CARROT CAKE PROTEIN LOAF
It's no secret I love carrot cake! I actually held back this Carrot Cake Protein Loaf recipe for awhile because I figured y'all had enough carrot cake (is there such a thing?). But now enough time has passed I feel like it's okay to post another carrot cake recipe LOL. This Carrot Cake Protein Loaf is filled with sweet spice, moist carrot, crunchy walnuts, and topped with dairy-free cream cheese icing. It's gluten-free as well and can easily be made egg-free and vegan!
Did you know? A small study in healthy adults showed that eating a walnut-rich meal reduced oxidative damage more so than a macro-equivalent oil-rich meal! (source) This is important because oxidized LDL cholesterol is part of the cause for atherosclerosis, and oxidative damage plays a role in aging.
Protein powder recommendation
For this Carrot Cake Protein Loaf, I used LIV Body Lean Vegan Protein in Pumpkin Pie flavor. This flavor is so good in carrot cake due to the hint of spices! I also love that LIV Body is free of artificial ingredients and low in fat and carbs with more protein per serving. You can use my code "NOEXCUSES" for 20% off all LIV Body products!
If you don't use this specific protein, I would suggest using a pea protein or vegan protein blend for best results. I cannot promise the result using whey protein as I've not tested it in this recipe. However, I do have a carrot cake recipe specific for whey!
I used gluten-free baking flour for this loaf to get a nice tender texture. You can also use all-purpose flour, brown rice flour, cake flour, cassava flour (Paleo), gluten-free oat flour, sorghum flour, spelt flour, tiger nut flour or whole wheat pastry flour. You can also trade up to two-thirds cup of the baking flour for one-third cup of coconut flour to lower the carbs, but this will yield a more dense and crumbly bread.
To sweeten this Carrot Cake Protein Loaf, I used a monk fruit brown sugar alternative. I just love the hint of molasses flavor! You can use any reduced-calorie brown sugar alternative, like Lakanto Golden, Sukrin Gold, Truvia Sweet Complete Brown Sugar Alternative, or Swerve Brown.
You can also use regular brown sugar or coconut sugar if you’re not worried about the added sugar! Feel free to substitute baking stevia, granulated erythritol, granulated monk fruit, or a granulated white sugar, but won’t taste as rich. If using stevia extract or drops, check the brand-specific conversion chart 😉
This loaf has lots of grated carrot, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves! Feel free to substitute two teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice for the individual spices. You can also swap out the unsweetened applesauce for mashed banana or pumpkin, or even almond butter, cashew butter, or sunflower seed butter for a super rich loaf!
To help hold this loaf together, you can either use egg whites or six tablespoons of ground flaxseed with three-quarters cup of warm water. A vegan egg replacer should work, too!
The chopped walnuts are optional, but add crunchy texture! Leave them out for a lower fat version, or add seedless raisins for a higher carb version. Pecans would be yummy in place of the walnuts, too.
Cream cheese icing
The icing is also optional, but just adds to the carrot cake experience! I used dairy-free cream cheese, calorie-free powdered sweetener, and pure vanilla extract for the icing.
Here's the printable recipe for this Carrot Cake Protein Loaf - I hope you love it! Feel free to rate this recipe or comment below if you do try it ;)
This post contains affiliate links and is sponsored by LIV Body.
Carrot Cake Protein Loaf
This Carrot Cake Protein Loaf is filled with sweet spice, moist carrot, crunchy walnuts, and topped with dairy-free cream cheese icing. It's gluten-free as well and can easily be made egg-free and vegan!
1 1/3 cup (160g) gluten-free baking flour*
2/3 cup (80g) vegan protein powder (I used LIV Body Lean Vegan Protein in Pumpkin Pie flavor, code NOEXCUSES for 20% off)
3/4 cup calorie-free brown sugar sweetener* (I used a monk fruit sweetener that measures like brown sugar)
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. ground cinnamon*
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg*
1/2 tsp. ground ginger*
1/4 tsp. ground cloves*
2 cups carrot, finely shredded
2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce*
2/3 cup (5 large) egg whites* (or vegan egg replacer)
1/3 cup chopped walnuts* (optional)
4 oz. dairy-free cream cheese* (like Kite Hill or Simple Truth brand)
1/2 cup calorie-free powdered sweetener* (I used a monk fruit sweetener that measures like powdered sugar)
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Cream cheese icing (optional):
*See blog post for substitutions.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Whisk together dry ingredients (through cloves) in a large mixing bowl.
Finely shred carrots to measure two packed cups.
Add shredded carrot and other wet ingredients (through egg white or egg replacer) to dry mix.
Mix wet and dry ingredients until a thick batter forms.
Fold in chopped walnuts (optional).
Line a loaf pan with parchment paper or grease well.
Spread batter over the bottom of your pan evenly.
Bake in preheated oven for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick or knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
While your loaf cools, mix icing ingredients together until smooth and creamy (optional).
Make sure loaf is cool (not warm) to the touch before icing, then spread over top and place in the fridge for an hour to chill for best results.
Cut into 8 slices and enjoy! Leftovers will keep in the fridge in an airtight container at least a week.
Calories (per slice, minus optionals): 141kcal, Fat: 0.8g, Sat fat: 0.2g, Carbs: 23g, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 12g, Sodium: 376mg
Calories (per slice, including optionals): 204kcal, Fat: 6.5g, Sat fat: 1.5g, Carbs: 25g, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 13g, Sodium: 436mg
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