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One of my absolute favorite desserts is Carrot Cake, and I am so excited for y’all to enjoy this Grain-Free and Dairy-Free Carrot Cake!

Grain-Free and Dairy-Free Carrot Cake

I have deemed this recipe “Cady’s Carrot Cake” because it is truly one of her greatest masterpieces. (If you don’t know, Cady is the Director of Operations at The Defined Dish). Carrot Cake is her husband’s favorite dessert and after making her mother-in-law’s recipe many times over the years, she decided to try her hand at a grain-free and dairy-free rendition and absolutely nailed it. Cady, you’re a real hero.

I, too, remember as a kid being offered carrot cake for the first time, turning my nose up at the thought of a carrot in a cake!! But as soon as I sunk my teeth into the first bite the rest was history and I am forever a carrot cake lover. Carrots add sweetness and moisture, and this recipe is just that. Moist, fluffy, and incredibly flavorful. 

Grain-Free and Dairy-Free Carrot Cake

I also love this recipe because it is incredibly simple to make and pretty foolproof! The hardest part? Waiting for the cake to cool so that you can ice it! haha… but seriously. That is pure torture to me.

This is the perfect recipe to make this spring for any occasion– whether it be for Mother’s Day, a baby shower, or even to make to snack on throughout the week!! I absolutely LOVE this cake with a cup of coffee. 

Grain-Free Carrot Cake
5 from 14 votes

Grain-Free Carrot Cake

Prep: 25 minutes
Cook: 35 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Servings: 9 To 12 Squares


For the Cake:

  • 2 ½ cups superfine almond flour
  • 1 ¼ cups tapioca flour
  • 2 ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs room temperature
  • ¾ cup avocado oil
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • ½ tsp orange zest
  • 2 cups shredded raw carrots about 4-5 medium carrots, see note
  • ½ cup loosely chopped golden raisins

For the Frosting:

  • 4 oz dairy-free cream cheese – room temperature
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter or vegan butter – room temperature
  • tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • ½ tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 ½ cups powdered sugar

For Serving:

  • ¼ cup chopped pecans


Make the Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a 9×9 square baking pan with avocado or coconut oil spray and place a parchment sling into the pan for easy removal. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, thoroughly stir together the almond flour, tapioca flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, or a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, add the eggs. Beat on medium high for 3-4 minutes until they are pale yellow and fluffy. Mix in the avocado oil, maple syrup, vanilla extract, lemon zest and orange zest. Beat on medium to combine.
  • Adjust the mixer speed to medium low, and working in increments, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Mix for 1-2 minutes until everything is well combined.
  • Next, slowly add the shredded carrots and add the golden raisins to the batter and mix until well combined.
  • Tip the batter into the prepared baking pan, spreading the batter with a spatula if needed. Transfer to the oven and bake until the top is lightly browned and when pricked with a cake tester it comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes. If the top starts to get overly browned, place a sheet of foil over the top, but do note this is a darker cake.
  • Remove from the oven and allow the cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Then use the parchment sling to carefully transfer the cake to a wire rack until completely cooled.

Make the Frosting

  • Meanwhile, make your icing. In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment add the dairy-free cream cheese, butter, vanilla extract, lemon zest and juice. Beat on medium for 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Next, slowly add the powdered sugar and beat on high for 2-3 minutes until combined. Transfer the icing to the fridge until your cake is completely cooled.
  • To finish, smooth a generous amount of icing and smooth out with an offset spatula evenly across the cake. Once you’ve iced the cake, sprinkle with the chopped pecans, cut into squares and enjoy!


Carrot Shredding Notes: Once your carrots are washed and peeled, you can either hand shred or use a food processor with the shredding blade. 
Batter Notes: Your batter may be a bit thicker than a typical cake batter, but this is to account for the moisture the carrots will release in the oven. 
Storage Tips: This cake is best the same day it is made but any leftovers can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Servings: 9 To 12 Squares

Food Photography and Styling by Modern Food Stories

Welcome! I’m Alex.

I’m a food lover sharing healthy, simple, delicious, recipes from my kitchen to yours. Here you’ll find lots of Whole30, lots of healthy, and a little indulgence here and there because…it’s all about balance y’all!

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I made this in a 9” springform pan and for some reason the middle 3.5” was completely raw. I embarrassed to say we ate it anyway because the flavor was soooooo good. Any advice or do you think I just should cook it longer. Maybe use convection?

    1. I would just cook it longer! Because the springform is deeper than the 9×9, it would just take a bit longer to cook. Let us know if you try this again!

  2. Made a ‘try it’ one first before bringing to Easter brunch…just case…and it was/is DELICIOUS!… like perfectly sweet enough. I want to have more healthy ‘desserty-type’ recipes, grain-free, for me AND the grandkids. I tweaked it a little with orange essential oil drops (didn’t have an organic orange for zest). Not a raisin fan, so didn’t have to add. AND substituted organic powdered monk fruit for powdered sugar in the cream cheese frosting👍👍; used more cream cheese/no butter, and a little vanilla Greek yogurt, test tasted for lemon flavor…and added a few orange drops. Hey, it’s MY new ‘go-to healthy sweet thing’.
    Also a fan of Brene Brown, and see you listed on her new podcast/interview…looking forward to lis

  3. For those who need a substitute – I tried these subbing bob’s red mill 1:1 gluten free flour for the almond and tapioca flours. Flavor is still good, but they are a little more dense than I’d like. I bet it would work really well if I did about 1/2 cup less!