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overhead shot of Easter bunny carrot cake on platter
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Easter Bunny Carrot Cake

This carrot cake with mascarpone frosting tastes just as good as it looks and is the perfect recipe to use for a bunny cake during Easter.
Course Dessert
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 24 slices
Calories 465kcal
Author Ryan Beck

Ingredients

Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • ¾ cup buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups grated carrots
  • 8 oz crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped

Buttermilk glaze

  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ cup buttermilk
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter (½ stick)
  • ½ tablespoon light corn syrup
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Mascarpone Icing

  • 8 oz mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), at room temperature
  • 2 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

Carrot Cake

  • Line 2 (9-inch) round cake pans with wax paper or parchment paper. Grease and flour the pans. Set aside.
  • Mix together flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a bowl. Set aside.
  • Beat together eggs, white sugar, brown sugar, vegetable oil, buttermilk, and vanilla extract in an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth. Gradually add the flour mixture and beat until just blended. Fold in carrots, pineapple, coconut, and walnuts by hand until just incorporated. 
  • Divide the cake mix evenly between the two pans. Bake at 350°F for 30 min or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place cake on cooling rack. While the cake is cooking, make the buttermilk glaze.

Buttermilk Glaze

  • Mix together sugar, baking soda, buttermilk, butter, and light corn syrup in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Let the mixture come to a boil and and reduce to simmer for about 4-5 minutes while stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. 
  • Take a toothpick and punch a few holes throughout the cakes. Taking a pastry brush, brush the glaze over the cakes. 

Mascarpone Icing

  • Beat the mascarpone cheese and butter together in an electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla extract and salt and beat until fluffy, about another 3 minutes. 
  • To assemble and decorate, leave 1 cake layer whole and place on large platter. Cut 2 opposite edges of the other layer into ears. The remaining cake will be a bow tie. Arrange on platter. Using a piping bag, pipe the frosting onto the cake. Be creative with your decorations.

Notes

  • You want a cake that looks good to taste good so take the time to make your own carrot cake. No store-bought mixes this time.
  • You may not realize this but baking powder and baking soda actually expires pretty quickly. Use baking powder that is less than a year old since it has been opened. If you use older baking powder, it won’t be powerful enough to help leaven the donuts. You can test it by stirring half a teaspoon of baking powder into a cup of hot water. It will immediately start to fizz and release carbon dioxide gas if it’s still fresh enough to use. Baking soda should be less than six months old and you can use the same test.
  • Make sure buttermilk and eggs are room temperature which creates a fluffy rather than dense cake.
  • You know cake is done when you insert a toothpick in the center and it comes out clean.
  • Don't skip on buttermilk glaze as it adds to moistness of the bunny cake.
  • Let cakes cool completely before adding frosting.
  • Use a template to cut cake, which makes thing so much easier.
  • Be creative with your decorations.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice | Calories: 465kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 67mg | Sodium: 407mg | Potassium: 98mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 36g | Vitamin A: 2350IU | Vitamin C: 7.4mg | Calcium: 60mg | Iron: 0.7mg