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Vegan Birthday Cake

This fun cake was a fun afternoon activity for my three year old and I. Since he is currently off of dairy and eggs, I googled easy vegan vanilla cake, and this recipe from the Cake Merchant came up. The recipe was intended for a 3-layer 6 inch cake, but since I only had one cake pan, but it was a big one (9 inch), I thought the math might work out and I could still make the same amount of batter. And I would say it did! Not only was this cake delicious and moist, but it was firm enough that my son and I were able to have fun icing it together without it falling apart. Here is the ingredient list the Cake Merchant suggests, which I used:


  • 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) non-dairy milk (soy, almond, rice)
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (230 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons (110 ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
  • 2 cups (250 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

She also has a vegan icing recipe, but since I didn’t have all of the ingredients she used on hand, I used another vegan buttercream made with coconut oil from Craftsy.

As for the instructions on how to make the cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
  2. Grease and line the baking pan(s) with parchment paper.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together by hand or mixer the non-dairy milk and vinegar. Let stand for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the sugar, oil, and vanilla extract, and whisk together until the mixture becomes frothy.
  5. Sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  6. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk together until the flour mixture disappears.
  7. Divide the batter evenly between the pans (or one large pan like I did) and bake for 22-25 minutes (I baked for 35 minutes since I was using a bigger, deeper pan), or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  8. Cool the pans on wire racks for about 15 minutes. Then turn the cakes out of the pans onto the wire racks and cool completely before frosting.

I actually put my cake into the fridge so it would be nice and chilled before we frosted it. Also, it was a hot summer day, so there wasn’t much “cooling” happening on top of my counter. Then after I made the vegan buttercream from the Craftsy website (I added a bit more coconut milk to make it more easily spreadable) then we went to town decorating. This cake wasn’t as beautiful as the one from the Cake Merchant because it was much flatter than her beautiful 3-layered cake, but the recipe was still super tasty and I had fun making it with my son. By the way, a small hack for making fun shapes on your cake is to use whatever cookie cutters you have on hand and let your child shake the sprinkles inside of the cutters after your place the cutters on top of the cake. Ideally, do this before the icing sets 😉


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“Vegan Birthday Cake”

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