Vegan Chocolate Sheet Cake – Easy and beginner friendly

This single layer vegan chocolate sheet cake is soft, fluffy and rich in chocolate flavour. It’s very easy to make and the chocolate soy whipping cream makes it extra chocolatey and delicious. This is one of my absolute favourite things to bake for Valentine’s Day.

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vegan chocolate sheet cake

I have a confession to make… I made this vegan chocolate sheet cake just in time for Valentine’s Day, only a week ago! I know, I know, I am a bad food blogger for not fully preparing recipes for Valentine’s Day!

But on a positive note, the fact that I managed to put this recipe together in such a short time proves that this vegan chocolate sheet cake is indeed super easy and quick to bake! I’m sure you’ll agree. A perfect, last-minute Valentine’s Day gift to bake!

It’s sweet, chocolatey and soft with perfectly smooth and fluffy chocolate whipping cream on top. Exactly what you were looking for? Then let’s get baking!

vegan chocolate sheet cake
vegan chocolate sheet cake

How to make this vegan chocolate sheet cake

I love chocolate flavour when it comes to baking, who doesn’t? Whether it’s for Valentine’s Day or any other fancy occasion, chocolate flavoured baked goods are always a win for everyone!

This vegan chocolate sheet cake is light and soft in texture, not overly sweet, rich in chocolate flavour and fragrant. Paired with a fluffy and silky smooth soy chocolate whipping cream on top, this recipe becomes extra chocolaty and even more delicious. Forget box chocolate cake, you’ve found perfection.

Boxed cake mixes are very handy and delicious too, but sometimes I find them too sweet and they often have food additives which I don’t really like. So making them from scratch is always my favourite approach to baking cakes.

It can be intimidating for beginners to start from scratch, I know because I once was too. So, here are some tips I use to make this vegan chocolate sheet cake.

Use dark cocoa powder with no added sugar

There is plethora of cocoa powders out there in the supermarket these days, which might be confusing for some of you guys when choosing one for your chocolate sheet cake.

Go for a nice, dark one with no added sugar as light cocoa powders have less flavour, and added sugar increases the sugar content which makes the taste of the final product different.

Use vegan butter instead of oil

I use both vegan butter and plant oil to bake cakes but for this vegan chocolate sheet cake I used vegan butter. Vegan butter is made with different ingredients depending on the brand you buy, I have seen vegan butter made with soy, olive, coconut etc.

The vegan butter I used for this recipe is a soy based vegan butter. It has quite an impressive buttery flavour and smell! You can use vegan butter just like conventional butter. Using vegan butter in this recipe gives it a nice, rich buttery flavour and it pairs with the chocolate flavour wonderfully.

It doesn’t have to be exactly the same vegan butter I used, which is soy based. You can use any other type of vegan butter in this recipe. I made the instructions simple with melted vegan butter so you don’t have to worry if your vegan butter would whip or not, like many recipes require.

Vegan butter milk

To achieve the soft cake texture, I used vegan butter milk in this vegan chocolate sheet cake recipe. So what is butter milk? Butter milk is essentially a fermented milk which has a tangy taste to it. This tanginess which comes from acid apparently helps relax the gluten development in the batter, thus creating a softer and fluffier cake.

But we cannot wait for our plant milk to ferment to use in this vegan chocolate sheet cake! So here is a quick way to make vegan butter milk.

Mix any of the following plant milks – soy, almond, oat or coconut – with a little bit of either lemon juice or apple cider vinegar and set aside. Boom! Then you a have perfectly tangy, vegan butter milk that can be used in any recipes that call for butter milk.

I usually go for the combination of soy milk and apple cider vinegar as I feel they make the best vegan butter milk.

Plant Whipping cream

I made this lovely, chocolatey, vegan soy chocolate whipping cream to go with this vegan chocolate sheet cake. Don’t they look perfect together?!

This is probably the best thing about this vegan chocolate sheet cake, perfectly soft and light chocolate cake with perfectly smooth, fluffy and rich chocolate whipping cream. It tastes as elegant as it sounds.

I used a store-bought soy whipping cream (I sometimes do a little celebration in my head because of how easy it has become to get plant-based whipping cream these days!), but if you cannot find any plant-based whipping cream in your area, alternatively you can use coconut cream as a substitute.

Chill 1-2 cans of coconut milk overnight, scoop out the solid part on top of the coconut milk and whip with other ingredients just like any other whipping cream. It works just like soy whipping cream.

To substitute, use 2 cups of coconut cream for this recipe with the same amount of other ingredients.

vegan chocolate sheet cake
vegan chocolate sheet cake

Why is this vegan chocolate sheet cake so good?

This vegan chocolate sheet cake is so good because A; it’s chocolate. And B; everyone loves chocolate. So, whatever the occasion, be it Valentine’s Day with your partner, a birthday party or even just a free Sunday, it’s no doubt that everyone will love it.

And the best part is: this recipe doesn’t involve any difficult techniques. So it’s baking beginner friendly, relatively easy and quick to bake. It’s a life saver for people who are running out of time to make a gift for a particular day!

Can I make this vegan chocolate sheet cake gluten-free?

Yes you can! If you would like to make this vegan chocolate sheet cake gluten-free, simply swap the plain flour with rice flour. The texture will be slightly denser, but it will be still soft and delicious.

I haven’t tried any other gluten-free flours so I can’t guarantee the result. However, if you ever make this vegan chocolate sheet cake with any other flours, let me know how it went!

Can I store this vegan chocolate sheet cake in the freezer?

Yes you can store this vegan chocolate sheet cake in the freezer for a longer shelf life! However, it is best to freeze the cake and whipping cream separately as the whipping cream will become slightly runnier once defrosted and needs extra whipping.

If you are not eating the vegan chocolate sheet cake immediately, freeze the cake in the freezer and whip your soy/coconut whipping cream when you serve and eat.

To store in the freezer, put the vegan chocolate sheet cake in an airtight container and store in the freezer for up to 2-3 months for maximum freshness.

How do I store the vegan chocolate sheet cake if eating within the next few days?

I doubt any of you can resist eating this delicious vegan chocolate sheet cake the day you bake it… But if you want to keep some for the next few days to enjoy later, put it in an airtight container and keep it in the fridge for up to 2-3 day to keep them fresh.

It is not recommended to keep it at room temperature as the soy/coconut whipping cream may go runny and spoil the texture of the cake.

Like storing in the freezer, it is best to keep the cake and the whipping cream separate in the fridge and assemble when serving so that it keeps its texture and deliciousness.

What toppings would be good for this vegan chocolate sheet cake?

Another thing that I love about this vegan chocolate sheet cake is that you can be pretty creative with your toppings.

For the pictures of this recipe I kept it very simple yet elegant with some cacao nibs and vegan chocolate syrup (recipe coming soon) but if you are looking to go fancier I suggest you to try some crushed nuts like: almond, walnuts, pecan nuts, chocolate granola, puffed grains, caramel syrup, fresh strawberries, raspberries, or even some edible flowers and glitters.

When topping with wet ingredients like fresh fruits, make sure to take any moisture off with kitchen paper so that they won’t make the soy/coconut whipping cream wet and runny.

You will LOVE this vegan chocolate sheet cake if you are:

– a chocolate lover
– looking for a last-minute Valentine’s Day gift to bake
– a baking beginner
– vegan
– not vegan
– a long term chocolate baking expert

vegan chocolate sheet cake
vegan chocolate sheet cake

Vegan Chocolate Sheet Cake

What you need:

For the cake

  • 1 & 1/4 cup(150g) plain flour
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • 3 tbsp dark cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup (100g) brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) melted vegan butter
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) soy milk
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee
  • Some cacao nibs for sprinkling

For the chocolate whipping cream

  •  3/4 cup (200ml) soy whipping cream
  • 1/4 heaping cup (50g) brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (30g) melted vegan milk chocolate

Tools:

How to:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (356°F)
  2. Warm up the soy milk in a milk pan over medium heat to dissolve the instant coffee. Don’t overheat as it creates a skin on top. You can also do this step in a microwave. When the soy milk is warmed up add in the apple cider vinegar and instant coffee. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the flour, corn starch, cocoa powder, brown sugar, baking powder and salt.
  4. Add the soy milk mixture and the melted vegan butter into the dry mixture. Stir gently with a large wooden spoon or a spatula. Be careful not to mix too much as it develops gluten in the batter, which can result in a tough texture when baked.
  5. Pour the batter into a square baking tin and smooth the top evenly.
  6. Bake for 18-20 mins until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  7. While the cake is in the oven, let’s make the chocolate cream!
  8. In a large bowl, pour in the soy whipping cream and sugar. Beat with an electric hand mixer until it’s thick and fluffy for about 8-10 mins.
  9. Add the melted chocolate into the whipping cream in 3 stages until well incorporated.
  10. Once the cake is baked and cooled down completely, take it out of the baking tin, put the chocolate cream on top and sprinkle with the cacao nibs.
  11. Enjoy!

Please leave a comment and rate this recipe in the comment section below if you like this vegan chocolate sheet cake! Let me know and tag me @thechestnutbakery on Instagram too. Thank you for making my recipe, friends!

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vegan chocolate sheet cake

VEGAN CHOCOLATE SHEET CAKE


  • Author: Maiko
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 9 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This single layer vegan chocolate sheet cake is soft, fluffy and rich in chocolate flavour. It’s very easy to make and the chocolate soy whipping cream makes it extra chocolatey and delicious. It’s one of my absolute favourite things to bake for Valentine’s Day.


Ingredients

Scale

For the cake

  • 1 & 1/4 cup(150g) plain flour
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • 3 tbsp dark cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup (100g) brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) melted vegan butter
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) soy milk
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee
  • Some cacao nibs for sprinkling

For the chocolate whipping cream

  •  3/4 cup (200ml) soy whipping cream
  • 1/4 heaping cup (50g) brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (30g) melted vegan milk chocolate

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (356°F)
  2. Warm up the soy milk in a milk pan over medium heat to dissolve the instant coffee. Don’t overheat as it creates a skin on top. You can also do this step in a microwave. When the soy milk is warmed up add in the apple cider vinegar and instant coffee. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the flour, corn starch, cocoa powder, brown sugar, baking powder and salt.
  4. Add the soy milk mixture and the melted vegan butter into the dry mixture. Stir gently with a large wooden spoon or a spatula. Be careful not to mix too much as it develops gluten in the batter, which can result in a tough texture when baked.
  5. Pour the batter into a square baking tin and smooth the top evenly.Bake for 18-20 mins until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  6. While the cake is in the oven, let’s make the chocolate cream!In a large bowl, pour in the soy whipping cream and sugar. Beat with an electric hand mixer until it’s thick and fluffy for about 8-10 mins.
  7. Add the melted chocolate into the whipping cream in 3 stages until well incorporated.
  8. Once the cake is baked and cooled down completely, take it out of the baking tin, put the chocolate cream on top and sprinkle with the cacao nibs.
  9. Enjoy!
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: cake, chocolate, gluten-free option

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8 Comments

  1. 18 February 2021 / 6:14 am

    Delicious cake and you’d never know it used plant-based ingredients! You’re right, it is so great that we can just grab these off the shelf now!

    • Maiko
      Author
      19 February 2021 / 10:46 am

      Thank you Freya! This cake is suer delicious! And I know, such a wonderful time to be vegan 🙂

  2. 18 February 2021 / 9:51 am

    Yum! Thanks for the recipe. I have to try making this now 🙂

    • Maiko
      Author
      19 February 2021 / 10:46 am

      Thank you for your comment! Let me know how it went when you make it!

  3. 18 February 2021 / 11:11 am

    Ok I am officially drooling. What an appetising photo! Keep up the good work.

    • Maiko
      Author
      19 February 2021 / 10:52 am

      Thank you Taz for the comment! I always try my best to capture the deliciousness haha.

  4. 23 February 2021 / 8:23 pm

    wow, this is absolutely delicious. Thank you for taking the time to create the recipe.

    • Maiko
      Author
      24 February 2021 / 5:17 am

      Thank you for the comment!

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