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Marlene’s Carrot Cake


Carrot cake is one of those baking oddities. A savory vegetable in a sweet baked good? Who thought up this ingenious cake? (Apparently, it is from medieval times.)

Finding a recipe that isn’t too light, like a chiffon, or too heavy, like a torte, is tricky. Fortunately, Marlene, a family friend, is a cake wizard!

Below is her recipe for the perfect carrot cake! She uses it when people want carrot cake for their weddings or receptions.

Since I often wonder about what carrot cake really is and where it came from, check out “What is This Thing Called Love” sung by Ella Fitzgerald.

Marlene’s Carrot Cake

Cook Time: 35 minutes


  • 1 ¾ cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 15-ounce can crushed pineapple, undrained
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup flake coconut (Baker’s® Angel Flake®)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 cups baby carrots, finely grated in food processor
  • 8-ounce cream cheese
  • ½ cup Land O' Lakes® butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon half and half
  • 3 cups powdered sugar


  1. Whip together the eggs and sugar in a mixer until light colored.
  2. Add oil and pineapple and mix well.
  3. Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a small bowl. Add to wet mixture and mix on low setting of mixer.
  4. Add coconut, pecans, and carrots. Mix until combined.
  5. Set oven at 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13-inch pan with Pam®. Pour cake batter into pan. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until springs back to the touch. Do not over bake.
  6. You can divide the batter between the 9x13-inch pan and a round 9-inch pan if you want the cake to be thinner.
  8. Let cream cheese and butter soften to room temperature. Whip together in mixer. Add vanilla, half and half, and 2 ¾ cups powdered sugar. If too runny, add the remaining powdered sugar.
  9. Frost cake when it is cool.

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About Jillaine: As a professional jazz singer who also studies law, savoring daily nosh with family refreshes me. You are invited to my table to try great food, hear tasty music, and join in upbeat conversation!

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