Carrot cake with frosting replaced by creamy caramel-flavored banana ice cream and custom carrot coconut sprinkles to match! Vegan, gluten-free, oil-free.
Another ice cream cake…really, Natalie?
Yes yes, but hear me out. Or if I can’t convince you that more cake was absolutely necessary, then perhaps a delicious slice of this Carrot Cake Ice Cream Cake can.
I posted this ice cream cake a couple of weeks ago and a little bird (a.k.a. youtube commenter) asked for a carrot cake version for her birthday. I couldn’t say no to such a deliciously genius birthday wish. And I wanted to make it happen before pumpkin season strikes and ice cream is no longer cool (no pun intended…okay maybe a little intended).
The Ice Cream
This time around I used banana ice cream for the creamy “frosting”. If you’ve ever frozen nicecream you’ll know that it can turn into an icy solid brick o’ banana. So to help preserve the creaminess, I added date paste to the mix. It also makes it taste caramel-y and luscious, so there’s that to look forward to too.
Date paste made with coconut milk? Even better! I personally used light canned coconut milk, but you could use full fat for extra creaminess or almond/soy/whatever for less fat.
Carrot cake has gotten the better of me countless times before. Those little orange shreds contain a lot more moisture than they let on, which can often result in mushy cake if you aren’t careful. And in a date-based cake the chance of a mushy middle is even greater.
That’s why I sweetened this cake with a combination of dates and coconut sugar. The dates keep it moist and add some sweetness, and the coconut sugar makes up for the rest.
The batter will seem really thick/dry for a cake batter, but it’s supposed to be. The carrots release a lot of moisture during baking, so if it starts seemingly a little dry it will be perfect after baking.
No mushy middle that sinks down into a cake crater as it cools. Because that’s just sad.
My cake took about 35 minutes to bake through completely. To test it for doneness, lightly press the center. It should feel firm not mushy just like the outer edges. If not, turn the oven down to 325F and leave it for another 5 minutes.
What’s a cake without custom-made matching sprinkles? Another variation of my Homemade Coconut Sprinkles, this time colored orange with carrot juice!
If you don’t have a juicer, you can simply buy carrot juice. Or put a carrot in the blender, shred it really small, then squeeze the shreds in a nut milk bag to extract the juice. It’s terribly inefficient, but for the tablespoon or two you need to make sprinkles it works.
And my apologies about the funky lighting in the video, it was filmed during a thunderstorm. It’s been raining here non-stop and eventually me and my cake couldn’t wait any longer…so yeah.
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Carrot Cake Ice Cream Cake
- 8 pitted Medjool dates
- 1/2 cup non-dairy milk I use light canned coconut milk
- 4 frozen bananas
- 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1-2 tbsps carrot juice
Carrot Cake: Preheat the oven to 350F. In a food processor, blend the carrots, dates, milk, coconut sugar, lemon juice, and vanilla extract. It can still be slightly chunky.
Add the rest of the ingredients. Blend until combined into a thick batter.
Transfer to a lined or oiled 6-inch round cake pan. Smooth the top with a spatula or slightly wet hands.
Bake for 35 mins at 350F. Test the center for doneness. If it feels slightly mushy leave it for 5 more minutes and consider lowering the temp to 325F.
Remove from the oven and cool. Then slice into 2 layers using a serrated knife or cake slicer.
Ice Cream: Blend the dates and milk.
Add the bananas.
Blend until smooth.
Sprinkles: Toss the ingredients together until all of the coconut is well coated and orange.
Leave out overnight to dry.
Assemble: Layer in a 6-inch springform pan: cake, ice cream, cake, ice cream. Top with sprinkles.
Remove from the freezer 5-10 minutes before cutting and eating. Keep leftovers in the freezer.
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