Nothing says fall holiday baking quite like a deliciously moist carrot cake loaf loaded down with the spices of the season and topped with a generous portion of cream cheese icing.
I’m so excited to share this carrot cake loaf recipe with you today. This recipe came from my friend, Amanda, who is a kitchen genius. Everything Amanda makes is good, so I know you’ll love this decadent carrot cake loaf as much as we do.
I personally love that this loaf has the same delicious flavors and texture as a traditional carrot cake, just in a smaller, more portable version. It’s perfect for traveling, as who wants to travel with a traditional three-layer cake? (Not me!). It’s also a great idea for gift-giving. Take it as a hostess gift for the holidays or a special gift for friends, family, or coworkers.
As mentioned, this carrot cake loaf recipe is loaded with the exact same ingredients as a carrot cake and the same fall spices you’d also find in pumpkin bread, like cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Studded with raisins and pecans, the only difference is you bake it in a loaf pan rather than a cake pan. Then you get to top it with scrumptious cream cheese icing.
This carrot cake loaf is easy to make with simple ingredients, so let’s get baking!
- All-purpose flour
- Vegetable oil
- Vanilla extract
- Grated carrot
- Chopped pecans
- Baking powder
Cream Cheese Icing
- Cream cheese (here’s our homemade cream cheese recipe)
- Powdered sugar
- Heavy cream or milk
- Vanilla extract
How to Make Carrot Cake Loaf
In a mixing bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt until combined.
In another large bowl, mix together the eggs and sugar until combined. Then, add in the oil and vanilla.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix together until fully incorporated.
You can use an electric mixer or a spoon to mix your carrot cake batter.
With a spatula, fold in the carrots, raisins, and pecans.
Pour this into a greased loaf pan and bake at 350 for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Remove the carrot cake loaf from the oven when done and allow it to cool for 10 minutes before removing it from the pan to cool completely.
Now we need to make our carrot cake loaf frosting!
Mix all of the frosting ingredients together, using additional milk if you’d like your icing a bit thinner.
Frost the cooled loaf and top with a few extra pecans if you like.
Enjoy this wonderful treat!
- Cover and store leftover carrot bread in the fridge for up to 1 week.
- This bread also freezes well and extra pecans on top help keep the icing pretty once you wrap it to freeze. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months and thaw in the fridge before serving.
- You can substitute granulated sugar for light or dark brown sugar or coconut sugar.
- I definitely recommend shredding the carrot at home and not using pre-shredded carrot, as it can be hard and dry.
- Instead of raisins, add in chocolate chips, sweetened shredded coconut, or dried cranberries. You can also substitute the pecans for walnuts.
- For cinnamon cream cheese icing, add 1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon to the frosting ingredients. Another option is to add a tablespoon of maple syrup to make maple cream cheese icing.
- Because it can last in the fridge for up to a week, this carrot cake loaf is a great recipe to make ahead of time.
- This unfrosted carrot loaf recipe is naturally dairy-free.
You may also like these other carrot cake recipes:
- 1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 3 carrots, grated about 1 cup
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
Cream Cheese Icing
- 4 oz cream cheese
- 1/4 cup butter, unsalted if you have it but salted is fine
- 1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon heavy cream or milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- In a mixing bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt until combined.1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ginger, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon salt
- In another large bowl, mix together the eggs and sugar until combined. Then, add in the oil and vanilla.3 eggs, 1 cup sugar, 1 cup vegetable oil, 2 teaspoons vanilla
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix together until fully incorporated. With a spatula, fold in the carrots, raisins, and pecans.3 carrots, grated, 1/2 cup chopped pecans, 1/2 cup raisins
- Pour this into a greased 9×5 loaf pan and bake at 350 for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven when done and allow it to cool for 10 minutes before removing from the pan to cool completely.
- Mix all of the frosting ingredients together, using additional milk if you’d like your icing a bit thinner. Frost the cooled loaf and top with a few extra pecans if you like. Enjoy!4 oz cream cheese, 1 1/4 cup powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon heavy cream or milk, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 cup butter, unsalted if you have it but salted is fine