You won’t have any will power once this Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake hits your mouth! We are giving the traditional Gooey Butter Cake a spring twist with all the flavors of our favorite carrot cake! It’s a spice cake chock-full of real carrots with cream cheese and pecan gooey filling to put it over the top!  One bite and you won’t be able to get this dessert off your mind.

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Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake

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Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake

No need to drive to St. Louis when you’re craving St Louis Gooey Butter Cake! Now you can make it at home in no time at all!

Get ready to dive into spring with this fun twist on this gooey delectable midwest staple! This Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake will be your new favorite dessert from the moment you sink your teeth into it. There’s truly no resisting the moist cake bottom, rich gooey filling, and crunchy pecan topping!

No crazy ingredients, tools, or time needed to make your sweet tooth dreams come true with this one! Grab your favorite spice cake mix, some fresh carrots, and a lot of pecans for a gooey butter cake that’s perfect for Easter, Mother’s Day, or just any day you need an excuse to eat cake! 

Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake on plate

What is Gooey Butter Cake? 

If you’re not from St.Louis, you might be scratching your head right now saying to yourself “what the heck is gooey butter cake?” Well, let me enlighten you! 

Gooey butter cake is a St.Louis staple that was eventually made popular when a recipe appeared in a Paula Dean cookbook. While the queen of all things butter might have popularized the dish, don’t be mistaken, this cake stared out in St.Louis. 

Gooey butter cake can be described as a flat and dense cake made with cake flour, butter, sugar, and eggs, typically near an inch tall, and dusted with powdered sugar. While sweet and rich, it is somewhat firm and is able to be cut into pieces similar to a brownie.

Essentially it’s little squares of heaven!

Is This the Same As Chess Squares? 

Pretty much! You may know this dessert by its other name, chess squares.  Like gooey butter cake, the classic version uses a yellow cake mix for the crust and a sweet cream cheese layer on top. 

Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake in cake pan

How To Make A Perfect Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake

Thanks to the help of a cake mix, this recipe is a piece of cake, literally! 😉 Just look at how simple these instructions are! So easy, you could even let the kids take charge with this one. 

Simply preheat oven and grease a 9x13x2 cake pan. In a large bowl, combine a spice cake mix, egg, melted butter, and carrots until well combined. Using clean hands, press the dough into the prepared pan with your fingers and set aside. You’ll then begin to blend, with an electric mixer, the cream cheese, beaten eggs, and powdered sugar until smooth.

Fold in the chopped pecans and spread the filling over the first dough layer. Once the filling has been poured over the dough, bake until edges are brown. Then, let the cake cool cake on cooling rack. Lastly, dust with powdered sugar, sprinkle with remaining chopped pecans, and enjoy!

Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake with fork

Gooey Butter Secrets From A True St. Louisan 

  • It’s best a couple of days old: If you really have experience with gooey butter cake then you’ll know that it’s always better a few days after you make it. Those extra couple days really allows the flavors to seep into each other and make for the best taste and a crispier edge. 
  • Don’t be afraid to use a cake mix: I love a good homemade recipe, but sometimes it’s worth it to take the shortcut and use a cake mix. Trust me, this recipe is just as good whether it’s a homemade crust or a cake mix crust, so don’t be afraid to save yourself some time and effort! 
  • Completely soften the cream cheese: I cannot stress enough the importance of fully softening cream cheese. If it’s not completely room temp you will end up with a gross lumpy filling, and no one wants that. I suggest letting your cream cheese sit on the counter for at least a few hours to be at the perfect temperature. 
  • Have fun with the flavors: What I love about gooey butter cake is that you can really make it your own! While you should definitely try this carrot cake version, don’t be afraid to mix it up and try other flavors, like Nutella Gooey Butter Cake, or Chocolate Chip Gooey Butter Cake.

Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake on plates

Spring Isn’t Complete Without These Spring Dessert Recipes!

Easy Meyer Lemon Pie  This recipe packs a ton of sweet lemon flavor with a fluffy texture. A simple homemade dessert perfect for spring. The pie is not overly sweet and has plenty of citrus love all the way through to the homemade whipped cream on top! 

Layered Pineapple Cake This pineapple cake is a tropical dream! Soft, white cake has a hint of rum and pineapple baked right in and is filled with a tangy pineapple filling. The cake is decorated with pineapple rum buttercream and macadamia nuts!

No-Bake Raspberry Cheesecake With Cookie Crust The perfect make-ahead dessert for a summer BBQ or potluck.  A thick chocolate chip cookie crust with a layer of fluffy no-bake cheesecake is topped with raspberry gelatin for a crowd-pleasing treat. 

Frozen Banana Split Dessert This make-ahead frozen dessert recipe is perfect for springtime or summertime potlucks, parties, showers, or gatherings. It takes very little work to make ahead, freeze, and then pull from the freezer when you’re ready to serve.

Double Berry Cheesecake Lush It all starts with a golden Oreo cookie crust. The cookie crust is topped with a cream cheese and whipped topping layer, then a cheesecake pudding layer, topped with strawberries and raspberries and finished with more whipped topping and berries. Pure bliss, I tell you!!

Key Lime Oreo Truffle Cream Pie A no-bake pie that starts with a graham cracker crust filled with a layer of rich Key Lime Oreo truffle filling and a layer of tangy white chocolatey mousse filling!

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This Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake Will Put A Spring in Your Step

Nothing says spring like a good carrot dessert, with plenty of cream cheese filling! It’s simplistic, yet bold flavors make this carrot cake gooey butter cake a top notch party dessert.

Bring it to your next family event, or holiday brunch and no one will be able to stop raving about it! I know you’re going to live it as much as I do!

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 Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake

Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake

Yield: 12 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

You won't have any will power once this Carrot Cake Gooey Butter Cake hits your mouth! We are giving the traditional Gooey Butter Cake a spring twist with all the flavors of our favorite carrot cake! It's a spice cake chock-full of real carrots with cream cheese and pecan gooey filling to put it over the top! 


  • 1 Box Spice Cake Mix
  • 1 large Egg
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
  • 1½ cups finely grated carrots

For Filling:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups powdered sugar (+ extra for dusting)
  • 1¼ cup chopped pecans (divided)


  1. Preheat oven to 325° F and grease a 9x13x2 cake pan.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, 1 egg and melted butter and carrots until well combined (it should be a thick dough).
  3. Using clean hands press the dough into the prepared pan with your fingers.
  4. Using an electric mixer, blend, cream cheese, 2 beaten eggs, and powdered sugar until smooth. Fold in 3/4 cups of the chopped pecans.
  5. Spread filling over first dough layer.
  6. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until edges are brown.
  7. Cool cake on cooling rack. Dust with powdered sugar and sprinkle with remaining chopped pecans after cake has cooled completely. Enjoy!


I like to make this a day or so ahead of time, because I actually like it better when it’s a day or two old the gooey center firms up more.

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