Best Vegan Vanilla Gluten-Free Birthday Cake. This cake is soft, fluffy, really moist, healthy and oil-free.
This vegan vanilla birthday cake with chocolate ganache is adorned with curled white chocolate on top. Yes, please. Now, this is how to start the week. It's hard to believe it is completely vegan, without eggs and dairy. I'm a sucker for vanilla, it's almost right up there with cinnamon. I especially love the strong vanilla flavor in these Fluffy Vegan Gluten-free Blueberry Muffins.
Oh my goodness, if there was ever a recipe that was tested and tested and tested, this would be it. I have done a lot of vegan and gluten-free, even oil-free baking, but trying to create a birthday cake like this was not easy. First off, I needed it to be vegan and gluten-free, obviously. Then, when you add in oil-free to the mix and only 8 ingredients, it becomes rather difficult. Because, sure I could do it and have it sacrifice true cake texture, but my whole point of recreating traditional desserts is them wowing everybody who eats them. This cake was devoured by my guests! The whole cake is just 8 ingredients (+salt & water)! A task I didn't think was possible including those requirements.
So, this cake came about and was inspired by the most precious person in my life, my daughter. She turned 4 recently and I created the ultimate vegan gluten-free cake for her, a double layer cake. A chocolate layer, a vanilla layer and topped with a strawberry frosting and then a chocolate ganache. She asked for all of that, so I had to deliver. Here is that cake I made for her birthday party.
And here's the birthday girl herself blowing out her candles...
I shared that cake photo on Facebook and asked you all which cake you wanted to see first, chocolate or vanilla, obviously vanilla one. Barely though, only by 2 votes. So, don't worry, the chocolate one is coming soon too! Here is the recipe for that amazing Vegan Strawberry Buttercream Frosting!
But for now....let's all cheer for vanilla! I had to remake it for the blog obviously....what a rough life.
For this post, I didn't want to make more strawberry frosting, so I just drizzled chocolate ganache on top and then some curled white chocolate on top, omg, so good!!
I tried many trials doing this nut-free and while I nailed the texture, it was not nearly moist enough because of the lack of oil. I'm still working on both a nut-free and oil-free cake recipe, so if you can't have nuts, don't fret. I will eventually get one up, but it still needs a bit of work. It's super easy to make a yummy cake when you add a lot of oil, not so easy without it, I found. In fact, it was just down right ticking me off. There are so many elements involved to keep it light and taste just like vanilla cake.
But not this one, would you look at how soft and fluffy that is? The almond flour gives it a buttery taste, keeps it insanely moist and the potato starch is what gives it fluff and that all-purpose flour effect. A little spongy, a little bit dense and a super soft cake, which I loved! There is no need for oil because of the almond flour, it gives plenty of fat. To make sure it stays moist, the applesauce is an extra layer of moisture. Applesauce also makes cakes really soft and tender, which I love.
To give it more structure and hold, I didn't want to use flax, because I didn't want specks of flax visible in this beautiful vanilla cake, so what did I do? Well, I decided to try my hand for the first time at using aquafaba, which is just the liquid at the bottom of a chickpea can. This idea has exploded all over the internet. It works as an egg replacer, among a billion other things. It is NOT my idea, the credit goes to Goose Wholt for the amazing discovery. You can find out all about this stuff here and their community to find all kinds of answers. The recommended amount for 1 egg is 3 tablespoons chickpea liquid, but I found 4 tablespoons to work best for my specific recipe. In fact, it worked better than flax. Most people are on to this craze lately, but if that sounds gross, don't worry, even I was scared. However, it's absolutely 100% undetectable....in fact, the batter is so darn delicious, you may just skip baking the cake!
With all the billion trials I did, I can't stress enough how each ingredient is crucial, you can't sub and expect the same results. Gluten-free baking, especially cakes, is too finicky.
After so much tinkering around, I ultimately went back to the recipe I wrote for my Cranberry Bundt Cake last year! I remember how much I loved that unique flour combo that I created and the texture. So, I trialed that one, making a few changes to make it lighter and it was finally a winner! The aquafaba was only a small part to my recipe, but it made a difference in it as well. It really does work better than flax for this cake.
Ding ding! A Dreamy Vanilla Vegan Gluten-Free Cake that is also oat-free and grain-free too. And if you aren't feeling up to making an actual cake, then you can totally make these as dreamy vanilla vegan cupcakes also! Use any frosting you like or drizzle the chocolate ganache on top of the cupcakes. YUM.
So many of you can't have oats or grains, so here is a cake that you can enjoy too!
I worked so, so hard on this cake, so please after you make it, I'll be dying to hear what you all think of it! So many of you told me you wanted this recipe for your kid's birthdays coming up, so I look forward to hearing your feedback below! I'd also love to see your pic if you are on Instagram. Tag me @thevegan8 and don't forget my tag #thevegan8, so I don't miss the notification and it saves to my page! Hope this Dreamy Vanilla Vegan Gluten-Free Cake is a huge hit at your parties!
Not in the mood for vanilla cake? Then make my amazing Vegan Gluten-free Chocolate Cake instead. You can make it as a plain chocolate or chocolate peppermint, or even as cupcakes. Both are delicious!