Sourdough Carrot Cake with Sour Cream Frosting (Easy one bowl method)

This carrot cake looks so simple since it does not have a bunch of added fruits and nuts. It does claim a little magic from the addition of fresh orange zest. The method itself is simple, using only one bowl for a super easy baking session with minimal clean-up.
The frosting is similar to cream cheese frosting; it has some tang from the sour cream but it’s a little lighter than a typical cream cheese frosting. You can top it with toasted nuts or coconut or just keep it simple with only the fluffy white frosting on top. You don’t even have to frost the sides. My kids like to make it in a sheet pan and eat it plain with no frosting. No matter how you put it together it’s a delicious, spicy and substantial cake.


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  1. Hi Rochelle; I just joined TBN and saw this recipe. It looks terrific and I have most everything on hand.

    Question-how much orange zest do you use? Would a 13 x 9″ pan work with this recipe? Finally, what does “yield 1 serving ” mean? ( I really like carrot cake but this is a lot for one serving!)
    Thanks in advance, John

    1. Hi John, I’ll let Rochelle answer about the zest. As for the servings, we use a plugin for recipes and they won’t allow us to say 1 cake, 1 batch, 2 loaves etc. So if you see a serving that doesn’t look right, think of whole amounts, like one cake.

    2. Hi John! I use just a little bit of zest, about 1/4 teaspoon total sprinkled between the layers on the frosting. Fresh orange zest is pretty pretty strong and I didn’t want it to overwhelm the flavors, just add to them. But if you love orange zest you can definitely increase the amount and add some to the batter as well.

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