Carrot Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting and Crunchy Coconut Chips

Carrot cake is one of my favorite desserts. I have tested many recipes to finally come up with the perfectly moist cake that is bursting with spices, textures and a delicious cream cheese frosting.

Yield: 3 layer 9 inch round cake

Carrot Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting and Crunchy Coconut Chips

Prep time: 3 HourCook time: 1 HourTotal time: 4 Hour


Coconut Chips
  • 1 bag Unsweetened Coconut Flakes, thicker flakes
  • 3 cups Granulated Sugar
  • 3 cups Water
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 24 oz Cream Cheese, soft
  • 1 1/2 sticks Unsalted Butter, soft
  • 4 1/2 cups Powdered Sugar, sifted
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 3 Eggs
  • 3/4 cup Buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1 1/2 cups Granulated Sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Ginger
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp Kosher Salt
  • 2 cups AP Flour, spooned and leveled
  • 2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 2 cups Carrots, peeled and grated
  • 1 cup Sweetened Shredded Coconut
  • 1 cup Walnuts, chopped
  • 1 cup Canned Crushed Pineapple with Juice
  • 1 cup Raisins


Coconut Chips
  1. Boil water and sugar until sugar has fully dissolved.
  2. Add in coconut flakes and soak for at least 15 minutes to overnight. (If soaking overnight, place in the fridge)
  3. Heat oven to 400F.
  4. Line a baking sheet with foil a couple times and then parchment paper. (This will help with cleanup and so the coconut doesn't stick to the pan.)
  5. Spread coconut onto baking sheet. (Use a slotted spoon so not all of the simple syrup goes onto the pan.)
  6. Bake in the oven, tossing every 10-15 minutes until golden brow. About 40 minutes.
  7. Allow to cool and store into an airtight container until ready to use. These can be made up to a week in advance.
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
  1. Using a handheld or standing mixer with the whisk attachment, cream together butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy.
  2. Scraping down the sides as you mix.
  3. Slowly add in sifted powdered sugar.
  4. Add in vanilla and cinnamon.
  5. Store in the fridge for about an hour before frosting the cakes. This frosting can get soft quickly, so you can also make this a day ahead and store in the fridge to firm up.
  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Line 3 round cake pans (8 or 9 inch pans) with parchment paper and cooking spray.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk, vegetable oil, sugar and vanilla.
  4. In a medium mixing bowl, combine cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, salt, flour, and baking soda.
  5. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and gently combine.
  6. Fold in carrots, raisins, walnuts, shredded coconut, and pineapple.
  7. Pour cake batter evenly between the 3 pans.
  8. Bake at 350F until a knife comes out clean in the center (about 25-30 minutes).
  9. Allow cakes to rest for about 10 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack until they have completely cooled.
  10. Frost each layer and then coat with coconut chips.
  11. If the frosting gets too soft, stick the cake in the fridge after one layer of frosting for about 30 minutes. Once the frosting has firmed up a bit, finish frosting.


Cakes, frosting and coconut chips can be made a day in advanced and stored separately. Keep the cakes in plastic wrap on the counter, the coconut chips in an airtight container at room temp and the frosting stored in the fridge. You can use sweetened shredded coconut for the topping if you don't want to make the coconut chips.

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Meet Kelly

Kelly Ruben is a Michelin Star trained chef and recipe developer based in New York City. She is a private chef for celebrities and high profile families and shares delicious recipes and cooking tips with her online community of over 260,000 food lovers from around the world!





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