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Healthy Carrot Cake (Oil-free, WFPB, Vegan)

The perfectly moist and sweet carrot cake that is conveniently also full of carrots, pineapple, applesauce, walnuts, coconut and raisins. 

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword carrot cake, oil-free, vegan
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 28 minutes
Total Time 43 minutes
Servings 8 slices
Author Faithful Plateful


  • 1.5 cups grated carrot
  • 1 cup crushed pineapple, undrained (or 1 cup finely chopped mango)
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1/4 cup raisins (optional)
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or sunflower seeds (optional)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

Dry ingredients:

  • 1.5 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar, maple syrup, or date sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ginger

Cashew Coconut Frosting

  • 1 cup cashews, soaked for 30 minutes in hot water
  • 1/3 cup coconut cream (thick part at the top of can of full-fat coconut milk)
  • 1.5 tsp apple cider vinegar (adds tanginess like cream cheese)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 4 tbsp powdered sugar, powered coconut sugar, honey, or maple syrup (You can make powdered coconut sugar by blending up regular coconut sugar)
  • 1/8 tsp salt


  1. If making the frosting, start soaking the cashews. 

    Trace two 8-inch cake pans onto parchment paper and cut out. Line bottoms of pans with parchment and grease the sides. To make 12 cupcakes instead, grease a muffin pan. Set pans aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Stir wet ingredients together.

  3. In a separate bowl, whisk dry ingredients together. Add wet ingredients, and stir until well-combined. Do not over-stir. 

  4. Pour batter evenly into the two cake pans. Bake at 350 for 28-30 minutes, until middle bounces back if you press on it with your finger. 

  5. Let cool completely and remove from pans. Frost with your favorite cream cheese frosting, or the frosting listed below. 

    Decorate with chopped walnuts or pumpkin seeds, flaked coconut, grated carrots, or carrot curls. 

To make frosting:

  1. While cake is baking, combine all the ingredients in a high-speed blender or small bullet/twister jar and blend until very smooth.  Let chill for 30 minutes, then blend again. The longer it chills, the less runny it will be. This frosting is slightly runny in nature, not ideal for piping, but delicious! Using coconut sugar or maple syrup will make the frosting a light brown color. Honey or regular powdered sugar makes it more white.