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  • thegrahamstable

Carrot and Turnip Cake with Rosemary Honey Bourbon Cream Cheese Icing

Updated: May 2, 2019

Since last weekend was Easter, I think there were about a million and one carrot cake recipes circulating social media. I hadn't planned on baking one myself, but seeing everyone else's beautiful carrot cakes inspired me to whip one up with a secret ingredient -- turnips! We have so many in our garden right now and I'm trying to use them in creative ways! I adapted this recipe from The Pioneer Woman (I just love her) and replaced half of the carrots she used with turnips. You honestly can't even taste the turnips in the cake. But, if you don't have bushels of turnips laying around like I do, you can certainly just omit the turnips and double the amount of carrots. The rosemary-infused cream cheese icing pairs so well with the spice cake -- and the bourbon just gives it an extra little kick. Definitely putting it on the menu for Easter next year!



2 cups sugar

1 cup vegetable oil

4 eggs

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup grated turnips

2 cups grated carrots

1/2 cup chopped pecans


1/2 cup butter

3 sprigs fresh rosemary

8 oz cream cheese, softened

1 cup powdered sugar

1 - 2 tablespoons bourbon

2 tablespoons honey

1/4 cup milk (or more as needed to make a pour-able consistency)


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a non-stick bundt pan with cooking spray and set aside.

2. In a large bowl, mix together the granulated sugar, oil, and eggs.

3. In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients and ensure there are no lumps.

4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix to combine. Mix in the carrots and turnips ensuring even distribution in the batter.

5. Pour the batter into the greased bundt pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 50 minutes. Allow to cool completely before icing.

6. For the icing, place the butter into a small saucepan along with the rosemary sprigs. Melt the butter completely on medium heat, but do not allow it to start browning. Once the butter has completely melted, remove from heat and cover the melted butter with the rosemary. Allow the rosemary to infuse the melted butter, covered, for at least one hour. Remove the rosemary sprigs when done infusing.

7. Using an electric mixer, beat together the softened cream cheese and rosemary butter until fluffy. Slowly add the powdered sugar to the mixture. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of bourbon (depending on how strong you want the bourbon flavor) and the honey, mixing well to fully combine.

8. Add milk to the icing, one tablespoon at a time, until your icing is a pour-able consistency. I ended up using 1/4 cup of milk to get the right consistency for mine, but you may need more or less depending on how much bourbon you add to your icing as well as the thickness of your honey.

9. Pour icing over cooled cake and top with chopped pecans.

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