:
- Dust with cinnamon and icing sugar
- Serve with whipped cream or coconut cream
- Cream cheese icing – 100 g full fat cream cheese (low fat wont whip properly), 2 tbsp. butter, 1/2 cup icing sugar (alternatively 1/4 cup glucose and 1/4 cup icing sugar) and 1/2 tspn. vanilla essence. Cream the cheese and butter, then continue to beat while adding sugar and vanilla essence. Spread it onto the cake and sprinkle with desiccated coconut shreds.