Indulge in this Super Moist & Fluffy Vegan Blueberry Lemon Cake. This luscious cake batter is infused with the vibrant essence of lemon zest, adding a refreshing citrusy twist to each bite. As you delve deeper into this perfect dessert, you'll encounter bursts of juicy blueberries nestled within the cake, generously decorating the top of the cake with their vibrant hues. These succulent blueberries and creamy vegan buttermilk create a symphony of flavors that will leave you craving more!
This cake makes the occasion! It's a highly-rated recipe due to its perfect balance of moisture and fluffiness. But honestly, it's a gorgeous cake that's easy to decorate.
Perfect in the spring and summer months and the best homemade surprise for someone needing a little cheer. Whether to mark a special occasion or add some joy to your Wednesday, you're in for a delightful treat.
In this post, I share the following:
- A baking option for making this cake gluten-free.
- How to prevent the blueberries from sinking to the bottom.
- Which butters are best for baking vegan recipes, and why using a high-quality vegan butter is essential to the end result.
Use this section to jump to areas of interest within the post.
Ingredients for a vegan cake
We'll skip the dairy and eggs to create this delectable vegan dessert. Instead, you'll need key ingredients like applesauce, nondairy milk. and plant-based butter. You'll also need the following:
- Flour - you'll need all-purpose flour or measure-for-measure 1:1 gluten-free baking flour to make this cake. I recommend the King Arthur brand.
- Organic cane sugar - you can use granulated or coconut sugar for this recipe. I prefer using cane sugar for baking as it is less refined and adds a beautiful touch to the final result.
- Nondairy plant milk - when baking and creating vegan buttermilk, it is recommended to use either soy milk or almond milk. These plant-based milk alternatives react exceptionally well with acids, resulting in a perfect vegan buttermilk substitute.
- Vegan butter - (unsalted)
- Applesauce - helps make this an eggless blueberry lemon cake. Note: I have not used any other common egg replacements like flaxseed.
- Fresh lemon juice & lemon zest - adds a refreshing citrusy twist to each bite.
- Blueberries - You can use either fresh or frozen blueberries for this recipe. If using frozen blueberries, thaw them before adding them to the batter. To prevent the blueberries from sinking to the bottom of the cake, gently toss them in 1 tablespoon of flour before incorporating them into the batter.
- Vanilla extract - a flavor enhancer
- Leavening agents - baking powder & baking soda work hard to make this a super fluffy cake!
See the recipe card for full quantities and instructions.
This one-bowl recipe uses the basic baking technique of whisking together the dry ingredients, adding the wet ingredients, and combining until perfectly smooth. Fold in the blueberries, transfer to a cake pan, and bake! Once done, allow them to cool, then have fun decorating.
Whisk together the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add the wet ingredients, stirring until you reach a smooth thick batter.
Shake the blueberries in 1 tablespoon of flour to prevent them from sinking to the bottom while baking. Then fold the berries into the batter.
Pour the wet batter into greased or parchment-lined cake pans and transfer to the preheated oven.
Once done, allow the cakes to cool completely before decorating.
This cake is great all on its own, which is a major compliment I got when it was tested. You can pair it with vegan vanilla ice cream or make homemade buttercream frosting.
Important note: Avoid your cake from slipping and sliding by allowing it to cool completely before decorating. Invert the cake tins over a wire rack and flip them right side up. Full cooling will take at least 30 minutes.
Decorating idea: use store-bought blueberry jam to spread between cake layers and vegan buttercream frosting to decorate the cake.
Besides an oven, this easy dessert recipe requires cake tins and a piece of parchment paper. Either 6" or 8" round cake pans will work perfectly. This recipe allows enough cake batter for two pans of that size. The photographed cake was baked in two 6" pans, cooled, and stacked.
No stand mixer is needed for this vegan blueberry cake recipe. Only a mixing bowl and whisk!
After baking a homemade cake, you can keep it fresh by covering it and storing it at room temperature for 2-4 days. If you want to extend its shelf life, place it in the refrigerator, where it can stay fresh for up to one week. Make sure it's wrapped or sealed in an airtight container.
Use only high-quality plant-based butter when baking. I only use Miyoko's Creamery and Vio Life because their fat content closely resembles dairy butter, and overall they accomplish a better texture. Other alternative brands use ingredients that disrupt the texture.
The butter should be melted and then cooled to room temperature (72℉) before adding it to the wet ingredients.
Can I use frozen blueberries in this lemon blueberry vegan cake?
Yes, use can use frozen or fresh blueberries. If using frozen thaw them while preparing the ingredients. Before adding them to the wet batter, toss with one tablespoon of extra flour to prevent sinking.
Can I use almond or cassava flour instead of all-purpose or gluten-free flour?
Unfortunately, not for this recipe. All-purpose or King Arthur's 1:1 measure-for-measure gluten-free flour blend is the only alternative flour I can recommend. The 1:1 GF flour should have xantham gum in the ingredients, like King Arthur's.
Should the nondairy milk be unsweetened or sweetened?
Either one will work perfectly. It doesn't matter for this cake recipe.
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Super Moist & Fluffy Vegan Blueberry Lemon Cake
Blueberry Lemon Cake:
- 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour (or 1:1 gluten-free flour) (420 grams)
- 1 ½ cups organic cane sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 ½ cups non-dairy milk
- ½ cup vegan butter (high-quality) (melted to a liquid and then cooled to room temperature)
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 4 tablespoons lemon juice, fresh
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest (about 1 lemon)
- ½ cup fresh or frozen blueberries
- Preheat the oven to 350℉ and line two 6" or 8" cake tins with parchment paper.
- Melt the vegan butter and allow it to cool to room temperature while you prep the other ingredients. Transferring the butter to a fresh dish and placing it in the fridge can help speed up the cooling.
- In a large mixing bowl combine the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking powder, and baking soda.
- In a medium-sized bowl combine the wet ingredients: non-dairy milk, butter, applesauce, vanilla extract, lemon juice.
- Combine the wet and dry ingredients stirring until completely smooth and no lumps remain.
- Toss the blueberries with 1 tablespoon of extra flour, which prevents them from sinking. Then add them with the lemon zest to the batter and gently fold both in.
- Pour the batter evenly into both cake tins (about ⅔ full) and transfer into the oven. Bake for 35-40 minutes and check if done by placing a toothpick in the center. When done, the toothpick will come out clean. The cakes should be golden on the top and bounce when lightly touched.
- Remove the cake tins from the oven and allow to cool. Carefully invert the cake tins on a wire rack and place them right side up. Allow them to cool completely before decorating.