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Vanilla Bean Carrot Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting




  • 4 cups peeled and finely grated carrots
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • 1/2 cup crushed pineapple, well drained
  • 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves


  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a bowl, whisk together carrots, eggs, sugar, oil, buttermilk, vanilla seeds, coconut and pineapple. In another bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. Stir flour mixture into carrot mixture until well combined. Grease pan or pans of your choice. I used 2 8″ x 8″ square pans. Bake for 35 – 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the pan comes out clean.
  2. Let cool on a rack while making the frosting.
  3. Beat cream cheese and butter together until light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar, milk, cinnamon and vanilla. Depending on how thick you like your frosting you may need to add more powdered sugar or more milk.
  4. Frost cake and sprinkle the top with cinnamon.