This easy vegan lemon cake is moist and delicious, but the icing on the cake, literally, is a glossy, glassy, gorgeous vegan lemon curd that tastes as heavenly as it looks.
If lemony desserts are your favorites, they certainly are mine, you will love this Vegan Lemon Cake with a lemon curd topping.
I shared this vegan lemon curd recipe with you last, and it really is the pièce de résistance for this dessert because it defines both the final flavor and look. And what a flavor and look it is!
The cake is soft, tender, moist and airy, with just a hint of lemon. But when you pour the lemon curd topping over it goes from being slightly tart to insanely lemony. The gooey, creamy curd complements the sweet crumb perfectly in every bite.
It's a dessert no one will be able to resist when you bring it to your dinner table. And did I say it was easy?
Why you'll love this recipe
- It's delicious
- It's gorgeous
- It's sweet
- It's tart
- It's easy
- It's quick
- It's one-bowl
How to make a vegan lemon cake from scratch
It's easier than you think, and it comes together faster than you'd imagine.
The cake batter is made in one bowl and the lemon curd, which you can make in advance, needs a single small saucepan and under 10 minutes.
For the cake batter you will need vegan butter at room temperature, sugar, all purpose flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, lemon juice and zest and nondairy milk (any kind is fine). You can find my vegan lemon curd recipe here (I used the curd made with 1 tbsp tapioca starch for this recipe because I like the topping a bit soft).
The only step to remember while making this cake is to cream the butter and sugar first--put them in a stand mixer or a big bowl and whisk until they are incorporated and look fluffy.
After that toss in the wet ingredients, followed by the dry, whisk together quickly until everything's mixed--don't overmix. Scrape it all into a parchment-lined, oiled and flour-dusted pan, and bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.
After 25 minutes pull the cake out, pour the lemon curd into the center, leaving an inch border on the edges, and scatter on a few optional sliced almonds. Return the cake to the oven and bake 10 more minutes. When you pull it out the edges should look nice and toasty and golden-brown.
A springform pan, preferably a 9- or 10-inch one. A 9-inch springform pan will give you the highest rise.
If you only have a regular cake pan, you can use it but you won't be able to easily unmold the cake from the pan as you can't flip it over into a plate because of the gooey lemon curd. In that case I'd just slice the cake right in the pan, ease out the slices and serve.
Another option would be to bake the cake for 30-35 minutes or until toasty brown, remove, and drizzle the lemon curd on top.
Yes, you certainly can. If you do, bake the cake for 30-35 minutes, unmold, and then drizzle on the lemon curd.
You can also just bake up this scrumptious vegan lemon pound cake.
Making eggless cakes is really a breeze because while it is true that eggs often give baked goods structure and a nice rise, it is easy enough to replicate those structural blocks with vegan ingredients.
In this case we'll use tapioca starch and a combination of the acidic lemon juice and baking soda to help make the cake airy, light and fluffy.
Storage and freezing tips
This cake can be refrigerated for up to one week. To freeze the cake, wrap it in plastic food wrap after it cools completely and store it in a freezer-safe container for up to three months.
More vegan cake recipes
- Vegan Lemon Yogurt Bundt Cake
- Vegan Lemon Pound Cake
- Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake
- Vegan Lemon Blueberry Cake
Vegan Lemon Cake
- Stand mixer or large bowl
- 9- or 10-inch springform pan (or other cake pan, see tips above)
- 8 tbsp vegan butter (at room temperature)
- 1 cup sugar
- ½ cup lemon juice (about three lemons)
- Zest of two lemons
- ¾ cup nondairy milk (I used oat milk)
- 1¼ cups all purpose flour
- 1 cup almond flour
- 1 tbsp tapioca flour (also called tapioca starch)
- 1½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 recipe vegan lemon curd
- 2 tbsp sliced almonds (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Prepare the cake pan. Spray the pan lightly with oil and cover the bottom with parchment paper, making sure it covers all the way up to the edges as the sugars in the cake tend to stick. Dust the cake pan with a tablespoon of flour.
- In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until fluffy, about a minute.
- Add the lemon juice and zest, nondairy milk, all purpose flour, almond flour, tapioca stach, baking powder and baking soda to the bowl and whisk 15 seconds until just incorporated. You can use the whisk attachment if using a stand mixer. Scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl to ensure everything is mixed and beat 10 seconds more.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top lightly with a spatula.
- Bake the cake for 25 minutes, then pull it out of the oven and pour the lemon curd into the center. Spread it slightly leaving a one-inch border all around the edges.
- Sprinkle with the sliced almonds, if using, then return the cake to the pan and bake 10 more minutes until it looks golden -brown. A toothpick inserted in the cake should come out clean (although some lemon curd might stick, which is okay).
- Let the cake cool for 20 minutes on a rack, then gently remove the sides of the springform pan and continue cooling on the rack.
- Slice and serve when cooled thoroughly.