Carrot Loaf Cake With Tangy Lemon Glaze
This easy, breezy one-bowl loaf cake makes the perfect afternoon snack — and a perfect breakfast the next day, too. It’s lightly spiced and nut- and fruit-free, but feel free to add about 1/2 cup of chopped nuts or dried fruit, if that’s how you like your carrot cake. There is an optional bit of grated carrot in the lemony glaze, which doesn’t lend that much flavor, but provides a lovely light orange hue. If grating carrot for the glaze seems fussy, you can certainly skip it.
- Serves: 1 person
- ¾cup/180 milliliters neutral oil or mild olive oil, plus more for greasing the pan
- 1cup/225 grams packed light brown sugar
- 2large eggs
- 1teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 ¾cups/225 grams all-purpose flour
- 2teaspoons baking powder
- ½teaspoon baking soda
- 1 ½packed cups peeled and grated carrots (about 6 ounces/165 grams, from 3 medium carrots)
- 1cup/100 grams confectioners’ sugar
- 1tablespoon finely grated carrot (optional)
Step 1Make the cake: Heat the oven to 350 degrees and set a rack in the center. Oil a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan and line it with a strip of parchment paper that hangs over the two long sides. Oil the paper, too.
Step 2Add the light brown sugar and eggs to a large bowl and whisk vigorously until pale in color, about 2 minutes. Add the oil, cinnamon, cardamom and salt. Whisk until well combined and smooth.
Step 3Add the flour, baking powder and baking soda, and whisk, starting slowly to incorporate the flour without spilling it, until well combined and smooth, switching to a rubber spatula if necessary. Fold in the grated carrots. The batter will be very thick.
Step 4Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Tap the pan on the counter a few times to remove any big air bubbles.
Step 5Bake the cake until golden and puffed and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. Set the pan on a rack to cool for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, use the parchment paper to lift the cake out of the pan and set on the rack over a baking sheet to cool completely.
Step 6When the cake is cool, make the glaze: Finely zest the lemon into a medium bowl. Juice the lemon, and set aside lemon juice. Add the confectioners’ sugar and finely grated carrot (if using) to the bowl with the zest, along with 4 teaspoons of the lemon juice. Whisk vigorously until smooth. Add more lemon juice as needed to make a thick but pourable glaze. Pour the glaze over the cooled cake and let it set for a few minutes before slicing. Store the cake well wrapped at room temperature for 3 to 4 days.