Have Your Cake and eat it too. Gluten-free dessert recipes can be a big hit or miss: some are simply dry and bland, others are as unhealthy as their gluten filled counterparts. When we find a GF cake recipe that’s gut friendly, tastes great and looks the part, it’s one we tend to make again and again — and share with our readers, of course.

Lately we’re loving this gluten free carrot cake recipe from Nealy Fischer, founder of The Flexible Chef and author of Food You Want: For The Life You Crave. The recipe embraces Nealy’s admirably adaptive nutritional philosophy: to ditch perfectionism and get flexible by “learning to let go, give yourself a break more often, inhale confidence, and bend the rules so you can live the life you crave both in and out of the kitchen.”

The natural sweetness of the carrots combined with the creamy whipped coconut frosting makes each bite an absolute joy, and will infuse any casual gathering with major celebration vibes…

Makes 1 layer cake or 12 cupcakes


Dry ingredients: 
2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp xanthan gum (omit if already in flour)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Wet ingredients: 
11/4 cups packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 large egg
1 cup finely grated carrots, packed

For the frosting: 
3 cups coconut cream, well chilled then drained (use solids only)
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 Tbsp vanilla extract


Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Grease the sides and bottom of two 7-inch cake pans, and line the bottoms with rounds of parchment paper. The cake is very moist, and the parchment eases its release later.

In a medium bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients.

In a separate bowl, whisk together by hand or use a mixer to beat together the brown sugar, oil, coconut milk, vanilla and vinegar. Add the egg, stirring just to combine, then fold in the grated carrots.

Stir the dry ingredients, a third at a time, into the wet ingredients. Divide the batter between the two prepared cake pans.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes if using 7-inch pans, 20 minutes if using 8-inch pans and 25 minutes if making muffins, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Watch carefully, and do not overbake.

Allow the cakes to cool completely in their pans on a cooling rack. Once cooled, you could freeze the cakes for icing later.

While the cakes are cooling, prepare the frosting: Place all the frosting ingredients in an electric mixer bowl. Mix on high speed until soft peaks form. The mixture only beats well if it’s really cold, so you may need to place it in the fridge to cool midway through, then beat it again. Chill to set, about one hour.

Remove the cakes from the pans, discarding the parchment. Set one of the layers on a serving platter, and spread a layer of frosting on top. Stack the other layer on top, and frost the top and sides of the cake.

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