Vegan Chocolate Cake: the decadent, vegan-friendly dessert recipe

Total time: 45 Min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 16 people
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By Cookist
for the cake
All-purpose flour
180 g
Cocoa powder
25 g
Granulated sugar
200 g
Baking powder
1 tsp
1/4 tsp
80 ml
Vanilla Extract
1/2 tsp
hot water
240 ml
White vinegar
1 tbsp
for the cocoa syrup
hot water
80 ml
Cocoa powder
1 tbsp
2 tbsp
Vanilla Extract
1/2 tsp
for the frosting
Powdered sugar
45 g
Cocoa powder
2 tbsp
Peanut butter
240 g

Vegan chocolate cake is a delicious, rich dessert recipe. It's super moist and fluffy as any classic chocolate cake, but it's vegan-friendly as it has no dairy or eggs. This is the best recipe to celebrate a birthday or any special occasion with friends, vegan or not.

You don't need crazy ingredient for making a perfect dessert recipe. This veg chocolate cake gets plenty of moisture from adding boiling hot water. Don't worry if the batter will look runny, that's just the way it should be.

Anyway, we wanted to make the batter even moister. We poked holes all over the top of the cake and filled with a sweet chocolatey syrup, seeping into all of the spongy nooks an crannies of your cake. This, combined with a creamy peanut butter frosting, makes the most decadent and dense dessert you’ve ever tried.

Customize your vegan chocolate cake as you like, by adding chocolate chips or making a layered one.

What Is Vegan Cake Made With?

This chocolate cake is just as moist and dense as any other, but it's made without butter or dairies and we substitute them with a few key ingredients. Plus there’s a fudgy surprise inside of this butterless cake: a creamy cocoa syrup that you’ll pour into the cake for extra moisture.

The cake batter is made with all-purpose flour.

Hot water is the key ingredient to make the batter super moist.

Baking powder helps the cake to rise a little bit even without the eggs.

Oil is a perfect vegan-friendly option for replacing butter.

For the frosting, use creamy peanut butter and not chunky one. Otherwise, the top of your cake will look lumpy instead of smooth.

How To Make Vegan Chocolate Cake

Making a vegan chocolate cake is easier than you may think. In a mixing bowl, combine all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt with a wire whisk. Add vanilla extract, white vinegar, oil, and water and mix until smooth.

Pour the cake batter into a cake pan lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350°F for 25 minutes, until set and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Poke the top of the cake with holes all over. In a measuring cup, combine water, granulated sugar, vanilla extract, and cocoa powder until smooth. Pour the chocolate mixture over the cake so it gets into all of the holes.

Set a fine-mesh strainer over a bowl and sift in cocoa powder and powdered sugar. Stir to combine. Fold in peanut butter until smooth. Spread the peanut butter frosting over the top of the cake before serving.


Tips for making the Best Vegan Chocolate Cake

For a layered vegan chocolate cake, divide the dough into two round cake pans. Add frosting as a filling as you assemble the cake, then top it with the rest of the leftover frosting.

Make sure your baking powder packet is still closed. As it stays active for about 3 months after opening, your cake could not rise while baking.

If you don't want to make the syrup and poke the cake, you can make the batter moist by adding some applesauce or avocado.

For a shortcut, you can also use a cake mix.

You can also add chocolate chips or nuts into the batter.

Be sure to line your cake pan with parchment paper to easily remove the cake after baking.

Let the cake cool fully before you poke holes or frost the cake.

How to Store Vegan Chocolate Cake

The cake is best enjoyed the day it’s made. However, you can cover the cake and store it on the counter for one day. You can also keep it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Can you Freeze Vegan Chocolate Cake?

Yes, freeze vegan chocolate cake for up to 3 months, wrapping it tightly with plastic wrap. Before serving, thaw it overnight and reheat it in the oven for 15 minutes.


Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C. Line a baking pan with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, put flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Mix.

Add vegetable oil, vanilla, hot water and vinegar. Mix.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

Bake for about 25 minutes. Check with a toothpick if the center is cooked.

For the syrup, place hot water, cocoa powder, sugar and vanilla in a jug. Stir.

Poke holes all over the cake.

Pour cocoa syrup slowly on to the cake. Leave it at room temperature for 1 hour to allow the cake to cool and absorb all the liquid.

For the frosting, sift the icing sugar and cocoa powder in a medium bowl. Add peanut butter and mix with a spatula until smooth.

Spread the frosting evenly over the cake.


Serve and enjoy!

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