Fall in love with this easy to mix up in one bowl vegan chocolate sheet cake recipe. Soft, fudgy cake topped with a creamy chocolate buttercream frosting, you won’t believe it’s dairy and egg free!
Hold onto your hats because this cake is downright delicious. This vegan chocolate cake recipe is rich, fudgy, super moist, has the perfect texture, and mixes up in just one bowl. Can we call this the perfect cake? I think we can.
This chocolate cake is dairy free, egg free, nut free, soy free, and can be made gluten free with one easy swap of the flour. Almost anyone can enjoy a slice of this cake regardless of their dietary restrictions, making it perfect for any special occasion.
That’s what makes this cake a go-to in my family because everyone can enjoy it! And let me tell you that this cake is devoured each and every time.
Why You’ll Love this Chocolate Sheet Cake
- Super chocolatey, super rich, super moist
- Mixes up in just one bowl
- Simple ingredients
- Great chocolate flavor
- Easy to make
- Perfect for birthday parties, special occasions, or just because!
Here is a quick rundown of what you’ll need to make this vegan chocolate sheet cake.
- Flour: A good all-purpose flour works great in this recipe, no fancy cake flour needed! For gluten free options, see below.
- Cocoa powder: You can use either natural cocoa powder or Dutch processed cocoa powder in this recipe. I generally use natural cocoa powder because it is slightly acidic and helps the cake rise, not to mention it still has some of the antioxidants in the natural cocoa.
- Flaxseeds: These are what help to bind the cake together without an egg. Plus, it adds some fat for flavor.
- Dairy free Milk + ACV: This makes essentially a vegan buttermilk which helps the cake to rise in the oven. The best milks to use to get a good curdle are either soy milk or almond milk. Coconut milk (from the carton not a can) will also work but won’t get as good of a curdle. If you need to use a different dairy free milk like rice milk or oat milk, omit the apple cider vinegar and add an additional ½ teaspoon of baking powder.
- Oil + Applesauce: Together these are what make the cake super fudgy and moist. A neutral vegetable oil like canola or refined coconut oil work perfect!
- Salt + Leaveners: For taste and to help it rise!
Substitutions & Variations
To make this cake gluten free, use a good gluten free 1:1 flour blend. Not all gluten-free flour blends are the same. My go-to is always King Arthur Measure for Measure gluten free flour. It is consistently a good mix that already contains the xanthan gum.
To make this a mocha cake, replace half of the dairy free milk with half a cup of a strong brewed coffee. This makes the cake taste even richer and more chocolatey!
Making a sheet cake is really easy and can be done in 4 major steps.
Make sure to check out the recipe card below for the full recipe and ingredient list.
First, make the flax eggs. Mix together boiling water and the flax seeds. Give it a good stir and set this aside. Using hot water really helps to activate the flax seeds.
Second, whisk the wet ingredients together. Into a large mixing bowl, add the soy milk (or dairy free milk of your choice) and the apple cider vinegar. Let this rest for about a minute before adding the sugar, oil, applesauce, vanilla extract, and the prepared flaxseed gel. Give this a good whisk to fully incorporate all the ingredients.
Tip! I find that room temperature dairy free milks incorporate into cake batter better than chilled dairy free milks.
Third, into the same bowl, sift in your dry ingredients. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Switch to a spatula and gently fold the ingredients together.
Finally, pour the batter into a lightly greased and lined 8×10-inch (20x25cm) baking pan. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center pulls out clean. The exact baking time will depend on the type of pan that you use, but generally this vegan cake shouldn’t take much longer than 45 minutes.
Let it rest in the hot pan while it cools. You can place the entire cake in the pan on a cooling rack to help it cool more quickly.
Finally, it’s time for frosting! Gently swirl the frosting over the top of the cake, making sure to add sprinkles before the frosting sets.
For sure! This will make a lot of cupcakes, about 24.
How to Store
Keep the leftover cake in an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 5 days. If you have used gluten free flour, I find that this cake tends to dry out on day 3, which is just the nature of gluten free cakes.
To keep it super fresh no matter which flour you use, you can freeze any leftover cake in an airtight, freezer safe container for up to a month.
More Cake Recipes
I know that you are just going to fall in love with this vegan chocolate sheet cake recipe! Be sure to give it a star rating in the comments below and let me know how your baking went! And if you have any questions about how to best adapt this cake for your dietary needs, drop a comment below and I’m happy to help.
Happy chocolate cake making!!
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- Mixing bowls
- Mixing spoons
- measuring cups
- Measuring spoons
- baking pan
- parchment paper
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 ¼ cup dairy free milk
- 1 ¼ cup sugar
- ¼ cup oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- ½ cup applesauce
- 1 ¾ cup flour
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- 3 tablespoons flax seeds
- ½ cup hot water
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C. Lightly spray and line with parchment paper an 8×10-inch (20x25cm) pan.
- Make the flaxseed egg and vegan buttermilk. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flaxseeds with the hot water. In the measuring cup, whisk together the dairy free milk and apple cider vinegar. Let both of these sit, separately, for 5 minutes.
- Mix the wet ingredients. In that same mixing bowl, add the vegan buttermilk to the flaxseeds. Then add the remaining wet ingredients of oil, sugar, vanilla, and applesauce.
- Sift the dry ingredients. Into the same mixing bowl, sift the dry ingredients of flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Switch to a spatula and mix until the batter is thick and fully combined. Pour into the prepared baking dish.
- Bake until done. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center pulls out clean. Let cool in the pan until cool before frosting. Top with the dairy free frosting of your choice, and don’t forget the sprinkles! Slice and enjoy!
- To make this a mocha cake, replace half of the dairy free milk with half a cup of a strong brewed coffee. This makes the cake taste even richer and more chocolatey!
- How to Store
- Keep the leftover cake in an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 5 days. If you have used gluten free flour, I find that this cake tends to dry out on day 3, which is just the nature of gluten free cakes.
- To keep it super fresh no matter which flour you use, you can freeze any leftover cake in an airtight, freezer safe container for up to a month.