Home Food This recipe proves that carrot cake is anything but boring

This recipe proves that carrot cake is anything but boring


Minnesota restaurant Brim uses coconut whip frosting and maple syrup for its spring staples.

This recipe proves that carrot cake is anything but boring

Carrot cake is one of those classic recipes that never dares to be rewritten – an old-fashioned, like Grandma’s dessert that’s packed with sugar despite its plant-based connotations. But this Easter table fixture has stood the test of time, and with just a few tweaks, you can help bring it to its modern form.

“Maybe it’s a Midwestern thing – maybe we’re closer to Betty Crocker, the taste of home – but we love the carrot cake here,” says Minneapolis-based jokes Kate Sidoti, co-owner of Brim Restaurant.

The restaurant, known for its locally sourced grain bowls made from scratch, hosts a weekend cake series that sells playful cakes inspired by seasonal ingredients. “They will always be gluten-free and often dairy-free to remind everyone to relax and enjoy some sprinkles on the weekend,” Sidoti says.

One of the most popular rotisserie cakes is her carrot cake, which contains about half the sugar of the standard variety. sidoti uses olive oil, coconut whip frosting instead of cream cheese, and maple syrup and organic cane sugar as sweeteners.

For Sidoti, a modern carrot cake must incorporate a lot of moisture or it will become a little too fluffy. In this recipe, butter is replaced by extra virgin olive oil, “which gives it a really, almost savory flavor,” she says. Sidoti’s favorite brand of gluten-free flour is Cup4Cup, but she warns against overmixing it or it will get very dense.

“Spices are your friend when it comes to gluten-free cakes – and they’re very high-quality spices,” Sidoti explains. “So if you want to make it worthwhile, maybe don’t reach for the jar of cinnamon you’ve had in the cupboard for two years. Fresh cinnamon has an effect on this.”

As for the toppings, Sidoti likes to get a little fancy, saying that garnish is the easiest way to elevate a bake. “We take a peeled carrot mandoline, coat it with a little coconut oil and organic cane sugar, and then dehydrate it to make these crunchy carrot cookies,” she explains. “Then add some toasted coconut to bring out a little coconut in the frosting.”

Edge Carrot Cake Recipe


  • 2¼ cups gluten-free flour (Cup4Cup recommended)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons good quality cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup organic cane sugar
  • ¼ maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups grated carrots
  • Homemade coconut frosting or Simple Mills vanilla frosting

For the coconut frosting

  • 1 stick vegan butter (preferably Miyokos)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups sifted powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons full fat coconut milk
  • Note: You can also use Simple Mills Vanilla Frosting for a quick change.


  1. Grease two 9×9 pans or a large 9×13 deep cake pan. Preheat oven to 350°F. 2.
  2. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg in a bowl. 3.
  3. In a separate large bowl, whisk together cane sugar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, eggs, and olive oil.
  4. Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture until combined. Gently mix in the carrots.
  5. Pour mixture into prepared pan and bake for 35-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. When cake has cooled completely, frost top of cake or if making two rounds, frost center and outside.
  7. While cake is baking, prepare frosting (if making, or a simple grinder is a good substitute).
  8. Soften the vegan butter and mix with a hand mixer until smooth. Then add vanilla until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and cinnamon, ½ cup at a time. If too dry, slowly add coconut oil, 1 teaspoon at a time. 9.
  9. Decorate the cake with dehydrated carrots, toasted coconut or toasted walnuts.

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