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Every birthday we get a chance to make something new and magical! This year my daughter wanted a red velvet cake. So off to work I went to adapt one to our holistic allergy free lifestyle. Everything we make around here is as organic as possible, no food dyes, junk ingredients, and free from most top allergens, except coconut.

This cake was a hit amongst all the tweens sitting in my living room! Many, whom are not gluten free, said it was the best cake they’d ever had. So I will take that as a win! I myself fell in love, sneaking a bite every chance I got. This cream cheese frosting is divine! Theres two options for super clean version or a more realistic cream cheese taste, using store bought vegan cream cheese.

 

Serves 16

Equipment:

2- 9 Inch cake pans ( I use these)

hand or stand mixer (my favorite mixer)

measuring cups/spoons

parchment paper (non bleached here)

Piping bags and tips (optional, I like this set)

 

Cake Ingredients:

2 1/2  cups gluten free flour (I use Bob Reds Mills 1 to 1 here)

1 1/4 cup organic coconut sugar

1 1/4 cups of vegan milk (unflavored)

1 tablespoon organic pure vanilla extract

4 Tablespoons Organic Food grade beet root powder (i like this one) or plant based food coloring (here)

1/2 cup vegan butter

1 cup organic applesauce (no sugar added)

1/2 cup raw organic cocoa powder (i like this one)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon non aluminum baking soda

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

 

Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting Ingredients:

1 cup vegan butter (softened) Use shortening if it needs to sit out unrefrigerated (this one)

1 cup vegan cream cheese (softened)

4 cups organic powder sugar

1 teaspoon organic pure vanilla

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon organic apple cider vinegar

 

**alternative cream cheese frosting down below **

 

Instructions for Cake:

  1. Prep: Preheat oven to 350F and grease two 9 inch cake pans, and parchment paper the bottoms. Set aside.
  2. Add apple cider vinegar to vegan milk and set aside to curdle for at least 5 minutes
  3. Prepare Dry Ingredients: Combine in a large mixing bowl, flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, baking soda and beet root powder. Whisk to combine and set aside.
  4. Prepare wet ingredients: If using a stand mixing combine wet ingredients into mixing bowl. If using a hand mixer mix in large baking bowl.
  5. Cream vegan butter for 2-3 minutes until fluffy. Then add in sugar and mix until it is incorporated into butter, using coconut sugar it will not fully dissolve.
  6. Add applesauce and vanilla. If using plant based food coloring instead of beet root powder add it here. Mix until combines.
  7. Mix the flour mixture and vegan buttermilk mixture in increments of two, mixing until the flour is JUST mixed in. DO NOT over mix.
  8. Divide batter evenly into your cake pans, use a scale if you’d like exact sizes.
  9. Bake in oven for 30-35 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.
  10. Cool the cakes in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Then carefully transfer them to a wire rack to fully cool before frosting.

 

 

Instructions for Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting:

This frosting is SOOO good. I always make extra and freeze it!

  1. Cream butter and cream cheese in mixer until light and fluffy.
  2. Adding two cups at a time, add in powdered sugar. Taste as you go for desired sweetness.
  3. Mix in salt, vanilla and apple cider vinegar **if you want white frosting make sure and use clear vanilla or it will slightly discolor it.

 

Assemble cake:

  1. Place a dollup of frosting in the center of cake stand, put one cake.
  2. Add a layer of frosting, thick about ¼ inch to the bottom layer.
  3. Add second layer on top.
  4. Frost entire cake.
  5. Pipe on design is optional.
  6. The cake in the picture has edible pearls in each swirled flower.
  7. Keep refrigerated for best results.

 

TIPS:

Make the cakes 1 day ahead and let sit in the fridge overnight before frosting. It makes them easier to handle and frost.

Wrap them tightly in plastic cling wrap to store in the fridge.

I assemble the cake on my cake platter to not have to move it. Gluten free cakes aren’t like gluten and do not like being moved.

If not refrigerating use shortening instead of butter in frosting for better standing at room temperature, will change the taste slightly.

Serve thin slices, it is tall, and very richly delicious!

 

 

ALTERNATIVE Frosting:

Before pre bought vegan cream cheese was a thing, this is what I used to make and it tastes darn close!

1 cup vegan shortening if it needs to sit out unrefrigerated (this one)

1 cup vegan butter (softened)

4 cups organic powder sugar

1 teaspoon organic pure vanilla

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1 tablespoon organic apple cider vinegar