carrot cake, super awesome carrot cake, best carrot cake, carrot cake with glaze

How to Make Super Awesome Carrot Cake

So Sunday evening I got a bug up my ass to make carrot cake, and I wanted one that tasted just as good as the carrot cake from the Outback Steakhouse.  I researched “Outback Steakhouse Carrot Cake” on  Pinterest (because I am a total and complete Pinterest junkie and everything must be researched there) and found some copycat recipes that I tweaked to my liking and level of laziness.  What makes this carrot cake super awesome?  The GLAZE.  You put a glaze on the cake layers before you frost it – and let the glaze soak down into it.  I’m telling you – IT MAKES ALL THE DIFFERENCE. It becomes all gooey and heavy and scrumptious.  As you can see from my [smartphone] photos (I was too covered in ingredients to get the nice DSLR camera out), I didn’t spend a lot of time making the cake look all pretty and fancy – I’m more about getting to the eating part as quickly as possible.  I’m no Martha Stewart – I will spend 2 hours editing one photo, but not ten extra minutes on cake presentation.  One recipe I found went to great lengths to explain how to make the frosting look “spikey”, and how to arrange the chopped pecans on the sides of the cake evenly.  I’m leaving all of that out of MY recipe.  You’re welcome.  I also skipped the walnuts because YUCK, and added a tad more vanilla extract, orange juice and powdered sugar because more is better.  A few of the recipes called for pineapple, and one called for white chocolate chips.  I decided the white chocolate chips sounded better – NONE of the copycat recipes I could find called for both in the same cake – so I had to make the call.  I also took the amount of pecans called for down a notch because I didn’t care about having them on the sides of the cake.

 I can now call this MY recipe because of those tweaks, right?  Right.  So this is how to create the official:

Swirly

CrazyDogMama’s Carrot Cake

Time needed:

45 min preparation + 40 min cooking
(Or in my case, 3 motherfucking hours because grating carrots is HARD and tiring, and every time I spill, I must clean, I can’t help it.)

Ingredients:

Cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose, pre-sifted flour (because who wants to sift?)
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
  • 3 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups grated carrots (the carrots *should* be peeled, but whatever)
  • 1 ⅓ cups sweetened, shredded coconut
  • 2 cups white chocolate chips
  • 1 ⅓  cups of finely diced pecan (mine are chunky)

 

Buttermilk Glaze:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 Tbsp. light corn syrup
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • 2 Tbsp. pure vanilla extract

 

Frosting:

  • 1 ½ cups unsalted butter, softened
  • 12 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 3 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tsp. freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 tsp. grated orange zest
  • 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350°F.  Grease two 9-inch round cake pans evenly – I used cooking spray because that’s how I roll.

In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt, then set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs until blended. Add in the sugar, oil, buttermilk, and vanilla and whisk until creamy. Fold in the carrots, coconut, white chocolate chips and 1 cup of the pecans (save the rest for the top garnish on the cake). Slowly blend the dry ingredients you set aside in with a silicone spatula until it is a batter. Evenly distribute cake batter between cake pans; let bake on the center rack of for about 40 minutes, or until the sides of the cakes pull away from the sides of the pan.

Make the glaze while the cake is in the oven by combining all the ingredients together (except the vanilla) in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Let simmer for about 3 minutes, stirring frequently, until fully warm throughout and the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and whisk in the vanilla. Cover to keep warm and set aside. Remove cakes from the oven and let them cool on a wire rack.  Poke 20 holes on the top of each cake layer with a toothpick – going only about half way down.  OK – that made me laugh.  Like I would stop at only 20 holes!  I poked about 35 holes in each cake layer.  Way more fun, and more room for glaze saturation. Drizzle (pour) the glaze evenly over each cake layer.  Cover the cake layers with plastic wrap and refrigerate for two to eight hours. Again, laughing here.  I could BARELY wait 2 hours.  I think I caved in at an hour and 45 minutes.  I also did NOT let the cakes cool for 2 hours (like suggested) before putting the plastic wrap over them – then waiting another 2 to 8 hours for them in the fridge.  Not happening.  I waited just long enough so that the plastic wrap would not melt on the metal part of the pan – 15 minutes tops.

carrot cake layers, carrot cake

Carrot Cake Before Frosting

Dale (my sweetie) is even more impatient than me and kept asking – how long until ‘cake time’?  This is the short conversation we had just before I put the plastic wrap over the cakes to put in the fridge:

Dale:  “Can I sniff them?”

Me:  “I suppose.”

Dale:  “Can I lick them?”

Me:  “No.”

Dale:  “Please?”

Me:  “No.”

Dale:  “Why not?”

Me:  “Get out of the kitchen.”

For the Frosting:  In a very large bowl, (the recipe I followed did not specify LARGE BOWL and I had cream cheese on my ceiling – fuckers) beat the butter and cream cheese for about 2 minutes or until fluffy with an electric mixer using the paddle attachment. Slowly add the powdered sugar, orange juice, orange zest, and vanilla. Mix well until frosting is smooth. Remove the cakes from the refrigerator, use a butter knife to loosen the edges of the cake from the sides of the pan (because the hardened glaze is sticky) and flip one of them onto a cake plate.  BE CAREFUL – THE CAKES ARE HEAVY WITH THE GLAZE!  Put about a cup of frosting on the center of the cake layer and spread it evenly over the cake. Flip the other cake layer on top of the now frosted first layer and apply more frosting to the top and sides until you are happy.  Sprinkle the remaining pecans onto the top of the cake. I didn’t do it and the recipe didn’t call for it, but I think some white chocolate shavings would be nice on top too.  Next time!  🙂

Behold THE BEAST!  This carrot cake is HUGE.  Be prepared to share because I believe there is about one zillion calories in this damn thing.

carrot cake, best carrot cake, carrot cake with glaze

Carrot Cake Finished


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4 Comments

  • K Kappler September 02, 2016 11.52 am

    A beautiful cake!

    Reply 
    • crazydogmama September 28, 2016 12.07 pm

      Thanks! It was sooooo good!

      Reply 
  • Cathy March 23, 2016 07.26 am

    yummie!

    Reply 
    • crazydogmama March 23, 2016 10.08 am

      Come have a piece, quick!!

      Reply 

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Cheryl, a.k.a. "CrazyDogMama". Welcome to my blog! Anything and everything goes here - seriously. I'm a super laid-back, non-traditional, 40-something introverted writer. My language can get a little colorful, I love horror movies, I pretty much live on coffee, chocolate and cigarettes and I'm not above writing about uncomfortable subjects. So, if you're good with that, take a look around and get to know me! Even if you're not, I try my best to entertain and offer up good advice occasionally, so hopefully there is a little something here for everyone.

This is my life.

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