Carrot Cake

Carrot Cake

Carrots give carrot cake a health-halo effect—people think it's health food, but it's usually very high in fat and calories. But our version has about 40 percent less calories and 50 percent less fat than most. First, we use less oil in our batter. Then we skip the butter in the frosting (don't worry, it's still light and smooth). To ensure the cake is moist, we add nonfat buttermilk and crushed pineapple.

From EatingWell: April/May 2005, The EatingWell Diabetes Cookbook (2005)
Yield: 16 servings
Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes (plus 1 hour cooling time)

Ingredients

Cake

  1. 1 20-ounce can crushed pineapple
  2. 2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour, (see Ingredient Note)
  3. 2 teaspoons baking soda
  4. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  5. 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  6. 3 large eggs
  7. 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  8. 3/4 cup nonfat buttermilk, (see Tip)
  9. 1/2 cup canola oil
  10. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  11. 2 cups grated carrots, (4-6 medium)
  12. 1/4 cup unsweetened flaked coconut
  13. 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted (see Tip)

Frosting

  1. 12 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese, (Neufchâtel), softened
  2. 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
  3. 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  4. 2 tablespoons coconut chips, (see Ingredient Note) or flaked coconut, toasted

Preparation

  1. To prepare cake: Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray.
  2. Drain pineapple in a sieve set over a bowl, pressing on the solids. Reserve the drained pineapple and 1/4 cup of the juice.
  3. Whisk flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Whisk eggs, sugar, buttermilk, oil, vanilla and the 1/4 cup pineapple juice in a large bowl until blended. Stir in pineapple, carrots and 1/4 cup coconut. Add the dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula just until blended. Stir in the nuts. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, spreading evenly.
  4. Bake the cake until the top springs back when touched lightly and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack.
  5. To prepare frosting and finish cake: Beat cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla in a mixing bowl with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Spread the frosting over the cooled cake. Sprinkle with toasted coconut.

Tips & Notes

Nutrition

Nutrition Per Serving: 342 calories; 17 g fat (5 g sat, 7 g mono); 56 mg cholesterol; 43 g carbohydrates; 6 g protein; 3 g fiber; 349 mg sodium; 150 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin A (40% daily value), Fiber (12% dv).

3 Carbohydrate Serving

Exchanges: 2 1/2 other carbohydrate, 1/2 vegetable, 3 fat