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Layered Carrot Cake with Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting

This is the BEST Layered Carrot Cake Recipe you will make - or so says everyone who has tasted it!  This Layered Carrot Cake is super moist without being oily, spiced perfectly, and the silky Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting is out of this world!  Bring these layers of deliciousness to a party and everyone will be begging you for the recipe!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 10 -12

Ingredients

CARROT CAKE

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup pecans finely chopped (I use my food processor)
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Wet ingredients

  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup Vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt (regular or lowfat)
  • 1/2 cup crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 2 8 oz. pkgs. cream cheese, room temperature ***
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature ***
  • 1/4 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups Powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup pineapple preserves

Instructions

Carrot Cake

  • Add crushed pineapple to a fine mesh sieve over a bowl and push down on pineapple with a spoon to eliminate excess moisture. Set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line three 8” round cake pans with parchment paper then spray with nonstick cooking spray WITH FLOUR or grease and flour pans.
  • In a large bowl, mix all of the Dry Ingredients together. In a separate bowl, gently whisk eggs then stir in remaining Wet Ingredients, including drained pineapple, just until combined. Don't overmix.
  • Stir Wet Ingredients into Dry Ingredients just until moistened, then stir in 2 1/2 cups grated carrots until evenly combined, being careful not to overmix.
  • Divide batter equally between prepared pans. Drop the pans a few times on the counter to get rid of air bubbles. Bake at 325 F degrees for 45 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean and the cakes begin to pull away from sides of pans.
  • Let cakes cool in pans on wire racks for 15 minutes then invert onto wire racks to cool completely.

Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting

  • In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and butter with an electric mixer until creamy. Beat in vanilla yogurt, and salt. Gradually beat in confectioner's sugar, until desired consistency is reached. Beat in pineapple preserves. Add additional powdered sugar if desired for thicker frosting.

Assemble

  • Place four strips of parchment paper around the edges of platter or cake stand to create a square with an open space in the middle (to keep cake stand clean). Place a small dollop of frosting in the center of the cake stand to keep the cake from moving and top with one leveled Cake.
  • Top cake with 3/4 cup frosting and spread evenly. Top with a Second Cake and spread evenly with 3/4 cup frosting. Top with remaining Cake.
  • Create Crumb Layer by scooping 1 cup of frosting into a smaller bowl. Frost cake starting with the top and working down until the cake is evenly frosted, removing any excess frosting. Refrigerate Cake 30 minutes or until crumb layer has set. If remaining frosting gets too soft, refrigerate as well then whip a few times before using.
  • Frost the outside of cake as you desire with the remaining frosting then remove wax paper. Serve cake cold or at room temperature.

Storage

  • Frosted Carrot Cake can be covered with cake dome and refrigerated for up to 4 days.

Notes

*If you can't locate pineapple preserves, ask your grocery store - sometimes its hiding on the top shelf!  I have found pineapple preserves at Vons.  You can also buy pineapple preserves on Amazon.
**If you have a food processor, use the fine grater attachment to grate your carrots.
***These ingredients MUST be brought to room temperature and NOT microwaved in order for the frosting to be a success and not be runny.  If your frosting is runny then you can refrigerate to thicken up before frosting your cake.
****The Carrot Cake layers can prepared one day in advance. Let the layers cool completely then wrap each layer tightly in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator.

HOW TO FREEZE CARROT CAKE

  1. If you are planning on freezing, then prep/frost your cake on a freezer safe plate/platter.
  2. Place frosted Carrot Cake in the freezer until it is firm to the touch.
  3. Once firm, wrap tightly in plastic wrap then repeat with a second layer of plastic wrap. Next wrap tightly in 1-2 layers of foil until completely sealed.
  4. If you are freezing individual slices, then place these plastic/foil wrapped slices in a freezer bag. If you are freezing your entire Carrot Cake for an extended period of time, then secure the aluminum foil with freezer tape to prevent freezer burn.
  5. You can store your Carrot Cake for up to 4 months. You can also wrap and freeze unfrosted layers of Carrot Cake using the same method and frost when you need them.
  6. To thaw your finished Carrot Cake, remove cake from the freezer and carefully remove the plastic and foil. Allow to thaw for about four hours before serving.