Vegan Coffee Cake
This vegan coffee cake is sweet and moist with a subtle coffee flavour, and is topped with a deliciously fragrant buttercream. Whether you’re addicted to your morning cuppa or just like to enjoy a coffee now and again, you’re going to love this easy eggless cake!
I have a confession…
I have never drunk a whole cup of coffee in my life.
The only time I’ve had more than a sip of coffee is when I accidentally picked up the wrong order in a cafe and didn’t want to waste it.
It’s one of those things that I really want to like because a morning coffee seems so much more exciting, and way cooler, than a cup of chamomile tea.
But not only am I super sensitive to caffeine (even green tea makes me jittery!), I just can’t quite push myself through the bitterness of it all.
My solution? Mix it with lots of sugar and frosting and enjoy it in a tasty vegan coffee cake!
Almost everyone that I know and love enjoys a good cup of coffee most days. So, I thought this would be the perfect treat to share with them all. I even had a couple of small slices myself and wasn’t affected by the caffeine. (Wild, I know!)
In some other countries, coffee cake doesn’t actually contain any coffee. It’s more of a sweet companion to eat alongside your cup of coffee. But in the UK (at least, this is the way I do it) it is an actual coffee-flavoured cake!
How To Make Vegan Coffee Cake
Preheat your oven and prepare your cake tins.
Your oven will need to be set at 180°C/350°F (or 160°C/325°F if using a fan/convection oven), and you’ll need to prepare two 7-inch round cake tins. I greased and floured my tins a little then lined the bottom of them with baking paper.
Next, make your dairy-free buttermilk. Using this is what helps the cake to rise whilst staying nice and moist inside.
To make your buttermilk, pour 280ml of unsweetened soy milk (1 cup + 2 tablespoons) into a small mug and add 2 teaspoons of vinegar (you can use either white vinegar or apple cider vinegar). Give it a quick mix and set it aside for 5 minutes or so. It should become slightly thick or curdled.
Next, it’s time to prepare the coffee, the star of the show! In a small cup or bowl, mix together 1 tablespoon of boiling water with 1 tablespoon of instant coffee granules. I used M&S gold granules.
Set it aside for a few minutes to give it a chance to cool down. You don’t want it to be hot when you add it to the rest of the ingredients because it’ll cause the flour to start cooking!
While the coffee is cooling, you can begin to make your sponge cake mix.
In a large bowl, mix together 250g of self-raising flour (2 cups), 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda and 200g of caster/superfine sugar (1 cup). Add in the “buttermilk” and the cold coffee from earlier along with 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract and 100ml of vegetable oil (7 tablespoons). Mix well until you have a smooth and creamy eggless coffee cake batter.
Divide the batter equally between your two cake tins and use the back of your spoon to make sure the batter is evenly distributed (this will help to avoid lopsided cakes!). Bake for 15-18 minutes until a toothpick through the centre comes out clean.
Once baked, allow the cakes to sit in the tins for around 10 minutes then gently flip them out onto a cooling rack. Leave them to cool completely.
While the cakes are cooling, it’s time to make the dairy-free coffee buttercream. Mix 1-2 teaspoons of instant coffee granules with equal amounts of boiling water. Set it aside to cool completely. Do not add it to the buttercream while it’s warm as it will cause it to split.
If you’re like me and don’t particularly like the strong, bitter flavour of coffee then 1 teaspoon will suffice. I personally liked that my frosting had just a slight hint. For a stronger flavoured buttercream, simply add more cooled coffee. You may also need to add more icing sugar to the recipe if you use more coffee.
Once the coffee is completely cold, mix it together in a large bowl with 120g of cold dairy-free margarine (1/2 cup) and 300g of icing sugar (~2 + 1/2 cups). I’d recommend using a wooden spoon until it’s mixed in properly, then giving it a quick mix with an electric whisk for a minute or so to make it fluffy.
If your dairy-free buttercream is too soft, add more icing sugar. If it’s too firm, add a splash of soy milk to help loosen it.
Assembling the cake
Place your first cake layer onto a cake board, stand or plate and spread a thick layer of the buttercream frosting on top.
Add the second eggless coffee cake layer on top then spread another thick layer of frosting. I used the end of my palette knife to create some texture on the top layer.
If you want to be extra fancy, you can use any remaining buttercream to pipe swirl decorations around the edges of the cake but obviously, this isn’t essential!
Leave the whole cake to sit in a cool, dry place for around 1 hour. This will allow the buttercream to stiffen up. Then, just cut into slices and enjoy!
Store it in an airtight container and keep it in a cool, dry place such as a kitchen cupboard. As long as it doesn’t get too warm, the buttercream will hold firm. You can also put it in the fridge if you like but I find this makes the texture a bit more dense and less fluffy. It will last for around 3-4 days so make sure to eat it up before then.
Yes! As I always do with my cakes, I froze this in an airtight container, with the frosting already on. It tastes just as moist, fluffy and delicious after it’s defrosted! I’d recommend storing it in slices rather than as a whole cake. To defrost, just pop the slices on a plate and leave at room temperature until fully thawed. Do not refreeze.
Absolutely! The coffee is only there for the flavour. Decaf would be a good option for anyone sensitive to caffeine.
More vegan cake recipes
- Chocolate cake
- Biscoff cake
- Lemon drizzle cake
- Red velvet cake
- Vanilla sheet cake
- Coffee and walnut sheet cake
Hope you enjoy this eggless coffee cake and if you make it yourself, please leave a comment or rating to let me know how it goes! Happy baking! xo
Vegan Coffee Cake
An eggless coffee cake with fragrant dairy-free coffee buttercream frosting.
For the sponge:
- 280 ml Soy milk (1 cup + 2 tablespoons)
- 2 Teaspoons Apple cider vinegar (or white vinegar)
- 1 Tablespoon Instant coffee granules
- 250 g Self-raising flour (~2 cups)
- ½ Teaspoon Baking soda (bicarbonate of soda)
- 200 g Caster sugar (1 cup)
- 100 ml Vegetable oil (7 tablespoons)
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla extract
For the dairy-free coffee buttercream:
- 1 Teaspoon Instant coffee granules
- 120 g Dairy-free margarine (½ cup)
- 300 g Icing sugar (2 + ½ cups)
For the sponge:
Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F (160°C/325°F if using a fan or convection oven). Grease or line two 7-inch round cake tins.
Mix the soy milk and vinegar and set side for a few minutes. This will act as vegan buttermilk.
Mix the coffee granules with 1 tablespoon of boiling water and leave it to cool.
In a separate, large bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda and sugar.
Now add in the buttermilk and the cooled coffee, along with the vegetable oil and vanilla. Mix well until you have a smooth and creamy batter.
Divide the cake batter between the two tins and use the back of a spoon to make sure it's evenly distributed.
Bake for 15-18 minutes, until a toothpick or knife through the centre comes out clean.
Leave the cakes in the tins for 10 minutes, then flip them out onto a cooling rack and let them cool completely.
For the buttercream frosting:
Mix the coffee granules with 1 teaspoon of boiling water and set it aside to cool. If you want your coffee cake to taste a bit stronger, just increase the amount to taste.
In a large bowl, mix together the dairy-free margarine and icing sugar. I recommend mixing with a wooden spoon until it comes together, then whisking with an electric whisk for a minute or two to make it fluffy.
Add in your cooled coffee and gently stir it in.*
Place your first cooled cake onto a plate, board or cake stand. Using a palette knife or spatula, spread a thick later of buttercream frosting over the top.
Add your second cake on top and spread another thick layer of frosting on top of that. You can use any leftover frosting to pipe buttercream swirls around the top if you wish.
Allow the cake to sit for 1 hour so the frosting becomes firm. Then cut into slices and enjoy!
- *The coffee must be completely cold otherwise the buttercream will split.
- Use vegan margarine, not vegan butter (block). Using it straight from the fridge will give you best results and prevent greasy buttercream.
- Store in an airtight container for up to 4 days.