Carrot Cake Cheesecake

Moist carrot cake meets creamy cheesecake in this next-level treat. Topped with fluffy dollops of whipped cream decorated as carrots, each piece of Carrot Cake Cheesecake is perfection on a plate!

A carrot cake cheesecake on a marble countertop beside two raw carrots and a cloth napkin

The Ultimate Carrot Cake Cheesecake

Whether you need a cute dessert for Easter or just love carrot cake and cheesecake (who doesn’t?), you have to make this thing ASAP. If I could only have one dessert for the rest of my life, this cake would be a serious contender. I could never get tired of tasting tender carrot cake and velvety cheesecake in the same bite.

The generous layer of Carrot Cake on the bottom comes from my foolproof recipe, which uses both pureed and shredded carrots for unbeatable flavor and moisture. On top of that is a thick, creamy cheesecake that gently melts in your mouth. The cute little whipped cream carrots add such a charming final touch!

A slice of carrot cake cheesecake on a dessert plate with a small fork

What You’ll Need

Let’s go through the ingredients you’ll need for each component of this hybrid dessert. The full quantities can be found in the recipe card toward the end of this post.

For the Carrot Cake Base

  • Raw Carrots: Washed and peeled.
  • All-Purpose Flour: Make sure you spoon the flour into your measuring cup little by little to prevent over-packing. Check your measurements with a food scale if you have one.
  • Baking Powder
  • Baking Soda: To supplement the baking powder and give the best texture.
  • Salt
  • Ground Cinnamon
  • Ground Ginger
  • Ground Nutmeg
  • Ground Cloves: You only need a small pinch – it’s easy to overdo it with such a strong spice.
  • Unsalted Butter: Let this come to room temperature.
  • Vegetable Oil: For added moisture.
  • Light Brown Sugar: This should be packed into the measuring cup.
  • Granulated White Sugar
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Egg: To help bind everything together.
  • Crushed Pineapple (Optional): Drained.
  • Sweetened Coconut Flakes (Optional)
  • Chopped Pecans (Optional): Or walnuts.
  • Raisins (Optional)

For the Cheesecake Filling

  • Cream Cheese: Brought to room temperature.
  • Sugar
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Sour Cream: Room temperature.
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Eggs: These should be at room temperature as well.

For the Whipped Cream Carrots

  • Heavy Whipping Cream: Keep this chilled until you’re about to use it.
  • Powdered Sugar: For structure and stability.
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Gel Icing Color: Green and orange.
A carrot cake cheesecake on a serving platter with a bowl of crushed pecans behind it

How to Make Carrot Cake Cheesecake

Making this cake is a bit of a process, but it’s such a breeze if you split up the steps. I like to make the carrot cake layer in advance, let it cool, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, then refrigerate it overnight. You could also make the whole cake in advance and refrigerate it in an airtight container, decorating just before serving.

Make the Carrot Cake

  1. Grate Some Carrots: Peel the carrots, then grate them just until you have 1 1/4 cups of grated carrots. Cover the grated carrots and set them in the fridge.
  2. Steam Remaining Carrots: Chop the remaining raw carrots into pieces small enough to go into a food processor or blender. Put them into a steamer basket (or a colander if you don’t have a steamer basket) set over a pot of boiling water. Cover and steam the carrots until they’re very tender, about 10-15 minutes.
  3. Puree: Transfer the warm carrots to a food processor or blender and puree them (do not add the water used to steam the carrots, JUST the carrots). The puree will be thick. You should end up with about half a cup plus 2 tablespoons of carrot puree. Set it aside to cool while you make the cake batter.
  4. Prep for Baking: Prepare a 9-inch springform pan with a parchment paper circle in the bottom and grease the sides. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  5. Combine Dry Ingredients: Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices in a medium-sized bowl. Set the mixture aside.
  6. Cream Butter, Oil, Sugars & Vanilla: Add the butter, oil, sugars and vanilla extract to a large mixer bowl and beat until the mixture is light in color and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Do not skimp on the creaming time, but do not over-mix either.
  7. Add Egg: Add the egg and mix until it’s well combined with the wet ingredients. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to be sure all of the ingredients are well incorporated.
  8. Start Adding Dry Ingredients: Add half of the dry ingredients to the batter and mix until they’re mostly combined.
  9. Add Carrot Puree: Add the carrot puree (it can be warm or cold) and mix until well combined.
  10. Finish Adding Dry Ingredients: Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix until combined. Do not over-mix the batter.
  11. Add Remaining Ingredients: Stir in the grated carrots, pineapple, coconut, pecans and raisins (or however many of those you’re using). Do not over-mix.
  12. Bake: Transfer the batter to your prepared pan and bake the cake for 27 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Make the cheesecake batter while it’s baking unless you’re making the carrot cake in advance.
  13. If Making Ahead: Let the cake cool in the pan for a few minutes, then flip it out onto a cooling rack and let it come to room temperature before you store it.

Make the Cheesecake

  1. Beat Cream Cheese, Sugar & Flour: Add the cream cheese, sugar and flour to a large bowl. Beat on low speed until completely combined and smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  2. Add Sour Cream & Vanilla: Add the sour cream and vanilla extract, mixing on low speed until everything is well combined.
  3. Add Eggs Slowly: Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly to combine after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  4. Pour Over Carrot Cake Layer: When the carrot cake is done baking, reduce the oven temperature to 300°F. Remove the cake from the oven and pour the cheesecake batter evenly over the cake. If you made your cake ahead of time, bring it to room temperature and prepare the same pan you baked it in with a parchment paper circle on the bottom. Grease the sides, then slide in the room temperature cake. Pour in the cheesecake layer.
  5. Assemble Water Bath: Wrap the outside of the pan with aluminum foil, then place the springform pan inside another larger pan. See my tutorial for Preventing Springform Pans From Leaking (I also like to use a slow cooker liner). Fill the outside pan with enough warm water to go about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. The water should not go above the top edge of the aluminum foil on the springform pan.
  6. Bake: Bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes. The center of the cheesecake should be set, but still jiggly.
  7. Turn Off Oven: Turn off the oven and leave the door closed for 30 minutes. The cheesecake will continue to cook, but slowly begin to cool as well.
  8. Crack Oven Door: Crack open the door of the oven for 30 minutes to allow the cheesecake to continue to cool slowly. This process helps prevent cracking.
  9. Chill: Remove the cheesecake from the oven and water bath wrapping and refrigerate it until it’s firm, 5-6 hours or overnight. Once it’s completely cool and firm, remove your cake from the springform pan.

Make the Whipped Cream & Decorate

  1. Make Whipped Cream: Add the heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar and vanilla extract to a large mixer bowl. Whip on high speed until stiff peaks form.
  2. Add Coloring: Set aside about 1/4 cup of the whipped cream and color the rest with orange gel icing color. Color the 1/4 cup of whipped cream with green gel icing color.
  3. Create Carrot Designs: Use a large round piping tip to pipe the orange whipped cream onto the cheesecake so that it looks like the tops of carrots. Use a grass piping tip to pipe the green whipped cream on top of the “carrots.”
  4. Garnish: Sprinkle some chopped pecans on top of the cheesecake if desired.
  5. Enjoy! Refrigerate the cake until you’re ready to serve it.
A carrot cake cheesecake on a dainty little cake stand shown from the side

Tips for Success

Be sure to check out the following tips before you start bringing this dreamy cake to life. It’s going to be divine!

  • No Liquid Food Coloring: There’s a reason I recommend using gel food coloring instead of the liquid stuff. Liquid food coloring isn’t as vibrant, so you’d need more product to get the same shade. This can cause the whipped cream to become too thin.
  • Room Temperature Ingredients Are Key: Don’t forget to bring your refrigerated ingredients to room temperature before you use them. The only exception is the heavy cream for the topping, which should be cold.
  • Stick With Low Speed: Don’t raise your mixer speed above low when you’re making the cheesecake filling. A higher speed would whip air into the mixture, which causes cracks to form in the cheesecake.
  • Use This Trick for Clean Edges: After I make my carrot cake, I like to transfer it to a cooling rack, wash my springform pan, dry it off and re-grease it. Then I’ll slide the cake back in and add the cheesecake filling. You don’t have to do this, but I love how smooth it makes the sides of the cake.
A piece of carrot cake cheesecake on a plate with the rest of the cake behind it

How to Store Extras

Keep this cake in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-4 days. I like to store it in a cake carrier so the whipped cream carrots don’t get smooshed.

Does This Freeze Well?

Yes, this cake freezes well without the whipped cream on top. Wrap the fully set cake in a tight layer of plastic wrap followed by a layer of heavy-duty foil. You can then place it in a freezer-safe container if you’d like. Freeze it for up to 1 month, thawing it out in the fridge overnight before decorating and serving.

Print
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A slice of carrot cake cheesecake on a dessert plate with a small fork
Recipe

Carrot Cake Cheesecake

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours 42 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours 12 minutes
  • Yield: 14
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Moist carrot cake meets creamy cheesecake in this next-level treat. Topped with fluffy dollops of whipped cream decorated as carrots, each piece of Carrot Cake Cheesecake is perfection on a plate!


Ingredients

For the Carrot Cake Base

  • 1 lb (454g) raw carrots
  • 3/4 cup + 1 tbsp (106g) all-purpose flour (measured correctly)
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • Pinch of cloves
  • 1/4 cup (56g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup (75g) packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp (26g) granulated white sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 oz (114g) drained crushed pineapple, optional (a full 8oz canned that’s drained is 4 oz)
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp (27g) sweetened coconut flakes, optional
  • 1/4 cup (27g) chopped pecans or walnuts, optional
  • 3 tbsp (28g) raisins, optional

For the Cheesecake Filling

  • 24 ounces (678g) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup (207g) sugar
  • 3 tbsp (24g) all purpose flour
  • 1 cup (230g) sour cream, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature

For the Whipped Cream Carrots

  • 3/4 cup (180ml) heavy whipping cream, cold
  • 6 tbsp (53g) powdered sugar
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • Orange gel icing color
  • Green gel icing color

Instructions

Make the Carrot Cake

  1. Peel the carrots, then grate them just until you have 1 1/4 cups (125g) of grated carrots. Cover the grated carrot and set in the fridge.
  2. Chop the remaining raw carrots (about 188g) into pieces small enough to go into a food processor or blender. Put chopped carrots in a steamer basket (or a colander, if you don’t have a steamer basket) set over a pot of boiling water. Cover and steam the carrots until very tender, about 10-15 minutes.
  3. Put the warm carrots into a food processor or blender and puree (do not add the water used to steam the carrots, JUST the carrots). The puree will be thick. You should end up with about 1/2 cup + 2 tbsp (150ml | 156g) of carrot puree. Set aside to cool while you make the cake batter.
  4. Prepare a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper circle in the bottom and grease the sides. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C).
  5. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices in a medium-sized bowl and set aside.
  6. Add the butter, oil, sugars and vanilla extract to and large mixer bowl and beat together until light in color and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Do not skimp on the creaming time, but do not over mix either.
  7. Add the egg, then mix until well combine. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to be sure all ingredients are well incorporated.
  8. Add half of the dry ingredients to the batter and mix until mostly combined.
  9. Add the carrot puree (it can be warm or cold) and mix until well combined.
  10. Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix until combined. Do not over mix the batter.
  11. Stir in the grated carrots, pineapple, coconut, pecans and raisins (if using them all). Do not over mix.
  12. Add the batter to the prepared pan and bake for 27 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Make the Cheesecake Filling

  1. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and flour on low speed until well completely combined and smooth. Be sure to use low speed to reduce the amount of air added to the batter, which can cause cracks. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  2. Add the sour cream and vanilla extract and mix on low speed until well combined.
  3. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly to combine after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
  4. When the carrot cake is done baking, reduce the oven temperature to 300°F (148°C). Remove the cake from the oven and pour the cheesecake batter evenly over the cake (I like to remove the cake and wash the pan, then add a new parchment circle and re-spray the sides of the pan with non-stick spray before adding the cake back to the pan and adding the cheesecake filling on top, but you don’t have to. I just think the sides come out nicer that way).
  5. Wrap the outside of the pan with aluminum foil, then place the springform pan inside another larger pan. (See my tutorial for preventing springform pans from leaking. I also like to use a slow cooker liner.) Fill the outside pan with enough warm water to go about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. The water should not go above the top edge of the aluminum foil on the springform pan.
  6. Bake for 1 hour 30 minutes. The center should be set, but still jiggly.
  7. Turn off the oven and leave the door closed for 30 minutes. The cheesecake will continue to cook, but slowly begin to cool as well.
  8. Crack the door of the oven for 30 minutes to allow the cheesecake to continue to cool slowly. This process helps prevent cracking.
  9. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and water bath wrapping and refrigerate until firm, 5-6 hours or overnight. Once completely cool and firm, remove from the springform pan.

Make the Whipped Cream & Decorate

  1. To make the whipped cream, add the heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar and vanilla extract to a large mixer bowl. Whip on high speed until stiff peaks form.
  2. Set aside about 1/4 cup of the whipped cream and color the rest with orange gel icing color. Color the 1/4 cup of whipped cream with green gel icing color.
  3. Use a large round piping tip (I used Ateco tip 809) and pipe the orange whipped cream onto the cheesecake so that it looks like the tops of carrots.
  4. Use the grass piping tip (Wilton tip 233) to pipe the green whipped cream on top of the “carrots”.
  5. Sprinkle some chopped pecans on top of the cheesecake, if desired.
  6. Refrigerate cheesecake until ready to serve.

Notes

  • Makes 12-14 slices.
  • To Store: Cake is best when stored in the fridge well covered for 3-4 days.
  • To Freeze: Wrap fully set cake (without whipped cream topping) in a tight layer of plastic wrap followed by a layer of heavy-duty foil. Place in a freezer-safe container if desired. Freeze for up to 1 month, thawing in the fridge overnight before decorating and serving.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 slice
  • Calories: 460
  • Sugar: 32.5 g
  • Sodium: 279.9 mg
  • Fat: 29.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 43.9 g
  • Protein: 7.7 g
  • Cholesterol: 124 mg

Keywords: homemade cheesecake, easter cake ideas, carrot cake decorations

Categories

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Recipe rating

26 Comments
  1. Sarina

    I have been searching for a carrot cake flavored cheesecake & all I have been able to find are ones with carrot cake bottom like this. Is there such a recipe that is just a cheesecake? Thank you!

    1. Lindsay

      I mean, you have to handle it gently, but it should be fine. I run an offset spatula around the bottom to loosen it and then gently push it off the side of the pan.

    1. Lindsay

      It just doesn’t. I have many cheesecakes that use a brownie or cheesecake base like this and it’s not a problem with any of them.

  2. Aristonia

    I had this recipe floating around in my head for a few days wondering if it has ever been made before. Your recipe popped up in my Google News Page. I was so excited! I am actually going to use the cheesecake recipe from “Junior’s” in New York. My question was how to prevent the carrot cake from over cooking while the cheesecake did it’s thing in the oven. Thank you for being here.

    You rock!

    1. Lindsay

      It won’t over cook. Just follow the recipe and it’ll be fine. I have many cheesecake recipes that use cake and brownie bases and they all turn out great. I hope you enjoy it!

Lindsay
About Lindsay

I'm a wife and a mom to twin boys and a baby girl! And I've got a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the treats!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29