10 Traditional Carrot Cakes for Easter

three-layered carrot and zucchini cake on a plate
Photo: Allrecipes

From its warming spices to its fresh, often fruity flavor, carrot cake teeters between a fall and spring dessert. When it comes to Easter, however, no dessert rivals the carrot cake's classic appeal. These recipes include everything you're looking for in a traditional carrot cake, with subtle differences that will help you find your favorite—heavy on the pineapple, dotted with raisins, vegan, gluten-free, and more. Dig in!

01 of 10

Grandma's Carrot Cake

slice of carrot cake on a plate

Crushed pineapple, flaked coconut, and walnuts give this cake its old-fashioned taste. "This recipe has been a favorite in our family for three generations," home cook heybejay says. "Different from traditional carrot cakes, this cake is extremely moist and flavorful and is topped with a buttermilk glaze while still warm."

02 of 10

Sam's Famous Carrot Cake

slice of carrot cake on a white plate with a fork

Another handed-down recipe, Sam's Famous Carrot Cake comes from home cook Brian D'Amico's grandfather. It boasts more than 3,000 ratings from home cooks who love that it includes all of the traditional elements, plus buttermilk.

03 of 10

Best Carrot Cake Ever

slice of carrot cake on a white plate with the cake in the background

With raisins, pineapple, coconut, and walnuts, this top-rated recipe checks all the boxes. Reviewers call it extra moist, and some even recommend straining the carrots after grating them.

04 of 10

Carrot Cake III

Carrot Cake III
Carrot Cake III.

With more than 7,000 ratings and 5,000 reviews, this recipe takes the cake as our most popular carrot dessert. Without pineapple, raisins, and coconut, it's a no-frills cake that calls for pecans in place of walnuts.

05 of 10

Chef John's Carrot Cake

Chef John's carrot cake on a white plate with frosting
Chef John

Chef John updated his carrot cake recipe with a cup of coconut oil, which tag teams with finely crushed pineapple for a moist texture and tropical taste.

06 of 10

Family-Favorite Gluten-Free Carrot Cake

slice of carrot cake on a white plate with a fork
My Hot Southern Mess

Carrots, applesauce, nutmeg, and cinnamon flavor this simple carrot cake. Use gluten-free all-purpose baking flour, and no one will find it lacking. "I have been making this recipe for over 20 years and it is a hit among family and friends," Allrecipes Allstar My Hot Southern Mess says.

07 of 10

Vegan Carrot Cake

whole carrot cake on a silver cake stand
Mackenzie Schieck

"Huge hit with even non-vegans," home cook Pammy says. Dried currants make a tangier, bolder alternative to raisins but offer the same chew. Reviewers love the cake's texture on the whole.

08 of 10

Isaac's Carrot Cake

Isaac's Carrot Cake topped with frosting and carrot design

If you're not a pineapple person, give this citrusy carrot cake a chance. "Not your typical heavy carrot cake," Allrecipes Allstar Lela says. "It has a fine and light crumb texture. I love the mandarin oranges and orange zest! My husband didn't know there were mandarin oranges in the cake, but what a way to make a moist cake."

09 of 10

Carrot-Zucchini Cake

three-layered carrot and zucchini cake on a plate

Your idea of a carrot cake may not include zucchini, but this recipe doesn't depart too far from the traditional dessert. "Using both carrots and zucchini gives this cake a unique flavor," home cook Lori O'Neill Harpel says. No pineapple, raisins, or coconut necessary.

10 of 10

Lite Carrot Cake

carrot cake slice with no frosting on a white plate

Our Lite Carrot Cake uses less fat than the average recipe, and it maintains an almost-five-star rating nonetheless. Home cook Laura says, "If this is 'light" then surely I will never make a 'regular' carrot cake!" Finish it with your favorite cream cheese frosting.

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