I made some subs: 1.5 cups brown sugar (no white), half cup oil and 1 cup crushed pineapple (drained) instead of 1 1/4 cup oil, 2.5 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 tsp nutmeg, 3 tsp vanilla, omitted nuts and frosting. I baked in two 9 inch round cakepans for 40 minutes instead of a 9x13 pan. The result was perfectly moist cake with terrific flavor, and less guilt! Next time, I'll double the recipe so my cakes can be a bit taller, and I'll add crushed walnuts...but I can't imagine it being much better than this.
Suggestion: if you're using a box grater, grate the carrots on the 2nd largest holes (same ones you use to grate cheese). I made the mistake of grating on the next smaller size holes last time, and used 5 cups of carrots (and 1/2 cup oil - no applesauce). The carrot shreds were too small and too many, and a lot of carrot juice was produced. All that extra liquid caused my "cake" to be more like a thin layer of rubbery pumpkin pie filling, even after cooking for over an hour. So make sure your carrot shreds are quite large, so you don't end up with all that unwanted carrot juice.
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I made some subs: 1.5 cups brown sugar (no white), half cup oil and 1 cup crushed pineapple...