If you're looking for the best homemade carrot cake recipe, you've gotta try this Old Fashioned Carrot Cake recipe with Pineapple! It's moist, just the right amount of sweet!
A warm blend of spices, subtle pineapple chunks and of course, tender carrots make the most flavorful carrot cake, topped with a creamy frosting that will have you licking the bowl.
Let's just get this out of the way.
My favorite cake is old-fashioned carrot cake. I'll take a sheet cake any day of the week over birthday cake or even double chocolate cake. Coming in at a close second is a mandarin orange cake, which also has pineapple.
There's something about the spice of the cinnamon, the earthy sweetness of the carrots and the lightness of the pineapple in this recipe that evoke all the right feels, you know???
And I've gotta give my Mom props for sharing this recipe with me. When my Dad heard I was making it, he knew what was coming down the pipeline and he promptly put in an order for a piece.
I was happy to deliver! 🙂
I made this carrot cake in a 9x13 pan for a few reasons. First, it's easy to frost and to serve. And second, it's easier to transport for special occasions.
You know, like Thursdays.
But you can certainly make this in to a fancy layer cake if you'd like.
- white sugar
- vegetable oil
- all-purpose flour
- baking soda
- carrot - you can use shredded or grated carrots, your choice
- crushed pineapple - you'll need to use the canned variety, not fresh pineapple
- chopped walnuts
For the homemade cream cheese frosting recipe:
- cream cheese, at room temperature
- powdered sugar
- vanilla extract
How to make Pineapple Carrot Cake:
First, preheat the oven and grease your pan. Pretty basic stuff, right?
In a separate bowl, combine your dry ingredients.
Tip: This is a good time to set out your cream cheese and butter to soften, because it takes a while.
Add dry ingredients to your egg mixture and mix well to incorporate. Then, a cup or two at a time, add your pineapple, nuts and carrots. Mix it up and then pour the cake batter into your prepared pan.
That's it! Feel free to sniff the pan before you put it in the oven. There's something about the spices that smells SOOOO GOOD!
When it's done cooking, let it cool completely before you try to frost it. Melted frosting is not a good look.
How to make Cream Cheese Frosting:
I'll warn you, this takes a pound of powdered sugar. Yep, you heard me right, a pound. But in the defense of powdered sugar, it does dissolve into practically nothing. Once you taste it, your worries will go right out the window!
Mix the cream cheese and butter until combined, then gradually add the powdered sugar and vanilla.
Tip: Don't dump in all at once unless you're a fan of major kitchen cleanup.
Beat the ingredients until it's smooth and easy to spread.
Be sure to take a teaspoon of two as a sample, just for quality control. You never can be too careful....
Recipe variations & tips for you:
- Add additional chopped walnuts to the top of the frosted cake, if desired.
- Add about ½ cup raisins to batter if you'd like.
- Substitute pecans for the walnuts
- Make the cake recipe into carrot cake cupcakes.
- When you cut the cake, drag the knife all the way through. This will keep crumbs from popping up and adhering to your frosting.
This pineapple carrot cake makes 15 generous sized servings.
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If you make this carrot cake recipe, leave a recipe rating or comment below. I'd love to hear from you!
Old Fashioned Carrot Cake with Pineapple
Pineapple Carrot Cake:
- 3 large eggs
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 cups shredded carrot about 2 large
- 1 cup crushed pineapple drained
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 8 ounce package cream cheese softened
- ½ cup butter softened, (1 stick)
- 1 pound confectioners' sugar
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pineapple Carrot Cake
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13 pan.
- In a large bowl, combine the eggs, sugar and oil using a stand mixer or electric mixer
- Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl.
- Add dry ingredient to wet ingredients and mix well on medium speed.
- Gradually add carrots, pineapple and nuts and mix well on low speed. Pour batter into prepared baking pan.
- Bake for 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.
Cream Cheese Frosting:
- In a large mixer, mix softened cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add vanilla and powdered sugar, gradually. Beat until smooth and creamy and a good spreading consistency.
- Frost cake and enjoy!