Gluten Free Carrot Cake Doughnuts

Enjoy these gluten free carrot cake doughnuts for breakfast and still have a healthy start to your day!

I love all things carrot cake- cookies, muffins, cheesecake, protein balls, baked oatmeal, smoothies...they are all sweetly satisfying and delicious! This time, I decided to create a carrot cake doughnut. Baked, not fried. A combo between carrot cake baked oatmeal and a muffin- these doughnuts are perfect for a weekend treat or even Easter brunch!

Now, I went super healthy and used old-fashioned oats. I simply ground them up a bit using a small food processor. This creates a denser doughnut. You could also use a gluten free flour blend for a lighter treat. I'd stick with cassava, tapioca, white rice, or almond flour. 

Even with the oats, these carrot cake doughnuts are moist and tender. First, freshly grated carrots will add a ton of moisture. For even more moisture and sweetness, I added some applesauce. You could also use Greek yogurt or a little butter.

Carefully spoon or pipe batter into a greased doughnut pan. Fill each doughnut well only about 1/2 full.

No doughnut pan? No problem! You could also bake these in a muffin tin.

Coup de grace- Cream Cheese Frosting

Carrot cake is enjoyable on its own, but the cream cheese frosting truly takes it to the next level! Be sure the doughnuts are completely cool before frosting.

  • Cream Cheese
  • Milk or Cream
  • Vanilla
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Optional: cinnamon

Gluten Free Carrot Cake Doughnuts with Old-Fashioned Oats and Chopped Pecans

Ingredients in Gluten Free Carrot Cake Doughnuts

  • Butter
  • Applesauce
  • Brown Sugar
  • Grated Carrots
  • Maple Syrup
  • Vanilla
  • Cinnamon
  • Ginger 
  • Nutmeg
  • Baking Soda
  • Baking Powder
  • Salt
  • Gluten Free Flour
  • Old-Fashioned or Rolled Oats


Storing Carrot Cake Doughnuts

Store in the fridge for 4-5 days.


What is a cake doughnut?

Cake doughnuts were first seen in a US cookbook in the 1830s. With the use of baking soda and/or powder, there's no need to use and wait for the yeast to rise. Cake doughnuts are denser, but uses the same ingredients as cake batter. Other doughnut recipes form more of a dough. Yeast doughnuts use most of the same ingredients; however, the majority of the flavor comes from the icing.  

Doughnut vs. Donut

Both spellings are considered correct. Doughnut is the original and perhaps preferred spelling. Donut is mostly used in the United States and it's popularity may have something to do with the rise in popularity of a certain coffee chain...Dunkin' Donuts.

Stack of Gluten Free Carrot Cake Doughnuts with Cream Cheese Frosting and Chopped Pecans

Craving more???

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Gluten Free Carrot Cake Doughnuts

Enjoy these gluten free carrot cake doughnuts for breakfast and still have a healthy start to your day!



  • 3 Tbsp. butter, melted
  • 1/2 c. applesauce
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 c. baby carrots, finely grated (about 20 carrots)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c. milk (can use dairy free)
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 c. gluten free flour
  • 2 c. old-fashioned or rolled oats, ground

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 2 - 3 Tbsp. milk or cream
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/4 c. powdered sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk the butter, applesauce, brown sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, carrots, eggs, and milk. Next, whisk in the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and flour. Finally, stir in the ground oats.
  • Spray or grease a donut pan. Spoon or pipe batter into each well, filling about 1/2 way. Bake for 18-30 minutes, depending on size of the donuts. You can also use a lined-muffin pan and bake for 28-30 minutes.
  • Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting: In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Next, beat in the milk/cream and vanilla. Then, beat in the powdered sugar and cinnamon. Once smooth, spread or pipe over cooled doughnuts. Garnish with chopped pecans.


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