A healthy carrot cake recipe that is gluten free, very easy to make, and is frosted with a delicious 2 ingredient cream cheese frosting. This simple gluten free carrot cake is made with almond flour and gluten free oats and can be easily made vegan by swapping the one egg for applesauce or a flax egg. This gluten free carrot cake is perfect for Easter or just to have around the house for a perfect nightly dessert. Goes perfectly with some smooth vanilla ice cream!
I say this just about every week, but this is truly one of my favorite recipes. I love every part of this recipe. The soft, fluffy inside of the oatmeal based cake and the sweet, smooth two ingredient cream cheese frosting right on top. I love it the most, however, because it was the result of “leftover ingredients.”
What are leftover ingredients you ask?
I bake at least once a week. Not just one recipe, but about 4-5 in one day if I’m in the mood. I love to recipe develop and play around with different ingredients. Whenever I spend one full day baking, by the end of the day, I’m left with little bits of flour in a bag, or 1/4 cup almond butter left in the container, or a half a cup of something else. Rather than wasting these ingredients, I love to combine them together and hope for the best for another brand new healthy recipe.
Yes, it’s okay to call this specific recipe healthy because it’s jam packed with good for you ingredients like fresh carrots, almond flour, gluten free oats, raisins, and no refined sugar.
YES, even the frosting on this cake is simple and clean and made with NO REFINED SUGARS. Can you believe that?
If dairy isn’t your thing, this entire cake, frosting included, is perfect for you! There is no gluten and no dairy in this entire cake! Which makes this carrot cake perfect for literally everyone in your life.
Fun fact about me, I was never a carrot cake lover. I never liked cinnamon, or carrots, and raisins grossed me out. If you had told me a few years ago that I would be making this recipe and actually loving it, I would have told you that I thought you were crazy!
Ingredients for Healthy Carrot Cake:
Almond Flour – the only flour you need for this cake is almond flour! Combined with the other ingredients in this cake, it makes for a perfectly fluffy inside. I love baking with almond flour because it’s easy to find and gluten free. Plus, it has less carbs than other flours if that’s something you want!
Gluten Free Oats – I don’t know if this is surprising or not, but I did use gluten free oats to make this cake extra fluffy and nutrient dense. Oats offer high amounts of many vitamins and minerals, such as manganese, phosphorus, copper, B vitamins, iron, selenium, magnesium, and zinc. I LOVE oats.
Maple Syrup – one of my favorite sources of natural sweetener and you only need a little for this cake! You could also use honey or agave if you do not have maple syrup.
Coconut Sugar — another one of my favorite natural sweeteners. Compared to granulated sugar and high-fructose corn syrup, coconut sugar has higher levels of iron, zinc, and calcium!
Almond Butter – helps keep this cake nice and moist! I use regular unsalted almond butter for this recipe, the smooth kind! I have not tried this recipe with another nut butter, crunchy or not, but I do believe that this cake would easily work with whatever you have on hand!
Eggs – I haven’t tried this with any egg replacer, but I know this cake would work with one. The egg 100% adds to the fluffiness of this cake, but if you’re vegan or don’t have eggs at your house, you can use 1/4 cup applesauce to replace the egg or make a chia seed/flax egg if you prefer it.
Applesauce– my favorite oil substitute for baking, in place of traditional vegetable oil or butter! You can totally use coconut oil as a substitute if you have it and want a little less sugar in your cake.
Grated Carrots – quickly grated up some big carrot sticks in my food processor. SO much easier than hand grating your carrots, trust me.
Raisins – optional, but highly suggested! You can also add nuts like pecans or walnuts if you like the texture, I just didn’t have any on hand in my kitchen.
+ spices aka cinnamon and baking soda: to help it rise and stay fluffy
I top this cake with a homemade healthier cream cheese frosting, and it uses just two ingredients: dairy free cream cheese and maple syrup! It’s super simple and tastes absolutely amazing. You can definitely used a pre-made frosting here or live the frosting out all together, but everyone loves frosting right?
Why is this carrot cake healthy?
The ingredients in this gluten-free carrot cake are fresh, natural, and all real food. That’s why I feel good when I’m eating it! Instead of using butter, white flour, and traditional sugar, I use other ingredients that I would prefer to eat myself, like applesauce, almond flour, and maple syrup. Know that if you prefer to eat the other ingredients, please do! I have Crohns which prevents me from eating gluten or dairy which is why I prefer to bake with my substitute ingredients. Easier to digest and healthier to eat 🙂
Tools needed to make this healthier carrot cake
Super easy! The tools you need are one big bowl, one small bowl, two mixing tools, and a 8×8 brownie dish for baking. You can always use a different sized cake pan if you have it, but the thickness of the cake in the 8×8 dish is perfect!
How do you make healthy carrot cake?
Start by combining all the wet ingredients in the big bowl first and mixing them together super well. The wet ingredients include: almond butter, egg, applesauce, and maple syrup.
Add in the grated carrot and mix it into the wet mixture super well. To make the grated carrots, peel a few larger carrots and throw them into a food processor for a few seconds! It makes grating the carrots so much easier.
In the same bowl, add in the dry ingredients and mix super well. The dry ingredients are: cinnamon, almond flour, baking soda, coconut sugar, and oats. Mix this super well to get a well combined batter.
Add in the raisins and evenly disperse into the batter.
Pour the batter into your lined baking dish and smooth out the top. Bake at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the inside is nice and fluffy!
While the cake is baking, make the frosting: combine the 4 oz of dairy free cream cheese and the 1/4 cup maple syrup and mix super well.
Once the cake is baked and cooled, frost the cake with your dairy free cream cheese frosting and enjoy!
What’s the best way to store healthy oatmeal raisin carrot cake?
If eating the same day, keep it out at room temperature! After 12 hours, I would store it in the fridge. You can also pop it in the refrigerator right after frosting it and just take it out when you want a slice! This cake is best eaten within a couple of days, but still stays nice and fluffy for about a week!
If you make this recipe, be sure to comment below and let me know how it was! Also tag @chens_plate on Instagram and use the hashtag #chensplate so I can see it and feature you!
Oatmeal Raisin Carrot Cake
- 1 cup almond flour
- 1 cup gluten free oats
- 1/2 cup grated carrots
- 1/2 cup almond butter
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup applesauce
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar
- 1/3 cup raisins
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 4 oz dairy free cream cheese (I used Kite Hill)
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
How to cook Oatmeal Raisin Carrot Cake
- Start by combining all the wet ingredients in a big bowl first and mixing them together super well. The wet ingredients include: almond butter, egg, applesauce, and maple syrup.
- Add in the grated carrot and mix it into the wet mixture super well. To make the grated carrots, peel a few larger carrots and throw them into a food processor for a few seconds! It makes grating the carrots so much easier.
- In the same bowl, add in the dry ingredients and mix super well. The dry ingredients are: cinnamon, almond flour, baking soda, coconut sugar, and oats. Mix this super well to get a well combined batter.
- Add in the raisins and evenly disperse into the batter.
- Pour the batter into your lined baking dish and smooth out the top. Bake at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the inside is nice and fluffy!
- While the cake is baking, make the frosting: combine the 4 oz of dairy free cream cheese and the 1/4 cup maple syrup and mix super well.
- Once the cake is baked and cooled, frost the cake with your dairy free cream cheese frosting and enjoy!
Sat. Fat (grams)