Last weekend, I thought it would be fun to make carrot cake in the morning. So I went to the store and didn’t buy carrots. Nice going, Kat.

After I returned to my senses and the store, I updated a cake from my mom’s recipe files. So what’s my new spin on a classic? Less sugar (half brown, half granulated, please), a mix of oil and butter, toasted walnuts, coconut, some nutmeg, bourbon-soaked golden raisins (HOO-AHHH!) and a drizzle of bourbon over the cake once it’s out of the oven. To top it off, I whipped up my very own bourbon salted caramel frosting. Sound good to you, amici? Let’s make cake!


½ cup golden raisins
¼ cup Maker’s Mark
1 ½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup light brown sugar
¼ cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup corn oil
1/3 cup melted butter
2 eggs
1 ¼ cups finely shredded raw carrot (about ½ a a pound bag or four carrots)
½ cup crushed pineapple with juice
¼ cup Baker’s coconut
½ cup chopped walnuts, toasted (or try it with pecans, even nicer!)
1 teaspoon vanilla

Soak raisins in Maker’s for at least a couple of hours. Once they’re plumped, reserve the bourbon. Of course, we’ll use it later!

Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.

In a stand mixer or with an electric mixer, beat eggs, sugars, oil, melted butter and vanilla for 2 minutes at medium speed. Reduce speed to low and mix in dry ingredients in three parts. Add, carrots, pineapple, coconut, raisins and toasted walnuts (or pecans). Mix till all ingredients are moistened. Pour batter into greased 9″ square pan.

Bake at 350 degrees about 35 minutes.

Drizzle some—or all—the bourbon used to soak raisins over hot cake. Not sure you want to use it all? CLINQUE! Cheers to you and your carrot cake! CENT’ANN’!