This post is sponsored by BILLA Bulgaria
Some desserts are loved by everyone: like the classic Carrot Cake. But it contains sugar, gluten and dairy products, which are not the best choice if you are on a diet. That’s why I created for you a perfectly delicious carrot cake version which is low-carb and dairy-free. You can eat it even if you are following a keto diet!
Why is this recipe great
The layers of this low-carb carrot cake are extremely soft and moist: they just melt in your mouth with every bite! Besides being very tasty, the cake is sugar, gluten and dairy-free. It is also very easy to make: it doesn’t require a mixer and even a newbie in the kitchen would not be challenged with it.
What ingredients you need
This recipe calls for mainly plant-based ingredients. The only ingredient from animal origin are the eggs. As you might know, they are very nutritious and also contribute to the nice consistency of the cake layers.
Other main ingredients for the layers are: coconut flour, almonds, carrots, flaxseed, unsweetened almond milk, xylitol, carrots, baking powder and spices.
For the frosting you will only need: coconut milk, xylitol and agar-agar.
You will find the required quantities of all ingredients at the bottom of the post, in the the recipe card!
Are Carrots Keto Friendly
Carrots contain about 9 g of carbohydrates per 100 g, which is slightly higher than the acceptable 5 g.
If you are on a keto diet, it is not recommended that you eat large quantities of carrots.
But the whole cake contains 2 carrots, which will not add up too much, considering that the rest of the ingredients are low-carb.
How I chose the ingredients
I chose to buy the main ingredients for this cake from BILLA supermarket. I like very much the coconut milk of the brand as it doesn’t contain any additives and is thick. I bought also other great ingredients there, many of which were organic.
I enjoyed shopping in one of the local malls as it was cozy and inviting. This gave me the opportunity to choose calmly the ingredients for the recipe.
How to make the layers
It is very easy to prepare the layers. First you need to mix the dry ingredients and to add the wet ingredients little by little. At the end you need to add the carrots and the walnuts.
Bake the layers in two separate pans at 350º F/ 180º C for about 25 minutes. You can surely bake them in one pan but you will have to increase the baking time with about 15 minutes. Also consider that the base would be very fragile and not easy to cut in half.
How to prepare the frosting
The frosting is very simple and you need just three ingredients for it: coconut milk, agar-agar powder and xylitol.
It is not recommended, however, to substitute agar-agar with gelatine. The reason is that the latter thickens at lower temperature and needs time to reach a frosting-like consistency. On the other hand the coconut milk might solidify and separate into its solid and liquid parts before the gelatine takes effect. This is not going to be a problem with agar-agar which hardens at about 40º C / 104º F.
I decorated this cake with cashew, pistachios and walnuts. It is true that cashews are not exactly low-carb but I like their look on the cake. Also few nuts for decoration would not change dramatically the nutritional values of the dessert. Of course, you can use other nuts instead: pecans, hazelnuts, almonds or others.
I hope you like this recipe! If you made it, I would be glad to receive your feedback how it went!
Here are few more recipes using carrots:
Keto Carrot Cake with Coconut Panna Cotta
For the layers:
- ¼ cup/ 25 g coconut flour
- ½ cup/ 110 g xylitol
- 3 eggs
- ⅔ cup/ 90 g raw almonds, or almond meal
- 4 tbsp/ 30 g flax seed meal
- ¼cup/ 30 g walnuts, roughly chopped
- ⅓ cup / 100 ml almond milk, unsweetened
- 1 tbsp white vinegar
- ¼ cup/ 50 ml olive oil
- 2 medium carrots, grated
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- ⅓ tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ⅓ tsp ground cloves
For the coconut panna cotta:
- 14 oz/ 400 ml coconut milk, canned
- 2 tbsp xylitol
- ⅓ tsp agar-agar powder
- Preheat oven to 360º F/ 180º С. Grease very well two 7 inch/ 18 cm cake pans and line them with circles of parchment paper.
- Combine almond milk and vinegar and stir.
- Grind the almonds in a food processor until fine powder (skip this step if using almond meal).
- In a bowl combine coconut flour, almond meal, xylitol, flax seed meal, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves. Whisk very well to combine.
- Add the eggs to the dry ingredients and whisk again. Gradually add the olive oil, vanilla and the milk with vinegar, stirring gently until smooth.
- Add the carrots and stir again, to combine. At the end add also the walnuts and stir until absorbed.
- Divide the batter in two equal parts and transfer them to the prepared pans.
- Bake for about 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick, inserted in the centre, comes out clean and the tops become golden brown.
- Let the layers cool completely before assembling the cake.
Coconut Panna Cotta:
- Start making the panna cotta right before assembling the cake!
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat combine coconut milk, xylitol and agar agar. Bring to boil, stirring from time to time. Lower the heat and let simmer for 3-4 minutes, stirring continuously.
- Remove the pan from the heat and let cool until room temperature. Stir from time to time, closely observing the moment when the mixture will start thickening. Assemble the cake right away at this point, before the frosting thickens more.
- Place one cake layer on a serving plate with a cake ring around it. Alternatively place it in a closed 7 inch/ 18 cm spring form pan, lined with a circle of parchment paper.
- Pour half of the frosting on top of the layer (the frosting should be half-liquid, half-jelly like).
- Place the second layer on top. Spread the remaining panna cotta over the cake. Smooth it out with a spatula.
- Cover the ring/ pan with aluminium foil. Let the cake stay in the fridge for 6-8 hours.
- Decorate with nuts.
- You can bake both layers in the same pan but you need to increase the baking time with about 15 minutes.
- Instead of walnuts, you can add other nuts to the layers: pistachio, pecans, Brazil nuts, macadamia, etc. Same for decoration.
- It is not recommended to substitute agar agar with gelatine. The reason is that gelatine needs time in the fridge in order to thicken the consistency of the frosting, while agar-agar thickens quickly at room temperature.