Vegan Carrot Cake Loaf with Streusel Topping

A vegan carrot cake loaf with streusel topping. This vegan loaf is made with whole wheat flour and sweetened with a small amount of maple syrup and a sweet streusel topping.

vegan carrot cake loaf slices

This recipe is inspired by my Maple Carrot Muffins with Streusel Topping. Similarly to the muffins, this loaf is sweetened with maple syrup and apple sauce, plus it’s made with whole wheat flour for a little extra fiber. I wanted to create a vegan version of my old carrot cake loaf recipe, but with the same streusel topping that I love.

If you’re looking for a fruit-sweetened loaf, check out my Fruit-Sweetened Carrot Cake Loaf, an old favorite recipe from the blog. This new recipe is vegan and is sweetened with maple instead of dates.

What you need: Whole wheat flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, carrots, applesauce, maple syrup, vanilla extract, plant-based milk and olive oil. Plus vegan butter and brown sugar for the streusel.

ingredients in measuring cups
carrot cake loaf batter in a bowl
carrot cake loaf batter in a bowl
vegan carrot cake loaf batter in a bowl

How to Make a Vegan Carrot Cake Loaf:

  • Start by combining all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. In a different mixing bowl, add all the wet ingredients. Whisk together until combined. Transfer the wet mixture to the dry mixture. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until combined. Transfer the mixture to the prepared loaf pan.
  • Next, prepare the streusel: In a small bowl, mix the flour, brown sugar and cinnamon together. Add the cold vegan butter and vanilla, then using a fork, cut the butter into the dry mixture until you get a slightly wet, small crumble. Sprinkle on top of the unbaked loaf.
  • Bake the loaf for 40 minutes at 350°F. Enjoy!

Tips to Make the Best Carrot Cake Loaf:

  • Make sure to finely grate the carrots (see the pictures for reference).
  • Avoid overmixing the batter as it can result in a denser loaf.
  • It’s important to use the spoon and level method to measure flour. To do this, take a spoon to scoop the flour and add it to a measuring cup. Take the back of a knife to scrape and level the top. If scooping the flour directly with the measuring cup, you will end up using more flour than the recipe requires.
  • Not all brown sugar is vegan. To make this recipe vegan, be sure to use vegan brown sugar. Coconut sugar may work as well, but I have not tested it.
  • You can try adding chopped walnuts, dates and/or raisins in the batter if you’d like.

More Sweet Bread and Muffin Recipes:

carrot cake loaf in a loaf pan
vegan carrot cake loaf closeup
vegan carrot cake loaf from the top

Vegan Carrot Cake Loaf with Streusel Topping

A vegan carrot cake loaf with streusel topping. This vegan loaf is made with whole wheat flour and sweetened with a small amount of maple syrup and a sweet streusel topping.
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine vegan
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 8

Ingredients

Dry Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, whole wheat or white (spoon and leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, ground
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teapsoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt

Wet Ingredients

  • 1 cup carrots, peeled and finely grated (about 1 large)
  • 1/2 cup applesauce, unsweetened
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, or light-tasting oil
  • 1/4 cup plant-based milk, plain and unsweetened
  • 1 teaspoon vanillla extract

Streusel Topping (optional)

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, whole wheat or white
  • 2 tablepoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vegan butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a loaf pan. Set aside.
  • Combine all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. In a different mixing bowl, add all the wet ingredients. Whisk together until combined. Transfer the wet mixture to the dry mixture. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until combined. Don't overmix. Mix until there is no big pockets of flour remaining. The mixture will be thick.
  • Transfer the mixture to the prepared loaf pan.
  • Prepare the streusel (if using): In a small bowl, mix the flour, brown sugar and cinnamon together. Add the cold vegan butter and vanilla, then using a fork, cut the butter into the dry mixture until you get a slightly wet, small crumble.
  • Sprinkle the streusel on top of the unbaked loaf.
  • Bake the loaf for 40 minutes at 350°F or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool at least 15 minutes before slicing.

Notes

Once the loaf has completely cooled, store it in an airtight container at room temperature.
It’s important to use the spoon and level method to measure flour. To do this, take a spoon to scoop the flour and add it to a measuring cup. Take the back of a knife to scrape and level the top. If scooping the flour directly with the measuring cup, you will end up using more flour than the recipe requires.
Not all brown sugar is vegan. To make this recipe vegan, be sure to use vegan brown sugar. Coconut sugar may work as well, but I have not tested it.
You can try adding chopped walnuts, dates and/or raisins in the batter if you’d like, though I haven’t tried it.
I tested this recipe with both soy milk and oat milk.

If you make this vegan carrot cake loaf, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! I love to hear from you guys. And of course, if you try this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram!

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WELCOME!

Nourished by Caroline

I’m Caroline, a registered dietitian located in Kelowna, British Columbia. I focus on plant-based nutrition and intuitive eating. I believe in living a balanced life, while eating the food you love. Learn more about my practice here or book an appointment today!