Looking for the BEST Vegan Chocolate Cake in all of the land? Look no further because you have found it!
Well, kids, today I’m bringing you something amazing you can bake for the one you love on Valentine’s Day. Or Saint Patrick’s Day. Or Mother’s Day.
Whatever the day, when you need a Vegan Chocolate Cake, I’ve got the recipe for you.
Whenever I have a special day that calls for a no-holds-barred chocolate cake, I will typically make Beatty’s Chocolate Cake from Ina Garten. That recipe has never let me down.
Then I had a request for a vegan chocolate birthday cake. Could I veganize Ina’s iconic chocolate cake recipe? (That baby has over 2,000 positive reviews, it’s a tried-and-true classic.)
The bigger question: would it be just as good?
It took some tinkering and trials (waaaay too much chocolate cake has been consumed at my house in a two week period…) but I have landed on a recipe for the BEST Vegan Chocolate Cake.
Nobody will even know it’s vegan if you don’t tell them.
How to Make Vegan Chocolate Cake from Scratch
It is 100% worth it to make your vegan chocolate cake from scratch. I promise you that it’s worth the extra effort. The substitutions are probably ingredients you have, if not, they are easy to get.
The buttermilk was easy to replace with unsweetened almond milk with vinegar added. You can use white vinegar or apple cider vinegar.
The eggs were trickier, but applesauce ended up being the best substitute in terms of not altering the flavor and lending the best texture. Other ingredients I tried made a more dense cake, so I definitely recommend making your vegan chocolate cake with applesauce.
As I was testing recipes, I tried different ways to make it a healthier chocolate cake, also. (Vegan doesn’t automatically mean it’s healthy. Sugar is vegan. ;-)) Here’s what I found:
- Whole wheat pastry flour works just as well as all-purpose flour, with hardly any noticeable difference in taste or texture.
- I tried Swerve ( erythritol, a sugar alcohol which is natural and has no calories or sugar) as a replacement for the sugar and it worked well.
The winning cake was light, moist, and had intense chocolate flavor. You’ll notice there’s coffee in the recipe and that’s what help bring out the chocolate flavor. You don’t taste even a hint of coffee.
I used this vegan chocolate ganache recipe for the frosting and it was amazing! I love a deep, fudgy chocolate frosting recipe over a too-sweet buttercream any day of the week.
Feel free to use a different frosting recipe if you prefer. I also added some crushed freeze dried strawberries to the top for their pop of color since it does happen to be Valentine’s Day week when I’m publishing this. It was an easy way to add some prettiness to the cake since my cake-decorating skills are null.
Ready to do this?!
How to make the Best Vegan Chocolate Cake
The BEST Vegan Chocolate Cake
This is the BEST Vegan Chocolate Cake recipe–moist, intensely flavored, and perfectly light.
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
- Yield: 8 servings
- coconut oil, for greasing pans
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose or whole wheat pastry flour
- 2 cups sugar or erythritol
- 3/4 cups cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup unsweetened almond milk, plus 1 tablespoon vinegar, mixed together and allowed to sit for a few minutes before using
- 1/2 cup avocado oil
- 2/3 cup unsweetened apple sauce
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup freshly brewed hot coffee
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use coconut oil to grease two 8-inch x 2-inch round cake pans. Line the pans with parchment paper, and then grease with more coconut oil and dust with flour.
- Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until combined.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the unsweetened almond milk with vinegar, oil, applesauce, and vanilla.
- With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. With mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. After cooling in the pans for 30 minutes, turn the cakes out onto a cooling rack and cool completely. The two layers may be frosted once the cake is completely cooled. Enjoy!
*Nutritional information is for the healthiest way to make this cake, which is whole wheat pastry flour and erythritol. Note that it will change if you use regular sugar and all purpose flour.
- Serving Size: 1 piece
- Calories: 235
- Sugar: 0.3 grams
- Fat: 15.7 grams
- Carbohydrates: 84 grams
- Protein: 5.2 grams
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