Gluten Free Carrot Cake Recipe with Sugar Free Cream Cheese Frosting

gluten free carrot cake recipe

For centuries, carrots have been used in baking for their natural sweetness and moisture. And while the first cakes made with shredded carrots likely originated in France, it wasn’t until restaurateurs in the United States began marketing it as a healthier option in the 1960s that “carrot cake” really took off.

What started out as a novelty in the United States soon became a staple on dessert menus everywhere.  Women looking to watch their figures thought they could have a tall slice of carrot cake as opposed to the more “sinful” chocolate variety.

Carrot cake is certainly delicious. But is it really a healthier option than chocolate cake?

Not really. The addition of carrots may add nutrients (primarily beta-carotene and fiber), but it doesn’t make the typical carrot cake “good for you.”

In fact, most carrot cake – such as the Mrs. Smith’s variety seen below –  is really just a box of refined sugar and bleached flour. And while this cake actually does have a few carrots in it (many carrot cakes don’t!), any potential benefit is negated by the trans fats, artificial flavors, corn syrup, preservatives and other “non-food” additives.

Take a look at the ingredients list for the Mrs. Smiths cake. Does this sound “healthy” to you?

Mrs. Smith’s Carrot Cake Ingredients

Sugar, Carrots, Enriched Bleached Flour (Bleached Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Margarine (Liquid and Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Water, Salt, Vegetable Mono and Diglycerides, Soy Lecithin, Preservatives [Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid], Artificially Flavored, Colored with Beta Carotene, Vitamin A Palmitate Added), Walnuts, Eggs, Crushed Pineapple, Soybean Oil, Cream Cheese (Pasteurized Milk and Cream, Cheese Culture, Salt, Xanthan Gum, and/or Carob Bean Gum, and/or Guar Gum), Nonfat Milk, Contains 2% or less of each of the Following: Partially Hydrogenated Vegetable Shortening (Soybean and Cottonseed Oil), Unsweetened Pineapple Juice, Corn Syrup, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Cornstarch, Food Starch-Modified, Leavening (Baking Soda, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Monocalcium Phosphate Monohydrate), Salt, Soy Flour, Spice, Ascorbic Acid, Cellulose Gum, Mono- and Diglycerides, Polysorbate 60, Sorbitan Monostearate, Polysorbate 80, Glycerine, Caramel Color, Lactic Acid, Sodium Propionate (to Propionate (to Preserve Freshness).

Contains wheat, soybeans, walnuts, eggs, and milk.

Not a chance!

But thanks to Wellness Bakeries, you can eat carrot cake that really is good for your body. Not only is our Carrot Cake Mix downright delectable, it’s also free of processed sugar, gluten, dairy, trans fats, additives and preservatives. And it’s a rich source of protein and antioxidants.

Now you can truly enjoy a sweet and spicy carrot-filled cake, topped with a velvety cream cheese icing… without the slightest hint of guilt. And it’s as easy as mixing a few ingredients together, spreading it in a pan and baking.

In addition to our carrot cake mix and frosting mix (one package is just enough, but two gives you a thick rich cream cheese layer), you’ll need a few more ingredients to make your cake.

ingredients you need to make a gluten free carrot cake

The first step is baking the cake itself. After you pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees F, you’ll need a mixing bowl and a hand mixer. Put 3 eggs, 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and 2 tablespoons of water in a bowl and beat on medium speed until well combined. Once mixed, add the carrot cake mix and orange zest and beat some more.

gluten free carrot cake in mixing bowl

Once that’s combined, fold in 1/2 cup chopped walnuts and about 1 1/2 cups shredded carrots with a spatula. Your batter should be nice and thick.

picture of gluten free carrot cake batter

Spread that in an 8×8 cake pan (or an 8″ round cake pan) that has been lined with unbleached parchment paper, then bake for about 30-35 minutes. You’ll know it’s done when the top springs back lightly to the touch and when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Now comes the hard part — allowing the cake to cool completely before icing it.

You should allow the cake to cool for 15-20 minutes before transferring it to a wire rack. While you wait, you can make the frosting (this may be the easiest, most delicious frosting you’ll ever make).

the gluten free carrot cake is cooling on a wire rack

Take 2 small packets of Classic Frosting Starter Mix, 4 tablespoons of softened butter, and 8 ounce package of softened cream cheese and put it in a bowl with 2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract. Beat until thick and creamy.

If you want to make the cake dairy free, you can substitute coconut cream for the cream cheese. You’ll find this recipe in our Fantastic Frostings & Tasty Toppings –  an eBook that comes with your order.

sugar free cream cheese frosting

Once the cake has cooled, spread the frosting on top, slice and serve. Garnish the slices with slivers of orange zest.

NOTE: To make a beautiful double layer cake, you will need to double the recipe below.

5 from 1 reviews
Gluten Free Carrot Cake Recipe with Sugar Free Cream Cheese Frosting
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Yield: 12
  • For Cake
  • 1 pack Carrot Cake Mix
  • 1.5 cups fresh grated carrots
  • 3 large organic eggs
  • 2 Tbsp. organic virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 2 Tbsp. water
  • ½ cup organic walnuts, chopped
  • Zest of 1 orange (1 tablespoon)
  • For Frosting
  • 8 oz. organic cream cheese
  • 4 Tbsp. pastured butter
  • 2 tsp. organic vanilla
  • 2 small packets Classic Frosting Starter Mix
  • Orange zest for garnish (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line an 8 x 8 pan with unbleached parchment paper and spray with coconut oil spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, add eggs, oil and water. Using an electric mixer, beat on high until fully combined.
  3. Add in Carrot Cake Mix, and orange zest, blending on medium speed to incorporate.
  4. Fold in the carrots and walnuts. The batter will be thick.
  5. Spread the batter evenly into the parchment-lined pan.
  6. Transfer to oven and bake until the tops spring back when pressed lightly, about 30-35 minutes. Let cool in the pan 15 minutes, and then gently transfer to a wire rack.
  7. Meanwhile, prepare the frosting.
  8. In a medium bowl, add the butter, cream cheese and Classic Frosting Starter Mix.
  9. Using an electric mixer, blend on high until fluffy, gradually adding the vanilla.
  10. When cake is fully cooled, spread on the frosting. Before serving, top each square with orange peel.
Nutrition Information (Per Serving)

233 calories, 21 g fat, 7 g saturated fat, 8 g carbohydrate, 2 g sugar, 4 g fiber, 7.5 g protein, 78 mg cholesterol, 252 mg sodium



      • Carol Derby says

        I will absolutely buy the cake mix, but was wondering if you have other sugar free frosting besides the cream cheese that would be good with the carrot cake?.. Most of my family do not like cream cheese.. Thanks Kelley…

        • Kelley says

          Sure, Carol! Our Fantastic Frostings & Tasty Toppings eBook will be automatically sent to you when you order from us. It has 12 recipes including a sugar free/dairy free Vanilla Buttercream Frosting, sugar free Maple Mesquite Frosting, sugar free Butter Pecan Frosting, sugar free Cardamom Creme Frosting, and sugar free/dairy free Coconut Creme Frosting – all of which I LOVE on our carrot cake. Hope you enjoy and please let us know!

  1. Jolante says

    This looks amazing but unfortunately I live in Canada and can not order your yummy cake mixes and other mixes. Do you have an actual recipe you could share with me? I would really appreciate it! Thank you

  2. Tanya says

    I have been buying and baking the chocolate cake for about a year or so and I bought the carrot cake a few weeks ago. They are both yummy! Funny thing happened on my last order…My neighbor called and asked me where to get the chocolate cake cause his dad was gluten free and it was his birthday. I had ordered 3 of each (chocolate and carrot) and they came in that day so it worked out perfect for them! And you now have a new customer!

    • Kelley says

      Hi Tanya! We appreciate your business and are happy to hear that you enjoy our goodies. Also, thanks for your endorsement and spreading the word about our healthy desserts! We just sent you a little “thank you” gift via email.

  3. Lahny McCray says

    I am interested in buying a cook book with gluten free, dairy free and sugar free recipes as well as bread recipes I can make from scratch. I have food allergies and weight issues and live most of the year in Costa Rica. Please help me out with this
    Lahny McCray

    • Kelley says

      Hi Lahny! You just described our healthy dessert cookbook, Guilt Free Desserts. It contains 50+ gluten free, sugar free dessert recipes – many of which are dairy free too (or can easily be made dairy free). And the bonus to that book is Better Breads – a dozen low glycemic, gluten free breads, biscuits, crusts and crepes. You can learn more about it here:

  4. Lila says

    So many people cannot afford your MIXes and still would like to eat
    healthy. It seems that you are just another scammers who are pushing their powdered products and making an easy buck on innocent people.
    If you’re a real deal you post the real recipes with ingredients that
    everybody can buy anywhere… very disappointing.

    • Paula says

      I’m offended by your unbelievably ignorant comment. Why do you feel entitled to getting the cake mix recipes, and for free no less. Take a moment to think about all the hard work that went into creating these convenience products and this business – all the trial and error to create the perfect combination of ingredients. If you can’t afford these cake mixes then spend the time researching and experimenting in your own kitchen to see how “easy” it is to do.

    • PLR says

      I have found that by the time I go out and purchase all of the ingredients that would go into a mix, I’ve spent a lot more $$ than if I would have just purchased the mix.

      • Kelley says

        Thanks, PLR. That’s true! Almond flour, organic erythritol, organic whey, organic cocoa – these are all expensive ingredients. We do our best to keep our prices low, and we feel that at $1 per serving, our healthy desserts are affordable to most people.

    • PLR says

      P.S. You can go to the Carrot Cake mix or any other product on the website and they show you the label with all of the ingredients.

  5. Shelley says

    Hi Kathy. Made the carrot cake and frosting. It was delicious. I used a hand mixer to make it. Something was a little “gritty”. Not sure if it was cake or frosting. Just thinking maybe I didn’t blend well enough. Thanks for any tips. I am a novice baker!!!

    • Kelley says

      Hi Shelley! So glad to hear you enjoyed our gluten free carrot cake! One thing we do mention about sugar alcohols is that it is very important to fully mix them so they incorporate or dissolve. It sounds as if you did not get those crystals to fully dissolve for some reason. I have not had that happen, as we powder the sweetener blend in our frosting mix and the mixing of the cake mix with the wet ingredients dissolves the crystals there. Blending is certainly key. If you notice your frosting mix pack has any hard pieces in it at all, give it a quick whirl in a blender or Magic Bullet. That will break up the crystals and make it smooth like powdered sugar. Please let us know how the next one goes!

  6. Robyn says

    Kelley — these cupcakes were sooo, soooo good. The kitchen/house was filled with the most amazing aroma whiles they baked in the oven; we could hardly wait to try them! In fact, two of them were snatched from the kitchen counter before I had a chance to add the (delicious) cream cheese frosting!!! I always have desserts on hand when my parents come to visit… and these are definitely on the menu.

    How wonderful to finally have a dessert that is healthy… and DELICIOUS. It’s actually better than any other I’ve tasted! Thank you. I’m going to try the Kahlua cupcake recipe next. I’ll keep you posted.

    • Kelley says

      Hi Robyn!
      I’m thrilled that you loved our Carrot Cake. It is my favorite, as well. I’ve served it to many dessert-lovers (including hard core carrot cake fans) who say it is “the best” they’ve had. And then I tell them it is gluten and sugar free (smile!). I do hope you try and love the Kahlua cupcakes. And please stay tuned for a new mix we’re releasing next month!

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