The Neelys' Light Carrot Cake

Cut down the calories, but not the flavor with this spice-filled light carrot cake recipe from the Neelys. The Neelys show you how to make a light carrot cake that doesn't skimp on the flavor.

Just because it's almost March, that doesn't mean you can't keep up with your healthy eating resolutions. Get back on track with this dessert!


It's almost March, and this is usually around the time where most everyone's "get healthy and eat better" resolutions start falling by the wayside. You can sneak a little health into your dessert at least with this great recipe for carrot cake that substitutes vegetable oil for butter, and uses the natural sweetness of crushed pineapples to help cut down on the sugar.

Even the frosting is a little bit healthier than usual; whereas a classic cream cheese frosting is half unsalted butter and half cream cheese with two cups of powdered sugar and vanilla extract, this recipe uses only reduced-fat cream cheese, 3/4 cup of powdered sugar, and some lemon zest to lighten up the flavor.

We really like this recipe in particular because of the delicious blend of spices the Neelys use in their recipe. If you're going to take away some of the fat and the sugar to make this light carrot cake, you have to get a little more creative with your spices to really wake up the tastebuds. Some of you might not have allspice or ground ginger in your spice racks, but believe us, for this recipe, you'll miss it if it isn't there!

Here's what you'll need:

Nonstick cooking spray 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 1 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon allspice 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger Fine salt 2 large eggs 1 egg white 1 cup packed light brown sugar 3/4 cup granulated sugar 1/2 cup canned crushed pineapple in fruit juice 1/2 cup vegetable oil 5 medium carrots, peeled and grated (about 3 cups) Light Cream Cheese Frosting, recipe follows

Light Cream Cheese Frosting:

8 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese, at room temperature 3/4 cup powdered sugar 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest

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