Vegan Chocolate Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

4-inch diameter 2-layer chocolate cake with white frosting on a blue and white plate on a kitchen counter
I'm not the best cake decorator, but this cake is tasty!

My Favorite Cake

Vegan chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting

Today* is my birthday, so I baked my favorite cake for myself. This cake can be made as cupcakes, a sheet cake, or layer cake. I have 4-inch diameter cake pans that I like to use for this purpose. This recipe made 3 of those plus 4 cupcakes. I'll eat the one layer cake and freeze the rest.


All the ingredients in their original packaging on a counter

Wet ingredients:

1 cup unsweetened soy milk*
⅓ cup applesauce
2 Tbsp canola oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

Dry ingredients:

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (or all purpose flour)
½ cup raw cacao powder
¾ cup cane sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt

*The combination of the soy milk and vinegar and baking soda/powder is what makes the cake rise. Soy works best here because it needs enough protein for the chemical reaction. You could also do half soy and half another kind of milk, like almond or coconut, or substitute all of it with another high protein vegan milk (not almond, coconut, or rice).


Whisk together all wet ingredients except apple cider vinegar. Add vinegar and stir. Set aside. Whisk together all dry ingredients. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just moistened. Don’t over-stir; some lumps are okay. Pour into muffin or cake pans and bake in a preheated 350 F oven. Bake until toothpick comes out clean or nearly clean - 18-20 minutes for cupcakes, 25-30 minutes for 4-inch mini cakes, 35-40 minutes for 8-inch cakes.

Let cool completely before frosting.



¼ cup vegan butter
¼ cup vegan cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract


Using an electric mixer, combine ingredients until blended and fluffy. Adjust proportions to taste. 

*I wrote this on my birthday in 2018 and didn't bother to publish until 2-1/2 years later. 


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