This whole wheat carrot cake is our version of a perfect carrot cake recipe. It is made with pineapple which gives it a wonderful flavor and moistness. Unsweetened applesauce also works well if you don’t have pineapple.
We had a recipe for carrot cake that we loosely followed for years, we finally nailed down all our tweaks and made a whole wheat carrot cake recipe we can follow time and again.
What's Cool About This Recipe
- 100% whole grain: This recipe can be made with 100% soft white wheat flour, hard white wheat flour or spelt flour.
- Perfect texture: When we were developing this recipe we wanted to get that perfect carrot cake texture, not too fluffy but also not too dense, and super moist without being soggy. It took us a few tries but we think we nailed it.
- Perfect for any occasion: If you’re like us then carrot cake is one of our go to desserts, we make it year round for all different occasions, be that birthdays, family dinners, picnics and more. You might also like our carrot cake muffins.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Whole wheat flour: We use whole wheat flour milled from soft white wheat, hard white wheat or spelt.
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Oil: We usually use olive oil or avocado oil.
- Sugar: We like to use organic granulated cane sugar.
- Crushed pineapple: Use undrained crushed pineapple. You can substitute unsweetened applesauce.
- Carrots: Freshly grated carrots will work best. We do not recommend using pre shredded carrots
See recipe card for quantities.
- For a low sugar carrot cake you can reduce the sugar to ½ cup.
- You can add chopped nuts or raisins to the batter before baking.
- If you need to make this diabetic friendly, this recipe also works with a 1:1 sugar substitute.
Overview of instructions with photos. See recipe card for quantities and full instructions.
Step 1: Peel and finely grate enough carrots to fill 1 cup lightly packed (about 1 large carrot).
Step 2: In a medium mixing bowl whisk the dry ingredients together (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves).
Step 3: In a large mixing bowl using a whisk or hand mixer, mix the oil and sugar together until no lumps remain.
Step 4: Add the eggs one at a time mixing well after each addition.
Step 5: Fold in the carrots and pineapple.
Step 6: Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until well combined.
Step 7: Pour into a greased 9x9 inch baking dish.
Step 8: Bake at 350°F for 28-32 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
Store carrot cake covered tightly in the refrigerator for up to 5-6 days.
How to Freeze
Cool the cake completely then wrap tightly in plastic wrap, place into a freezer safe bag or container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator or at room temperature (if there are visible ice crystals formed between the cake and plastic we recommend unwrapping the cake and then covering loosely to thaw).
Tips From Our Kitchen
Make sure you beat the eggs into the oil and sugar 1 at a time. This helps the cake not fall in the center.
We suggest using fresh milled flour or purchasing from a small milling company that knows how to preserve the freshness of flour. Janie’s Mill is a great place to purchase from.
This could be from not measuring the carrots properly. If there are too many in the batter it can make the cake soggy.
The best frosting for carrot cake is cream cheese frosting, the tanginess pairs perfectly with the sweetness of the cake.
Whole Wheat Carrot Cake
- 1½ cups soft white wheat flour whole wheat pastry flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- ½ cup oil avocado oil or olive oil
- 1 cup raw cane sugar granulated
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup crushed pineapple undrained
- 1 cup lightly packed finely grated carrots
- 1 batch cream cheese frosting or sour cream icing
- Preheat the oven to 350°F with the rack in the center or upper third position.
- In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the dry ingredients.1½ cups soft white wheat flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon sea salt, 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, ½ teaspoon ground ginger, ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- In a large mixing bowl, using an electric hand mixer or whisk, combine the sugar and oil until no lumps remain.½ cup oil, 1 cup raw cane sugar
- Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition.2 large eggs
- Add the pineapple and carrots, stir with a rubber spatula or spoon until well combined.½ cup crushed pineapple, 1 cup lightly packed finely grated carrots
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and stir until well combined and no lumps of flour remain.
- Pour the batter into a greased 9x9x2 inch baking dish. Bake for 28-32 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Cool before frosting.
You can substitute unsweetened applesauce (½ cup or 60 grams) for the crushed pineapple.
We calculate these nutritional facts using an estimate and they can vary drastically between ingredients used and measuring technique. So, they are not intended for medical use.