Baked oatmeal is a wholesome, hearty breakfast, but sometimes you just want something sweeter, and these carrot cake baked oats are perfect for that! Made with rolled oats, carrots, raisins, and nuts, this healthy carrot cake baked oatmeal recipe taste just like carrot cake and feels like you’re having dessert for breakfast.
As you’ve probably noticed, I’m a big fan of baked oatmeal and have shared many baked oatmeal recipes before. The number one reason I love it so much is that it keeps well in the fridge, so it makes a wonderful meal prep idea that makes weekday mornings so much easier. There’s no need to stand over a hot stove or pull ingredients out of the pantry, just reheat your baked oatmeal, serve, and enjoy!
The second reason I love baked oatmeal is that it’s so versatile, as you can flavor it so many ways, so you won’t get bored on the same old plain baked oatmeal morning after morning. Apple pie? No problem. Pumpkin spice? You got it. Carrot cake baked oatmeal? Easy, let me show you how it’s done.
What You’ll Need
This carrot cake baked oatmeal is made with pantry staples, here’s what you’ll need:
- Rolled Oats: Oats are the base of this baked oatmeal dish, be sure to use rolled oats as instant, quick-cooking and steel-cut oats will not work.
- Carrots: Because you can’t make carrot cake oatmeal without carrots! Plus, they add a little fiber.
- Nuts: Carrot cake is often made with walnuts or pecans, feel free to use whichever you like or omit them if you’re not a fan. You can also use almonds instead.
- Raisins: To add a touch of sweetness and chewiness to every bite.
- Shredded Coconut: To add a little more sweetness, texture, and flavor. You can omit it if you’re not a fan.
- Cinnamon, Ginger, and Nutmeg: To add a bit more flavor and spice.
- Vanilla Extract: To enhance the flavors.
- Eggs: To bind the oats and create a fluffy texture.
- Maple Syrup: To sweeten the oats, you can also use brown sugar.
- Olive Oil: To add some moisture and healthy fats. While I think olive oil provides the best texture, you can also use melted butter or melted coconut oil.
- Baking Powder and Salt: Some baking essentials to ensure the oats are light and fluffy.
If you want to take this dish to the next level and add a little boost of protein at the same time, you can make a cream cheese and yogurt topping for the baked oatmeal.
Tips for the Best Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal
Shred the carrots as finely as possible. For the best results, ensure that your carrots are finely grated or shredded. The carrots help to moisten the baked oatmeal and add texture, but the pieces need to be small in order to do so. Use the smallest setting of your box grater or food processor to shred the carrots as finely as possible.
Soak the raisins. While it isn’t essential, soaking raisins before adding them to the batter helps to rehydrate them, plump them up, and adds moisture to the baked oatmeal. To soak the raisins, place them in a small bowl, cover them with hot water, let them sit for 10-15 minutes, and then drain and use.
How to Make Healthy Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal
Making carrot cake baked oatmeal is as simple as making a carrot cake, here’s what you’ll do:
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the wet ingredients.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and give everything a good stir until well combined.
- Once mixed, pour the mixture into a baking dish, spreading it out evenly.
- Transfer the baking dish to the oven and bake until the middle is set, the oats are moist, and the top is golden brown.
- Once baked, remove from the oven, allow to cool slightly, and serve as is or with toppings of your choice.
Honestly, this carrot cake baked oatmeal is easy to make, nutritious, and absolutely delicious, and can easily be enjoyed for breakfast, brunch, snack, or dessert.
Red’s Nutrition Tip
Wondering what makes this carrot cake baked oatmeal healthy? Not only is it made with real food but it’s a well-balanced meal with complex carbohydrates, fiber, protein, and healthy fats. While the baked oatmeal itself has a moderate protein content, by serving it with cream cheese and yogurt topping or plain Greek yogurt you can easily create a healthy and balanced breakfast.
Cream Cheese Frosting for Baked Oatmeal
Believe it or not, you can make carrot cake baked oatmeal with high protein icing! By combining Greek yogurt with cream cheese and a drizzle of maple syrup you can create a protein-packed topping to make your carrot cake baked oatmeal taste more like a dessert than a healthy breakfast, while still being incredibly good for you.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Cream Cheese: You can use full-fat or low-fat cream cheese. For the best results, soften your cream cheese by bringing it to room temperature.
- Greek Yogurt: You can use full-fat or low-fat Greek yogurt, while I think plain works best, as it keeps the added sugar content down, vanilla Greek yogurt would also work very well. I opted to use Greek yogurt as it boosts the protein content, however, any style of yogurt will work.
- Maple Syrup: To add a little liquid sweetener.
- Vanilla Extract: To enhance the flavor.
- Salt: To enhance the sweetness.
Here’s how to make it:
- Combine the softened cream cheese, yogurt, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt in a medium mixing bowl,
- Give everything a good whisk until well combined and smooth,
- That’s it!
Once combined, the cream cheese topping can be served immediately with the carrot cake baked oatmeal and any leftovers can be stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
To Make it Gluten-Free: No adaptations are needed, the recipe is gluten-free. Just be sure to use certified gluten-free oats.
To Make it Dairy-Free: Swap the milk for almond milk, coconut milk, or the non-dairy milk of your choice.
To Make it Egg-Free: Omit the eggs and use 2 flax eggs instead.
To Make it Vegan: Swap the milk for dairy-free milk and swap the eggs for 2 flax eggs.
Yes! You can turn this baked oatmeal into carrot cake oatmeal cups by transferring the oat mixture to a greased muffin tin as opposed to a baking dish and baking it in the oven at 375°F for 20-25 minutes.
Yup! To make carrot cake baked oatmeal bars, bake the oats in a baking dish as per the directions, allow to cool completely, and then slice the baked oatmeal into 8 evenly shaped bars.
Absolutely. This carrot cake baked oatmeal makes 6 servings so simply divide the ingredients by 6, prepare the batter as per the directions, then add the oat mixture to a single-serve baking dish or large ramekin, and bake in the oven at 375°F for 30-35 minutes.
Storage + Reheating
To Store: Once baked and cooled, this carrot cake baked oatmeal can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
To Freeze: Once cooled completely, the baked oatmeal can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. To freeze the baked oatmeal whole, cover the baking dish with plastic wrap and/or aluminum foil and then place the entire baking dish in a freezer-safe bag. To freeze leftovers or individual portions, transfer the baked oatmeal into single-serving airtight containers and transfer them to the freezer.
To Reheat: To reheat the baked oatmeal whole, cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and warm it in the oven at 350°F for 10-15 minutes. To reheat individual portions, place the portion in an oven-proof baking dish in the oven for 5-10 minutes or in the microwave in a microwave-safe dish for 1-2 minutes. To reheat the baked oatmeal from frozen, allow it to thaw in the refrigerator or at room temperature and then reheat it in the oven or microwave as per the above directions.
More Healthy Baked Oatmeal Recipes:Print
Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal
This healthy carrot cake baked oatmeal with cream cheese topping feels like you’re having dessert for breakfast! This recipe is a great meal prep breakfast that is gluten-free and vegetarian.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Total Time: 50 minutes
- Yield: 6 slices 1x
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: Baked
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Gluten Free
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 pinch ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup finely grated carrots
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/4 cup walnuts or pecans, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup shredded coconut
- 2 eggs, whisked
- 2 cups milk
- 1/4 cup maple syrup or brown sugar, packed
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cream Cheese Topping :
- 2 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 pinch salt
- Preheat the oven to 375°F and grease a 9×9 inch baking dish or pan with a little olive oil or cooking spray.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients; rolled oats, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, baking powder, and salt, and stir to combine.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the grated carrots and wet ingredients; eggs, milk, maple syrup, olive oil, and vanilla extract, and whisk to combine.
- Add the dry ingredients to the bowl of wet ingredients and fold gently until well combined. Then add raisins, nuts, and shredded coconut, and fold again until well incorporated.
- Once mixed, transfer the oatmeal mixture to the baking dish, spreading it out evenly.
- Transfer the baking dish to the oven to bake for 35-40 minutes until the middle is set and the top is golden brown.
- While the oatmeal is baking, in a medium mixing bowl, add the softened cream cheese, Greek yogurt, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and a tiny pinch of salt, and whisk until well combined. Set aside.
- Once cooked, remove the baked oatmeal from the oven and allow it to cool slightly before serving it with the cream cheese topping.
- Once cooled completely, leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- Serving Size: 1 slice with topping
- Calories: 436 calories
- Sugar: 23 grams
- Fat: 19 grams
- Carbohydrates: 50 grams
- Fiber: 6 grams
- Protein: 13 grams