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Carrot Cake Roll

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front shot of carrot cake roll
Spiced cake is rolled up with rich cream cheese filling in this delicious carrot cake roll for a yummy spring dessert.
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Table of Contents
  1. Carrot Cake Roll Ingredients
  2. How To Make This Carrot Cake Roll Recipe
  3. How To Serve
  4. Storage
  5. More Recipes You’ll Love
  6. JUMP TO RECIPE

This carrot cake roll is a pretty twist on a classic carrot cake. Cinnamon spice carrot cake is layered with a luscious cream cheese filling, then rolled up and topped with a light glaze, making a stunning and delicious dessert. 

For more of our favorite carrot cake recipes, check out carrot cake cheesecake and carrot cake cupcakes.

overhead shot of carrot cake roll cut into pieces on a wooden board

Carrot Cake Roll Ingredients

carrot cake roll raw ingredients that are labeled

You’ll need:

For the Carrot Cake

  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups finely shredded carrots, about 2 to 3 whole carrots
  • ½ cup powdered sugar for dusting the cake once baked
  • Clean linen kitchen towel that is 2 inches longer at the top and bottom of the cake pan

For the Cream Cheese Filling

  • 1 (6-ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 4 tablespoons salted sweet cream butter, room temperature
  • 1½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1¾ cup powdered sugar

For the Glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

BUTTER: Unsalted butter can be used instead of salted butter. Just add ¼ teaspoon of salt to the filling.

CARROTS: Baby carrots can replace the whole carrots in this recipe.

NUTS: If you love nuts on your carrot cake, sprinkle chopped walnuts or pecans on top of the finished cake and around it on the serving plate.

CARAMEL: Add a drizzle of yummy caramel on top before serving. 

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How To Make This Carrot Cake Roll Recipe

STEP ONE: Preheat oven to 375°F. Whisk the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, salt, ginger, and nutmeg in a medium bowl, and set dry ingredients aside.

carrot cake roll process shot of ingredients before and after being whisked together in a bowl

STEP TWO: In a large mixing bowl, with an electric mixer or stand mixer, beat the eggs for 5 minutes or until they are a light frothy yellow.

PRO TIP:

Don’t skip beating the eggs for the full time as this helps the roll become fluffy. 

carrot cake roll process shot of eggs being whisked in a bowl

STEP THREE: Add the sugar, vanilla, and oil to the eggs then beat until well combined.

STEP FOUR: Fold in the flour mixture and then the carrots.

carrot cake roll process shot of carrots being folded into the batter

STEP FIVE: Pour batter into a 15×10-inch jelly roll pan lined with parchment paper and sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

STEP SIX: Spread the cake batter evenly in the prepared pan then bake in the preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes.

carrot cake roll process shot of cake batter placed in a baking dish

STEP SEVEN: Remove the cake from the oven and run a sharp knife around the edges of the pan to loosen it.

STEP EIGHT: Heavily dust a linen tea towel with powdered sugar and place it over the cake. Lay a large, heavy cutting board on top of the towel then quickly flip the cake over, taking care not to touch the hot pan with your hands.

PRO TIP:

The tea towel should be wider than the jelly roll pan by about two inches on either side. Make sure to use a smooth towel rather than terry cloth, and avoid using fabric softener when you launder it so that you can avoid leaving fuzz or an odd taste on your cake.

carrot cake roll process shot of caked dusted with flour on a tea towel

STEP NINE: Remove the pan and carefully peel the parchment paper off the cake. Generously dust the cake with powdered sugar. Flip the ends of the towel over the short ends of the cake and carefully roll one end toward the other. Set aside rolled cake to cool completely.

PRO TIP:

Be patient and take your time rolling and unrolling the cake, or it could crack. A few small cracks are nothing to worry about, but you don’t want to break your cake! Take it slow and easy.

carrot cake roll process shot of cake in tea towel on a wooden board

STEP TEN: To make the filling, cream together the cream cheese and butter with a hand mixer in a medium mixing bowl at medium speed for 1 to 1½ minutes.

carrot cake roll process shot of butter and cream cheese being combined in a bowl

STEP ELEVEN: Reduce the speed to low speed and add the vanilla and powdered sugar to the cream cheese mixture. Increase the speed to medium and blend for another minute until smooth.

carrot cake roll process shot of ingredients in a bowl

STEP TWELVE: To make the glaze, whisk together the powdered sugar and milk until the glaze is completely smooth then set it aside.

carrot cake roll process shot of powdered sugar and milk whisked together in a bowl

STEP THIRTEEN: To assemble, slowly unroll the cooled cake roll.

carrot cake roll process shot of cake on a tea towel

STEP FOURTEEN: Spread the cream cheese mixture over the cake with a spatula, avoiding the edges of the cake.

carrot cake roll process shot of cream cheese being spread over cake

STEP FIFTEEN: Using slow and even pressure, slowly roll the cake into a roll shape.

STEP SIXTEEN: Wrap the cake tightly with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator to chill for at least an hour or overnight.

STEP SEVENTEEN: Drizzle the glaze over the finished cake before slicing.

PRO TIP:

Place roll on a wire rack before pouring the glaze on top so that any excess glaze will run through the rack rather than leaving a puddle around your cake.

carrot cake roll process shot of glazed being poured over carrot cake roll

STEP EIGHTEEN: Cut the ends off the roll with a sharp knife, then gently slice the cake into 10 to 12 even slices. 

PRO TIP:

Freeze the cake for 30 minutes before slicing to make it easier to cut evenly. You can also run the knife under hot water and then dry it before slicing to help make more even slices.

STEP NINETEEN: Allow the slices to thaw for a few minutes before serving. 

How To Serve

This delicious carrot cake roll recipe would be a delightful addition to your Easter table. Add our easy Easter bunny cake to your dessert offerings to delight the little ones.

Storage

IN THE FRIDGE: Cover any leftovers and store them in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

IN THE FREEZER: Unglazed carrot cake roll can be frozen, tightly wrapped in plastic wrap, for up to one month. Allow the roll to thaw before glazing and slicing.

a slice of carrot cake roll on a plate

This amazing homemade carrot cake roll will become a favorite once you try it. It’s a delicious classic treat with sweet, moist cake and the rich, creamy filling just has all the flavors of traditional carrot cake.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Can I freeze this carrot cake roll?

This easy carrot cake roll recipe can be frozen, well-wrapped, for up to three months.

What is the best pan to use for a roll cake?

It’s important to use a 10 × 15-inch jelly roll pan for this cake as you want it to be nice and thin.

Why did my carrot cake roll crack?

Your cake needs to be rolled into the towel as soon as it comes out of the oven. When the cake is rolled while warm, the heat and moisture will help give you a crack-free cake. The cake is much more likely to crack if it is rolled when cooled.

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front shot of carrot cake roll

Carrot Cake Roll

5 from 3 votes
Spiced cake is rolled up with rich cream cheese filling in this delicious carrot cake roll for a yummy spring dessert.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 11 minutes
Total Time 31 minutes
Servings 11

Ingredients
  

Carrot Cake

  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 large eggs
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 cups carrots, finely shredded (about 2 to 3 whole carrots)
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar, for dusting the cake once baked
  • linen tea towel, that is 2 inches longer at the top and bottom of the cake pan

Cream Cheese Filling

  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 4 tablespoons salted sweet cream butter, softened
  • cup powdered sugar
  • teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a 15×10-inch jelly roll pan with parchment paper and spray with nonstick spray. Set it aside.
  • In a medium-sized mixing bowl whisk together the all-purpose flour, ground cinnamon, baking powder, salt, ground ginger, and ground nutmeg. Set it aside.
  • Using a stand mixer or a medium-sized mixing bowl and a handheld mixer on high, beat the eggs for 5 minutes, until the eggs are a light frothy yellow.
  • Add the sugar, vanilla, and oil then continue beating until well combined.
  • Fold in the flour mixture then fold in the shredded carrots.
  • Evenly pour and evenly spread the cake batter into the prepared jelly roll pan.
  • Bake for 10 to 12 minutes.
  • Remove the cake from the oven. Using a sharp knife, run the tip along the edge of the sides not covered with parchment paper.
  • Heavily dust the top of the tea towel with powdered sugar.
  • Immediately place the tea towel on top of the cake.
  • Lay the cutting board on top of the tea towel.
  • Quickly flip the cake over, so it is laying on top of the dusted tea towel.
  • Carefully and slowly peel the parchment paper off of the cake then generously dust the top of the cake with powdered sugar.
  • Flip one end of the tea towel over one of the short ends of the cake. Carefully begin to roll one end towards the other. Once rolled, set it aside to completely cool.
  • To make the filling, use a medium-size mixing bowl and a handheld mixer to cream together the cream cheese and butter for 1 to 1½ minutes.
  • Reduce the mixer speed to low. Add the vanilla and powdered sugar. Increase the mixer speed to medium and blend for another 1 minute until smooth.
  • To make the glaze, in a small mixing bowl whisk together the powdered sugar and milk until completely smooth then set it aside.
  • Once the cake completely cools, slowly unroll the cake.
  • Using a silicone spatula or an offset spatula to smooth the cream cheese mixture over the surface of the cake avoiding the edges.
  • Slowly with even pressure, carefully and slowly roll the cake only back into a “roll”.
  • Wrap the carrot cake roll in plastic wrap, to ensure it holds its shape. Allow the cake to chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour to overnight.
  • Before slicing your carrot cake roll, drizzle the glaze over the top in a zigzag pattern.
  • Using a sharp knife, slice off the ends of the roll. Then carefully slice 10 to 12 even slices.

Notes

  • Don’t skip beating the eggs for the full time as this helps the roll become fluffy. 
  • The tea towel should be wider than the jelly roll pan by about two inches on either side. Make sure to use a smooth towel rather than terry cloth, and avoid using fabric softener when you launder it so that you can avoid leaving fuzz or an odd taste on your cake.
  • Be patient and take your time rolling and unrolling the cake, or it could crack. A few small cracks are nothing to worry about, but you don’t want to break your cake! Take it slow and easy.
  • Place roll on a wire rack before pouring the glaze on top so that any excess glaze will run through the rack rather than leaving a puddle around your cake.
  • Freeze the cake for 30 minutes before slicing to make it easier to cut evenly. You can also run the knife under hot water and then dry it before slicing to help make more even slices.

Nutrition

Sodium: 230mg | Calcium: 56mg | Vitamin C: 1mg | Vitamin A: 4302IU | Sugar: 43g | Fiber: 1g | Potassium: 171mg | Cholesterol: 79mg | Calories: 340kcal | Trans Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Fat: 14g | Protein: 4g | Carbohydrates: 52g | Iron: 1mg
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  1. Mayra says

    5 stars
    I’ve made this recipe for three years in a row now. Sooooo tasty and easy! Always a hit at Thanksgiving or Christmas!

    I will say, the filling makes quite a bit. I always have some left over, so I usually just make 2 rolls or use for another dessert. I also only use 3/4 cup powdered sugar rather than 1 3/4 cup, a little less sweet.

    This recipe has become a tradition and my family really enjoys it! Thank you for sharing!

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