Vegan Italian Cream Cake + Cream Cheese Frosting
Take an afternoon to bake this delicate and timeless vegan Italian cream cake. Your family and friends will love you and probably won’t believe it’s vegan!
Every great recipe deserves and amazing introduction right? Wrong.
This post is all about the BEST Vegan Italian Cream Cake and Dairy Free Cream Cheese Frosting
Well, okay this cake is absolutely incredible and it certainly deserves it’s share of talk. However, I’d say it’s reputation precedes it and therefore it doesn’t need too much explaining. On the other hand, I don’t know if I can help myself. I mean, no other cake can boast such classic Southern charm.
In my family this is sort of an annual tradition because it’s my mother’s favorite choice on her birthday. I try to make it every year and when I do it’s something that everyone enjoys. There’s some quiet elegance to it’s perfect flavor combinations. I think this cake should make an appearance at every lady’s luncheon or church picnic. Something about it just makes me want to go borrow a cup of sugar from a sweet neighbor.
I think one of my favorite things about this cake is that it’s very simple to decorate without much hassle. Just cover it in pecans and squiggle on a border of your choice and voilà, it’s ready to be the perfect centerpiece of your next party!
FAQs about How to Make this Vegan Italian Cream Cake Recipe:
Can I substitute walnuts for the pecans?
Absolutely! I have done this on more than one occasion. Pecans are better in my opinion but walnuts do fine.
What is the best vegan cream cheese to use in dairy free cream cheese frosting?
I think my favorite brand is probably Tofutti believe it or not. I don’t particularly like any of their other products but the cream cheese always has nice texture and mild flavor. I also have used Daiya and Miyokos so honestly use your favorite if you have one.
Do I have to whip the aquafaba?
Technically, no. The cake will still probably bake without that step but you will lose volume and get a denser texture. The whipping step is worth it, trust me.
Italian Cream Cake + Cream Cheese Frosting (Vegan)
- 1 cup aquafaba liquid from 2 cans cooked garbanzo beans aka chickpeas
- 1 1/2 cups cane sugar
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1/2 cup organic vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup coconut oil or organic vegetable shortening, melted
- 1/4 cup applesauce can sub pumpkin puree if you don't mind a little more golden color
- 2 tablespoons baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups flour
- 1 cup chopped pecans toasted
- 1-1/3 cups shredded coconut flakes I've used sweetened and unsweetened before so adjust to your taste for sweetness
- 6 -7 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup vegan "butter" or organic vegetable shortening room temp
- 1/2 cup vegan cream cheese softened
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoons almond milk or any plant-based milk
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans toasted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C) and line 3 8-inch cake pans with parchment paper. Pour aquafaba into bowl of stand mixer and beat until its begins to look light and fluffy (about 3 minutes). Slowly drizzle in sugar while beating on high and continue until it forms stiff peaks (it should take about 5 more minutes). In separate bowl, stir together the lemon juice, applesauce, melted coconut oil, oil, and vanilla extract.
Now, while continuing to beat the aquafaba mixture, slowly pour in the liquids and beat just until evenly combined (the volume of fluffiness will fall a bit but don't worry, it was still worth it for the end result).
Now in another separate bowl, sift the flour, salt, and baking powder. Remove the mixing bowl from the mixer and add the sifted dry ingredients. Use a large spatula to gently fold in the ingredients just until fairly combined. (It's actually better to leave some small lumps then to overmix and lose volume.) Add the pecans and coconut and fold in well.
Divide batter into the pans as evenly as possible. Bake for 30-40 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean and edges are lightly golden. Remove the cakes from oven and cool completely before frosting. (I prefer to cover them and place them in the freezer for at least an hour.)
Beat vegan butter and "cream cheese" in a large mixing bowl until creamed. Add vanilla, salt, and powdered sugar one cup at a time. Add milk beat until light and fluffy. You may need to add more milk as needed for frosting consistency to be light and fluffy.
Once cakes are cooled, use a sharp knife to loosen the sides and gently remove cakes from pans. Peel off the parchment and place one of the layers on your desired plate or tray. Spread a layer of the frosting on top and top with a second layer of cake. Repeat layering cake and frosting for each layer until the top layer is frosted.
Spread a generous amount of frosting on the sides of the cake and use a cake spatula to evenly spread it. You can decorate as desired or leave it simple. Top with pecans.
It's best to store the cake in something such as a cake dome to prevent it drying out and keep in the fridge.
Here are some other posts you may enjoy:
Mini Chocolate Chip Bundt Cakes (Vegan+GF)
Vegan Cappuccino Cake + White Chocolate Espresso Frosting
Triple Layer Vanilla Velvet Valentine Cake
This post was all about the BEST Vegan Italian Cream Cake and Dairy Free Cream Cheese Frosting
If you’d like to try making your own almond milk check out this recipe and video here – >>>
For the nut milk bag I used you can get it HERE -> It’s not absolutely necessary but it makes things so much simpler and I really enjoy having it.
Use the the code “sincerelytori” for a discount!
How much of the vegan cream cheese do you use? Your recipe states “1/2” but not 1/2 of what. 1/2 cup? 1/2 container? Thank you!
Sorry about that. It should have read 1/2 cup.