Easter is almost upon us and Keedo, who is a proudly South African brand who design and manufacture the most beautiful, quality kiddie clothing and who also sell awesome toys ranges, books, bath/body goodies for kids and homeware items asked me if I’d share a recipe that was not only delicious but easy enough for anyone big and small to tackle. So I thought it would be awesome to make a Pecan Carrot Cake with Cinnamon and Vanilla Cream Cheese Icing.
This carrot cake is moist and full of amazing flavours! You’ll find hints of nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon, which all come together super nicely under a pillowy dose of smooth Cinnamon and Vanilla Cream Cheese Icing. I added pecan nuts to this, but if you don’t have any you can leave them out, or you can also use almonds, pistachios etc.
I also thought that because we’re on lockdown a whole cake might be a bit much so this recipe yields 12 perfectly delicious cupcakes. But if you feel like you’d prefer a cake, then just double everything, spilt the batter between two standard-sized cake tins and bake for 30-35 minutes 🙂 The same goes for the icing, double the recipe for a whole cake.
My kids loved helping make these almost as much as the loved eating them! So I’m keen to share this recipe with all of you and I hope you share your pics with me if you make them too.
Here are a few other cool Easter-inspired recipes you can get stuck into 🙂
INGREDIENTS: Makes 12 Pecan Carrot Cake with Cinnamon and Vanilla Cream Cheese Icing
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 75 ml vegetable/canola oil
- 2 large eggs (room temperature)
- 3/4 cups light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
- 1/4 cup full cream yoghurt – if you don’t have yoghurt you can use homemade buttermilk. You can make this by adding a teaspoon of lemon juice or white vinegar to half a cup of milk and let it sit for 5 minutes.
- 1 and 1/2 cups grated carrots
- 1/4 cup chopped pecan nuts – you can also use almonds or pistachios, anything really
1. Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C (fan-assisted, 160ªC if not). Line a cupcake tin with cupcake liners. If you’re making a cake instead, you must prepare two 9-inch round cake pans by spraying them with Spray and Cook and lining the bottom with a round of parchment paper (don’t forget to double the recipe if making a cake).
2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg, until well-combined then set aside.
3. In another bowl whisk together the oil, eggs, brown sugar, white sugar, yoghurt (or buttermilk), and vanilla essence until well combined. Then add the grated carrots and pecans and give it a good stir.
4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula until just combined, making sure not to over mix the batter.
5. Pour the batter into the cupcake liners, fill them to just under 3/4 of the way up. Bake at 180°C for 22-25 minutes or when a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow them to cool in the pan for a bit before taking them out to cool completely.
6. If you’re making a cake, divide the batter evenly between the two cake tins. Then bake for 30-35 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pans on a wire rack for about 20 minutes. Once the cakes have cooled, remove them from their pans and return to them to the wire rack to cool completely.
INGREDIENTS FOR THE CREAM CHEESE ICING:
- 125 grams of medium fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 60 grams unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence or 1/4 teaspoon vanilla seeds
- pinch of salt
- Generous pinch of cinnamon
- In a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer (or in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment) beat the cream cheese until nice and smooth.
- Add the butter and mix for about a 1 minute until well combined.
- Add in the icing sugar, vanilla essence/seeds, salt and cinnamon and continue mixing until fully combined, don’t forget to scrape down the sides halfway through.
- Using a piping bag and nozzle (of your choice) or pallet/butter knife pipe/smear a generous helping of icing onto each cupcake. Top with a pinch of cinnamon or a mini Lindt chocolate bunny.