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Vegan Gingerbread Cake

This Vegan Gingerbread Cake is perfect for the Holidays! A moist ginger cake with a cookie butter filling is decorated with cute piped chubby gingerbread men. Vegan, easy, delicious and is the perfect showstopper for any Christmas table this holiday season!

This cake has been made in collaboration with Flora. All opinions expressed in this post are my own. (For more information along with affiliated links, check out my disclosure policy.)

Gingerbread cake with gingerbread men on the sides.

Vegan Gingerbread Cake

If you are gingerbread obsessed like me, then you are going to absolutely love this cake. Three soft and moist ginger sponges are sandwiched between the most luscious whipped ginger frosting, with puddles of cookie butter and crushed up cookies for crunch. It’s my weakness all in one cake! Don’t even get me started on the decoration.. IT’S SO CUTE! The little gingerbread men wrap around the cake in the most gorgeous festive design, I’m in love!

Looking for more Christmas recipes, I have the BEST range of festive bakes from cakes, cupcakes, brownies and pastries. CLICK HERE!

Slice of gingerbread cake with biscoff filling and buttercream on a plate.

Why you’ll love this gingerbread cake:

  • TASTE: This vegan gingerbread cake is moist, fluffy, perfectly spiced with hints of caramelised cookie butter and crunchy bits of gingerbread biscuits. It’s literally Christmas in a cake!
  • VARIATIONS: The cake can be customised to suit you. For example, you could swap out the cookie butter / Biscoff filling for a cranberry jam, caramel sauce, ginger cream or chocolate ganache for example.
  • DIFFICULTY: The cake is really simple to prepare as all the ingredients are mixed in one bowl (with only the buttermilk in a jug). We’re also using a super easy whipped American style buttercream, with the addition of some ground ginger for added flavour.
  • STORAGE: The frosted cake keeps very well in the fridge and maintains it’s mosit texture which means you can prepare the cake a few days in advance if needed. Just make sure it’s kept in an air tight / sealed container for optimum moistness!
  • DECORATION: The easiest but most effective design has to be the piped gingerbread men. They are so easy to make and pipe on the sides of the cake but look amazing! You can make them as large or little as you prefer.
Slice of vegan gingerbread cake.

Ingredients you’ll need:

This recipe is super easy, using ingredients you may already have in your kitchen cupboards / pantry. If not, don’t worry… I’ve listed them below for you to jot down on your shopping list for your next shopping trip. You can find the quantities including the full method and ingredients list in the recipe card at the bottom of the page.

  • Dairy-free milk : This is for making a vegan buttermilk. Soya milk works best, but you can use any dairy-free milk including almond, oat and cashew.
  • Apple cider vinegar.
  • Self Raising Flour.
  • Caster sugar : Use a fine, white sugar.
  • Ground spices : Ground ginger, ground nutmeg, ground cinnamon and ground mixed/ all spice.
  • Raising agents : Baking powder and bicarbonate of soda.
  • Sunflower oil : Make sure to use a neutral flavoured oil.
  • Black strap molasses – You can also use black treacle.
  • Dairy-free butter : Use a dairy-free block butter for best results (Flora Plant Butter is my go-to)
  • Icing sugar : Sieve before use to remove any clumps.
  • Biscoff spread / cookie butter : Use smooth or crunchy.
  • Cocoa powder.
  • Ginger biscuits : Crumble up some vegan friendly gingerbread biscuits / cookies for inside the cake and for decoration.
Bite taken out of a slice of gingerbread layer cake.

How to make a Vegan Gingerbread Cake

This is the kind of cake that will have your friends and family questioning if you even made it, it’s THAT good! Serve it with a cup of coffee or a hot chocolate with a Christmas film on the TV for the ultimate festive, cozy experience. You can find the full written recipe and ingredients in the recipe card at the bottom of the page.

  1. Cake / sponges

    Mix together the milk and vinegar. Set aside for 5 minutes, this creates a vegan buttermilk. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, spices, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Add the oil and molasses into the buttermilk. Add the wet into the dry ingredients and mix to combine.

  2. Bake

    Divide the batter into three lined baking tins and bake the cakes until golden brown, risen and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean and the cakes are springy to the touch. Allow them to cool fully before filling and frosting.

  3. Stacking and frosting

    In a bowl, whisk the butter until pale and creamy. Add in the icing sugar and spices. Whip until light and fluffy. Once the cakes are cold, stack and fill the cakes with buttercream and fill the middle with some melted Biscoff spread and crushed gingerbread biscuits. Repeat until the cake is stacked, then, crumb coat and chill until firm. Once chilled, give the cake a final coat of buttercream. Colour some frosting with cocoa powder, transfer into a piping bag with a round tip nozzle. Pipe a swirl of buttercream around the top edge border of the cake.

  4. Gingerbread men decorations

    Pipe gingerbread shapes using the brown buttercream around the sides of the cake and decorate with a little white frosting. Serve and enjoy!

Close up of decorated vegan gingerbread cake.

How to make the BEST vegan buttercream

You’re after a thick, whippy, smooth and creamy buttercream? Then you’ve come to the right place! This is the ultimate soft, lightly spiced buttercream frosting which is perfect in taste and texture. Made using Flora Plant Butter, the buttercream contains only a few ingredients is simple to make.

You’ll want to make a spiced butter for the ultimate gingerbread buttercream. Whip the Flora butter along with the ground ginger and cinnamon until pale and fluffy then add in the icing sugar and splash of dairy-free milk until it’s the perfect light and creamy consistency. This buttercream will be used for stacking the cakes, crumb coat, final coat, swirl on top and the gingerbread ‘icing’.

Speaking of the gingerbread men, any left over buttercream can be coloured with some cocoa powder, transferred into a piping bag fitted with a round top nozzle and piped into shapes around the sides of the cake. I then use some of the white buttercream for the details. It’s such a simple yet effective design and tells you exactly what the cake flavour is… LOVE IT!

Block of vegan butter in a christmas scene.

Tips for stacking & decorating the cake

When the gingerbread cake layers are cool to the touch, they’re ready to stack, fill and decorate. The cakes should bake even / flat, but if they have a bit of a domed top, use a sharp serrated knife to trim off the domes. The leftovers make for a great snack – haha!

If you want the cakes to be even and each slice to have the perfect layers; pipe the buttercream then use an off-set spatula to spread it flat. This will ensure a even base for the next layer of cake.

I decorated my cake in a super fun, festive style with a rustic speckled white buttercream and piped gingerbread men on the side. The light buttercream background contrasts against the brown gingerbread men making them stand out beautifully.

The cake is topped with a swirl of buttercream and crumbled up gingerbread cookies / biscuits. Other great alternative topping ideas include:

  • Crushed Biscoff biscuits: As the cakes are stacked with melted Biscoff, added crunch from caramelised Biscoff cookies on top is simple scrumptious!
  • A caramel drizzle : Go all out and add a sweet caramel drizzle to the top of the cake. You can use my vegan 3 ingredient caramel sauce for this.
  • Puddle of melted Biscoff : Top the cake off with a puddle of melted Biscoff. When you then cut slices, Biscoff oozes out.. it’s glorious!
  • Candied oranges : The addition of citrus / zesty oranges alongside the spiced cake and cookie butter is delicious, and makes for a really yummy flavour explosion!

If you make, and love this recipe, please leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating below. Thank you & happy baking! Make sure to tag me in your photos on Instagram , TikTok and Facebook! And if you want to pin this recipe for later, you can use the button on the recipe card, above or below this post, or on any of the photos. Happy baking all!

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Gingerbread cake on a wooden stand

Vegan Gingerbread Cake


Description

How to make the ULTIMATE Vegan Gingerbread Cake, with layers of ginger sponges, a spiced buttercream and cookie butter filling. Perfect showstopper for the holidays!


Ingredients

Units Scale

Ingredients for the sponge

  • 480ml of dairy-free milk (soya milk works best)
  • 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 420g of self raising flour
  • 300g of caster sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon of mixed spice
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
  • 120ml of sunflower oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon of black strap molasses

Ingredients for the buttercream

  • 530g of dairy-free butter I used Flora block butter
  • 500g of icing sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • Dairy-free milk (if needed)
  • 4 heaped tablespoons of Biscoff spread / cookie butter (melted)
  • Ginger biscuits (for crumbling inside the cake layers and on top of the cake)
  • Cocoa powder (for the buttercream gingerbread men)

Instructions

Method (sponge)

  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C fan and line three, 8 inch loose base / push up cake tins with greaseproof paper. If you don’t have 3 cake tins you will have to bake the cakes separately. Just cover the unused batter with a damp tea towel until you’re ready to use it.
  2. In a bowl, combine the dairy-free milk with the apple cider vinegar and whisk until fully combined. Set aside for 10 minutes to curdle. This creates a vegan ‘buttermilk’.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, sift the flour, sugar, spices, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Mix well to combine.
  4. Add the oil into the ‘buttermilk’ along with the molasses and whisk to combine.
  5. Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix.
  6. Pour equal amounts of batter into the lined cake tins. Make sure to tap the tins on the worktop to remove any air bubbles.
  7. Pop the cakes into the centre of the preheated oven and bake for around 25-30 minutes. You will know they are done when you put a knife or skewer in to the centre of the cake and it comes out clean and they are springy to the touch.
  8. Place the cakes on a cooling rack and allow to cool slightly before removing them from the tins. Leave the cakes to cool fully on the cooling rack.  Once cool, pop them into a sealed container to keep them fresh before frosting.

Method (buttercream)

  1. In a large mixing bowl, add in the dairy-free butter, whip until creamy. I use a stand mixer with a balloon whisk attachment, a hand mixer will work great too.
  2. Sift in the icing sugar and spices. Whip on high speed for around 5 minutes to incorporate it. Add a splash of dairy-free milk if needed. If the frosting is too thick, add some more chunks of butter. If it’s too soft, add more icing sugar. You want it smooth, creamy and airy.
  3. Transfer 2 tablespoons into a piping bag and snip off a tiny bit of the tip (this is for the gingerbread icing details).
  4. Transfer 1/4 of the buttercream into a separate bowl and add in a tablespoon of cocoa powder at a time until it’s a light brown / gingerbread colour. Transfer into a piping bag fitted with medium round tip nozzle. Set aside. 
  5. Place one of the cakes on a serving plate or cake stand. Dollop or pipe some of the white frosting on top and spread out until even using an off-set spatula or pallet knife.
  6. Optional filling: Make a well in the middle of the buttercream and fill with 2 tablespoons of Biscoff spread, along with some crushed up gingerbread biscuits. 
  7. Place the second cake layer on top. Press it down gently so it sticks, repeat for the third cake. Coat the whole cake with a thin layer of frosting. This creates a crumb coat.
  8. Place the cake into the fridge to set for 15-20 minutes. You want the frosting to be firm, this will make the final coat and applying the decorations easier.
  9. Remove the cake from the fridge and apply a second/final coat, this time making it thicker, then using a cake scraper to make the edges of cake smooth.
  10. Add some of the white frosting into a piping bag fitted with a star tip nozzle ( I use a Wilton 2D Tip) and pipe a swirl around the top edge of the cake.
  11. Use the brown icing to pipe gingerbread man shapes all around the sides of the cake and use the little bag of white icing to pipe on the details.
  12. Crumble up some gingerbread biscuits to the top of the cake.
  13. Slice and enjoy!
@littleblogofvegan

(Ad) Gingerbread Cake : Spiced ginger sponges, gingerbread buttercream & a cookie butter core, decorated with buttercream gingerbread men. Made using Flora Plant 🎄 Get the recipe: click the link in my bio or visit thelittleblogofvegan.com #floraflavouredbutter #christmascake #vegancake #gingerbread #christmastiktok #gingerbreadcake #gingerbreadmen #cakedecorating @FloraPlantUKI

♬ Christmas song “Let’s decorate” – 3KTrack

Notes

To store: Store this cake in a sealed container in the fridge. Best eaten within 3 days of making.

Remove from the fridge and leave at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.

Un-iced cakes can be stored in a sealed container at room temperature for 2 days.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25-30 minutes
  • Category: Cakes and layer cakes
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: christmas baking, christmas cake, gingerbread, gingerbread cake, gingerbread men, vegan gingerbread cake, christmas cake

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13 Comments

  1. Jo Swift
    November 24, 2023 / 8:08 pm

    This looks beautiful. Going to make it for my family gathering :]

    • November 26, 2023 / 2:03 pm

      Hello, Aw thank you so so much! I hope you enjoy! Make sure to let me know what you think xx

  2. Alice
    November 26, 2023 / 1:43 pm

    Tried and tested and just perfect. Making it again for a Christmas party!

  3. Monica .Wilson
    November 27, 2023 / 4:22 am

    please put all ingredients in American measurements. Not in the mood to research what ml and grams are in our measurements. Recipe looked great but not the measurements. Put both versions and let us choose which we prefer.

    • December 3, 2023 / 12:15 pm

      Hello, Using grams is a much more accurate way of baking. Cups isn’t accurate and may not lead to a precise bake. With vegan baking, you always want to make sure you’re measuring the ingredients exact, which is why i highly recommend gram measurements. Hope this helps x

  4. Evy
    November 29, 2023 / 10:26 am

    Where do you buy the flora plant butter?

    • December 3, 2023 / 12:16 pm

      Hello,
      You can pick it up in most uk supermarkets and online stores x

  5. Tash
    December 12, 2023 / 7:12 am

    hi! I am wanting to try this recipe but i am gluten free. will this work well if i swap out flour etc.?

    thank you!

  6. Susie Wood
    December 13, 2023 / 10:30 pm

    what is biscoff spread?

    • December 14, 2023 / 11:26 am

      Hello, Its a cookie butter spread of the popular caramelised biscuit – Biscoff / Speculoos 🙂 Hope this helps x

  7. Pragya Kansal
    December 18, 2023 / 5:52 am

    Hi, love this recipe! I was just wondering, where did you get the little gingerbread man cookies you put on the top of the cake?

    • December 18, 2023 / 12:47 pm

      Hello, they’re from B&M, i was so excited when i saw they are vegan!! xx

  8. Martine
    December 25, 2023 / 9:30 am

    I made this recipe for Christmas and everyone enjoyed it! Thank you very much!

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