Killer Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

4 eggs
1 1/4 cups (300ml) vegetable oil
2 cups (420g) white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups (276g) all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 cups (720ml) grated carrots
1 cup (240ml) chopped pecans
1/2 cup (105g) butter, softened
8 ounces (227g) cream cheese, softened
4 cups (600g or less) confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped pecans

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two 9 inch rounds or a 9×13 inch pan.

  2. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, white sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in carrots. Fold in pecans. Pour into prepared pan.

  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.

  4. In a medium bowl, combine butter, cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Stir in chopped pecans. Frost the cooled cake.

Frosting variation:
Cliff isn’t a huge fan of frostings. The amount of powdered sugar it takes to make a buttercream that will have that dry-to-the-touch, crisp-outside-creamy-inside texture makes him a little ill. And every time I made this frosting, I had way too much of it, as I always make it in a 9×13. Here’s a less sugar-intensive frosting. It will be harder to transport, as the frosting remains somewhat flowier. But I think the flavor makes up for the extra mess. And I skip the nuts, due to laziness.

85 g butter, softened
175 g cream cheese, softened
2 t vanilla extract
250-300 g powdered sugar

Blend all ingredients on medium until combined, then whip on high until completely smooth. Frost cooled cake immediately.

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