Sunday Times Food Awards

Where to buy SA's tastiest carrot cake

In a quest to help you buy the best, our panel of tasters put ready-made carrot cakes from leading supermarkets to the test

10 September 2017 - 00:00 By Hilary Biller
Carrot cake is always a crowd-pleaser.
Carrot cake is always a crowd-pleaser.
Image: iStock


It's free and fair!

Taste is a subjective thing, we know, but if you gather a group of people - as we did with 40 Sunday Times readers - and ask them to blind-taste carrot cakes from leading supermarkets, you will come to an agreement on the winners and the losers.

The panel of tasters were presented with each of the products "naked" without any branding or packaging. They were asked to judge them according to their appearance, taste and texture and to say whether they would buy them or not.

To be sure of fairness, auditor Jade Craig oversaw the event and tallied the scores. 

From top tier down: carrot cake from Pick n Pay, Woolworths (left), Spar (right) and Checkers.
From top tier down: carrot cake from Pick n Pay, Woolworths (left), Spar (right) and Checkers.


FIRST PLACE: Pick n Pay Carrot cake

Price: R15.99 per slice

Judges's comments:

  • Wendy: Best-looking of all carrot cakes, I loved the layer of icing in the middle.
  • Val: It looks good and has enough carrots for a carrot cake.
  • Denise: My favourite — moist, and icing divine.

SECOND PLACE: Woolworths Carrot cake

Price: R39.99 per loaf

Judges's comments:

  • Ntyiso: The icing is very tasty and complements the cake.
  • Chantal: The cake outperformed all the other carrot cakes.
  • Judy: OK, but wouldn’t go overboard to buy it.
  • Tracy: Lemony icing, nuts on top, lovely taste.

THIRD PLACE: SPAR Freshline Iced carrot cake

Price: R35.99

Judges's comments:

  • Ntyiso: Looks great but something is missing in the taste.
  • Chantal: Glacé icing rather than rich cream cheese carrot cake icing.
  • Lisa: There’s no trace of nuts except a few on top.

FOURTH PLACE: Checkers Carrot cake slices 

Price: R29.99 for 5

Judges's comments:

  • Tracy: Great cinnamon on top. Very fine pieces of carrot.
  • Aadila: Lacks fruit and nuts. Icing is quite thick.
  • Miranda: Too dry and shape is not like a carrot cake.