Farm | Food

In the Kitchen: Maw Maw’s Carrot Cake Recipe

Written by Kelsey Jordan, Produced by Karissa Leung

Easter at Kiawah River wouldn’t be the same without homemade desserts. Notably, the carrot cake has been a southern tradition for our family ever since I can remember.  

Every Easter, we would all go to my Maw Maw’s house to share a feast. The table was set with fine China and everyone would bring a dish to shareSitting in the center of the table where our family gathered was Maw Maw’s famous Carrot Cake. That was the part of the meal all of the grandchildren looked forward to the most. Made with homegrown carrots from her garden, I can still remember the taste.  

Now I carry on that tradition by baking the delicious dessert for my family every Easter in her honor. For my recipe, I included carrots from the Kiawah River Farm, which Maw Maw taught me was the secret to her cake’s discernible freshness. I also included dairy-free alternatives if desired, and believe me, no one can tell the difference! 

Enjoy this recipe with your family as you work together to shred the carrots or frost the cake, it’s a tradition that anyone can enjoy with results this tasty!  



– 2.25 cups flour  

– 3 teaspoons baking powder  

– 1 teaspoon baking soda 

– 4 teaspoons cinnamon 

– 1.5 teaspoon nutmeg 

– 1 teaspoon salt 

– 0.5 cup applesauce 

– 0.5 cup canola oil (or coconut oil) 

– 1 cup milk (or almond milk) 

– 2 teaspoons vanilla 

– 1 cup cane sugar 

– 2 cups grated carrots 

– 1 cup sweetened coconut flakes 



– 2 tsp vanilla 

– 0.5 cup butter* 

– 8 oz. cream cheese* 

– 4 cups confectioners sugar 

*Vegan butter and vegan cream cheese if desired 


– Preheat the oven to 350°F  

– Whisk the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a bowl. 

– In another bowl, mix the applesauce, vanilla, milk, sugar and oil together. 

– Pour both bowls into one and gently fold in the shredded carrots and coconut flakes. 

– Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool the cake before adding frosting.  

– For the frosting: Using a hand mixer, blend the softened butter and cream cheese together. Next, mix in the powdered sugar and vanilla and bend until creamy. Let the frosting chill for 30 minutes before adding to cake.