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Vegan Black Forest Sheet Cake

The BEST Vegan Black Forest Sheet Cake is here. Black forest cake (traditionally a chocolate cake paired with a cherry filling and whipped cream) get’s a super festive makeover into a sheet cake that’s perfect for a crowd! Filled with cherry jam and chocolate ganache, decorated with adorable reindeer, you will love making this festive Holiday treat!

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

Black forest sheet cake with cherry jam and chocolate frosting.

Vegan Black Forest Sheet Cake

All of the most delicious flavours in one easy-to-make sheet cake. Moist and decadent chocolate cake is filled with sweet cherry jam and creamy chocolate ganache, topped with a whipped chocolate buttercream, and more juicy cherries. It combines the richness of the chocolate, tangy cherry along with lusciously creamy buttercream, you’ll love it!

Looking for more christmas recipes, check out my range of the BEST Vegan Christmas recipes here, including cakes, cupcakes, brownies and more!!

Close up of a black forest sheet cake.

Ingredients for the best vegan chocolate cake:

Making the perfect homemade vegan chocolate cake is simple, but it all comes down to the ingredients. It’s important to use high quality ingredients to create a moist, dark, rich and flavourful chocolate sponge.

  • The most important ingredient in this and any chocolate cake is cocoa powder. You want to make sure the cocoa powder you use is good / high quality. I like to use a dark cocoa powder as it really enhances the flavour of the dessert.
  • Another star ingredient in the cake is the buttermilk and oil. They’re the reason for the cake being super moist. The best egg replacer for vegan cake is buttermilk. I use soya milk mixed with apple cider vinegar. You want to make sure the oil you use is of neutral flavour, so I recommend sunflower oil for baking.
  • The addition of self raising flour with baking powder and baking soda helps to keeps this cake super soft and fluffy. Make sure to sieve them before adding into the batter to remove any lumps making for a perfectly combined sponge.
  • You’ll want the filling to be smooth and creamy, so inside if a hidden chocolate ganache. This is simple chocolate and cream melted together and piped in the ‘poke’ holes. I use dark 70% chocolate along with the Natures Charm Coconut Whipping Cream. This allows the ganache to be ultra silky smooth.
  • Lastly, the star of the show is the silky buttercream. This is a special buttercream as it uses the traditional ingredients of dairy-free butter, icing sugar and cocoa..but with the addition of condensed milk. I use the Natures Charm Condensed Oat Milk, which adds smooth, grain-less texture as well as making the buttercream taste similar to a chocolate spread. It’s delicious!
Slice of vegan black forest cake with cherry jam

Why you’ll love this recipe:

This is such an easy vegan chocolate cake recipe which you’ll love to bake over the holidays, but if you need a-little more temping, here are my top reasons why you need to bake this cake:

  • It’s vegan friendly – No animal derived ingredients.
  • Really easy to make.
  • Easy to serve and share.
  • No stacking needed.
  • Super rich, moist and decadent.
  • Filled with fruity and juicy cherries.
  • Simple yet effective decoration.
  • Baked in 1 tin.
  • Great for storing – Un-iced cake can be stored in a sealed container for 2-3 days.
  • Fun for the kids to get involved in making and decorating.
  • Served 8-10, depending on the slice size.
  • Great for a Christmas gathering / party.
Black forest cake with reindeer.
Christmas black forest sheet cake.

How to make a Vegan Black Forest Sheet Cake

This is an unbelievable vegan chocolate cake which is sure to get your gusts going back for a second slice. The cake basically consists of three simple steps and it’s so quick to make. Find the full written recipe and method in the recipe card at the bottom of the page.

  1. Cake

    Mix together the dairy-free milk and vinegar. Stir and set aside to curdle, this creates the vegan buttermilk. In a separate bowl, combine all the other ingredients. Pour in the buttermilk and oil. Stir into a cake batter.

  2. Bake

    Pour the batter in the lined tin, spread out until even. Bake in the middle of the oven for 25-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.

  3. Filling

    Use the end of a wooden spook to poke holes into the cake. Transfer cherry jam and chocolate ganache into separate piping bags, snip off the tips. Pipe the fillings into each hole.

  4. Buttercream

    Whip the butter, condensed milk, icing sugar and a-little bit of cocoa together until fluffy, add milk if needed. Transfer 2-4 tablespoons into a piping bag fitted with a large round tip nozzle. Pour the remaining cocoa into the bowl and whip until a dark chocolate buttercream. Spread over the top of the cake.

  5. Decoration

    Pipe bulbs of the light chocolate buttercream over the top of the cake. Press on a glacé cherry. Use melted chocolate to pipe antlers and eyes.

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 InstagramFacebook & TikTok! 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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black forest sheet cake with chocolate buttercream and glacé cherries

Vegan Black Forest Sheet Cake

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Easy Vegan Black Forest sheet cake filled with cherry jam and chocolate, decorated with reindeer is perfect for Christmas.


Units Scale

Ingredients for the cake

  • 250ml of dairy-free milk
  • 2 tablespoons of Natures Charm Condensed Milk
  • 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 100g of caster sugar
  • 250g of self raising flour
  • 30g of cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
  • 70ml of sunflower oil
  • 20g of chopped glacé cherries (roughly chopped)

Ingredients for the chocolate ganache

  • 50g of dairy-free dark chocolate
  • 40g of Natures Charm Coconut Whipping Cream (or coconut cream)

Ingredients for the buttercream

  • 130g of dairy-free butter
  • 180g of icing sugar
  • 6 tablespoons of cocoa powder
  • Dairy-free milk (see step 2 & 4)

Ingredients for decoration

  • Glacé cherries
  • 50g of dairy-free dark chocolate (melting and grating)


Method (cake)

  1. Preheat your oven to 180ºC fan and line an 8 x 8 inch square cake tin with greaseproof paper. Allow the paper to hang over the tin slightly, this makes it easier to remove the cake when baked.
  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 sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda. Mix well to combine. Add the oil into the ‘buttermilk’ and whisk to combine.
  4. Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix just to combine. Fold in the chopped glacé cherries.
  5. Spoon the batter into the lined tin. Level it out with the back of a spoon or offset spatula.
  6. Place the cake into the middle of the preheated oven and bake for around 25-30 minutes. You will know it is done when you put a knife or skewer down the middle of the cake and it comes out clean and it’s springy to the touch. If batter comes off on the skewer, it needs more time to bake. To prevent burning, top the cake with some greaseproof paper then return back into the oven.
  7. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes then carefully transfer onto a cooling rack. Allow to cool fully before filling and frosting. You can even place the cake in a sealed container once cool then frost the day after. It’s a very light sponge so be careful with it when removing from the tin.

Method (filling)

  1. Fill a small saucepan with water and place on the hob over medium heat. Add the chocolate and cream into a heat proof bowl and place on-top of the pan. Allow to melt, stirring occasionally.
  2. Once melted, remove from the heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  3. Once slightly cool, transfer into a piping bag and snip off the top. Transfer the cherry jam into a separate piping bag and snip off the tip.
  4. Poke holes in the cake using the base / handle of a wooden spoon and pipe in some of the cherry jam and ganache.

Method (buttercream)

  1. In a large mixing bowl, add in the dairy-free butter and condensed milk, 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 2 tablespoons of the cocoa powder. Whip on high speed for around 5 minutes to incorporate it. Add a splash of dairy-free milk if needed. If the buttercream 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 2-3 tablespoons of the light chocolate buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a round tip nozzle. Set aside.
  4. Add in the rest of the cocoa powder into the buttercream and whip to combine. You may need to add a splash more dairy-free milk. You want this buttercream to be darker in colour and rich.
  5. Dollop or pipe some of the white buttercream on top of the cake, spread out until even using an off-set spatula or pallet knife.
  6. Pipe bulbs of the lighter buttercream over the top of the cake.
  7. Decorate with a glacé cherry for the reindeer nose, some left over dark buttercream for the eyes.
  8. Melt some dairy-free dark chocolate either in a microwave or on the hob, transfer into a piping bag, snip off the tip and pipe on some antlers.
  9. Optional: Sprinkle over some grated dark chocolate.


To store: Keep this cake stored in a sealed container in the fridge. Leave at room temperature for 15-20 minutes before serving. Best eaten within 3 days of making. Un-iced cake can be stored in a sealed container at room temperature for 2 days. Always stored iced cakes in the fridge.

What dairy-free butter to use? My favourites are Naturli Vegan Block and Flora Plant Based Block Butter. All work amazingly in vegan buttercream!

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

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