Vegan Gluten-Free Carrot Cake
This cake is simple, requiring just 1 bowl to make! Plus, it requires basic ingredients you likely have on hand right now.
I tested this recipe for 3 days straight until I finally ended up with this perfected version. I served it to friends (non-vegan and non-gluten-free folks) and none of them could tell that it was special-diet friendly. Score!
The base of the cake is coconut oil, applesauce, flax eggs, maple syrup, and almond milk. Organic brown sugar and cane sugar add the perfect amount of sweetness while leaving the cake light and fluffy. And for gluten-free flours, I went with almond flour.
The result is a light, airy, fluffy carrot cake that retains its moisture without being mushy (the ultimate goal).
Once cooled, it’s frosting time!
Vegan Gluten-Free Carrot Cake
- 3 batches flax egg (3 Tbsp flaxseed meal + 7 ½ Tbsp water as original recipe is written)
- 1/3 cup melted coconut oil* (or sub other neutral oil)
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 scant cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/2 cup organic brown sugar* (or sub coconut sugar)
- 1/4 cup cane sugar* (or sub coconut sugar)
- 3/4 tsp sea salt
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 3/4 – 1 cup plain unsweetened almond milk* (or other non-dairy unsweetened milk)
- 1 1 /2 cups loosely packed grated carrot
- 1 1/2 cups almond flour* (I didn’t test with almond meal, but I think it would work)
- 1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour blend*
- 3/4 cup chopped raw walnuts* (if preferred, omit, or sub 1/2 cup (70 g) raisins)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (176 C). Butter and flour two 8-inch, 1 9×13-inch, or 3 6-inch round pans with coconut oil or vegan cooking spray and dust with gluten-free flour (adjust number/size of pans if altering batch size). Shake out excess. Set aside.
Prepare flax eggs in a large mixing bowl. To flax eggs, add oil and maple syrup and whisk to combine. Next, add applesauce, sugars, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon and whisk to combine.
Add lesser amount of almond milk (3/4 cup or 180 ml as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) and stir. Add grated carrot and stir. Then add almond flour and gluten-free flour blend and stir. The batter should be thick but pourable. If too thick, add remaining almond milk 1/4 cup or 60 ml as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). If adding walnuts, add at this time and stir.
Divide evenly among cake pan(s). Bake for 40-50 minutes or until deep golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. When you press on the top, it shouldn’t feel too spongy, so don’t be afraid of over-baking! The gluten-free blend just takes a little longer to bake. Also, note that the size of pan you use will vary baking time.
Remove from oven and let rest in the pans for 15 minutes. Then carefully run a knife along the edges and gently invert onto cooling racks to let cool completely.
NOTE: This cake needs to cool completely. It benefits from plenty of airflow, and the flavors develop as the cooling process goes on. If short on time, you can speed the cooling by placing the cakes in the refrigerator or freezer until very cool to the touch.
Once cooled, you can serve as is or frost! For frosting, you have several options! See options above.
Store leftovers at room temperature, covered, for 2-3 days, in the refrigerator for 3-4 days, or covered well in the freezer for several weeks. However, it’s best when eaten fresh.
Do note that, if using vegan cream cheese or yogurt in the frosting, the cake should be stored in the refrigerator. From the refrigerator, let set out for 10-15 minutes before serving so it warms a bit and becomes more tender. Let thaw completely from the freezer.
Healthy Halloween Stuffed Peppers
Halloween Stuffed Peppers
Prep: 25 minutes
Cook: 35 minutes
- 4 small peppers (a mix of orange, red and yellow looks nice)
- 25g pine nuts
- 1 tbsp olive or rapeseed oil
- 1 red onion , chopped
- 2 fat garlic cloves , crushed
- 1 small aubergine , chopped into small pieces
- 200g pouch mixed grains (we used bulghur wheat and quinoa)
- 2 tbsp sundried tomato paste
- zest of 1 lemon
- bunch basil , chopped
- STEP 1
Cut the tops off the peppers (keeping the tops to one side) and remove the seeds and any white flesh from inside. Use a small sharp knife to carve spooky Halloween faces into the sides. Chop any offcuts into small pieces and set aside.
- STEP 2
Toast the pine nuts in a dry pan for a few mins until golden, and set aside. Heat the oil in the pan, and heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Cook the onion in the oil for 8-10 mins until softened. Stir in the garlic, pepper offcuts and aubergine and cook for another 10 mins, until the veggies are soft. Add a splash of water if the pan looks dry. Season.
- STEP 3
Squeeze the pouch of grains to break them up, then tip into the pan with the tomato paste. Stir for a minute or two to warm through, then remove from the heat and add the lemon zest, basil and pine nuts.
- STEP 4
Fill each pepper with the grain mixture. Replace the lids, using cocktail sticks to secure them in place, and put the peppers in a deep roasting tin with the carved faces facing upwards. Cover with foil and bake for 35 mins, uncovered for the final 10. The peppers should be soft and the filling piping hot.