This Pumpkin Carrot Cake is like a pumpkin cake crossed with a carrot cake, and crossed with a hummingbird cake too! Moist, flavorful, full of spice, and slathered in a thick layer of cream cheese frosting! This Pumpkin Carrot Cake is a new fall staple.
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TGIF! I hope you had a great Labor Day weekend! And now we’re already heading into another weekend. I used a vacation day on Tuesday, so I extended my holiday weekend even longer. I got so much done to get ready for fall, so it was great. If only every week could be a 3-day work week.
I’m sharing another cake recipe, this Pumpkin Carrot Cake. The third cake recipe in a row. I recently posted this Pumpkin Apple Upside Down Cake and this Sweet Potato Bundt Cake with Orange Glaze. I usually try to mix things up, but cake was the name of the game this month, so here we are. You won’t be mad: this Pumpkin Carrot Cake recipe is dynamite.
I definitely think of carrot cake as a spring or Easter thing, but when you think about it, carrot as a baking ingredient isn’t terribly different from pumpkin. They are both ingredients that are drastically enhanced by the spices that accompany them.
The spices that complement carrot and pumpkin are pretty similar, so why not put them altogether?? Carrot can definitely be a fall thing too. We get this magical Pumpkin Carrot Cake.
First of all, it’s probably obvious that this Pumpkin Carrot Cake is one of the most moist cakes you’ll ever try. Between the carrot and the pumpkin, nevermind the buttermilk and other moist-maker ingredients, this cake is crazy moist.
Second, it’s thick! It’s a bit of a monster cake. Each layer is a good third thicker than a standard cake layer. It’s also HEAVY! Once this Pumpkin Carrot Cake was frosted, it was astonishing how much it weighed. I stored it in the fridge, and I was a little worried about the shelf, to be honest.
Third: add-ins. In addition to the magical pairing of carrot and pumpkin, this Pumpkin Carrot Cake also has a host of other incredible ingredients: coconut, raisins, and even pineapple. The pineapple gives additional moisture and sweetness, and a tiny touch of fruitiness. I don’t typically care much for raisins, though it’s certainly situational, but this cake feels more complete to me with raisins.
If you’re not into raisins, just leave them out. You could add nuts instead. I skipped nuts because things were getting pretty over-the-top, but walnuts would be incredible in this Pumpkin Carrot Cake, or pecans would be great too.
Lastly, spices! Cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice are necessary here, of course. The other ingredients in this cake are made more delicious and potent because of the spices.
You get a little of everything in this Pumpkin Carrot Cake! Think of a pumpkin cake crossed with carrot cake crossed with hummingbird cake.
I debated where I wanted to go with frosting this Pumpkin Carrot Cake, but I didn’t contemplate very long before deciding that classic cream cheese frosting was the only way to go. It’s so good with either pumpkin or carrot separately, so it makes sense to use it when combining the two!
For an alternative carrot cake recipe, check out this Chocolate Carrot Cake…. it is to-die-for. You’ll love that spin on a classic.
Or for a few pumpkin favorites this time of year – I love these Pumpkin Cookies with Brown Butter Icing, and they’re one of my OG pumpkin recipes. An all-time fave. I also made those Pumpkin Cookies with Cream Cheese Frosting and with Maple Frosting!
Pumpkin Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
This Pumpkin Carrot Cake recipe is like a pumpkin cake crossed with a carrot cake, and crossed with a hummingbird cake too! Moist, flavorful, full of spice, and slathered in a thick layer of cream cheese frosting! This Pumpkin Carrot Cake is a new fall staple.
For pumpkin carrot cake:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
- 8 oz. can crushed pineapple drained
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup grated carrots
- 1 cup shredded sweetened coconut
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
For cream cheese frosting:
- 12 oz. cream cheese softened
- 1 cup butter softened
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 6 cups powdered sugar
For pumpkin carrot cake:
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice.
In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs, pumpkin, granulated sugar, brown sugar, oil, pineapple, and buttermilk until combined.
Add the flour mixture to the mixing bowl, and beat until just combined.
Fold in carrots, coconut, raisins, and walnuts, stirring until just combined.
Divide batter evenly between two greased 9-inch round cake pans.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes, or until edges are golden, and a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
Cool in pans for 20 minutes, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Meanwhile, prepare cream cheese frosting.
For cream cheese frosting:
In a large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and butter until creamy.
Add vanilla, and beat until combined.
Add powdered sugar, 2 cups at a time, beating well after each addition. I sometimes find that I want my frosting thicker - add additional powdered sugar to adjust consistency, if desired.
Place one cake layer on a serving plate.
Spread with cream cheese frosting, about 3/4-inch thick.
Refrigerate for about 20 minutes, or until frosting is mostly firm.
Top with remaining cake layer.
Frost top and sides of cake with remaining cream cheese frosting.
Refrigerate for about 20 minutes to set frosting. Cut and serve.