Carrot cakes have always been a childhood favourite. I’ve never really like carrots per se, but carrot cake? Not saying no to that! I really wouldn’t call myself a baking or cooking expert by any means, but making something I love – I’ll always take that as a challenge. Plus, this super delicious carrot cake recipe is really easy to make AND it’s packaged nicely in a jar – just PERFECT! So if you get carrot cakes this year from me… you’ll know where the idea came from!
Well, Easter Sunday is coming up… just a week away and I was thinking of what to make! Easter –> bunnies –> bunnies love carrots — > I love carrot cake — > Easter is a time to be thankful for all the blessings God has given us, hence the carrot cake in a jar idea. A collection of that we oh-so-love.
Recipe: Carrot Cake in a Jar
Recipe inspired by: 504 Main
Ingredients for the Carrot Cake (makes 4 500ml servings):
- 1 cup of flour, sifted
- 1 cup of sugar
- 1/2 cup of vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp of baking soda
- 8 tbsp of crushed pineapple
- 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts
- 1 cup of shredded carrots (I know I have two carrots in the photo, but I only ended up using one)
- 1/2 cup of shredded sweetened coconut
- 1 tsp of vanilla
- 1 tsp of cinnamon
- 4 500ml mason jars (such as Ball® Set of 4 Wide Mouth Collection Elite® Pint (16-oz.) Wide Mouth Jars)
Ingredients for the Frosting:
- 1/2 cup of cream cheese (half a bar)
- 1/4 cup of butter, softened (4 tbsp.)
- Icing sugar, to taste
The key thing to baking is to ensure all the ingredients are at room temperature – so be sure to take all the ingredients out of the fridge and let them rest for at least 30 minutes. Prep time for this project took about 3o minutes and the baking took 45 minutes.
Part 1: Sterilize the mason jars. Bring a stock pot filled with enough water to cover the mason jars and set it to boil. The jars will probably try to float when you put them in, the trick I found was to fill them a bit with water. Put the lids in as well. Let them sit in the boiling water for at least 10 minutes, then you can take them out and dry them.
Part 2: Bake the cake. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, and then start with shredding the carrots if you haven’t already shredded them (peel the carrots before you shred them!)
Then, add the sugar and mix well.
Add in flour, baking soda, vanilla and cinnamon. (Btw – I absolutely fell in love with these enamel measuring spoons from West Elm, apparently they’re going away very soon! I’m so sad!)
Finally, add the carrots, coconut, pineapple and walnuts. Mix well. I must say it isn’t a pretty sight – but it is sure delicious when it is done!
Grease the jars with some oil. I used a paper towel dabbed with some vegetable oil and wiped the insides of the jars. Fill the jars half-full with the carrot cake mixture. I put them in a 9×13 jelly pan because I was scared I would tip them by mistake inside the oven. Placed them in the oven for 45 minutes.
While the carrot cakes are baking, I used the time to do some clean-up and work on the frosting.
Part 3: Make the frosting. Beat the butter and the cream cheese until smooth.
Add the icing sugar in increments of 1/2 cups and taste to ensure it is sweet enough for you. I ended up using a cup.
Then, I took out the carrot cakes.I used the toothpick test to ensure that they are cooked all the way through (I think they vary depending on the size of the container). Might want to try them at 35 minutes and then put in some more time to ensure they are cooked all the way through. Let them cool before adding the frosting.
Adding the frosting will also shorten the shelf life of the cake, so only put the frosting if you know that the cake will be eaten within a week. I did not have a piping bag, so I just used a spoon to add the frosting on top of the carrot cake.
Then, I added some finishing touches such as adding baker’s twine (got a package of them from Etsy) and a cute hand-written calligraphy note to make it look even more like a gift! I have some tips to doing some hand-lettering as seen in this previous post.
And there you have it! A delicious treat with a sweet note, what more can you ask for? Enjoy making them… for yourself and for your friends this Easter!
P.S. If you’re wondering where I got the mason jars, I also find them a deal at Canadian Tire (if you live in Canada).