Moist vegan carrot cake with easy orange frosting

A moist, fruity, lightly-spiced vegan carrot cake recipe that’s easy to whip up in a food processor or by hand. A wonderful treat for tea-time or anytime!

While it wouldn’t be Rosh Hashanah without it, we cannot live on honey cake alone, right?! Over the course of YomTov I like to have a variety of sweet treats, cakes and baked goods available. I think it’s important to have plenty of choice to share with family and friends.

vegan carrot cake on a plate.

Delicious vegan cake

This delicious vegan carrot cake came about after I decided to ‘veganise’ my tried-and-trusted carrot cake recipe, in honour of a vegan friend. I’ve been experimenting more and more with vegan baking and it’s possible to get really delightful results with only a little effort. This moist, fruity, lightly-spiced cake is a world away from the dry and tasteless results we fear when baking without eggs or dairy.

vegan carrot cake ready to be cut.

Traditional ingredients

Carrots are a traditional ingredient on Rosh Hashanah, although you’re usually more likely to see them in tsimmes or a carrot salad! However, a slice or two of this gorgeous vegan carrot cake will convince you to add them to your baking as well. I say “a slice or two” because it’s almost impossible to limit yourself to just one! Especially if you’re a carrot cake fan, like me. Perhaps it’s my age but these days I’ll usually even choose carrot cake over a brownie. What’s happening?!

A moist, fruity, lightly-spiced vegan carrot cake recipe that's easy to whip up in a food processor or by hand. A wonderful treat for tea-time or anytime!

An easy, foolproof recipe

More and more people are becoming vegan for both health and environmental reasons, so having a great vegan cake recipe tucked away will serve you well. This one is really easy, especially if you use a food processor. Just be sure to mix the grated carrots and raisins into the cake batter by hand, so they don’t get pulverised. 

Less is more

I like my cake to be the star of the show, so I don’t usually add much in the way of frosting. That’s why I only gave this vegan carrot cake a simple orange glaze. If you want to go all-out with the frosting, you can find a vegan ‘cream cheese’ frosting recipe at Veggie Desserts.

Slice of vegan carrot cake.

Rosh Hashanah and beyond!

While this vegan carrot cake is a perfect addition to your Rosh Hashanah baking, it’s also good at any time of year. Serve with a cup of tea, and add a dollop of vegan yogurt or whipped coconut cream for an indulgent treat.

A piece of vegan carrot cake on a plate with a fork.

If you’re after more vegan bakes and desserts for Rosh Hashanah (or anytime!) try squidgy date flapjacksspiced apple challah‘head of a fish’ shortbread cookies, apple and raisin cupcakes, or creamy vegan malabi with pomegranate.

A moist, fruity, lightly-spiced vegan carrot cake recipe that's easy to whip up in a food processor or by hand. A wonderful treat for tea-time or anytime!

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Vegan carrot cake with easy orange frosting

A moist, fruity, spicy vegan cake, perfect for Rosh Hashanah or anytime.
Course Cake
Cuisine American, European
Keyword cake, carrot
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 9
Author Helen


  • 2 medium carrots (approx 175g)
  • 115 g raisins (¾ cup)
  • zest of an orange
  • 175 g soft light brown sugar (7/8 cup)
  • 175 ml sunflower oil (¾ cup)
  • medium bananas (approx 150g)
  • 175 g self-raising flour (1¼ cups)
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • tsp mixed spice (or use pumpkin pie spice, speculaas, or your preferred sweet spice blend)

For the orange frosting

  • 175 g icing sugar (powdered/confectioners sugar) (1¾ cups)
  • 1-2 tbsp orange juice


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Line a 20cm square tin with baking parchment or greaseproof paper.
  • Peel and grate the carrots. Put into a large bowl with the raisins and orange zest, and set aside.
  • In the food processor, blend the sugar, oil and bananas, to give a thick, smooth mixture. (Alternatively mash the bananas with a fork and then whisk in the sugar and oil.)
  • Add the flour, bicarbonate of soda and spice, and process (or beat by hand) to give a thick batter.
  • Combine the batter with the carrots, raisins and zest and mix well. Transfer the mixture to the lined baking tin and use a spatula to level the surface.
  • Bake at 180°C (350°F) for 40-50 minutes until risen and brown, and a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.
  • Remove from the oven. Take the cake out of the tin and remove the paper. Leave to cool on a wire rack.

To decorate

  • Beat the icing sugar with just enough orange juice to give a thick but still runny icing. Once the cake is completely cold, drizzle the icing over the cake and allow to set for at least a few minutes before serving.

You might also like to check out this epic list of 80+ Rosh Hashanah recipes, or this one which features the best side dishes for Rosh Hashanah.

Or if it’s vegan cake recipes you’re after, how about vegan chocolate babka, or vegan spiced apple cupcakes?


  1. That sounds delicious Helen. Bananas really help to make vegan cakes extra scrummy I’ve found.

  2. This was delicious when I tried yours, Helen. I’m off shopping now to see if I can match it!

  3. Can I make in advance and freeze this cake?

    • Hi Caren. I haven’t tried freezing this cake so I can’t say for sure but I don’t see any reason why it shouldn’t be fine if you freeze the plain cake. Add the frosting (if you want frosting!) after it’s thawed and you’re ready to eat it. Enjoy!

  4. What a great recipe to have for my vegan friends. This looks so yummy – and love the orange frosting too!

  5. After years of the same old thing, I’m loving new ideas like this one for the Holidays. It is a perfect carrot cake.

  6. This was so easy to make and so delicious!! Thank you for the amazing recipe!

  7. This looks delicious! Pretty sure I have never seen anyone eat only 1 piece of carrot cake, so I may have to double this recipe!

  8. This looks so moist and tasty! Can’t wait to share this with my vegan friends!

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