If you love chocolate orange treats around the winter and festive period, you're going to adore this vegan chocolate orange cake recipe which one of my favorites when the weather turns cold.
Topped with a zesty orange glaze, these chocolate loaf cakes take less than 30 minutes to make. Complimenting the orange flavors is a light, airy and fluffy cake texture which will blow your mind.
I love to serve this cake warm with dairy-free single cream more so than any others of my cakes as it really brings out those seasonal flavors. The contrast between the temperatures is truly beautiful.
Why You Will Love This Cake
- Amazing Consistency - The crumb of this easy chocolate cake is so tender which is always a great thing. There are no dense textures in the cake either. Instead, the texture is unbelievably soft and moist just like my vegan gingerbread loaf cake which is just how you want it to be.
- Great Topping - My favorite part of the loaf cakes has to be the glaze topping. Yes, the chocolate cake itself is bursting which orange flavors, but the glaze takes those flavors to a whole new level. It's sharper, tangier and incredibly moreish - even on its own!
- Perfect For Christmas - Although this cake is great all year-round, I especially love to bake it around Christmas and New Year, just like I do with my vegan chocolate shortbread cookies. When it is baking inside the oven, it infuses the whole house with the decadent and homely fragrances that it produces.
- Allergy Friendly & Plant Based - This vegan chocolate orange cake is fully vegan and dairy free.
- Apple cider vinegar - When this wonderful vinegar is combined with the soy milk, vegan 'buttermilk' is created. This will then react with the leavening agents inside the cake batter and ultimately give the cake an amazing, light consistency.
- Brown sugar - This is almost always the most effective kind of sugar when making a chocolate cake. With the wrong ingredients and ingredient ratios, chocolate cake can easily become dry. Luckily, brown sugar contains lots of molasses which gives the loaf cakes lots of moisture.
- Canola oil - Canola oil is the same thing as rapeseed oil. They're called different things in different parts of the world. I love to use this oil as it always gives me great outcomes in my cake recipes, in comparison to other types that I've tested.
- Freshly squeezed orange juice - This will be used for both the cake and the glaze. If you're looking for a strong orange flavor throughout this dessert, make sure that you don't use any artificial orange juices. Instead, squeeze the juice yourself from an actual orange.
- Zest of 2 oranges - The orange zest is arguably more important than the fresh orange juice as this has a deeper and more concentrated flavor. Therefore, leaving this out would do you and your cake a huge disservice. You'll find this powerful ingredient inside my eggless sicilian orange cake loaf and eggless orange blueberry cake loaf. It works with greta success every time.
See recipe card for full information on individual ingredients and quantities.
Substitutions & Variations
- You can make these cakes gluten-free by making one simple substitution. The all-purpose flour needs to be replaced by a wheat-free alternative. These days there are so many alternatives that you can find inside grocery stores. I often like to use a 1:1 gluten-free, baking-specific all-purpose flour blend.
- If you like, you can add an extra topping to the cake, you certainly can. I say this because when I make orange cakes, I like to have a nutty element alongside those flavors as you'll see in my vegan orange almond cake and vegan chocolate orange macadamia nut clusters. Some nuts that you can add to the top of the glazed include chopped cashews, peanuts and hazelnuts.
How To Make Vegan Chocolate Orange Cake
For the full method, please refer to the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
1: Grease two loaf cake tins with vegan butter.
2: Make the vegan buttermilk and let it curdle.
3: Combine the dry ingredients inside a large bowl.
4: Add the wet batter ingredients.
5: Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
6: Pour the cake batter into the cake tins. Bake inside the oven.
7: Let the cakes cool fully.
8: Make the orange glaze. Spoon it over the cakes.
Use a high-quality cocoa powder - Using a good quality cocoa powder will give you that perfect, rich taste that you want in a festive chocolate orange cake. It will really elevate those chocolatey flavors.
Don't over-mix the cake batter - Instead of mixing the batter, gently fold your chocolate orange cake batter until all the ingredients are just combined. This will give you a fluffier cake.
This could be because the oven temperature is too high. Always check on your cakes just before they're due to come out of the oven. Every oven is different and some cakes bake faster than expected.
Stick a skewer into the cake. If it comes out clean, this means the cake has baked and is ready to come out from the oven.
Store this cake at room temperature in an airtight container for 4 days.
More Vegan Orange Recipes
If you tried this Vegan Chocolate Orange Cake Recipe or any other recipe on my website, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how you go in the 📝 comments below. I love hearing from you!
Easy Vegan Chocolate Orange Cake
Chocolate orange cake batter:
- 200 ml soy milk
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 175 g all-purpose flour sifted
- 25 g cocoa powder
- 150 g brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 0.5 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 50 ml canola oil rapeseed
- 50 ml freshly squeezed orange juice
- Zest of 2 large oranges
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 160 g powdered sugar
- 2.5 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
- Preheat the oven to 177 Celsius (350F).
- Grease two 20cm x 10cm loaf cake tins with cold vegan butter. Set aside.
Make the cake:
- Make the vegan buttermilk by mixing the apple cider vinegar into the soy milk. Set aside for 7-8 minutes while the buttermilk curdles. Measure out the other ingredients while you wait.
- To a large bowl, add the flour, cocoa powder, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt. Mix to combine.
- Next, pour in your curdled soy milk. Also, add the oil, orange juice, orange zest and vanilla extract. Carefully fold the chocolate orange cake batter until there are no lumps of flour remaining.
- Equally, pour the chocolate cake batter into the two prepared loaf cake tins and bake in the center of the oven for 20 minutes. A skewer will come out clean when it’s ready.
- Let your two baked cakes cool in their tins for 15 minutes, then carefully remove the cakes from the tins. Transfer the cakes to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Make the glaze:
- Add your powdered sugar to a small bowl. Then add the orange juice. Mix.
- Spoon the glaze over your cooled cakes.
- Using a good quality cocoa powder will give you that perfect, rich taste that you want in a festive chocolate orange cake. It will really elevate those chocolatey flavors.
- Instead of mixing the batter, gently fold your chocolate orange cake batter until all the ingredients are just combined. This will give you a fluffier cake.