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whole vegan carrot cake with pecans and carrots in background

Vegan Carrot Cake with Pineapple and Pecans

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: vegan carrot cake, vegan dessert
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
cooling time: 2 hours
Total Time: 3 hours
Servings: 12
Calories: 330kcal
Author: Cindy Rainey
This is the best vegan carrot cake out there! Filled with spices, grated carrots, crushed pineapple, and sprinkled with pecans; this vegan carrot cake is the most delicious, tender, full-of-flavor carrot cake you will eat!
Print Recipe


  • oven
  • two 8-9 inch round cake pans or one 9x13 cake pan


  • 3 cups shredded carrots see notes

Plant Milk and Vinegar

  • 3/4 cup unsweetened plant milk I used oat milk
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar packed
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Remaining Wet Ingredients

  • ½ cup vegetable oil I used avocado
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 8 ounces crushed pineapple with juice


  • 1 cup chopped pecans ½ cup for the cake recipe and ½ for decorating


  • Preheat oven to 350° and prepare pans by greasing and flouring.
  • Wash, peel, and grate the carrots. Set aside. See notes.
  • Make sour milk by combining the plant milk and vinegar. Set aside while you are measuring out your other ingredients.
  • In a medium/large bowl, combine the flour, brown and white sugars, baking powder, cornstarch, baking soda, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. Mix together well and set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, combine crushed pineapple with juice, oil, and vanilla. Once the plant milk has started to sour, add to the wet ingredients. Mix until well combined.
  • Add the wet ingredients all at once to the dry ingredients along with the shredded carrots. Mix until moistened and well combined. Don't overmix or your cake will be tough. This can be mixed by hand.
  • Fold in chopped pecans.
  • Pour into prepared cake pan/pans of choice. Place in preheated oven and bake for 35-45 minutes. (See notes about bake-even cake strips.)
    You'll know your carrot cake is done when it bounces back with lightly touched and when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Place on a rack to cool. If you are using round layer cake pans, remove from pans after 15 mintues to continue cooling. Allow to cool completely before icing - about two hours.
  • Sprinkle with powdered sugar or frost with your favorite icing. I recommend my vegan cream cheese frosting.


Do not take a shortcut and buy pre-grated carrots from your produce department. They are too thick and dry. And PLEASE don't squeeze any of the moisture out of the grated carrots.
Sometimes cake is delicious eaten warm. This is not one of those cakes. The flavors will combine and better develop as the cake cools.
If you use my cream cheese frosting recipe then prepare it while the cake is baking and cooling. It needs two hours in the refrigerator to harden or it will be too soft. 
If you use my cream cheese frosting  recipe do not attempt to frost until the cake is thoroughly cooled.  The frosting will melt and separate if you try to frost the cake warm. 
If your environment is warm, I suggest refrigerating the frosted cake until serving so that the cream cheese icing doesn't soften too much. 
I suggest using bake-even cake strips so that your cake layers will not be domed. 


Calories: 330kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 320mg | Potassium: 305mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 39g | Vitamin A: 5393IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 91mg | Iron: 2mg