Utopia Vegan Chocolate Cake, Party Food, And Veganomicon Cutlets

September 5, 2010 by Keri

It isn’t a birthday celebration without cake, and this weekend we celebrated a few family birthdays: my mom’s 44th, her boyfriend’s 46th, and the big 4-0 for my beloved uncle.  My little guy turned 2.5, and I know some of you probably think that isn’t a real birthday… But what I’m getting at is, I made cake.  Simplest Rich Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Frosting (page 22) from Sweet Utopia, to be more specific.  I thought it was a little too gutsy to make a previously untried recipe for a party, but since Sweet Utopia is my vegan cookbook of the week, I went for it.  This vegan cake recipe couldn’t have been simpler to make; it was actually a one bowl recipe.  The frosting was really more of a fudge layer, which was delicious, and I incorporated a simple buttercream in between my cake layers and as a “glue” for the cookie crumbles around the cake.

Vegan Cake Recipes

Simplest Rich Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Frosting


Chocolate Cake:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups soymilk
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Chocolate Frosting:

  • 1 1/2 cups nondairy chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup vegan butter substitute
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted

To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and oil and flour two 8-inch round cake pans.  Combine the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.  Add the soymilk, oil, vinegar, and vanilla extract and stir until just combined.  Pour evenly into the prepared pans and bake for about 28 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Cool on racks.

To make the frosting, melt the chocolate chips and vegan butter substitute in a double boiler over gently simmering water.  Alternatively, place them in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave at medium power for 1 minute.  Stur.  Microwave for 25 seconds longer and stir until smooth.  If necessary, microwave for an additional 25 seconds.  Stir in the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.  Let the frosting cool for 8 to 10 minutes.

To assemble, remove the cooled cakes from the pans and spread about one-third of the frosting over 1 of the cakes.  Place the other cake over it and frost the top and sides.  Store uncovered in the refrigerator until serving time.  leftovers should be covered and stored in the refrigerator.

Vegan Cake Recipes

Oh, right.  We also had non-cake food.  My mom made the black bean burgers from Veganomicon, french fries, broccoli slaw, and baked beans, all vegan.  If you remember my birthday post from back in July, you’ll probably notice the food is quite similar, and by similar I mean exactly the same.  My family is a creature of habit when it comes to party food!

Vegan Burger Recipes

This evening, I made one of my favorites, Chickpea Cutlets from Veganomicon, along with herb roasted red potatoes and a simple curried cauliflower.  It was such a great meal; the flavors from each dish were very complimentary.  It almost seems as though I’m making Veganomicon my cookbook of the week, I know, but contrary to childhood beliefs, one can’t live on desserts alone!  Or at least not with a sound mind and stomach.

Vegan Cookbook Recipes

Vegan Cookbook Recipes

Do you ever travel with any cookbooks?  Which do you find easiest to use in less familiar kitchens?

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I Eat Trees is a blog featuring my adventures in all things vegan. My favorite recipes, snack food finds, and restaurant trials are all on the menu so enjoy!


  1. Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) says:

    i barely read books in my own kitch, let alone travel w/ them LOL Props to you!!!!

    that cake..omg. i want it!!


  2. Noelle says:

    Great looking cake. Looks like a winner! I do not travel with cookbooks, but my laptop is handy to look up recipes.:)

  3. Sava says:

    I loooove cookbooks and since I started reaaaalllyy cooking I like to take them with me everywhere just to read. I have a list of things I want to cook that is like ten miles long!

    As far as cooking in other kitchens, I don’t do a lot (or any) of travelling so I guess I don’t know the answer to that 😛

  4. Stefanie says:

    I always bring my folder of recipes when I visit my parents house. They always ask for something sweet so I have to be ready for their cravings. That cake looks moist and full of chocolate goodness. 🙂

  5. The cake looks sooooo good! I don’t travel with a cookbook but I do take my iPad along — I can access google docs which is where I store all great recipes I find on blogs!

    • Keri says:

      Now I’m thinking I should just type up my favorites and save them in my docs… save me some back pain! 😛

  6. bitt says:

    it all looks so delicious! I need to crack open veganomicon to make those burger recipes. yum.

  7. Gertha Tribue says:

    Hi, I tried your chocolate cake recipe some days ago but somehow couldn’t get the same result as you, my cake really wasn’t looking that good (but tasted fine). What kind of chocolate are you using? Maybe it’s coming from the flour I used, I have a gluten intolerance so I used amaranth flour instead of normal wheat flour.

    • Keri says:

      Hi, Gertha! I used dutch processed cocoa powder in the cake, but I would guess the flour is the problem. Cakes can be especially sensitive to flour swaps because of their consistency. I’d suggest searching for a “gluten-free chocolate cake recipe” in your browser, because the recipe would take the need for a gluten-free flour into account, and I’ll be on the lookout for a good one for you as well. I’m sorry your cake didn’t turn out so great, though!