Carrot Cake with Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting

*Prep-20 m
*Cook-45 m
*Ready In-10 h 5m

    cooking spray
    -2 cups all-purpose flour
   - 2 teaspoons baking soda
   -2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    -1/2 teaspoon salt
   - 2 eggs
    -1 1/2 cups white sugar
    -3/4 cup buttermilk
   - 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
    -2 tablespoons vegetable oil
   -2 teaspoons vanilla extract
   - 2 1/2 cups grated carrots
   - 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
   -1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple in juice, drained and juice reserved

   - 1 (8 ounce) package Neufchatel cheese, softened
    -1 tablespoon reserved pineapple juice
  - 1 (16 ounce) package confectioners' sugar
    -1 teaspoon vanilla extract
   - 1 pinch salt
       1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
      2.Sift flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon salt together in a bowl. Lightly beat eggs in a bowl; add white sugar, buttermilk, applesauce, oil, and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract and mix well. Stir buttermilk mixture, carrots, pecans, and drained pineapple into flour mixture just until mixed; pour into prepared dish.
       3. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool cake in baking dish on a wire rack, about 1 hour. Cover dish tightly with plastic wrap; refrigerate 8 hours to overnight.
      4. Beat Neufchatel cheese and 1 tablespoon reserved pineapple juice together in a bowl with an electric mixer until smooth; add confectioners' sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1 pinch salt and beat until frosting is smooth. Spread frosting on cake.

  Cook's Note:
    Substitute 1/4 cup silken tofu for eggs if desired.
    Two 8- or 9-inch baking pans can be used instead of 9x13-inch if desired. The next day, gently remove cakes from the pans and prepare to frost them.
    Walnuts can be used in place of pecans.



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