I've made this recipe several times because once someone tries it, they want me to make it again. No substitutions are needed. I have tried it with 1 c white and 1 cup brown sugar and it's great that way too. Adding fresh grated nutmeg gives it another great flavor boost. I've packed in extra carrots and extra pecans and last time I ran out of vegetable oil and used about 1/3 c canola to supplement. Still great! It is a lot of oil, but not too much and the oil crisps up the edges of the cake. The only thing I do differently is the frosting. It falls in the center when you move it before it's done! Let it cook! If it does fall, give the center to the frosting lovers. I don't like cream cheese frosting at all, so I use the recipe with a package of vanilla pudding whisked into 1 cup of milk, with an 8 oz tub of cool whip and a tsp 1 tsp of vanilla mixed in at the end. That's my preference though and in no reflects the yumminess of the cake!
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I've made this recipe several times because once someone tries it, they want me to make it...