Olive Oil Carrot Cake

It is National Dessert Day, and we are celebrating in a big way. We love dessert every day of the year, but today is special – mainly because no one can fault us for ordering ice cream at lunch or cake for dinner. We’re craving fall favorites this month, like Chef Kevin O’Connor’s Olive Oil Carrot Cake with Extra Virgin ‘Buttercream’. Olive oil replaces the butter in the frosting, so that makes it full of healthy fats...right? Read below for the recipe. Because you can have your cake and eat it too, Potatoheads…..

From Chef Kevin O’Connor.

For this recipe, I let the bold flavors of the olive oil take the place of the spices that are traditional in any carrot cake. When I make this cake, I use Nantes carrots grown in the Capay Valley, but any carrot will work.


3 cups all-purpose flour, plus a little more for the pan

1 pound of carrots, peeled and finely grated

3 large eggs, at room temperature

⅓ cup of nonfat buttermilk, at room temperature

2 cups of sugar

1 ½ cups of olive oil

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

¾ cup powdered sugar

6 tablespoons olive oil


Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a large cake tin with a drizzle of olive oil. Dust with flour, tap out any excess and set aside.

Whisk together the carrots, eggs, buttermilk, sugar, and olive oil in a large bowl. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir the flour mixture into the carrot mixture until completely combined. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan.

Bake for one hour and fifteen minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. While the cake is baking, prepare the buttercream by thoroughly and vigorously whisking the powdered sugar and olive oil together. Unmold the cake onto a cooling rack and let cool completely before frosting. (Optional) Garnish with carrot ribbons or cleaned carrot tops.

*Image by Nicole Franzen

On a cake kick? Check out our guide to the best cake shops. Maybe you’re in the mood for pie? Read our best pie recipe roundup.