Monday, August 22, 2016

Red Velvet Cake


Red velvet cake was one of the first dessert recipes that I tried to make vegan about 13 years ago. I tried several recipes as well as several of my own versions, but was never quite satisfied. Often, they would be a bit dry or the flavor was not quite right.

I wanted a red velvet cake that was moist and tasted like the original version. After many less than ideal attempts, I gave up. Then I saw Chef Chloe win Cupcake Wars with her vegan Ginger Spice Cupcakes. I bought her cookbook and saw that her cupcakes called for a cup of canned pumpkin and a cup of coconut milk, and they turned out very moist and delicious. I can see why she won!

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Her recipe gave me the idea to try the red velvet cake again. I decided to puree beets in place of the pumpkin, add the coconut milk, and change the flavor profile to match red velvet cake. Now I finally have a vegan red velvet cake recipe that makes a moist and rich cake that anyone will love.

Vegan Red Velvet Cake


10 oz fresh beets (about 4 medium sized beets)

2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tbsp cocoa powder

1/2 cup coconut oil
1 cup canned coconut milk (mix before measuring)
2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 tsp white vinegar


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Coat two 9 inch round cake pans with cooking spray.

Wash, peel, and chop the beets and put them in a saucepan with enough water to cover them. Bring the beets to a boil. Let the beets simmer while you work on the rest of the recipe. It takes about 20-30 minutes for the beets to soften all the way through.

While the beets are cooking, combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl (flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa powder). Mix well to be sure there are no clumps of cocoa or baking soda.

Once the beets are soft, drain off the water and reserve it in a measuring cup. Put the beets in a blender. Add the 1/2 cup coconut oil, the coconut milk, vanilla, and vinegar. Blend until completely smooth. Fold the beet mixture into the dry ingredients.

Divide the batter evenly between the two cake pans. Bake for 20 minutes. Let the cakes cool, while you prepare the frosting and optional glaze.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

1/4 cup vegan margarine
4 oz vegan cream cheese (1/2 tub)
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp lemon juice
1 1/2 - 2 cups powdered sugar

Cream Cheese Frosting Directions:

Put all frosting ingredients in a bowl and beat with electric mixers until smooth.

Beet Glaze: (Optional)

Take the remaining beet juice, and boil it with 1/4 cup of sugar and a little bit of cornstarch (about a tsp). Let it cook down until it thickens into a glaze. I only had about 1/3 cup of beet juice, so it only took about 5 minutes. Add 1 tsp vanilla, and use to decorate the plate.

You can also put drops of this glaze in the frosting and gently fold in to create a swirl.

When the cakes are cool, frost and enjoy!

For 12 slices of cake. Nutritional information from

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 129 g
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat
% Daily Value*
Total Fat
Saturated Fat
Trans Fat
Total Carbohydrates
Dietary Fiber
Vitamin A 6%Vitamin C 3%
Calcium 4%Iron 10%
Nutrition Grade D-
* Based on a 2000 calorie diet

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