This gluten-free carrot cake recipe with dairy free cream cheese frosting is inspired by Chef John’s Carrot Cake on Allrecipes. I basically took his recipe and swapped out everything that had gluten and dairy.
I also made a few tweaks here and there to make it extra delicious – namely, doubling the amount of cream cheese frosting. So if you are a cream cheese frosting lover, this recipe is for you!
Product brands I recommend for this recipe
For the most consistent results, I recommend:
- Violife dairy free cream cheese
- Robin Hood gluten-free flour
- Earth Balance soy free vegan butter
Watch the cooking video for this recipe
Recipe substitutions or variations
Gluten-free flour: if you aren’t able to get Robin Hood gluten-free flour, you can swap it out for any other gluten-free flour blend. Or, you could even use white or brown rice flour.
Brown sugar: swap this out for granulated coconut palm sugar, or regular granulated white sugar. I wouldn’t recommend using any liquid sweeteners since they will change the wet to dry ingredients balance.
Vegan butter: swap this out for melted coconut oil or any other type of vegan butter substitute.
Cream cheese: swap this out for any other brand of dairy free/vegan cream cheese substitute.
Make this recipe vegan: swap out the 4 eggs for 4 vegan egg substitutes.
Make this recipe grain free: swap out the gluten-free flour blend for cassava flour. Use this handy conversion chart.
Use a different size baking pan: for this recipe, I used a 10.4 x 14.5” glass baking dish. At this size, the cake will be done after 35 minutes. If you use a 11 x 15” glass baking dish, the cake will be done after 30 minutes. In either case, cook until a toothpick comes out clean.
Pro tips for making this gluten-free carrot cake recipe with dairy free cream cheese frosting
Warm your vegan butter and dairy free cream cheese to room temperature before starting: allowing them to soften up on the counter ahead of time will allow you to more easily beat them in your stand mixer when you make the frosting.
Let the cake cool completely before putting frosting on it: if you don’t wait for the cake to cool completely before frosting it, your frosting will melt when you put it on the cake.
Keep your cake in the fridge until right before you cut it: to get the cleanest cut on your cake, you will want to cool it completely in the fridge before serving. If you don’t, your cake pieces will likely crumble and not look super professional!
Do I need to have a stand mixer for this recipe?
Not at all, especially not for the cake batter. You will however need some type of hand mixer to make the frosting – or a whisk and really buff arms 😉
How important is it to grease the pan before baking?
Greasing the pan is super important if you want really clean looking cake slices. If you don’t grease the pan, your pieces may come out crumbly and not intact.
Want more gluten free and dairy free recipes?
The recipes on my blog are both gluten & dairy free, ALWAYS. If you are looking for more, you can also check out my 1 month gluten & dairy free meal plan or recipe book (which comes with 140 additional recipes for breakfasts, lunches, dinners, snacks & desserts).
Tried this recipe?
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Gluten free carrot cake recipe (with dairy free cream cheese frosting)
- Stand mixer or hand mixer
- 10.4 x 14.5” glass baking dish
- 2 cups gluten-free flour
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ginger
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup vegan butter, melted
- 2 1/2 cups shredded carrots
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 400 g dairy free cream cheese (two packages of Violife)
- 1/2 cup vegan butter
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 5 cups icing sugar
- Preheat your oven to 350°F
- Combine all dry ingredients in stand mixer bowl
- Once all your dry ingredients are mixed thoroughly, add all of your wet ingredients (other than carrots) to the stand mixer bowl. Beat until there are no lumps remaining and everything is mixed together.
- Add in your shredded carrots and mix thoroughly.
- Grease your glass baking dish with vegan butter or coconut oil.
- Using a spatula, scrape all batter into your greased 10.4 x 14.5” baking dish.
- Bake for roughly 35 minutes or until the toothpick test comes out clean.
- Let your carrot cake cool completely.
- Cream together your room temperature cream cheese, vegan butter and vanilla.
- Slowly add icing sugar 1 cup at a time while beating.
- Store your frosting in the fridge until your cake has completely cooled and is ready for frosting.
- Apply your frosting to the cake and return to the fridge until ready to serve.
Tara Klippert is a Registered Health and Nutrition Counselor and holds a diploma in Holistic Nutrition and Health Coaching. She shares her gluten free, dairy free & allergy friendly recipes.