Low sugar apple carrot cake
More than 13 years ago, I committed to a healthy lifestyle because of my health problems – anxiety, endometriosis, and moody menopause.
The hardest part was finding a healthy way to satisfy my sweet tooth and fuel my body with nutrients instead of spiking my blood sugar and promoting inflammation.
Since then, I have also focused on creating nutritious desserts. After all, a delicious, homemade cake is a delightful, heartwarming treat.
Every time I make a healthy treat, I focus on adding value to my health by using ingredients that nourish my body.
Preparing a healthy dessert is not that hard.
In this recipe, I made two significant changes:
I replaced the white sugar with organic coconut sugar, and
I combined all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour in the same amount to keep the refined carbs under control, add some nutrients and reduce the amount of refined carbs.
Keeping refined carbs under control is another part of healthy eating and weight management. And that’s what I have tried to do in this recipe. Let us face it, we all crave a few refined carbs from time to time. But the key is to eat only a little and have them occasionally.
Why I used coconut sugar to bake this apple carrot cake?
I used coconut sugar for a more intense flavor. I prefer coconut sugar in my desserts because it is less processed than white sugar and contains more nutrients. But sugar is always sugar, whether white, brown, cane, or coconut. So we should consume it in moderation.
I love its mild caramel flavor, which makes desserts taste different than those made with other sweeteners. But in a good way.
Coconut sugar has a lower GI (glycemic index) than cane sugar.
The glycemic index of coconut sugar is 35, while that of cane sugar ranges from 58 to 82 on a scale of 100
I called this apple-carrot cake a low-sugar cake because the entire cake contains only 90 grams of coconut blossom sugar.
The whole cake makes eight servings, meaning almost 11 grams of sugar in each piece. Each piece of cake weighs about 140 grams.
What are the ingredients for the low-sugar apple-carrot cake?
125 g grated apples (2 medium apples)
125 g grated carrots (2 medium carrots)
80 ml extra virgin olive oil
70 g organic coconut sugar
Three organic or free-range eggs
75 g almond flour
100 g whole wheat flour
100 g all-purpose flour
150 g whole milk
One teaspoon of baking powder
½ teaspoon baking powder
One teaspoon of ground organic cinnamon (I used Ceylon cinnamon)
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
Lemon zest from 2 organic lemons (optional)
A pinch of salt
Cream cheese frosting
I created my brand new cream cheese frosting. It’s smooth and has a unique flavor from the coconut sugar I used to sweeten it. If you are not a fan of coconut sugar, you can replace it with white sugar.
Ingredients for the cream cheese frosting:
200 g full-fat organic cream cheese block, softened to room temperature
40 g unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
Two tablespoons of organic coconut blossom sugar
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
One teaspoon of vanilla extract
For garnish: Toasted flaked almonds and toasted apple slices
How to prepare the low-sugar apple-carrot cake?
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Baking time: 30 to 35 minutes
Makes eight slices
The recipe is easy to make and affordable.
Tips for preparing this low-sugar apple-carrot cake:
You can add a few toasted walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped, to the batter. I preferred to keep it simple. The toasted walnuts or pecans add a nutty flavor to the pie.
Use freshly grated carrots and apples. It’s better to grate them at home than to buy prepackaged, pre-grated carrots or apples because they are dry and sometimes hard. You will need two medium carrots and two medium apples for this recipe.
Use room temperature ingredients: Allow the eggs, cream cheese, and butter to come to room temperature before using them in this recipe
I recommend making this cake ahead of time for a more intense flavor and an even more tender bite.
Preheat the oven to 180 C/ 365 degrees Fahrenheit.
Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl: flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, lemon zest, cinnamon, nutmeg, and a pinch of salt.
In another mixing bowl, beat eggs and sugar with an electric mixer at medium speed. Stir until the eggs are pale yellow.
Gradually add the oil and stir until well incorporated.
Add the flour mixture with a rubber spatula, stirring in large motions. Slide the spatula along the bottom of the bowl and keep stirring the ingredients from the bottom to the top until evenly mixed.
Add the vanilla and the milk
Fold in the carrots and apples.
Line a round tart pan (24 cm in diameter – 9 inches) with parchment paper and grease it with olive oil.
Pour the batter evenly into the tart pan
Bake the cake for 30 to 35 minutes
Test the center of the cake with a toothpick. If it comes out almost clean, the cake is baked.
Let the cake cool completely before frosting.
Spread the frosting and garnish the cake.
Store the carrot cake in the refrigerator. It keeps well for up to 4 days.
How to make cream cheese frosting with cinnamon flavor?
Step 1: Beat the cream cheese and butter in a large bowl with an electric hand mixer on medium speed until smooth. This will take about 2 minutes.
Step 2: Add the coconut sugar, a pinch of salt, cinnamon, and vanilla extract, and beat until the sugar dissolves. Beat on low speed for 30 seconds, then increase the speed to medium and beat until everything is well mixed.
Do not overbeat the cream cheese. It can break down and become runny if beaten too hard. Once the mixture looks fluffy and stiff, you should turn off the mixer.
Tip to keep the weight down:
Since this low-sugar apple-carrot cake is rich but healthy, remember that moderation is the key to everything, including healthy foods.
Enjoy a slice of this cake in the first part of the day, so you have enough time to burn off the calories and reach your weight maintenance goal.
It will keep in the refrigerator for at least four days.
I am looking forward to hearing from you.
If you recreate this low-sugar apple carrot cake recipe, let me know by sharing your pictures on Instagram and tagging them with the hashtag #healthywomanstyle, or leave a comment below.
Wishing you a fall filled with healthy desserts, inspiration, and good things,
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