Mini carrot cake for two people made in a 6" round cake pan.
I make a lot of carrot cake this time of year.
It’s not just for Easter in my house; it’s also the birthday cake of choice for many friends with spring birthdays. We’ve been munching on carrot cake cupcakes, carrot muffins, carrot cake whoopie pies and the like since February.
I’m confident that this mini carrot cake is the absolute best carrot dessert to be had. The full-size recipe I used as a reference for scaling down is one of my grandmother’s. No one is quite certain of its origin but most of the time, in my family, a recipe without a source can be attributed to an old issue of Southern Living or a church cookbook.
Whatever the source, this cake makes all who taste it a little weak in the knees. The oil and egg make for a tender cake, the cinnamon adds warmth, and the cream cheese frosting provides its wonderful tanginess. The walnuts on top are optional, but I really love their crunch!
Oh, and this mini carrot cake is made without pineapple. A lot of people ask in my other recipe for small carrot cake (that recipe is made in a 8x8" pan; this particular recipe is made in a 6" round cake pan)
One small note here: You really need to manually shred the carrot with a hand grater. One year, I used my food processor to save time, but the thicker shreds made the texture of the cake seem off. Along these same lines, don’t be tempted to buy pre-shredded carrots. Use some muscle, we only need ¼ cup. Your reward is cake!
Mini carrot cake for two updated notes:
This recipe is quite a few years old, but people continue to write to me and tell me it tastes like their favorite carrot cake for Publix! Which tells me that Publix doesn't use pineapple in their carrot cake, and also has a heavy hand with the cinnamon, just like me.
I hope you and your family love this mini carrot cake. Let me know if you make it for your small Easter celebration.
Carrot Cake for Two
Yields 1 small 6" carrot cake.
- FOR THE CAKE:
- ¼ cup canola oil
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ cup packed grated carrot (from 1 small carrot)
- ½ cup flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ cup chopped walnuts
- FOR THE FROSTING:
- 3 ounce block of cream cheese, softened
- 2 tablespoons butter, softened
- 6 tablespoons powdered sugar
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla
- Grease a 6” round cake pan with shortening or cooking spray. Preheat the oven to 350°.
- In a medium bowl, beat together with an electric mixer the canola oil and sugar. Beat very well, about 1 minute.
- Add the egg, cinnamon and vanilla and beat another 30 seconds. Beat in the carrot for about 15 seconds--you want it to break up a bit so it stains the batter orange. Sprinkle the flour and baking powder on top and beat until just combined. Do not overmix. You may stir in the walnuts at this point or save them for the frosting, your choice.
- Pour the batter into the pan, place it on a baking sheet, and bake for 24-26 minutes. Test for doneness with a toothpick before removing from the oven--moist crumbs clinging to the toothpick is ideal.
- Allow the cake to cool completely on a wire rack before attempting to frost it.
- To make the frosting, ensure all ingredients are room temperature or you will end up with lumps. Beat together everything with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Tip the cake out of the pan, place it on a serving plate upside down (so that you have a flat surface on top) and spread the frosting on the cake. Garnish with walnuts. This cake tastes even better if allowed to sit one day (in the fridge) before serving.
This recipe uses a 6x2" small round pan that yields 4 small slices of cake.6
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 515Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 21gCholesterol: 83mgSodium: 197mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 1gSugar: 37gProtein: 6g
Is it possible to have the full-sized recipe of your grandma’s.
I found your small sized carrot cake recipe on Pinterest, and will try it for I love carrot cakes.
Want the larger version for my neighbour.
My smallest pan is an 8in round- would this still work for that or would the cake be too flat?
Christina Lane says
It would be too flat, I'm sorry! I'm thinking you should double the recipe though and it might work? The cake might sink ever so slightly in the middle as it cools, but fill it with extra frosting :)
Also, have you seen my 2 tiny ramekin carrot cakes with warm cream cheese frosting? That might work for you!
it'll be flat tho. or you'll need to do two batches and make it two layered cake.
I made it once and it turned out so delicious . Can I double or triple your original recipe as I want to make it little big cake than you did in this recipe ?
Christina Lane says
I haven't tried it doubled, but if you do, I would bake it in an 8 or 9" pan :)
Thanks Christina, I doubled the recipe and used it for cupcakes , it turned out awesome tasty . It made exactly a dozen cupcakes. I bring down sugar to 3-4 table spoons for batter. Though I have strict diet these are irresistible, I had 3 already 🙃
This is the most delicious Carrot Cake I've ever tasted!
I actually baked it twice to make it a two layer cake. Frosted the middle of the two and top only.
this was fantastic - made it for my partner's birthday, and it's the best carrot cake he's ever had! Thank you for sharing!
Hi I made this cake today and it came out really well even though I was wondering how come u didn't add any baking soda,salt and all..The batter was really runny I doubted the cake will come out good,but bang it was perfect..moist cake..But I didn't get any taste of Carrot,is that how it is?how to get more flavour of carrot?
Christina Lane says
Yay, Amrita! Thanks for following the recipe exactly :)
As for more carrot flavor...I'm not sure what you mean. Carrot cake is really just an overly moist spice cake. The carrots provide incredible moisture. It's not meant to taste like a carrot smoothie, in my opinion.
OMG !! This cake is delicious. In every way, it is perfect!!! Thank you, Suzanne
Hi. I'm looking to make a 3 layer 4 inch cake. Do you think this recipe would work if I double it? reduce bake time too?
Oh this was a winner! Thank you. I will definitely add this to my repertoire. I made it for a couple with 2 small children for a thank you gift. First try with carrot cake and I followed your recipe exactly....only I didn’t do as you said and forgot the parchment paper lining. Oh no! Lost a bit when taking it out but it also gave me the chance to taste it and boy was it good! And I would sieve my icing sugar next time for my buttercream since I spent a lot of time trying to beat out the lumps. I love your photos too, very inspiring. You are super talented. I have tried to find your recipe book in Europe in online bookstores but can’t seem to find it. Such a pity.
laura melgoza says
When you say 1/2 tsp of vanilla, do you mean 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract OR vanilla powder??
Christina Lane says
Vanilla extract. I don't have any recipes on here with vanilla powder because it's hard to find.