This vegan funfetti cake recipe is the perfect birthday cake. It’s flavorful, super easy to make, and tastes impressive. It only requires one bowl and no egg replacer. If you’re looking for a classic cake, this is your recipe.
This is one of those recipes the blog has needed for a while. I mean, who doesn’t want a classic cake from childhood?
Did you have the confetti cakes from the box growing up? I need to figure out how to make the rainbow chip frosting, and we will all feel nostalgic.
This tastes better than I remember the boxed version ever tasting. My family went crazy for this cake.
Why you’ll love about this vegan funfetti cake
- It makes a great vegan birthday cake
- Easy recipe
- Full of flavor
- Made with simple ingredients
- It’s made in one bowl
Ingredients and substitutions
Check out the recipe card at the bottom of this post for the full recipe.
- All purpose flour- I’ve only ever tried all purpose flour in this. If you need gluten-free, you could use all-purpose gluten-free flour in a 1:1 ratio.
- Baking powder/ baking soda helps give the cake the rise we want because it doesn’t have any egg replacer in it.
- Salt- is one of those basic ingredients you need for the flavor to pop in baking and cooking. Don’t remove it from the recipe.
- Full fat coconut milk is the kind that comes in the can, and it’s very important in this recipe. The coconut milk acts almost as vegan butter would and adds the extra fat you need to make it a super moist vegan funfetti cake. The only substitute I would try for this, which I haven’t trialed, is a vegan heavy cream. They make several brands now. Even though this has coconut milk in it, it doesn’t have a coconut flavor.
- White sugar- works great as a sweetner in this cake. I wouldn’t sub this out for any other sugars.
- Brown sugar- I know brown sugar sounds weird in a white cake, it does make it a slightly more brown color, but I love the tender crumb that brown sugar brings and the slightly different flavor profile. If you want this to be a whiter cake, use white sugar.
- Vegan butter soft- I like the use of vegan butter in this for the flavor. My most often-used vegan butter is the vegan country crock. There are other delicious brands, but this one is affordable and works great. You could use vegetable oil or canola oil if were out of vegan butter, but I’ve never tried that as a substitute.
- Vanilla extract- this seems like a lot of vanilla extract, but roll with it. If you want to add a slightly different non-traditional flavor, add a little bit of almond extract. But if you want this taste traditional, stick with the vanilla.
- Non dairy milk- you can use soy milk, almond milk, oat milk, whichever you like, but you’re going to be making vegan buttermilk by combining this with the vinegar. This needs about 5 minutes to set up, so this will be the first thing you do for this recipe.
- White vinegar- this is used for two reasons one, to make vegan buttermilk, and second, to give acid to the recipe to get the chemical reaction for the cake to rise with the baking powders. You can use apple cider vinegar if that’s all you have, but I prefer white vinegar for this one.
- Sprinkles- you want colorful rainbow sprinkles; not all brands are vegan due to the dyes they use, but my local Fred Meyer (or Kroger) has a vegan store brand. The naturally dyed ones are often not as bright as the other brands, but they will still get the job done. Don’t use any other kind of sprinkles than the “jimmy’s”; they will melt into your batter and can turn some yucky colors.
Vegan Buttercream Frosting
- Vegan butter softened- having this soft but not melty is essential to have the frosting set up correctly. There are no substitutes for vegan butter.
- Powdered sugar- this type of sugar works best for frostings. I have a varied amount for this because it will depend on how thick or thin you want your frosting to be.
- Vanilla extract- I prefer a vanilla buttercream but you can use a different extract, like a mix of almond extract and vanilla or lemon. If you’re using a different flavor, I would not use as much as this calls for.
- Non dairy milk- I would use higher fat non dairy milk like soy milk or some of the new Not milks,etc. Or if you have a vegan heavy cream, this will work great.
- Pinch salt- you don’t have to use a tiny pinch of salt, but I think it makes the flavors pop a little more.
How to make
Let’s start with making the vegan vanilla cake recipe.
Take a 2-cup liquid measuring cup and add the plant-based milk and 1 TB vinegar, stir, and set it aside.
Preheat your oven to 350° F, spray two 8-inch cake pans with cooking spray, sprinkle some flour, shake it around, and dump the excess flour into the sink or garbage can and set aside.
Get out your stand mixer and add all your wet ingredients + all the dry ingredients but the sprinkles into the large mixing bowl. Then mix on low speed until incorporated, switch to medium-high speed for 2-3 minutes until well whipped and it starts to be fluffy.
Stop the mixer and add your vegan sprinkles; stir with a spatula to combine.
Split the cake batter evenly between the two cake-baking pans, and smooth out the top.
Bake the cakes for 33-38 minutes; depending on your oven, a toothpick should come out mostly clean. Let them cool on a cooling rack for 15 minutes before carefully turning them over and removing the cake from the pan to finish cooling.
Make the frosting
Take a medium bowl and a hand mixer or the bowl to your hand mixer. Add the frosting ingredients and whip until smooth. Start with the minimal amount of ingredients and add more as needed to reach the consistency you’re looking for.
Assemble the cake
Once the cake is cooled, place the bottom half on a cake plate and add some of the frosting to the center in a decent layer, as this will be your filling.
Now add the other layer on top, cover the sides of the cake, and lastly, the top with the frosting and decorate as you please.
Expert Tips and Tricks
- Use a piping bag to make cute decorations on the cake.
- Make sure the cake is fully cooled before putting frosting on it.
- Only use rainbow sprinkles which are also known as jimmy sprinkles. They don’t melt into the batter as non parcels will. Not all colorful sprinkles are made equally.
- Only use full-fat coconut milk where it states to.
How to Serve
This vegan confetti cake is best served the day it’s made. It can be eaten days later, but cake is always best fresh.
How to store and freeze
If you’re storing the cake unfrosted, then wrap the cooled to room temperature layers in plastic wrap and place them in an airtight container until you’re ready to frost them.
If the cake is frosted, you can store it in a cake container to avoid ruining the frosting. If you don’t have a cake cover, you can use a large bowl to cover the cake.
If you want to freeze the leftover cake, you can freeze it in slices or the whole rest of the cake. To do so, you’re going to want to par-freeze the cake.
This just means you will place the cake uncovered in the freezer until it freezes the frosting; then, you can cover the cake with plastic wrap in multiple layers then put it in a freezer-safe container or freeze-safe bag.
You can freeze this for up to 3 months. Let defrost before enjoying.
Variations and Ad-ons
- If you want to make this gluten-free, you can use all-purpose gluten-free flour in a 1:1 ratio.
- You can make these into cupcakes if you prefer, but the baking time will change. Don’t over fill the batter this cake does grow quite a bit.
- You can use a different frosting if you prefer.
Recipes you may like
- 3 ⅓ cups all purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup full fat canned coconut milk
- 1 ½ cups white sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup vegan butter soft
- 1 ½ TB vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups non dairy milk
- 1 TB white vinegar
- 1 cup sprinkles
- 1 ½ sticks vegan butter softened
- 3-4 cups powdered sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3-6 TB higher fat non dairy milk
- pinch salt
Make vegan buttermilk
- Take a 2-cup liquid measuring cup and add the non dairy milk and 1 TB vinegar, stir, and set it aside.
- Preheat your oven to 350° F and spray two 8-inch cake pans with cooking spray and then sprinkle some flour, shake it around, and then dump the excess flour into the sink or garbage can and set it aside.
- Get out your stand mixer and add all the ingredients but the sprinkles into the large mixing bowl. Then mix on low speed until incorporated, switch to medium-high speed for 2-3 minutes until well whipped and it starts to be fluffy.
- Stop the mixer and add your sprinkles; stir with a spatula to combine.
- Split the cake batter evenly between the two cake pans, smooth out the top.
- Bake the cakes for 33-38 minutes, depending on your oven, a toothpick should come out mostly clean. Let them cool on a cooling rack for 15 minutes before carefully turning them over and removing the cake from the pan to finish cooling.
Make the frosting
- Take a medium bowl and a hand mixer or the bowl to your hand mixer. Add the frosting ingredients and whip until smooth. Start with the minimal amount of ingredients and add more as needed to reach the consistency you're looking for.
Assemble the cake
- Once the cake is cooled, place the bottom half on a cake plate and add some of the frosting to the center in a decent layer as this will be your filling.
- Now add the other layer on top and cover the sides and top with the frosting and decorate as you, please.
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