Have I told you how much I love Yvette Van Boven’s Home Baked cookbook? Well, I do.
I find myself going back to it over and over. And when I came across this recipe, which is basically a cross between a carrot cake and banana bread, oh boy, was I excited (which just goes to show how much of a food nerd I am)!
Anyhoo, I made it and tasted it, and between mouthfuls of delicious moist cake, full of healthy add-ins (think unsulphured dried apricots, grated coconut and slices of banana), I was congratulating myself on the wonderful choice.
Why should you try this recipe?
I really like that, unlike other banana bread recipes, the bananas are not mashed into a that-could-be-anything consistency but are rather sliced and mixed in. This way, when you’re eating, you can still taste the wonderful banana taste and texture. A brilliant idea, really.
I also like that the carrot mixture is cooked which I think makes the carrot softer and the flavour more pronounced.
The cake super moist, the texture is gorgeous and all the ingredients are healthy so you can go to the fridge for a sneaky slice as often as you like.
Baking your carrot and banana cake
In the book, it looks from the photo like it was made in a small bundt tin but the recipe guides you to bake it in a loaf pan and so that’s what I did.
This is another recipe which is really great for the kids’ lunch boxes, as it is nut free, refined sugar free, wheat free and even butter free, and doubles as a great after-school or really-anytime snack. It’s perfect for adults too!
How I changed the recipe
I didn’t really change it at all, except I substituted some of the wholemeal spelt flour for green banana flour because I ran out.
As far as I am concerned, no further changed are necessary as the recipe is completely wonderful as is and soooo good for you.
This recipe is based on Yvette van Boven’s recipe which you can find in her cookbook Home Baked.
Smashing carrot banana cake
- 250 ml (1 cup) unsweetened organic apple juice
- 150 g (1 1/4 cups, about 1.5 large) carrots, grated
- 100 g (2/3 cup) unsulphured dried apricots, halved
- 2-3 tbsp honey
- 250 g (2 cups plus 2 tbsp) spelt flour (I used a 70/30 mixture of wholemeal spelt flour and green banana flour)
- 50 g (1/2 cup) grated unsweetened coconut
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon or ginger (I used cinnamon)
- pinch of salt
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 2 bananas, sliced
- Pre-heat the oven to 180C (350F).
- Grease a 1.5 litre (1.5 quart) loaf pan. (I spray mine with coconut oil spray and line with some baking paper.)
- In a saucepan, bring the apple juice, carrot, apricots and honey to a boil. Turn off the heat and let rest for 30 minutes, until the mixture is nearly at room temperature. If you transfer the mixture into a large ceramic dish, it will cool faster.
- Meanwhile, combine the flour with the coconut, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Then spoon in the carrot mixture.
- Stir in the beaten eggs and finally the banana slices.
- Pour the batter into a prepared pan.
- Bake the cake for 50 minutes or so, until a cake skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean.
- Let it cool in the pan, then turn out onto a rack. Once cooled, the cake will be slightly firmer.
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