All the mouthwatering recipes in our series “The Main Ingredient” have one thing in common: They all contain cookies. Cheryl’s vanilla buttercream frosting serves as the base for the glaze of this carrot Bundt cake recipe. This Easter dessert recipe will please one and all!
With Easter around the corner, I’m thinking of one dessert and one dessert only — carrot cake. The problem is that not everyone has the time to stack and layer a cake. Plus, and let’s be honest, a sheet cake isn’t the prettiest-looking cake out there. So, what’s the solution?
Make a Bundt cake, of course!
A Bundt cake has all the ease of a sheet cake with the attractive appearance of a layer cake. For this carrot Bundt cake recipe, I easily transformed Cheryl’s Vanilla Buttercream Frosting into a glaze and drizzled it onto the cake in less than five minutes. The result was a dessert that’s perfect to serve at any springtime gathering you might have.
Here are six tips to follow to make sure your Bundt cake comes out looking professional and tasting great.
1. Grease the skids
Greasing and flouring the Bundt pan is essential; you don’t want a cake that sticks to the pan. The vanilla glaze can cover a few flaws, but it’s best to properly grease the Bundt pan, even if the pan claims to be nonstick.
To grease the pan, generously coat it with butter, taking care to get the butter into all the nooks and crannies of the pan, including the raised middle portion. Next, add a few tablespoons of flour to the pan and swirl it around, similarly working to reach all the crevices. Once the pan is evenly coated with flour, swiftly tap the pan upside down, removing any excess flour.
2. Take a measured approach
When measuring flour, it’s best to weigh how much you need. If you do not have a scale, then use a spoon and level it into a measuring cup. Using too much flour can lead to a dry and dense cake, and is often the culprit when bakes go awry. Too little flour can cause the cake to come out too wet.
3. Don’t be afraid to customize
After mixing the carrots, coconut, and chopped nuts into the batter, feel free to add other ingredients that are to your liking, such as raisins, cranberries, or anything else your heart desires.
4. Get shredded
Shred the carrots using the fine side of the grater. Finely shredded carrots bake better and distribute more evenly throughout the cake. They also make your cake look even more lovely when it is cut.
5. Go nuts
Chopping the nuts small provides a more pleasurable experience when eating the cake.
6. Add decorative flair
Fresh flowers, or even buttercream flowers made with the vanilla buttercream frosting, can be piped and added to the top of the cake for an extra special touch.
Carrot Bundt Cake
- 1 10-inch Bundt pan
- 1 Stand mixer
- 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 3 eggs, room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 3/4 cup shredded sweetened coconut
- 1 cup carrots, shredded and dried with paper towel
- 1/2 cup pecans, finely chopped
- 1 tub
Cheryl's Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
- 1-2 tablespoons milk
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Butter and flour one standard 10-inch Bundt pan. Set aside.
- In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars on medium-high for 4 minutes. Change to medium speed and drizzle the oil into the bowl. Once incorporated, turn the mixer back to medium-high for another 2 minutes.
- Add eggs one at a time, briefly mixing the batter on medium-low until smooth and scraping the bowl after adding each egg. Add vanilla, and briefly mix until combined.
- In a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Spoon and level the flours to get an accurate measurement.
- With the mixer on low speed, add a third of the flour mixture to the mixing bowl. Immediately follow with half the buttermilk, then another third of the flour mixture, and the second half of the buttermilk. Finish with the remaining flour mixture. Keep the mixer on low speed so the flour and buttermilk do not splash out of the bowl. Scrape the bowl, making sure any dry ingredients trapped at the bottom are incorporated.
- Add the shredded carrots, chopped nuts, and shredded coconut, and mix briefly until these ingredients are evenly distributed in the batter.
- Pour the batter evenly into the prepared Bundt pan and place in the oven. Start assessing the cake at 40 minutes. It may take longer than 40 minutes, so watch closely. If the cake is jiggly, it is not done and needs a few more minutes. When a long skewer, knife, or toothpick inserted comes out clean, the cake is done.
- Cool the cake for 10 minutes before turning it out. Place cake on wire rack to finish cooling.
- To make the glaze, whisk a tub of Cheryl's Vanilla Buttercream Frosting with a tablespoon of milk. If the glaze is too thick, add milk 1 teaspoon at a time, until achieving the desired consistency. Once the cake is fully cooled, drizzle the glaze over the Bundt, letting the icing run down the sides and into the center hole of the cake.