Monday, April 1, 2013

Healthy Carrot Cake

Hello Friends!
I have my first recipe to share with you!

For my family's Easter dinner I decided I was going to make the dessert. However since half of my family is on a diet, and a couple of them don't eat sugar, I figured it needed to be healthy, low fat, and sugar free (without using nasty aspartame or splenda!). So I decided that carrot cake would be a great dessert to try and would be perfect for Easter. I found a recipe which I used and modified. You can check out the original recipe here {A Healthier Carrot Cake} Below are the directions on how I made the cake.

Ingredients with modifications

Serves 6-8

3 eggs (I used farm fresh)
1-2 bananas (I used 2 bananas)
10-15 fresh dates without pits (I could only find dates with pits but they are super easy to remove- I used only 7 because I added pineapple)
6 tblsp sunflower oil
1 cup whole wheat flour 
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cardamom (If you don't already own it's super expensive! So I went to our local health food store and bought only a tsp since they sell it in bulk and it only cost me .88 cents!)
3-4 carrots (medium size, grated)
1/2 cup coconut flakes
1/2 cup walnuts (roughly chopped)
1/2 cup raisins

I added:
1/2 cup fresh pineapple
1 tsp stevia granulated 

Cream Cheese Frosting:

8 oz. package of cream cheese (I used Neufchatel cheese which has 1/3 less fat than cream cheese)
3 tblsp honey (I used only 2 tblsp)
1/2 lime (juice)
1/2 cup hazelnuts (I didn't have any hazelnuts so I just used 1/4 cups walnuts and 1/4 cup almonds (roughly chopped)

I added:
1/2 tablespoon stevia granulated

After eating this I realized I really should have added more Stevia or honey to the cream cheese because it just kinda tasted like cream cheese and not frosting. I also suggest using a little milk in the frosting to make the consistency better. I did not do this but I will next time! 

Preheat the oven to 350F. Whisk the eggs in a medium sized bowl. Use a hand mixer or a blender to mix bananas, dates, pineapple and oil into a thick cream in another bowl. Sift together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, and stevia and stir it together with already beaten eggs and the banan-cream. Add grated carrots, coconut flakes, walnuts, and raisins and stir it until it all comes together. Pour it into a cake pan and bake for about 40 minutes. (I made a double batch and my first batch I poured the mixture into two 8 inch round cake pans, the second I poured into a 9 x 13 cake pan. Try to stick a toothpick in the center of the cake, when nothing sticks on it the cake is ready. Let it cool. 
Whip together the cream cheese, honey, milk, and stevia (bananas or dates would probably also work as sweeteners for the frosting.) Add the frosting when the cake is completely cooled. Serve with roughly chopped hazelnuts, walnuts, or almonds to the top.

Enjoy! It may not be as delicious as normal carrot cake but it's definitely way healthier for you!

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