I want to begin by saying that, if you haven’t checked out all of the delicious recipes available at minimalistbaker.com, you’re missing out! Dana’s recipes are always flavorful and easy. This vegan chocolate cake was no exception!
I was baking for a non-vegan crowd, so it was highly important to me to find a recipe that could win everyone over. Learning to bake vegan has been a learning process, but I’m so happy to report that this recipe made it incredibly simple, with delicious results!
I followed the recipe, but I have added a couple of my own notes to elaborate a bit where I felt it was necessary.
Two-Layer Vegan Chocolate Cake
1 1/2 Cups Unsweetened soy or almond milk
2 tsp White or apple cider vinegar
1 1/4 Cups Unsweetened applesauce
1/2 Cup Strong brewed coffee
2/3 Cup melted coconut oil (can sub grapeseed, but flavor will be slightly different)
2 tsp Vanilla extract
2 Cups + 2 Tbs Unbleached all-purpse flour
1 1/3 Cups Organic cane sugar
1 Cup Unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tsp Baking soda
1 tsp Baking powder
1/4 tsp Salt
1 Cup (16 Tbs) Vegan butter sticks, softened
2 1/2-3 Cups Powdered sugar
2/3 Cup Unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 Cup Semi-sweet chocolate, dairy-free, melted and slightly cooled
2 tsp Vanilla extract
1/4 Cup Unsweetened soy or almond milk
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly spray 2 8-inch round cake pans with nonstick spray Dust bottoms and sides of pans with cocoa powder, shake out the excess, and set aside.
- Mix the soy milk and vinegar in a large mixing bowl, and let set for a few minutes to activate. Add the oil, coffee, vanilla extract, and applesauce and beat until foamy. Note: If using coconut oil, it will likely clump up once added to the soy milk and vinegar mixture, do to it being chilled from the milk. All you have to do is add a little bit of heat to the bottom of the bowl while continuing to mix, just long enough to re-melt the oil. I used low heat on one of my burners, and held my metal bowl slightly above it for a minute or so. A hairdryer would also work.
- Add the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt to another bowl, whisk to combine, and add to the wet mixture a little at a time while beating continuously. Beat until no large lumps remain.
- Divide batter evenly between your 2 cake pans. Tap several times on counter top to release air bubbles.
- Bake 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Let cool in pans for 8-10 minutes, and then turn cake out onto cooling racks. Can also place pans in the freezer for 8-10 minutes, and then turn cakes out onto cooling racks. Letting sit much longer than 10 minutes will encourage the cake to stick, so don’t wait too long.
- While cooling, prepare frosting by beating together all ingredients until light and fluffy, adding the powdered sugar in small amounts until you reach your desired consistency and sweetness. If it becomes too thick, add more almond milk. If it’s too thin, add more cocoa powder or powdered sugar. Frosting can be stored in the refrigerator, but it should be at room temperature when frosting the cake.
- Once the cake is cooled, frost generously with buttercream frosting, adding a thick layer between the top and bottom layers.
I’m sure there are recipes or methods available to make a vegan cream cheese frosting using vegan cream cheeses, (there are many brands available). This hasn’t been tested by us yet, but hopefully will be in the furture!