Tall and fluffy, two layer, moist delicious, whole-wheat, fat-free vegan chocolate cake
With vegan chocolate low-fat healthy frosting filling between the layers. This whole-foods plant-based (WFPB) vegan birthday cake will not let you down! Made from simple ingredients found in most kitchens.
Tall, light and fluffy, a great vegan birthday cake for someone special in your life.Jump to Recipe
Vegan birthday layer cake with whole wheat (all purpose) flour, zucchini, aqua faba and lots of cocoa powder.
It is moist, rises proud and high, is delicious, sweet, rich and gorgeous. This cake looks and tastes great and is SO HEALTHY.
This is the cake I make for my husband and kids birthdays. They love it and look forward to it.
Their friends can’t tell it is vegan, or that it is healthy, but they know it is great chocolatey cake
Whole foods vegan cake secret tricks
I have learned many healthy and tasty tricks from eating and feeding my family whole foods plant based since 2013, and I want to share them with you.
- Use zucchini instead of oil for moisture, and aqua faba (liquid from a can of beans) instead of eggs.
- Use a creamier non-dairy milk (like soy, or make your own unfiltered nut milks). We avoid coconut milk, because it contains saturated fat (clogs your blood vessels).
- Whole-wheat (all purpose) flour and zucchini make this vegan cake high fibre and high in plant nutrients, great for staying slim, and preventing cancer.
- Cocoa powder is high in antioxidants, which reduce inflammation.
I did a lot of research, plus trial and error to design a fat-free, whole wheat cake, with just the right frosting, that was going to be good enough for special birthday parties, and this is definitely the one!
Forks Over Knives Guidelines
All of my recipes are created to meet oil-free and whole foods eating recommendations from whole foods plant based experts from Forks Over Knives, and with ingredients selected for disease prevention based on nutrition study results from nutritionfacts.org.
Inspiration to Eat Whole Foods Plant Based
This book gives so many examples of how food can keep us living healthier longer lives:
Aqua faba please!
Aqua faba (the liquid from a can of beans) is a great egg substitute because it has protein, with no artery clogging cholesterol and no animal product inflammation.
Protein gives cake batter strength and structure. Air bubbles from baking soda push the batter up, and protein holds the structure while in the oven, so that this chocolate cake is light and fluffy.
Vegan Fat-free Chocolate Frosting / Icing
The lactose-free, margerine-free, and dairy-free frosting is so simple and easy, melt chocolate chips with dairy free almond milk or soy milk in your microwave.
I admit, the frosting is not healthy, but at least it has no added oils and you don’t need much of it. The cake alone isn’t sweet enough for a birthday party, but with the frosting, it becomes something special.
Chocolate does give the frosting antioxidants (to combat the free radicals produced by the icing sugar!). The kick of sweetness from the frosting really complements the cake and makes it a treat.
Making frosting yourself saves you from all the chemicals, franken-oils and artificial ingredients found in store bought frosting. Yuck. I have always hated store frosting. Espcially since it always gave me a stomache ache. It should be forbidden for kids (and adults) in my opinion.
The problems with regular cake
Traditional birthday cakes from a box mix, or a store, are made with
- processed white flour,
- white sugar,
- processed oils
- artificial flavours
- no fibre
Store made white flour cakes are essentially candy and a chemical mess, and are terrible for you
Often at work I would take a piece of store bought cake for a co-worker’s birthday and after a couple bites secretly throw it in the garbage because it just did not taste like real food to me.
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Why you should make this whole foods vegan cake recipe
It is easy! Only takes 1 hour and uses 11 common ingredients to make both the cake and the frosting.
It is filled with fibre, and a vegetable too!
Most importantly it looks wonderful, it’s huge, it tastes moist, chocolatey and delicious, it is fluffier than other vegan cakes, and it is going to make the people you love healthier and feel great when they eat it.
This cake will not make you fat. Yes there is sugar in it, but, did you know? Fiber (like in whole wheat flour and zucchini) prevents sugar crashes because it slows digestion.
Fiber is going to fill you up before you can eat too many calories.
You can eat a piece of this cake a day (until it is gone) as a healthy snack – no guilt.
Do you have a special someone with a birthday in the near future?
This is the vegan recipe for him or her.
No stomach ache, no fat, no clogged arteries, fight cancer, lose weight.
It is a moist, fluffy, decadent chocolate, light oil free cake that is going to make you healthier when you eat it!
Feel great tomorrow. Eat this cake today!
It was very hard to get pictures of my vegan cake because my family cut, served and devoured it so quickly.
These pictures are from the next day, the icing started to get a bit wet, but it holds up deliciously well.
I kept it on the counter under a cake lid, and it looked and tasted delicious for the 4 days the cake lasted – until it was all eaten up.
My daughter is excited to share this vegan birthday cake with her friends.
She asked me if I could make another vegan chocolate cake, for her to take to school for her birthday in June. Her school has a healthy snacks only policy, and I am sure I can convince her teacher that this cake meets their criteria. Plus her teacher is lactose intolerant so this will be great for him!
She is proud that she will be able to bring a delicious and healthy whole wheat, vegan, fat free cake to grade 4 for her 10th birthday.
Update: the cake was a huge hit, all the kids in her class, and her teacher loved it, one cute little boy even asked her for the recipe! To them it was just a great cake, she didn’t even tell them it was healthy or vegan.
Tall Vegan Aqua Faba Chocolate Zucchini Layer Cake with Vegan Frosting Filling - Whole Wheat, No Oil
- Two 9" round cake pans, or one 9" x 13" rectangle baking dish.
Ingredients & Tips
- 1 cup non-dairy milk I've used soy, or homemade pecan or almond milk (pecans or almonds blended with water in high speed blender).
- 1.5 cups aquafaba* 2 cans of liquid from beans - save the beans for another recipe. I've used black beans, lentils, kidney beans, chickpeas.
- 2 cups brown sugar Or other dry sweetener.
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
- 4 cups zucchini shredded - two medium zucchini, I've also used spaghetti squash (had to adjust the liquid down a touch) but worked great!
- 3 cups whole wheat flour my flour says “best for bread”, I have also used white flour (it was at the lake and I didn't have any whole wheat).
- 1.5 cups cocoa powder unsweetened, the better the quality cocoa, the better the flavour cake.
- 3 teaspoons baking soda Ensure is well mixed throughout the dry ingredients.
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup chocolate chips heaping, dairy free
- 1/3 cup non-dairy milk soy is especially creamy and is lower fat than coconut milk. I've had great success with homemade pecan or almond milk (I blend 1/4 cup pecans or almonds with approx 2 1/4 cups water in high speed blender and I don't bother to strain it). Pecan is more decadent, but separates afterwards.
- 3 cups icing sugar
- Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C). Lightly spray two 9” round cake pans.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the non-dairy milk, aquafaba, brown sugar and vanilla.
- Shred zucchini (or other squash substitute) in a food processor or with a grater.
- Stir in the shredded zucchini. I used a spiralizer to make 2 cups of zucchini, which I then quickly chopped into small pieces, and then a small food processor to make the other 2 cups. I wanted some zucchini wetter and some more dry. You could food process all the zucchini instead.
- In a separate bowl, mix the whole wheat flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt and then add to the zucchini mixture, stirring until completely combined.
- Pour evenly into the two cake pans.
- Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- The cakes should rise nicely, the top might feel a bit tough, but the frosting softens it up.
- Let cool completely. Run a knife around the pans and turn upside down onto a cooling rack or towel.
- While cake is cooling, make the frosting by putting the chocolate chips and non-dairy milk in a microwave safe glass bowl and microwaving in 15 second increments until chocolate is gooey but not a liquid. Add the icing sugar 1 cup at a time.
- Stir frosting with a fork or whisk until it is completely smooth.Add additional non-dairy milk one tablespoon at a time if required to reach smooth and desired spreading consistency.
- Once cake has cooled, generously spread warm frosting on the bottom layer to get a nice thick middle layer of icing. I put the first cake upside down and the 2nd right side up so the two flat bottoms meet in the middle. Place the 2nd layer of chocolate cake on the 1st and spread the chocolate frosting over the top and sides.
- The frosting spreads easily when it is warm, and then cools and stays in place. Microwave for 10 seconds if it becomes too thick to spread. This picture is from the next day... after sitting on the counter under a cake lid. Frosting is still holding up well!
Inspiration for this recipe
Jenny Dunklee | The Lazy Vegan Baker http://www.thelazyveganbaker.com/2016/06/02/chocolate-zucchini-cake/
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