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Vegan Funfetti Cake

A few weeks ago, I got an email from someone with a recipe for a Wacky Cake (thank you Alanna!). She said it was her go-to cake recipe for gluten free and vegan cakes, and I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it! I’d been meaning to work on a vegan funfetti cake recipe for a while, and this was the perfect place to start.

image of vegan funfetti cake with slice on plate and bite about to be taken with a fork

The original recipe was for a chocolate cake, so I definitely had to tweak it a bit to make it a vanilla cake that made enough batter for a layer cake. But after a bit of experimenting, I think I got it just right!

Simple Ingredients You Probably Already Have in Your Pantry

One of my favorite things about this depression era recipe is its simplicity. It doesn’t have any crazy egg replacements or ingredients you need to order online.

I can almost guarantee you have everything you need in your pantry already!!

To replace the eggs used in most cake recipes, this recipe uses a hefty amount of baking soda and vinegar.

I was a bit skeptical when I first read this recipe, but I knew it had to work since this recipe has been a fan favorite for decades.

photo of simple and easy vegan funfetti cake batter ingredients

Sure enough, the cake layers rose just fine and were tender and moist. The flavor is definitely unique and different than my usual butter cakes, but it’s totally delicious in its own way.

I couldn’t stop myself from eating all the cake tops after I leveled them. That’s always a sign that I have a winning recipe on my hands.

What’s even wilder is that you can make this vegan funfetti cake batter by hand!! The vegan buttercream in this recipe does require a stand or hand mixer, but you only need a whisk to make the cake batter.

Ingredients to Be Mindful of When Baking This Vegan Funfetti Cake

When you think of a vegan recipe, you know it can’t use ingredients like eggs, milk, or butter. But there are other less obvious ingredients you have to be careful with too!

Choose Organic Granulated Sugar

Most granulated sugar is made from beets, so you might assume it’s vegan.

However, there are a lot of types of granulated sugar in the US and the UK that are filtered with bone char. Most organic granulated sugar is vegan, so I recommend using organic sugar in this recipe.

Make Sure Your Sprinkles are Vegan

Another ingredient in this recipe that you need to watch out for is the sprinkles!

While there are lots of great vegan sprinkles out there, your average rainbow sprinkles are not vegan.

image of vegan sprinkles being poured into a vegan vanilla cake also known as a wacky cake

You don’t want to use your run of the mill sprinkles from the grocery store in this cake. Instead, I recommend these vegan rainbow sprinkles.

Surprisingly there are also really pretty vegan sprinkles blends made by Sweetapolita that can be used to decorate this cake.

Take a Good Look at Your Food Coloring

Some natural food coloring is vegan, but not all of it! I usually use Americolor gel food coloring in my baking, but sadly it isn’t vegan.

For the decoration of this cake, I used this natural and vegan food coloring. Coloring your vegan frosting is totally optional, but it does make the decoration of this cake a bit more exciting!

image of frosted vegan cake decorated to look like a watercolor painting with colorful frosting

Tips for Making the Best Vegan Funfetti Cake:

  • Mix the batter until the ingredients are just combined! Over-mixing the batter can cause your cake layers to be dense and tough.
  • Use vegan butter for the frosting (like Earth Balance Baking Sticks) instead of shortening to give you buttercream more flavor.
  • Ingredients at room temp mix together better, so set out any cold ingredients ahead of time.
  • Make this vegan funfetti cake gluten free by using your favorite cup for cup gluten free flour.
  • One batch of batter can be used to make three 6″cake layers, two 8″ cake layers, or one 9×13″ sheet cake.
  • Use your favorite type of dairy free milk to make the vegan buttercream! I love almond milk, but soy, oat, or coconut work great too

Making This Vegan Cake in Advance & Storage Tips:

  • A frosted cake can last in the fridge for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to a month. The buttercream locks in all the moisture, keeping the cake fresh and delicious!
  • Make your vegan frosting ahead of time or save any leftover frosting! It can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • A frosted cake can last in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for up to a month. The frosting locks in all the moisture, keeping the cake fresh and delicious!
  • If you cut into the cake and have leftovers, use any remaining frosting to cover the cut section to keep it moist and store in the fridge for up to a week.
image of a slice of vegan funfetti cake

Let Me Know What You Think!

If you try this vegan funfetti cake recipe, I’d love to hear what you think of it! Please leave a rating and comment below.

Also tag me @chelsweets and #chelsweets so that I can see your amazing creations on social media.

Other Recipes You Might Like:

Yield: 16

Vegan Funfetti Cake

image of vegan funfetti cake with slice on plate and bite about to be taken with a fork

This vegan funfetti cake is tender, packed with flavor, and incredibly easy to make! It's the perfect way to celebrate any occasion!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 33 minutes
Additional Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 28 minutes

Ingredients

Vegan Funfetti Cake

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (280g)
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar (266g) - be sure it's organic or made from beets
  • 3/4 tsp fine salt (4g)
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking soda (5g)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or flavorless oil (112g)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (4g)
  • 1 1/2 tsp almond extract (6g)
  • 4 tsp white or apple cider vinegar (16g)
  • 1 cup water (240g)
  • 1/2 cup vegan rainbow sprinkles (90g)

Vegan Buttercream Frosting

  • 1 1/2 cups vegan butter, softened at room temperature (285g)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract (8g)
  • 1 1/2 tsp almond - optional (8g)
  • 6 cups powdered sugar (750g) - check the bag to make sure it's vegan!
  • 2 Tbsp alternative milk like soy, almond, coconut, or oat milk (30g)

Decorations & Tools

Instructions

Vegan Funfetti Cake Layers

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F/175 C. Grease and line three 6" cake pans.
  2. Whisk together 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour, 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar, 3/4 tsp salt, and 1 1/4 tsp baking soda in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. In a separate large bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup oil, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1 1/2 tsp almond extract, 4 tsp vinegar, and 1 cup water.
  4. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and whisk together until the batter is smooth.
  5. Add 1/2 cup rainbow sprinkles and fold into the batter until they're evenly distributed.
  6. Pour the batter evenly between the prepared pans and bake for 33-35 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and let cool in the pans for 10 minutes. Flip the cake layers out of the pans and onto a wire rack to finish cooling.
  8. Once fully cooled, use a serrated knife to level the tops of the cake layers.

Vegan Buttercream Frosting

  1. Beat 1 1/2 cups vegan butter on a medium speed for 30 seconds with a paddle attachment or whisk attachment until smooth.
  2. Mix in 2 tsp vanilla extract and 1 1/2 tsp almond extract on a low speed.
  3. Gradually add in 6 cups powdered sugar and 2 Tbsp of dairy-free milk on a low speed. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed.
  4. Mix on low for a couple minutes until the ingredients are fully incorporated and the desired consistency is reached. 
  5. If the frosting seems too thick, add in additional dairy free milk (1 tsp at a time). If the frosting is too thin, add in more powdered sugar (quarter of a cup at a time).

Assembling this Vegan Funfetti Cake

  1. Stack and frost cake layers on a greaseproof cake board using a dab of vegan buttercream to help stick the first cake layer to the board.
  2. Spread an even layer of vegan frosting on top of your first cake layer with a large offset spatula. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of rainbow sprinkles on top of the frosting.
  3. Repeat with remaining cake layers. Place the top cake layer upside down (makes it easier to frost).
  4. Cover the cake in a thin coat of vegan buttercream. Smooth the frosting using a bench scraper, then chill the cake in the fridge (10 minutes) or freezer (5 minutes).
  5. Add a second, thicker layer of vegan frosting to the cake and smooth using a bench scraper.
  6. If desired, color the remaining frosting different colors using vegan food coloring. Add dabs of the colorful frosting around your cake, and smooth using a bench scraper to create a watercolor look.
  7. Place the remaining frosting into a piping bag fit with your favorite frosting tip and pipe small swirls around the top of the cake.
  8. Add a pretty sprinkle blend around the base and top of the cake, then enjoy!

Notes

Making This Vegan Funfetti Cake in Advance & Storage Tips:

  • Make your frosting ahead of time or save any leftover frosting! It can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Be sure to give it a good stir once it thaws to get the consistency nice and smooth again.
  • A frosted cake can last in the fridge for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to a month. The buttercream locks in all the moisture, keeping the cake fresh and delicious!
  • If you cut into the cake and have leftovers, use any remaining frosting to cover the cut section to keep it moist and store in the fridge for up to a week.

Nutrition Information

Yield

16

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 655Total Fat 32gSaturated Fat 6gTrans Fat 3gUnsaturated Fat 25gCholesterol 6mgSodium 253mgCarbohydrates 91gFiber 1gSugar 71gProtein 3g

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