Want to make a vegan wedding cake from scratch? This chocolate and white wedding cake recipe yields a gluten and dairy free cake, plus peanut butter wedding cake frosting and vanilla wedding cake icing!
Given all the coronavirus pandemic craziness going on in the world right now, my fiancé and I recently pulled the plug on our destination wedding.
Now, we’re planning a virtual, at-home wedding where nearly everything has turned DIY! Lawrence is building us a chuppah and cooking our wedding dinner, and I’m making our wedding cake.
We’re now in our wedding month—we’re getting married in 17 days!—so I figured I’d share my cake-making experience with you all.
I’ve been eating gluten-free for about a year now, and our only wedding guests (our neighbors) are vegan. So I put my efforts into perfecting the ultimate gluten-free, vegan wedding cake recipe! You won’t find any egg whites or egg yolks in this wedding cake!
This is a true his-and-hers cake, with chocolate cake layers and peanut butter frosting for him and vanilla cake layers and vanilla frosting for me. I also figured out how to naturally color the frosting so that we wouldn’t end up with any chemicals in our wedding cake!
If you’re a fan of wedding cake recipes from scratch or are perusing simple wedding cakes for your own wedding, read on to learn how to make your own five-layer wedding cake! I promise it’s not at all as hard as it sounds.
P.S. If you’re wondering how I have my wedding cake photographed here before my wedding, these photos are of my trial run. I’ll share final wedding cake photos with you, too!
Cake-Making Tools You’ll Need
When it comes to making a wedding cake from scratch, it helps to have a few tools. I spent a good amount of time researching what cake-making tools would make my time in the kitchen 1,000% percent more productive. Without further ado, here are the handful of tools I invested in.
5-Layer Cake Tins
I promise using this set of tins is the easiest way to make a small layered wedding cake. The set of five cake pans yields a six-inch wedding cake.
Buy it: Wilton Easy Layers! Set of 5
You’ll need to cut the tops off of your cake layers once they come out of the oven. A bread knife, which is sharp and serated, is the best way to do this. I luckily already had one of these on hand, so I didn’t have to purchase one.
Buy it: Cuisinart 8″ Bread Knife
Cake Turntable Decorating Stand
After reading lots of cake-making blog posts, I determined that having a cake turntable was an absolute necessity if I wanted to decorate the heck out of my cake and not end up with massive neck and arm pain.
Cardboard Cake Circles
The No. 1 thing that will ruin your cake-making experience is not using a cake circle as a base. You want to go with one that’s a couple of inches larger than your cake is going to end up so that you can decorate the base and also so that you can easily pick up the base and place it on its final cake stand.
Buy it: Wilton 8-Inch Cake Circle
I’ve taken several baking classes over the years, and I grew to love these icing spatulas years ago. When making my wedding cake, I used the large spatula to get a base coat on and the small spatula for detail areas.
I once owned reusable piping bags, and they were an incredible pain to clean. That’s why I love these disposable piping bags, which are really helpful if you’re decorating with multiple colors.
If you’re hand decorating your cake, which I highly recommend, the easiest way to end up with beautiful flowers is having the right piping tips.
Buy it: Wilton Master Decorating Tip Set
A Vegan, Gluten-Free Wedding Cake Recipe
When it comes to baking a wedding cake from scratch, some patience is required! Here’s how I made a five-layer wedding cake.
When I shared with friends that I was making my own gluten-free wedding cake, a friend asked how I get my gluten-free desserts to not taste like cardboard. The key is really moisture, and this cake recipe contains avocado oil, oat milk, apple cider vinegar, and plant-based margarine.
I prefer baking with a neutral-tasting oil such as avocado oil, versus an oil like coconut oil. Plus avocado oil works really well in gluten-free cakes.
Even though I was making two different cake flavors, I started with one batch of batter, separated it, and added cocoa powder to the chocolate portion.
I did the same with the batch of wedding cake frosting that I made. I whipped up a giant batch of vanilla frosting, separated it, and added peanut butter to the remainder to make peanut butter frosting.
To make the base of the cake, I started with a base of all-purpose gluten-free flour. You don’t need any fancy cake flour, and using a single gluten-free flour like almond flour won’t yield a product that’s light and fluffy enough.
I like to make my own gluten-free flour mix for this because it saves money, but you can certainly use store-bought. I combined the gluten-free flour blend with sugar, baking soda, salt, oat milk, avocado oil, apple cider vinegar, and vanilla extract.
I then separated out the batter into two separate batches and combined one of those portions with unsweetened cocoa powder.
Once you’ve let the cake layers cool completely to room temperature, you’ll need to slice off the top of the cakes. Of course, that means you’ll be left with a good amount of cake. What to do with this cake? Lawrence and I enjoyed using it as a base for homemade ice cream sundaes!
Decorating Your Wedding Cake
Next up is the fun part! To make the vegan buttercream frosting, I combined plant-based margarine with vanilla extract, oat milk, and powdered sugar.
Note that I tested the cake both with plant-based margarine that is oil based and one that is nut based. The icing turns out much creamier with the type that’s oil based.
I then separated out part of the icing and blended that with peanut butter to make the peanut butter frosting! After I finished frosting the cake, I got to the part that I was really excited about: decorating the cake.
I really hate baking with artificial food coloring, so I used plant-based food coloring that I found on Amazon. I had so much fun decorating my gluten-free and dairy-free wedding cake!
More Wedding Planning Help
For more wedding-related content, check out amydgorin.com/wedding. In particular, I think you’ll enjoy these posts:
- Wedding registry checklist
- Inexpensive wedding locations in New York
- Low-cost wedding venues
- What to put in a bridesmaid box
- Groomsmen proposal ideas
- Flower girl proposal ideas
- My pre-wedding skincare routine
- How to have a virtual bachelorette party
Gluten-Free Vegan Wedding Cake with Peanut Butter & Vanilla Frosting
- 3 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour
- 2 cups cane sugar
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2 cups unsweetened oat milk
- ¾ cup avocado oil
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp vanilla extract
- ⅔ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- Cooking spray
- 2 tbsp sprinkles
- 2½ sticks plant-based margarine
- 2¼ tsp vanilla extract
- ½ cup unsweetened oat milk, divided
- 6½ cups powdered sugar
- ½ cup natural peanut butter
- Plant-based food coloring, as needed
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda.
- In a separate medium mixing bowl, mix together milk, oil, vinegar, and vanilla.
- Pour wet mixture into dry mixture, and use an electric hand mixer to mix ingredients together. Do not over mix.
- Portion out approximately half the batter into a separate mixing bowl (you can use the bowl that had the wet ingredients in it). Add in cocoa powder, and use an electric hand mixer to blend ingredients together. Do not over mix.
- Spray five 6-inch non-stick baking pans with cooking spray. Fill each cake pan evenly with batter. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the cake's center comes out dry. The vanilla cake may take slightly longer to bake.
- Let cakes cool. Once completely cooled, use a bread knife to cut off the tops of the cakes.
- Place softened plant butter in an extra-large mixing bowl. Using an electric hand mixer to cream butter until it's light and fluffy.
- Add in 7 teaspoons oat milk and vanilla extract, and mix until well combined.
- Add powdered sugar in 1/2-cup measurements. Mix until frosting is well combined and fluffy. Scrape down sides, as needed. If the frosting is too thick, you may add additional oat milk in increments of 1 Tablespoon at a time.
- Separate out about 1/6 of the frosting into a separate mixing bowl. Add remaining oat milk and peanut butter. Mix until well combined.
- Place an 8-inch cardboard cake circle on a cake decorating stand. Place a chocolate layer in the center of the cake circle, then use an icing knife to cover the top of the cake with peanut butter icing.
- Place a second chocolate cake layer on top of the peanut butter icing, and use an icing knife to cover the top of the cake with vanilla icing.
- Repeat with remaining chocolate cake layer and peanut butter icing. Complete with two vanilla cake layers, topping each layer with vanilla icing.
- Once cake is assembled, place it in the fridge to cool, for 30 minutes to 2 hours.
- Remove the cake from the fridge, and use a large icing knife to complete the cake's crumb coating. This will be a thin layer of frosting. Place cake in fridge to cool for 20 minutes.
- Apply a final layer of frosting to the cake.
- Color your decorating frosting: Separate remaining frosting into bowls, add food coloring, and place in piping bags. Decorate as you'd like!
- Place sprinkles at the bottom of the cake's base.
I’d love to hear from you! Let me know if you make this vegan cake! What do you think of this white cake recipe and chocolate cake recipe? Enjoy this vanilla and chocolate wedding cake recipe!
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