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Overhead view of a carrot cake with a slice being taken out with a cake spatula.
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5 from 5 votes

Vegan Carrot Cake w/ Cashew Cream Cheese Frosting

This delicious spice cake is dense, sweet, and super moist, just like a good carrot cake should be. Topped with a dreamy cashew cream cheese frosting, this sneak veggie dessert is perfect for your Easter menu or an anytime decadent treat!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Resting Time10 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: dairy free, egg free, soy free, vegan
Servings: 12 slices
Calories: 480kcal


For the Carrot Cake

  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour (white whole wheat or spelt flour will also work)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 1 cup crushed pineapple (drained)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 cup finely shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup walnuts (chopped) (plus more for garnish)

For the Cashew Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 2 cups raw cashews (soaked 2-3 hours, or overnight)
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup organic powdered sugar (or to taste)
  • 1/8 tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 1/4 cup non-dairy milk (plus more as needed) (I used unsweetened almond milk)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)


For the Carrot Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Line two 9-inch cake pans with a circle of parchment paper or lightly spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the crushed pineapple, vanilla, vinegar, coconut sugar, maple syrup, coconut oil, and almond milk.
  • Stir the dry ingredients into the wet just until incorporated.
  • Stir in the shredded carrots and chopped walnuts. The batter will be thick, but still pourable.
  • Divide the batter among the two prepared cake pans. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. 
  • Let the cakes cool in the pans on a wire cooling rack for at least 10 minutes. Then, turn the cakes out and let them continue to cool on the wire cooling rack.

For the Cashew Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Add the soaked cashews, lemon juice, vanilla, powdered sugar, and salt to a food processor. With the food processor running, slowly pour in the milk through the top spout. Then slowly pour in the melted coconut oil through the top spout. Continue to process until the mixture is perfectly smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides as necessary. Add additional milk 1 tablespoon at a time if needed to get the mixture smooth.
  • Transfer the frosting to an airtight container and place in the fridge for several hours or overnight to let it thicken and set up. 

To Serve

  • Once the cakes have completely cooled and the frosting has thickened, turn the cakes upside down so that the perfectly flat sides are face up. Spread a thin layer of the frosting over the top of one of the cakes. Stack the other cake on top and then gently frost the whole cake. 
  • Garnish with chopped walnuts.
  • Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge as the frosting won't stay solid if it gets warm.


~Please note that the Cashew Cream Cheese Frosting needs time for soaking the cashews and time for setting up in the fridge. Plan accordingly! The frosting can also be made in advance
~You should have just enough frosting for a thin layer between the two cakes and to cover the whole thing. If you like a LOT of frosting, you may want to double the recipe. 
~Make sure the cakes are completely cooled before you start to frost. You may need to let the cold frosting sit for just a few minutes at room temperature in order to spread the frosting easier. After frosting, stick the entire cake back in the fridge for 20 minutes to set (or stick it in the freezer for 5-10 minutes). 
~Store all leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container.


Calories: 480kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Sodium: 220mg | Potassium: 211mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 8550IU | Vitamin C: 9.1mg | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 1.4mg