Spongey and fluffy ​​Vegan Yellow Cake without any eggs! Covered in a rich vegan chocolate frosting, this is the ultimate birthday cake that looks, tastes, and feels just like the classic version.

If you are looking for a chocolate birthday cake, make sure to check out The Best Vegan Chocolate Cake!

yellow cake with chocolate frosting with slices missing on a wood board.

Get the candles and sprinkles ready because this Vegan Yellow Cake is perfect for birthday parties! Decorated in a decadent Vegan Chocolate Frosting, every bite is incredibly rich and scrumptious. Don’t forget the Vegan Ice Cream to serve with each slice!

Yellow cakes are traditionally made with a lot of egg yolks for that classic golden hue. Instead, I used turmeric in the eggless cake recipe. Same beautiful yellow color without the animal products or any funky flavors.

I think you’re really going to love this Vegan Yellow Cake recipe because it’s:

  • Easy to make in one bowl
  • Freezer friendly (bake it months in advance!)
  • Made with 9 pantry-staple ingredients
  • Soft, fluffy, and moist!

For the most festive and colorful dessert table, serve this yellow cake next to Strawberry Cupcakes and Funfetti Cupcakes.

Removing a slice of chocolate-frosted cake.

Yellow cake vs. white cake

These are both technically vanilla cakes but have slight differences. A traditional yellow cake recipe is made with egg yolks to give it its signature color and a rich and tender flavor. White cake, on the other hand, uses only egg whites.

Yellow cake is perfect for birthday parties because you can use any type of frosting and the flavors are easy to love! White cake is traditionally served for weddings because it’s so crisp and clean.

How to make vegan yellow cake with chocolate frosting

Whisk the dry ingredients together in a bowl. To the same bowl, slowly stir in all of the wet ingredients using a large spoon until everything is just combined. A standing mixer will make this step a lot easier!

Divide the yellow batter between your cake pans and bake until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let them cool while you prepare the chocolate frosting.

Decorate the cakes with frosting when they’re completely cool. Pipe some extra frosting on top and add some colorful sprinkles or chocolate shavings as well. Don’t forget the birthday candles!

a round chocolate-frosted cake with colorful sprinkles on top.

Tips and substitutions

  • Cake flour – This will always give your cakes a light, fluffy, and airy crumb. All purpose can be used if you don’t have cake flour at home.
  • Gluten free – Although I haven’t tested it, I usually have good results when making gluten free cakes with all purpose gluten free flour. The texture will be a little more dense though.
  • Oil – Any neutral tasting oil, such as avocado, canola, or vegetable oil, will do. Coconut oil can weigh down a cake, so avoid it if you can.
  • Cake pans – I used two round 9 inch cake pans to make a layered cake but the recipe should also work in a half sheet pan.
  • Dairy free milk – Any unsweetened plant milk will work.
  • Frosting – If chocolate frosting isn’t for you, try vanilla frosting, strawberry buttercream, or swiss meringue buttercream instead.

Storing birthday cake

Frosted vegan birthday cake will stay fresh and moist at room temperature for about 2 or 3 days. To keep it longer, store the cake or individual slices covered in the fridge.

Want to freeze it instead? Wrap the unfrosted baked cakes really well in plastic, then freeze for up to 6 months.

Fork taking a bite out of a piece of yellow cake on a white plate.

Want more vegan birthday cake recipes?

yellow cake with chocolate frosting with slices missing on a wood board.
4.75 stars (8 ratings)

Vegan Yellow Cake

Spongey and fluffy ​​Vegan Yellow Cake without any eggs! Covered in a rich vegan chocolate frosting, this is the ultimate birthday cake that looks, tastes, and feels just like the classic version.
Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 35 mins
Total: 50 mins
Servings: 16 servings

Ingredients 
 

Yellow Cake

  • 2 3/4 cup cake flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup neutral flavored oil (I used avocado oil)
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened soy milk
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

For Decorating and Frosting

Instructions 

Bake the cake

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and spray two 8 or 9 inch cake pans with oil. I also like to place a circle of round parchment paper in the bottom to prevent the cakes from sticking to the pans.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, salt, turmeric and sugar together until well combined.
  • To the same bowl, pour in the oil, soy milk, apple cider vinegar and vanilla. Mix with the dry ingredients using a large spoon until just combined. Be careful not to over mix, or the cake won't be as soft. (You can also use a stand mixer with the whisk attachment.)
  • Divide the batter evenly between the cake pans and bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  • Let the cakes cool in the pans for about 10 minutes, then carefully pop them out and place on a cooling rack. You must allow the cakes to cool completely before frosting.

Frost and decorate

  • Once the cakes are cooled, frost with chocolate frosting as desired. Pipe additional frosting on top and add colorful sprinkles, if desired.
  • Serve and enjoy! The cake will keep at room temperature for 2-3 days, or up to 1 week in the refrigerator. It can also be frozen. Wrap or cover cut parts of the cake to avoid it drying out.

Notes

  1. I haven’t tried this cake gluten free, but an all purpose mix might work. It won’t be as fluffy and light though.
  2. Use a neutral tasting oil, such as avocado, canola or vegetable oil. Coconut oil can weight down a cake, so avoid it if you can. You could also use melted vegan butter.
  3. May substitute a different plant milk for soy milk, if needed. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1of 16 servings | Calories: 446kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 158mg | Potassium: 204mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 45g | Vitamin A: 54IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 64mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Nora Taylor
Did you make this recipe?Mention @nora_cooks_vegan_ or tag #noracooks!

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Comments

    1. I haven’t tried it, but I think it will work. It will need a lot longer to bake though, probably around an hour I’d guess.

  1. This cake was delish! Due to acid reflux, I try to stay away from dairy as much as possible. I have tried several of your cakes and they all come out tasting excellent. I used a cream cheese frosting instead of chocolate…

  2. This is my second time making this cake, and it is delicious. My father who is not vegan and is 80 years old just requested I make it again because he wanted more. Doing that right now!

    1. Thank you so much for your wonderful review, Jennifer! It makes me so happy to hear that your dad is such a big fan 🙂 Happy baking!

  3. Thank you for this recipe!! I’ve been looking for a vegan yellow cake recipe for a while now since it’s one of my boyfriend’s favorite cakes. Found this and made it for my boyfriend’s birthday and he (and everyone else) loved it! I couldn’t find cake flour so I used regular all-purpose flour and was very careful not to overmix and it turned out moist and delicious. I iced it with the recommended vegan chocolate frosting recipe but only used 2 cups of powdered sugar and it was perfect!

    1. Hi Mimi. Happy birthday to your boyfriend! I’m thrilled you found a cake that you love! Thank you for sharing you great feedback and ideas!

  4. If I wanted to make this cake in a 13×9 pan would I need make any adjustments to baking time or otherwise?

    Thank you 

    1. You shouldn’t need to make any adjustments! Just check for doneness after about 28 minutes just in case.

  5. Hey Nora! I want to start saying I love you’re recipes which saved my life since I have a child with food allergies and I can safely bake your baked goods ♥️. 
    I made this cake last night. The chocolate frosting came out great! But the cake was on a dryer side. I’ve never made this cake before so here are my questions:
    1. Could it be because I over mixed it? 
    2. I used dsome food colorIng- it’s meant to be for a little girls bday party, could it make the batter any different? 
    3. When the cake was ready to come out of the oven, I was on my way out. So I took it out but left it in the baking pans for over an hour. Could it be it? 
    I used Ripple milk and followed the instruction. 
    Also I do have another question: what is the purpose of the turmeric in the recipe? 
    Thank you for any suggestions and thanks for sharing your amazing recipes! 

    1. If the cake turned out on the dryer side, it’s likely that the batter was overmixed or overbaked. Next time, mix the ingredients until they just start coming together. And turmeric gives the cake its yellow color 🙂 Hope this helps!

  6. Very tasty cake but also very crumbly. Any tips for making sure the cake doesn’t fall apart upon transfer out of the pan? I used sunflower oil instead of  avocado. 

    1. Definitely let it cool in the pan for at least 10 minutes before removing it and make sure the pan is greased as well. Also, overmixing can cause the cake to become dense and crumbly. Hope this helps!

  7. So good… I used all purpose flour and accidentally did 2 Tbsp of acv instead of 2tsp. Still turned out great. Nice texture and flavor. I will definitely be making this again.

    1. I’m so glad the cake turned out great for you! Thank you for sharing your review and feedback! Wishing you happy cooking!

  8. I usually love your recipes. Your Lemon Cake, Chocolate Cake, Cornbread and Iced Oatmeal Cookies are loved in this house. However, this Yellow Cake does not meet expectations. Tried making twice, following your directions exactly….even went non organic to use available cake flour. And nope. No height, not a great flavor…..Also, I have tried to post before. How come negative reviews don’t get posted? How are we to know which recipes are worth investing time and ingredients in, if we don’t get unbiased ratings?

    1. Hi Sharon. I haven’t seen a review from you on this recipe, but some do get filtered to spam (even when they are not). I do approve comments where recipes don’t work out for folks, and I always try to help if I can! I’m sorry the cake didn’t work out for you. It’s very similar to my Vegan Funfetti Cake, which is pretty popular on my site. My best advice is to not over mix the batter, or over bake the cakes.

    1. Did you use the full tablespoon of baking powder, not a teaspoon? Make sure you don’t over mix the batter, or the cake will come out dense and not very soft. And did you use cake flour? Hopefully I can help!

  9. Can this recipe simply be cut in half to make a single one layer cake (or a smaller amount of cupcakes)? I’d like to make something small for a few people and not have leftovers.

  10. Came out amazing! Thank you Nora 🙂 I had given up baking my kids their birthday cakes, but after this recipe and your chocolate cake, I’m sold! Hands down the BEST!

    1. Hi Joanna! It’s so fun to be able to make birthday cakes for the kids! For anyone actually! I’m so glad the cake turned out amazing for you! Thank you very much for sharing your great review and fun comments! Happy cooking!

  11. Made this cake tonight  6 in 2 layer cake for my daughter bday…I want to make a sheet cake but don’t know if I need to double or triple?
    Good cake without flax egg! I used grapeseed oil but will use vegan butter next time!

    1. Thanks! You don’t need to double the recipe for a thin sheet cake. Simply bake for less time, more like 20 minutes, until it’s done in a quarter sheet pan.

  12. Hello,

    I’m not vegan and I want to try this for a friend but I have one question.  How is the cake held together without any egg substitutes? 

    Thank you. 

    1. You’d be surprised how often eggs are actually not needed in a recipe! 🙂 It holds together just fine. Sometimes I use aquafaba or flaxseeds to replace eggs (among other things), but for this particular recipe it’s not needed. Hope you enjoy it!

    1. Cake flour is a wonderful flour for cakes that is lower in protein and very finely ground, giving cakes a light, fluffy and tight crumb. If you can’t find it you can make your own or use regular plain flour.

  13. Will this work with DIY cake flour? So with plain flour and cornstarch.

    I have tried this cake flour for chocolate cake and it makes it taste extra fudgy, not sure if it’ll work with a vanilla cake or should a mix the flours together

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