Y’all KNOW how much I adore a good carrot cake! I posted THIS recipe a couple of years ago which is a slight modification from my mother-in-law’s famous carrot cake. But today, we’re veganizing it and making it dairy + egg free! It’s still so GOOD, promise!

Don’t forget that I have a few other amazing VEGAN cake recipes on the blog such as my Vegan Chocolate Cake and my Vegan King Cake.

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Happy FRIYAY! Lets celebrate with a good ole Vegan Carrot Cake! My stipulation in sharing this recipe with you is that when you make it, you HAVE to invite me over for a slice, mkay!? I expect many invitations to come through this weekend :D

This is yet another delicious vegan baked good that my friend Courtney helped me develop! She’s a professional baker in the Nashville area and has been helping me create vegan baked deliciousness like these BOMB Vegan Sugar Cookies (seriously the best EVER!), these peanut butter cookies, and these Vegan Thick & Chewy Vegan Oatmeal Cookies. Needless to say, she’s pretty amazing and every recipe that she’s helped me with has turned out SO SO GOOD!

iced carrot cake on a cake stand with carrots around it

And this carrot cake is absolutely no different! When Courtney first tested this, she made it as a sheet cake and took it to a gathering of all NON vegans. She said it was a huge hit and I couldn’t agree MORE.

The way that the recipe is written, you can make this as a sheet cake in a 9×13 inch pan OR as a round, double layered cake using either 8 or 9 inch pans. I’ve found that the 9 inch pans work better for the round version but 8 is totally doable as well.

carrot cake batter

Ingredients in this Vegan Carrot Cake:

As with most of my veganized baked goods, we kept things simple and classic meaning that this is a classic flour and sugar recipe. I’ve never tried making it gluten free but recommend trying a simple gluten free 1-1 flour if you need/ want it!

So, here are the main ingredients we’re working with:

  • Sugar, brown and white
  • flour
  • apple sauce to act as a minding agent
  • plant based milk of choice
  • orange juice and zest
  • Carrots, of course
  • optional but highly recommended: chopped nuts and/or shredded coconut

For the frosting, we’re keeping things simple with a classic buttercream frosting (using vegan butter of course) and a splash of maple syrup to give it a maple-y flavor with is a nice little touch :D

top down shot of vegan carrot cake with icing and chopped nuts sprinkled on top

To make the cake, you’ll simply need to mix together the wet ingredients in one bowl, the dry in another and then combine them. Then just pour the batter into your desired pan and BAKE. That’s literally it.


close up shots of vegan carrot cake with a bite being taken out

More delicious dessert recipes to try:

See how to make the Vegan Carrot Cake here:

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Vegan Carrot Cake

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  • Author: Brita Britnell
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 1 large cake 1x


I’m excited for you to try this Vegan Carrot Cake with Maple Buttercream frosting! It’s soft and fluffy while being full of carroty goodness and so deliciously MOIST! It can be made as a sheet pan or as a round double layer cake.



For the cake:

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • Zest + juice of half an orange (¼ cup of juice)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup plant based milk
  • 2.5 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 2 cups shredded carrots

Optional add ins:

  • 1 cup walnuts or pecans, chopped
  • 1 cup shredded coconut

Vegan Maple Buttercream:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) vegan butter, room temp*
  • ¼ cup plant based milk
  • 2 cups vegan powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract OR maple extract for extra maple flavor


For the cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F
  2. Grease a 9×13 sheet cake pan or 2 8 inch cake pans and set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sugars with oil, applesauce, vanilla, orange juice and zest, and milk and set aside.
  4. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and add to the wet.
  5. Stir together until incorporated. 
  6. Fold in the carrots and other add ins. Batter will be relatively thick.
  7. Transfer to the sheet cake pan (or divide evenly between the two pans). Place in middle rack of oven and bake for 20-22 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
  8. Remove and allow to cool fully before adding frosting.

To make the frosting:

  1. Beat the butter in a stand mixer until fluffy (about 30-45 seconds).
  2. Add the plant based milk and turn mixer on to low.
  3. Begin adding the powdered sugar in, ½ cup at a time. Once it is all added, scrape the sides of the bowl.
  4. Add in the maple and extract and turn mixer on medium-high. Beat for 1-2 minutes, until mixture is light, fluffy, and a nice frosting consistency. Add a little more powdered sugar (to thicken) or milk (to thin) as needed or desired.
  5. Ice the cake as desired and sprinkle on a few extra nuts to make it pretty! :D


*I’ve been loving the Country Crock Plant Butter lately and while very tasty in this recipe, please know that it makes the frosting rather thin as it gets warmed. If you’re making this cake in the summer or in a humid environment, I do not recommend the Country Crock brand but would instead try the Miyoko’s or Earth Balance brands if you have access to them!

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Cake
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American