The fluffiest Vegan Vanilla Cake made without any weird ingredients. Soft and tender vanilla cake topped with vanilla frosting and sprinkles. This easy one bowl vegan cake is made without eggs, butter or milk!
Meet my Vegan Vanilla Cake.
A soft and fluffy one bowl Vanilla Cake that’s made without butter, eggs or milk. Topped with a creamy vanilla frosting, it’s hard to believe it’s egg-free, dairy-free and vegan.
Whether you’re following a vegan diet, baking for allergies or have simply run out of eggs, this Vegan Vanilla Cake is sure to satisfy.
My, my, my, this cake really tested my limits. If you follow along on Instagram, you would have seen it took 8 attempts to get this cake just right.
Despite having a delicious Chocolate Vegan Cake recipe to start from, I quickly discovered that while cocoa covers everything, vanilla leaves you no place to hide.
I ended up with vanilla cakes that were crispy like cookies, some were stodgy in the middle, others tasted like oil.
I was beginning to think it couldn’t be done. But finally, the right combination of ingredients resulted in a lovely, soft cake with a beautiful texture. Even I was surprised!
Just like my favourite Apple Cake, this recipe relies on oil for moisture. Without being able to use dairy to ensure a light texture, we instead use the combination of almond milk and white vinegar. And a generous amount of vanilla extract ensures the vanilla flavour really comes through.
I will be honest, in my opinion, this cake doesn’t level up to a beautiful, buttery Vanilla Cake, but it is a wonderful vegan option. You can also throw it together so quickly, seeing as it is just a mix and stir recipe. And it’s fantastic as an egg free cake alternative.
Why you will love this Vegan Vanilla Cake
- Quick and easy
- Simple one bowl cake
- No weird ingredients
- Uses only pantry staples
How to make Vegan Vanilla Cake
- This easy cake comes together in minutes. No electric mixer needed.
- Start by adding your white vinegar to your almond milk and setting it aside for 5 minutes to curdle.
- In a large mixing bowl, add flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Gently whisk to combine.
- Next, add oil, vanilla and milk to the dry ingredients and combine using a whisk until smooth and creamy. Batter will be thin and runny – this is ok.
- Bake cake for 30-35 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
- Leave to cool completely before topping with vegan vanilla frosting.
Bake your cake straight away
Once the baking soda and vinegar meet they will start to react, which means you need to get your cake in the oven pronto. Don’t let your cake batter sit for any length of time or your cake won’t be soft and tender.
For best results, I do recommend following the recipe as it is written. However, below I’ve detailed the ingredients and what can and can’t be changed.
- White vinegar: You can use either white vinegar or apple cider vinegar in this recipe. Both will yield similar results. DO NOT leave this ingredient out. It is very important in creating a light and fluffy cake as it reacts with the baking soda.
- Almond milk: I tested this recipe using almond milk. If you can’t use almond milk due to a nut allergy, you could try another plant based milk like soy. But I found almond milk yielded great results.
- Plain flour: Use either plain flour or all purpose flour in this recipe.
- Caster sugar: Use either caster sugar or granulated sugar in this recipe. I haven’t tested the recipe with coconut sugar or any sugar alternatives. Keep in mind that sugar doesn’t just add sweetness to baked goods, it adds moisture, texture and colour too.
- Baking powder and baking soda: I did test this recipe using only baking powder and only baking soda, but I found the combination of both definitely resulted in the best cake. Remember to regularly check the expiration dates on your raising agents.
- Vegetable oil: I have only tested this recipe using vegetable oil, but I’m sure other flavourless oils would also work.
- Vanilla extract: Use vanilla extract, rather than vanilla essence, for optimal vanilla flavour. Don’t skimp, otherwise your cake will be rather bland.
Change up the flavours
You can easily use this cake recipe as a base but add fresh blueberries, zest of a lemon, or a handful of chocolate chips. Or if you prefer a chocolate version, try my Vegan Chocolate Cake.
More vegan recipes to try
Soft and fluffy Vegan Vanilla Cake made without, eggs, butter or milk.
Vegan vanilla cake
- 240 ml (1 cup) almond milk*
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 210 grams (1 and 1/2 cups) plain flour or all purpose flour, sifted
- 150 grams (3/4 cup) caster sugar or granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- 80 ml (1/3 cup) vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Vegan vanilla frosting
- 115 grams (1/2 cup) block of vegan butter (not spreadable), softened*
- 250 grams (2 cups) icing or powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon almond milk, if needed
- Sprinkles, optional
- Preheat oven to 180 C (350 F) standard / 160 C (320 F) fan-forced. Grease and line a 8-inch cake pan with baking or parchment paper.
- Add together almond milk and vinegar and set aside to curdle for 5 minutes. In a large mixing bowl, add flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk briefly.
- Make a well in the middle of your dry ingredients. Add oil, vanilla and all the milk. Whisk until combined. Your cake batter will appear thin – this is ok.
- Transfer batter to cake pan and place in the oven. Bake for approximately 30-35 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool completely.
- To make your vanilla frosting, add vegan butter to a large mixing bowl. Use an electric mixer to beat on a low speed for 30 seconds or so, just until soft and creamy. Add sugar and vanilla. Beat until a soft frosting forms. If it’s too thick, add a touch of almond milk. If your frosting is too soft, place it in the fridge to firm up before frosting your cake.
- Use a spatula to frost the top of your cake and decorate with sprinkles, if using.
1. I tested this recipe using almond milk, however, other plant based milks, such as soy, should also work. See above in post for full substitution guidelines.
2. I find that vegan butters are naturally very soft since they are usually made with oil. Unlike regular butter, you may not need to softened your butter for long (even just 10-15 minutes out of the fridge) before using it. Use your judgement!