Sunday, March 31, 2013

Carrot-Coconut & Pineapple Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Icing

This is BIG! Real big. Imagine the perfect carrot cake...spicy, nutty, & a hint of fruit. Only now...get ready.....pineapple & coconut too! Wow. And you thought it couldn't get ANY better. Ha! I made this for Easter last year. Warning: You cannot eat just 1 piece! For reals!

Carrot cake is delicious in it of itself, but once you add the pineapple & toasted coconut, you just can't go wrong. Enjoy this variation & let me know how you LOVE it. It serves around 16 good sized portions.

Carrot-Coconut, Date & Pineapple Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Icing


1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

3/4 pound raw carrots (about 2 1/2 cups finely grated)

½ cup crushed canned pineapple tidbits

1 cup chopped Dates

1 cup toasted Coconut flakes + 1 1/2 cups for outside of cake (optional)

1 cup yellow golden raisins

2 cups (260 grams) all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons ground Ginger

1 teaspoon Nutmeg

4 large eggs

1 1/2 cups (300 grams) granulated white sugar

1 cup canola oil (or corn oil)

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Cream Cheese Frosting:

1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature

4 cups confectioners (powdered or icing) sugar, sifted

1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract

1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Butter or spray three - 9 x 2 inch (23 x 5 cm) cake pans and line the bottoms of the pans with a circle of parchment paper. 

Toast the pecans or walnuts for about 8 minutes or until lightly browned and fragrant. Let cool and then chop coarsely. Peel and finely grate the carrots.

In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg, ginger and ground cinnamon.

In bowl of electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the eggs until frothy (about 1 minute). Gradually add the sugar and beat until the batter is thick and light colored (about 3 - 4 minutes).

Add the oil in a steady stream and then beat in the vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and beat just until incorporated. With a large rubber spatula fold in the grated carrots, dates, pineapple and chopped nuts.

Evenly divide the batter between the three prepared pans and bake 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 

Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack. After about 5 -10 minutes invert the cakes onto the wire rack, remove the pans and parchment paper, and then cool completely before frosting. 

Cream Cheese Frosting:

In bowl of electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the cream cheese and butter, on low speed, just until blended with no lumps. Gradually add the sifted powdered sugar and beat, on low speed, until fully incorporated and smooth. Beat in the vanilla extract, and lemon zest.
To Assemble:
Place one cake layer onto your serving plate. Arange small peices of parchment paper underneath corners of your cake, so that the icing doesn't get into your cake plate. You can pull these out as soon as you are finished icing the cake. Just don't place them too far underneath your cake, or the weight will cause the cake to break when you remove them.

Spread with a few tablespoons of frosting, then add the next and subsequent layers, repeating the same step. Once all three layers are iced in the middle "dirty" ice the outside of your cake. this layer helps to secure the cake, and mould the exterior, then ice it with the remaining icing a final time. chill until ready to serve. I also used the remaining untoasted coconut to gently place of the outside of my cake. about half the frosting.



  1. Oh goodness, this cake looks divine!

  2. One of my favorites with such a great twist!