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Chestnut Vanilla Cake with cream cheese frosting

Chestnut Vanilla Cake with cream cheese frosting

Chestnuts and vanilla are the perfect Christmas paring, a combo that makes this festive plant-based cake the ultimate show stopping pudding on Christmas day

  • Serves 6

  • 45 minutes

  • 3 pans

  • Beginner

Suitable for dairy-free, vegans and vegetarians

Whole Chestnuts


Sponge Cake

  • 350g white plain flour
  • 130g brown sugar
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 2tsp cinnamon
  • 100g Merchant Gourmet Whole Chestnuts, chopped finely
  • 2 tbsp flax meal + 6 tbsp water
  • 110 ml olive oil
  • 250 ml almond milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tbs apple juice or fresh lemon juice
  • Coconut oil to prepare the baking tin

vegan cream cheese frosting and filling

  • 200g (about 1 pack) of vegan cream cheese
  • 2-3tbs vegan butter
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 80ml of icing sugar
  • 3tbs jam of choice


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C and grease 2 loose based cake tins, of 15cm each, with coconut oil.
  2. Place the flour, caster sugar, salt, baking powder, cinnamon and chestnuts in a large bowl and combine ensuring there are no flour or sugar clumps.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the flax meal and water and allow to activate for about 10 minutes.
  4. In another small bowl combine the olive oil, almond milk and vanilla extract. Pour the wet ingredients (flaxmeal mixture, olive oil, milk and vanilla) into the bowl with the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and chestnuts), add the juice and mix with a spoon until just combined. Be sure not to overmix.
  5. Pour the cake batter into the prepared cake tins and bake for 30 minutes, or until cooked through.
  6. Whilst the cake layers are in the oven, prepare the frosting by combining the vegan cream cheese, butter, vanilla and icing sugar and mix well with an electric or regular whisk. Taste and add more sugar if you wish, though please be mindful that the cake will have jam in it too. Set aside until the cake sponges are ready.
  7. Remove the cake layers from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Check with a toothpick if the centre of the cake is done. If it isn’t, return to the oven for 5-10 minutes, covering the cake layers with tin foil if the top is already brown. To assemble the cake, take 1 cake layer, cover lightly with frosting, then cover the centre with jam, leaving the edges jam free, then place the second layer on top and cover the gaps as well as the top with frosting. You can serve immediately or keep in the fridge for 1-2 days.


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