Your Guide to the Sweetest Carrot Cake in the Hudson Valley

Carrot cake is a classic, and for good reason. Here's where to get your fix around the Hudson Valley.

From wedding cakes to just because sweet treats, the bakeries of the Hudson Valley stock some of the most crave-worthy and moist carrot cakes, carrot cupcakes, carrot cake muffins, and carrot cake donuts around.

Carrot cake is believed to have originated sometime in the Middle Ages, as sugars were expensive and scarce at the time. To get around this, many used carrots as a substitute to sweeten. The story of carrot cake also has a 19th-century French connection involving a tale in which a French king commissioned a chef to make a dessert similar to pumpkin pie substituting carrot and a few other ingredients. Then, there are also ties to Switzerland, which featured carrots over chocolate in cake as a healthier alternative to prevent cavities in children.

Regardless of which origin story strikes your fancy, there’s no denying the carrot cake desserts of the Hudson Valley are downright delicious. Here’s where to find the sweet treats locally:

Apple Pie Bakery Café

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The Culinary Institute of America, 1946 Campus Dr, Hyde Park; 845.905.4500

If you’re looking for the perfect bite to satisfy that sweet craving, try Apple Pie Bakery Café’s carrot cake muffin. This vegan treat is made by the student-run and faculty-led teaching restaurants at the Culinary Institute of America and is priced at $3.50.

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Caked Up!

40 S Main St, New City; 845.499.2929

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This New City hotspot has so many flavors on offer that the best question to ask is “What don’t they offer?” Unsurprisingly, carrot cake makes an appearance on the lineup, and it comes in cupcake, cake, and cake jar form. No matter which format makes your taste buds sing, you’ll adore savoring the moist cake paired with ultra-indulgent cream cheese buttercream.

The Cakery

1004 Main St #11, Fishkill; 845.202.7281

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What began as a home bakery focusing on baked goods served “on a stick” has blossomed into Fishkill’s The Cakery, home to decadent desserts and flavors galore. Order a 4” or up to a 10” carrot cake with cream cheese filling and 50/50 cream cheese and vanilla buttercream icing with buttercream carrots, with or without walnuts.

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Hudson Valley Cheesecake

257 Liberty St, Newburgh; 845.633.8900

Handmade artisan cheesecakes? Now, imagine a creamy carrot cake cheesecake…it’s a yes for us! Hudson Valley Cheesecake’s carrot cake cheesecake is chock-full of carrots and spices and topped with fresh cream with cinnamon, walnuts, and raisins.

Maxine’s Catering & Bittersweet Bakers

1258 Rock Hill Rd, Accord; 845.626.2762

This one goes out to folks looking for custom-order wedding cakes or special occasion cakes and desserts. Maxine’s Catering & Bittersweet Bakers aims to help make client visions come to life. If you choose the carrot cake flavor for your special event cake, look forward to notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cardamon, and allspice throughout each slice.

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Nothing Bundt Cakes

10 Wolf Rd Unit 2, Albany; 518.459.2253

What is more beautiful than a bundt-shaped cake? Now, imagine it being carrot cake…with carrot and pineapple pieces baked into it. And don’t forget the warm cinnamon and nutmeg notes! Nothing Bundt Cakes has several products, including bundt cakes in 8″, 10″, and tiered bundt cake sizes. There are also bundtinis, which are a box of 12 mini bundt cakes, and bundtlets, a.k.a. individual bundt cakes.

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Overlook Bakery

105 Tinker St, Woodstock; 845.684.5898

All of Overlook Bakery’s treats and desserts are made from scratch and baked in-house right in Woodstock. Carrots, raisins, and toasted walnuts—oh my! Oh, and don’t forget about the cream cheese frosting. When you’re picking up your cake, be sure to order locally roasted Heavy Feather coffee and espresso drinks to go.

Carrot Cake at The Pastry Garden
Photo courtesy of The Pastry Garden

The Pastry Garden

2586-2600 South Rd #5, Poughkeepsie; 845.473.5220

The Pastry Garden has been around since 1984, starting as a family business. The bakery has been a top choice of sweet treat enthusiasts in the region and is a repeat Best of Hudson Valley winner. If you’re looking for a moist treat no matter the season, try The Pastry Garden’s carrot cake or carrot cupcakes filled and iced with walnut cream cheese. P.S. If you really love the treats, consider ordering a custom carrot cake for your wedding or other special occasion.

“The recipe is 40 years old and from an old German baker that I worked with when I was 23 years old, and we’ve never changed it,” shares Stephanie “Steph” Principe, owner of The Pastry Garden. “[It’s] more moist than the average carrot cake because a carrot cake can sometimes be dry.”

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Rabble Rise Doughnuts

138 Main St, New Paltz; 845.419.2278

A carrot cake donut? Consider us sold. Rabble Rise Doughnuts makes all donuts by hand and has cake, brioche, and sourdough varieties. The carrot cake donut is a fluffy sweet treat made with carrot brioche, cream cheese glaze, and carrot cake crumbles. Yum is an understatement.

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Shandaken Bake

6036 Main St, Tannersville

Shandaken Bake’s olive oil carrot cake is a gourmet riff on the beloved classic. The recipe is made with golden raisins, cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove, then topped with Meyer lemon cream cheese frosting. Shandaken Bake is open on Saturdays and Sundays.

Related: Shandaken Bake Tempts With Sweet Treats in Tannersville

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