Gluten-Free Carrot Cake |

Gluten-Free Carrot Cake

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Prep Time: 20 Minutes | Baking Time: 55 Minutes

Serves 12

A good carrot cake is essential ammunition in any baker’s arsenal. It can be spruced up with cream-cheese frosting for special occasions, drizzled with orange glaze to keep it dairy-free or left plain for easy transportation on picnics.


  • 240g of soft light brown sugar
  • 240ml of sunflower oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 270g of plain gluten-free flour
  • 1 tbsp of baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp of xanthan gum
  • 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 1 tsp of bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 tsps of mixed spice
  • 200 g/1 medium carrot, grated
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 100g of sultanas
  • 75g of pecan nuts, chopped

For The Orange Glaze:

  • 150g of icing sugar
  • 3–5 tbsps of freshly squeezed orange juice


  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C (325°F) Gas 3.
  2. To a large bowl, or the bowl of a free-standing mixer, add the sugar, oil and eggs. Whisk on a medium-high speed until thickened and slightly pale. Add the flour, baking powder, xanthan gum, salt, bicarbonate of soda and mixed spice to the bowl and whisk again until you have a smooth, thick batter. Add the grated carrot, orange zest, sultanas and pecan nuts, and stir until well combined.
  3. Spoon or pour the mixture into the cake pan and bake in the preheated oven for 45–55 minutes, checking the cake after 45 minutes. The cake is done when risen and springs back when pressed lightly on the top – a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake should come out without any wet batter clinging to it.
  4. Place the pan onto a wire rack and allow the cake to cool completely. Once cooled, gently remove from the pan, loosening the edges with a table knife if necessary.
  5. At this stage the cake can be dusted with icing sugar and served just as it is. Alternatively, you can decorate with cream-cheese frosting.
  6. For a dairy-free adornment, as pictured, prepare the orange glaze. Sift the icing sugar into a bowl. Stir in the orange juice a tablespoon at a time and mix well to form a viscous paste. Drizzle over the cake and allow to set before serving.

Recipe courtesy of This Is Gluten-Free by Victoria Hall, photography by Adrian Lawrence (Ryland Peters & Small, £16.99)