Classic Carrot Cake


1 lb. cream cheese (2 8-oz. packages), divided
¾ cup vegetable oil, plus more for pan
2¼ cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
¾ tsp baking soda
2 tsp. cinnamon powder, plus more for dusting
1/2 tsp. salt
¾ lb. carrots
1¾ cups sugar, divided
Two large eggs
3 tsp vanilla extract, divided


  • Ensure a oven rack is in the middle of your oven—Preheat to 350°. Lightly grease a large cake pan with vegetable oil. Then line the pan with parchment paper. 
  • Whisk flour, baking powder, ground gingerbaking soda, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl.
  • Peel ¾ lb. carrots and cut off the ends. Grate carrots on the large holes of a box grater into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Toss with your fingers until well coated.
  •  Next, crack the two large eggs into a large bowl. Add the sugar and whisk vigorously until the mixture is very smooth. Next, slowly stream in ¾ cup vegetable oil, constantly whisking until the mixture is smooth. Finally, add Vanilla extract and whisk vigorously once more to fully incorporate.
  • Fold the dry ingredients into egg mixture with your spatula until almost no streaks of floury bits remain.
  • Scrape the batter into prepared cake pan, and smooth the top with the back of a spoon or spatula.
  • Bake the cake for 60-70 minutes. Or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, (Baking time will vary depending on the size of your cakepan, so if you aren’t using a standard cake pan, start checking for doneness at the 60-minute mark. Allow cake to cool for about 20 minutes before removing from pan. If the edges are sticking, slide a butter knife around the edge to help release. Next, transfer to a wire rack for further cooling. 
  • While the cake cools, make your icing-you may use a homemade or store brand frosting.
  • Place cooled cake on a platter. Dollop your frosting on top and make swirls and swooshes with the back of a small spoon as you spread it out, then dust lightly with cinnamon. Slice with a sharp knife.

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