Vegan Olive Oil Cake
This vegan olive oil cake is an easy one bowl spongy vanilla cake with a hint of lemon and delicious moist olive oil crumb.
If you love the subtle flavor of olive oil, you are in for a treat.
Olive oil cakes have been among my favorite cakes for ages. It’s a classic European recipe, usually made with three eggs, so it’s typically not vegan.
However, this vegan version is unbelievably close to the authentic olive oil cake with a fluffy, spongy, moist crumb perfect with a cup of tea.
How To Make Vegan Olive Oil Cake
It’s so easy to make an cake with olive oil cake! Even if you never baked a vegan cake recipe before, you will be sure to success with this one-bowl cake recipe.
All you need to make this tasty olive oil cake are:
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil – Choose a light olive oil flavor if you are not sure you will enjoy the olive oil flavor in the cake. In fact, olive oil flavors range from 1 (light) to 5 (strong), and you can pick one that is light to start with.
- Unsweetened Apple Sauce
- Baking Soda
- Baking Powder
- Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
- Lemon Zest
- Non-Dairy Milk – The mild-flavored plant-based milk is the best, like almond milk or oat milk. However, coconut milk or soy milk will also work very well.
- All-Purpose Flour or white spelt flour
- Vanilla Extract
Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line the bottom of a 9-inch cake pan with parchment paper. Slightly oil the sides and bottom with an oil spray. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk the sugar, olive oil, applesauce, almond milk, lemon juice, vanilla extract, and lemon zest.
Then, fold in the flour, baking soda, and baking powder, and whisk to combine evenly. The olive oil cake batter should be smooth and runny with no lumps.
Pour the cake batter into the pan.
Bake the cake on the center rack for 40 to 45 minutes, until the top is nicely golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
If still wet and the top turns brown too fast, place a piece of foil on the cake pan. Keep baking in extra 5-minute bursts, checking often with a clean toothpick until dry and set.
Let the cake cool down 5 minutes in the cake pan.
Then, release the cake on a cooling rack for a few hours or until it reaches room temperature.
Serve the cake plain or decorate the cake with:
- A dust of powdered sugar
- Fresh fruits like fresh blueberries or fresh lemon slices
- Sliced almonds – better to add these on top of the unbaked cake so they stick to the top of the cake.
If you prefer, make a batch of my vegan royal icing recipe, add in some lemon juice instead of almond milk.
Then, drizzle on the cooled cake or on the slice before serving.
This vegan olive oil cake recipe can be stored for up to 4 days in the fridge in a sealed cake box.
You can also freeze the cake whole or in slices in an airtight container for up to 1 month.
Thaw the cake at room temperature just before serving.
You can use this vegan lemon olive oil cake recipe with different citrus flavors. Replace the lemon juice and lemon zest with other citrus fruits like:
Always make sure you use untreated, organic citrus fruits when it comes to adding zest. This prevents adding preservatives to your recipe.
Other option consists of replacing the vanilla extract with:
- Almond Extract
- Orange blossom water
- Rose water
I listed below some substitutions suggestions if you are allergic to some of the ingredients.
- Gluten-Free – I didn’t try all-purpose gluten-free flour in the recipe but I am confident it will work with a 1:1 flour blend containing xanthan gum. However, like any vegan gluten-free cake, if you use the recipe as per written but with a gluten-free flour blend, the texture will be slightly gummy, not as moist.
- Nut-Free – Use coconut oil, soy milk, or oat milk.
- Sugar-Free – Replace the sugar with a natural sugar-free crystal sweetener like erythritol or allulose.
- Citrus-Free – You can simply skip the lemon zest and lemon juice without adding anything else in the cake.
You can add some frosting on top of this olive oil cake. Below are some of the best frosting recipes to match this lemon olive oil flavor:
Frequently Asked Questions
Find below my answers to your most common questions about this olive oil vegan cake recipe.
Can I Use Almond Flour Or Coconut Flour?
You must use all-purpose flour for this cake recipe, or the batter won’t hold together.
Can I Make A Two-Layer Cake With This Recipe?
You can bake the cake batter into two greased 9-inch round cake pans.
However, the cake layer will be thinner, and they will bake faster in 30 to 35 minutes.
Can I Make Muffins With The Recipe?
Use a 12-hole muffin pan for baking olive oil muffins.
More Vegan Cake Recipes
I have plenty of delicious vegan cake recipes for you to try. Here are some of the best.
Have you made this moist cake recipe? Share a comment or review below to connect with me.
Vegan Olive Oil Cake
- ¾ cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
- ½ cup Unsweetened Apple Sauce
- 2 ¼ cups All-Purpose Flour
- 1 ¼ cup Sugar
- ¾ teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
- 2 ½ tablespoons Lemon Juice - from one fresh lemon
- 2 tablespoons Lemon Zest
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- 1 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- ¼ cup Powdered Sugar
- 2 tablespoons Blueberries
- 3 Lemon Slices
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease a 9-inch cake pan with oil spray. Set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk sugar, olive oil, applesauce, vanilla extract, milk, lemon juice, and lemon zest.
- Fold in flour, baking soda, salt, and baking powder.
- Whisk to bring all the ingredients together into a smooth, runny cake batter with no lumps.
- Pour the batter over the prepared pan
- Bake in the center rack of the oven for 40-45 minutes, or until golden brown and a pick inserted in the center of the cake come out clean. If wet, keep baking. If top brown too fast, add a piece of foil on top of the pan
- Cool for 5 minutes in its cake pan then release on a cooling rack for few hours
- When cake is cool down, decorate if desired with a dust of powdered sugar, berries and fresh lemon slices
- Store leftover in an airtight cake box in the fridge for up to 3 days or freeze for later and thaw in the fridge.