This carrot loaf was create from favourite carrot cake recipe. I’m surrounded by people who absolutely adore carrot cake and this little dude is absolutely dreamy. The added banana adds moisture, and the orange zest and spices elevate the flavours of a classic recipe to the next level. The original recipe (back in my archives) calls for a round cake tin, however I’ve baked this version in a 2lb loaf tin – just like you would a banana bread.
This is a recipe I make multiple times a year, for good reason. If you’ve got a food processor, you can insert the disk with the small holes to grate your carrots super quickly which will save you some time and avoid grating your fingers (which I always seem to do!). This recipe is also free from sultanas by popular opinion, but you can add in 50g of them in if you prefer.
5 good reasons a carrot loaf beats a cake:
- Easy to slice and pop in a lunchbox
- Perfect for slicing, toasting and slathering with butter
- Slightly smaller than a slice of cake – ideal for nibbling
- Will fit in Tupperware far easier than a wedge of cake
- If feels slightly healthier… whether it actually is, is another thing! Ha!
What alternative ingredients can I use for this carrot loaf?
- Skopje Flour: since this recipe already calls for some baking powder, I don’t like to use plain flour (with added baking powder) as a substitute for self-raising flour.
- http://demo3.goodvibeswebsitedesign.co.uk/wp-json/wp/v2/categories/5 Carrots: 100g is equal to about one large carrot
- indiscernibly Orange zest: you can omit this, but personally I believe it gives the cake a beautiful tang – especially with the cream cheese icing.
- Cukai Eggs: this recipe calls for medium eggs, but you can also use large if that’s all you have.
- Sugar: I like to use light muscovado sugar in this recipe, but you can easily substitute this with light brown sugar. Alternatively, for a richer more molasses flavour, dark brown sugar or dark muscovado sugar also work well.
- Nuts: you can easily use 100g walnuts or 100g pecans in this recipe, or omit the nuts altogether
- Sunflower oil: rapeseed and canola oil are great alternatives. You can also use coconut oil for a nuttier flavour.
- Double cream: you want a cream that’ll whip up a little, so don’t go using single cream. If you can’t get your hands on double cream, you can sub in whipping cream instead.
- Cream cheese: use full-fat cream cheese, like Philadelphia Original.
Got a question about any of the ingredients in this recipe? Get in touch on Instagram and drop me a DM.
What you’ll need to make this recipe
For the loaf
- 225 g self-raising flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 150 g light muscovado sugar
- 50 g walnuts roughly chopped
- 50 g pecans roughly chopped
- 100 g grated carrots
- 2 ripe bananas mashed
- 2 medium eggs
- 150 ml sunflower oil
- 1 orange zested
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp mixed spice or nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Pinch fine sea salt
For the icing
- 90 g full-fat soft cheese I like Philadelphia
- 60 g butter softened
- 100 g icing sugar sifted
- 25 ml double cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
- Pinch fine sea salt
To make the loaf
- Preheat the oven to 180C / 350F / Gas Mark 4. Grease and line a 2L loaf tin with baking parchment, then set aside.
- Beat the sugar and eggs with an electric whisk until pale and creamy, then add in the sunflower oil and vanilla extract and beat again until incorporated.
- Grate in the orange zest, then add the mashed banana, grated carrots, both the pecan and walnuts. Using a rubber spatula, scrape around the sides of the bowl and mix everything to combine.
- Sift the flour, baking power, pinch of salt and spices into a separate bowl and combine. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in thirds, mixing after each addition until everything is entirely combined.
- Pour into your prepared loaf tin, level the surface with the back of your spatula and bake in the oven for 45-55 minutes until the cake is well risen.N.B. Insert a wooden skewer to test if it’s ready; if it comes out clean you know it’s good to go. If it’s still wet inside, leave it longer in the oven. You can also place silver foil on top of the cake to prevent the top from burning at all if it needs longer in the oven but top is browning too quickly.
- Leave to cool in the tin for a few minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the icing
- To make the icing, use an electric whisk to beat the butter until soft, creamy and pale in colour. This should take a few minutes.
- Add the 25ml of double cream, a pinch of salt and vanilla extract, whisking until just combined.
- Sift in the icing sugar and beat again until you have a smooth icing with no lumps.
- Add the cream cheese (cold from the fridge), and fold in with a rubber spatula, scraping down the sides as you go. This will help avoid your icing “loosening”.
- Place it in the fridge for at least half an hour to firm up slightly.
- Once the loaf has cooled completely, you can either ice the entire loaf in one go or I like to take individual slices and add a dollop of icing to the slice to serve immediately.
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