Baked Carrot Cake Protein Donuts with Cashew Frosting

Baked Carrot Cake Donuts with Cashew Frosting via Nutrition in the Kitch

I’ve definitely been craving more spring-inspired recipes and carrot cake is one of those to me. I’m sure if you’ve been following me over on Instagram you’ve seen me talk about my excitement for “real spring” quite a bit.

It was my birthday this past week (holy moly I’m 32!) and on that day it was a legit snow-storm blizzard outside. I’m not going to lie, I texted my hubby and told him we were moving somewhere hot, like very, very soon (sorry Mom!). But in the meantime, if I can’t have “real spring” in the form of green grass, rain showers, budding leaves, flowers, and sunshine, springy recipes will have to do!

Baked Carrot Cake Protein Donuts with Cashew Frosting via Nutrition in the Kitch

Easter is usually the start of “real spring”… this year for us here in Edmonton maybe not so much, but at least warmer days are undoubtedly ahead of us. So, in lieu of Easter, impending spring, and my love for carrot cake, I present to you these delicious, dense, doughy, filling, and flavourful Baked Carrot Cake Protein Donuts with Cashew Frosting!

About a month ago I came across this amazing Carrot Cake recipe from Feasting on Fruit and I just had to try it out. It was perfect. Not too sweet, filling, perfectly spiced, and moist! I also loved how easy the recipe was to make as carrot cake is usually something that takes more time, work and patience than I typically like to put into baking, ha!

Baked Carrot Cake Protein Donuts with Cashew Frosting via Nutrition in the Kitch

I decided to use Natalie’s amazing recipe as inspiration and adapt it to make these tasty baked carrot cake donuts, made with fibre-rich gluten-free brown rice flour and a creamy dreamy cashew frosting!

We all know donuts are a decadent and indulgent treat, to be enjoyed in moderation, however these donuts are honestly made with such great healthy ingredients I wouldn’t even hesitate to enjoy one for breakfast, or Easter brunch!

They are full of healthy omega-rich fats, fibre, vitamins, minerals, and even protein! I snuck in collagen peptides (great for skin, nails, hair, and gut health) and honestly, you would never know. The collagen dissolves right into the wet ingredients and adds a nice touch of protein to these baked goodies!

Baked Carrot Cake Protein Donuts with Cashew Frosting via Nutrition in the Kitch

The walnuts add the perfect amount of texture and crunch to each bite and the cashew frosting is a very, very, convincing and delicious substitute for a normal carrot cake cream cheese frosting.

Not only do the cashews bring in healthy fats and some protein, they also blend perfectly with the coconut yogurt, maple syrup, and lemon to make a rich, thick, and perfectly sweet frosting with a touch of tanginess.

Unlike a yeast containing donut, these donuts are more dense and cake-like, but without frying and baking instead, they are “lightened up” and don’t taste greasy at all. Perfection!

Baked Carrot Cake Protein Donuts with Cashew Frosting via Nutrition in the Kitch

Whether you are celebrating Easter along with me or not, these tasty baked donuts should definitely be on your next menu for a gathering, brunch, birthday, baby shower…or just any other day of the week this spring.

If you do celebrate Easter, I hope you are having a wonderful weekend, enjoying time with friends and family, remembering the amazing sacrifice made for us. Overwhelmed by the love, joy, peace, and grace we have been freely given.

For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that everyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. John 3:16-17

Baked Carrot Cake Protein Donuts with Cashew Frosting via Nutrition in the Kitch

Have a wonderful Sunday,

Baked Carrot Cake Protein Donuts with Cashew Frosting
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 12
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut yogurt
  • ½ cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • ¾ cup coconut palm sugar
  • ¼ cup collagen peptides (optional)
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2¼ cups brown rice flour
  • ⅓ cup tapioca flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1½ cup grated carrots
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts
  • Cashew Frosting:
  • ¾ cup raw cashews, soak in hot water for 20 minutes (or overnight in the fridge)
  • ¼ cup unsweetened coconut yogurt
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup (or raw honey)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Optional Garnish:
  • ¼ cup chopped walnuts
  • sliced strawberries
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine the coconut yogurt, applesauce, coconut pam sugar, collagen peptides (optional), lemon juice, vanilla, and almond milk and stir until smooth.
  3. To the same bowl add in the brown rice flour, tapioca flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and salt.
  4. Stir until you have a thick smooth batter.
  5. Fold in the carrots and walnuts.
  6. Grease 2 6-cavity donut pans well with coconut oil or another oil of choice (I use these silicon donut pans)
  7. Bake the donuts for 20 minutes or until a toothpick pulls clean.
  8. Remove from the oven and cool completely before removing from the donut pan.
  9. For the frosting, drain the cashews and add the cashews and the remaining frosting ingredients to a high speed blender.
  10. Blend on low, and slowly increase to high, stopping periodically to scrape the sides with a spatula.
  11. Blend frosting until completely smooth.
  12. Remove from the blender and frost the donuts (once they are completely cooled), then garnish with the chopped walnuts and sliced strawberries.
  13. Enjoy immediately or store the donuts in the fridge for up to 2 days.

Dont forget to check out my Easy Protein Donuts too.

Recipe adapted from Feasting on Fruit


Author: Christal Sczebel

Christal is the creator of Nutrition in the Kitch. She's a Certified Nutritional Consultant, twice published author, gluten and dairy free recipe developer, food photographer, speaker, wife, and mama. Christal loves good food, all things wellness, and loves to travel. Her wellness philosophy is centred around balance and sustainable health, life's way too short for boring diets and restriction!

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  • I didn’t have enough time to celebrate Easter because I was traveling back to my college town from home! I wish I could have made something really yummy or celebrated a bit with my friends and family. These carrot cake protein donuts look spectacular–I really want to make my own carrot cake donuts someday!

    • Happy Easter Cassie! You’ll definitely have to give these donuts a try when you get the chance 🙂