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Carrot cake on marble plate with a slice removed. Bowl of nuts next to a stack of white plates and forks
115Total Time
35Prep Time
40Bake Time
A little effort

Carrot Cake with Vanilla Bean Icing

Quick and easy

3 Reviews

  • Vegetarian

About the bake

A delicious carrot cake recipe for the whole family. Packed with nuts, spice and zesty fruit brushed with a lemon and vanilla syrup. To top it all off it is smothered with creamy, fluffy vanilla bean icing. The ultimate crowd pleaser 

115Total Time
35Prep Time
40Bake Time
A little effort


  1. Step 1:

    Preheat the oven to 180°C (fan 160°C, gas mark 4). Grease and line 2 x 20cm sandwich tins.

  2. Step 2:

    In a bowl with a mixer, cream the butter and sugar together for a few minutes, or until light and fluffy. Gradually pour in the eggs and the vanilla extract, then add the flour and continue to mix for a minute. Fold in the carrot, pineapple, zest, mixed spice, sultanas and nuts.

  3. Step 3:

    Divide the cake mixture equally between the two tins and flatten with a spatula. Bake on the middle shelf and cook for 30-35 minutes, or until golden and a skewer comes away clean when inserted into the centre of the cakes.

  4. Step 4:

    Meanwhile, make the lemon and vanilla syrup by heating the sugar and lemon juice together for a few minutes, or until the sugar has completely dissolved and then add the vanilla. Turn both cakes out on to a wire rack and brush the tops of the warm cakes with the syrup. Allow to cool whilst you make the icing.

  5. Step 5:

    Cream the butter, cream cheese and vanilla bean paste together into the bowl of a mixer and beat until light and fluffy. Add the icing sugar and continue to mix until you achieve a spreading consistency.

  6. Step 6:

    Sit one of the sponges on a plate or stand, and spread with half of the icing. Place the second sponge on top, and cover with the remaining icing. Decorate with more zest, chopped pistachios and edible flowers if you wish.


  • For the Carrot Cake

    • 250g Unsalted butter (softened)
    • 250g Billington's Unrefined Golden Caster Sugar
    • 4 Large free range egg(s) (lightly beaten)
    • 1 tsp Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Extract
    • 250g Self raising wholemeal flour
    • 150g Carrot(s) (peeled & coarsely grated)
    • 75g Pineapple (tinned, roughly chopped)
    • 1 Lemon zest
    • 1 tsp Mixed spice
    • 50g Sultanas
    • 100g Pistachio nuts (roughly chopped)
    • 50g Pecan nuts (toasted & roughly chopped)
  • For the Lemon & Vanilla Syrup

    • 50g Billington's Unrefined Light Muscovado Sugar
    • 1 Juice of one whole lemon
    • 1 tsp Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Extract
  • For the Vanilla Cream Cheese Icing

    • 75g Unsalted butter (softened)
    • 450g Unrefined golden icing sugar (sifted)
    • 180g Cream cheese
    • 1 tsp Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Bean Paste


  • 2 x 20cm sandwich tins
  • Mixing bowl
  • Spatula

Nutritional Information

per 235g
  • 1048cal Energy
  • 54g Fat
  • 28g of which Saturates
  • 124g Carbohydrates
  • 102g of which Sugars
  • 13g Protein
  • 0.67g Salt

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