Carrot Cake Roulade with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Filling

Carrot Cake Roll
Carrot cakes have a very comforting feel to them, with their warm spices and the rich cream cheese frostings that top them off. But there is no reason that a homey carrot cake can’t be dressed up a little bit by changing the presentation around and keeping the classic flavors that make it so delicious. This is a Carrot Cake Roulade is a jelly roll style carrot cake that is stuffed with a Cinnamon Cream Cheese Filling.

The base for the roulade is a sponge cake that is spiced with cinnamon, ginger and cloves and packed with plenty of shredded carrots. More traditional carrot cakes tend to be very moist and heavy, but this one is light and fluffy. The sponge cake is made by beating whole eggs until they have tripled in volume. It’s important to use room temperature eggs to get the best results. The sponge is the perfect base for a rolled cake because it holds its shape easily, and is also durable enough to be unrolled to allow the filling to be spread inside the cake before it is rolled back up again. I’ve used orange and lemon zest to give the filling a little extra depth in the past. This time around, I played up the spicy notes of the carrot cake by adding some ground cinnamon to the cream cheese filling.

In this dessert, the sponge cake is soft and the filling is rich and creamy. To add a little bit of texture to it, I sometimes add in a generous handful of finely chopped walnuts or pecans to the cake batter before it bakes. Large nuts can make the cake difficult to roll and to slice. Finely chopped nuts are much easier to work with and still add a little bit of crunch to the finished cake. I usually just dust my roulade with confectioners’ sugar before serving, but a few whole nuts make for a nice garnish, as well.

Carrot Cake Roulade with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Filling
3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
4 large eggs, room temperature
1 large egg white, room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 10.5×15.5 – inch jelly roll pan (or cookie sheet with sides at least 1/2 inch deep) with vegetable oil, line the bottom with a piece of parchment paper and lightly grease paper.
Sift flour, baking soda, salt and spices together onto a sheet of parchment paper.
In a large bowl, beat eggs and egg white on high speed until doubled in volume, about 3 minutes. Gradually add in the sugar and continue beating on high speed until mixture has almost tripled in volume (from the volume of the original eggs).
Sift the flour mixture over the egg mixture and stir in gently, making sure no streaks of dry ingredients remain visible. Stir in vanilla, shredded carrots and nuts, if using.
Pour into prepared pan and spread into an even layer.
Bake for 15-18 minutes, until the cake springs back when lightly pressed.
Run a knife around the edges of the cake and let the cake cool for 5 minutes in the pan. Place a clean dishtowel over the pan, then invert the cake onto the dish towel, leaving the parchment paper in place. Roll cake and dish towel up into a spiral and allow cake to cool completely.

To finish the cake, gently unroll the cake and peel off parchment paper. Spread a thick layer of frosting on the unrolled cake, then roll back up and transfer to a serving dish. Dust with confectioners’ sugar before serving.

Serves 8-10.

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting Filling
4-oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 cups confectioners’ sugar

In a medium bowl, beat together cream cheese and butter until smooth. Blend in vanilla and cinnamon, then gradually beat in the confectioners’ sugar until mixture is smooth and creamy.

9 comments

  1. That looks and sounds amazing! Need a few supplies before I try one but I’m looking forward to it. I haven’t done a roulade before–always wanted to. Now is a good time!!

  2. Wow! That roulade looks incredibly delicious!

  3. This looke amazing…perfect for a chilly fall day to welcome my husband & son home :) Thank you for sharing!!

  4. I love carrot cake, what a great idea to turn it into a rolled up.

  5. Does the carrot cake roulade need to be refrigeraated?Please help

  6. Also, can you use another pan and */not roll

  7. JThomas – I recommend using a different carrot cake recipe if you do not want to make a roulade:

    http://bakingbites.com/2009/03/lower-fat-carrot-sheet-cake/

    The cake should be refrigerated if you’re not going to eat it on the day it is assembled.

  8. Hello,

    Can you tell me if this roulade can be frozen?

  9. Paula, I haven’t frozen it myself before, but if you assemble it completely and wrap it up very tightly with plastic wrap, I think it could be frozen. Allow it to defrost completely at room temperature before unwrapping it.

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