Amazing Gluten Free Pumpkin Carrot Cake

Published on Oct 14, 2023

  by   Kristina Stosek

3 reviews

Prep Time: 20 minutes Cook Time: 30 minutes Serves: 8
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This Amazing Gluten-Free Pumpkin Carrot Cake is like no other. An extra moist layered cake made with a blend of pumpkin, carrots, pineapple, and walnuts slathered with the fluffiest pumpkin cream cheese frosting hinted with cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, and lemon. YUM!

slice of pumpkin carrot cake with pumpkin cream cheee frosting on a plate

What makes this an amazing gluten free pumpkin carrot cake?

This pumpkin carrot cake has three things that elevate this dessert to another level of deliciousness. The layered cake has a perfect moist crumb made with olive oil, pumpkin, carrots, pineapple, and walnuts. The frosting is fluffy, creamy, and flavored with pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, and fresh lemon. And, you can’t tell this dessert is gluten free!

How to make pumpkin carrot cake layers?

The cake layers are made in four steps. 

grated carrots, pumpkin puree, crushed pineapple and walnuts in a bowl



Place grated carrots, crushed pineapple, pumpkin puree, and walnuts into a bowl.

grated carrots, pumpkin puree, crushed pineapple and walnuts in a bowl



Whisk together brown sugar, olive oil, eggs, lemon juice, and vanilla until smooth, and stir in the carrot mixture.

wet mixture mixed with dry ingredients


Whisk the dry ingredients. These are basic pantry ingredients: flour, spices, baking powder, and baking soda. Add the dry ingredients one third at a time to the wet mixture and stir until you no longer see the flour. Do not over-mix the batter, or the cake will become dense.

cake batter in two round cake pans


Transfer the thick batter evenly into two 9-inch round prepared pans. Don’t worry too much if the batter isn’t precisely the same in both pans. If one of the cakes is larger than the other, use it as the bottom layer.

two round baked carrot cakes


Bake until it passes the toothpick test. Then cool in the pans.


While the cakes are baking, make the pumpkin frosting. The frosting is an easy recipe and extremely fluffy and flavorful. To make the frosting, start with room-temperature ingredients. This is important to get that fluffy, creamy frosting.

pumpkin cream cheese frosting on a whisk


Cream together cream cheese and butter


Add pumpkin puree, vanilla, lemon juice, and spices. Mix until well combined


Add the powdered sugar quarter cup at a time and whisk after each time. This will give you extra fluffy, light pumpkin frosting. Chill for 30 minutes before using. You can make the frosting a day in advance if you wish. Be sure to store it in an airtight container in the fridge.

cross section of layered pumpkin carrot cake with frosting


Once the cake has cooled in the pans, invert them onto plates or wire rack. Place one cake with the bottom side facing up on a dessert platter and spread half the pumpkin frosting mixture evenly over top.

Place the second cake on top, with the bottom side facing up, and finish decorating with the remaining frosting. At this point, you can decorate the cake with walnuts and carrot ribbons if you wish.

Chill the cake covered for two hours or overnight before serving. Enjoy!

Equipment you will need

Electric mixer: I highly recommend using an electric mixer for the cake batter and frosting. However, you can use a manual whisk if you don’t have an electric mixer.

Baking pans: You will need two 9-inch round baking pans

Standard kitchen tools for baking: Bowls, measuring cups, measuring spoons and spatula

gluten free pumkin carrot cake with frosting on a plate overview

Baker’s tips:

Q: Can I make the gluten free pumpkin carrot cake dairy-free?

A: The cake itself is dairy-free. To make the frosting dairy-free, use dairy-free cream cheese and vegan butter to replace the dairy ingredients

Q: Can I use this recipe to make a one layer pumpkin carrot cake?

To replace two 9-inch round baking pans with a single baking pan, you can use a 9×13-inch rectangular baking pan. This pan has the volume capacity of two 9-inch round pans. Keep in mind that when using a different pan size, you may need to adjust the baking time. 

Q: What can I use instead of brown sugar?

I used brown sugar because it has an extra flavor of molasses. This adds another layer of deliciousness to the carrot cake. However, you can use pure maple syrup, honey, coconut, or granulated sugar.

Q: How do I know when the cake is done?

Use a toothpick or cake tester to check for doneness.

close up of a slice of pumpkin carrot cake with frosting

Is this gluten free pumpkin carrot cake nutritious?

This gluten-free pumpkin carrot cake recipe incorporates nutrient-rich carrots, pumpkin, pineapple, walnuts, heart-healthy olive oil, and lemon juice. These ingredients promote good health.

If you are looking for recipes that include pumpkin, check out our complete list of gluten free pumpkin recipes.

how to store pumpkin carrot cake with frosting

Properly storing carrot cake with frosting will help preserve its quality and prevent it from becoming stale or dry. Always use airtight containers or coverings to keep the cake fresh and delicious.

Cake Dome: 

If you have a cake dome or a large airtight container, place the cake inside it. This is a great option to keep the cake from getting smudged.

Plastic Wrap: 

Cover the entire cake with plastic wrap, ensuring it’s airtight. This helps prevent the cake from drying out and keeps the frosting from absorbing other odors in the fridge.

Properly storing gluten free pumpkin carrot cake with pumpkin frosting will keep for up to five days when refrigerated.

whole gluten free frosted pumpkin carrot cake on a dessert plate

A good reason to try Gluten Free Pumpkin Carrot Cake

This gluten free pumpkin carrot cake with pumpkin cream cheese frosting is the perfect blend of indulgence and nutrition, making this dessert AMAZING! If you are following a plant-based diet you may enjoy the Vegan Gluten Free Carrot Cake.

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Many thanks!

Kristina xx

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Sorry to hear about the frosting Leeann, I make it often, not sure what could affect it. After chilling, the cream cheese and butter keep the frosting a light texture but not soupy. If anyone else has this problem please let me know. Thank you.

Leeann Rock

The cake itself was good, just slightly dry, but the frosting was so SOUPY, even after extended chilling. I used about twice as much sugar and still soupy but I just couldn't add any more as it was bordering on oversweet at that point. If I make this again, I'll try regular cream cheese or just regular cream cheese frosting but it will miss the pumpkin and spice which was nice.

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