This one-bowl vegan lemon cake recipe is so easy! You only need 9 ingredients and 40 minutes for this light fluffy vegan cake. Follow my step by step tutorial and soon you'll have a moist, fluffy, zingy layer cake to tuck into. It's not only pretty but tastes so good that nobody would guess that it's a dairy-free and eggless vegan cake.
This vegan lemon layer cake is zingy, fluffy, moist and delicious.
But it's also really easy! You only need 1 bowl, 9 ingredients and 40 minutes for this zesty vegan cake.
Follow my step by step tutorial and soon you'll have a moist, fluffy, zingy layer cake to tuck into.
It's so delicious and nobody will guess that it's a dairy-free and eggless vegan lemon cake.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "Amaaaaazing! So moist, so fluffy, perfect amount of lemon, so easy to make, so perfect! Amazing, amazing, amazing – can’t wait to try other recipes!) It just eats like cake, you would never know its vegan. So wow – Amazing!" - Delilah
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "The first vegan cake I ever made. So delicious!" - Gabrielle
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "What a success this was! Was a definite hit with my colleagues. So nice to find a recipe which gives different timings for different tin sizes – I found this really useful, thanks." - Kate
Vegan cakes that don't suck
Life changed for me a couple of years ago.
After many years of baking, I finally hit on the way to make a vegan cake that didn't suck. See, for a long time, vegan cakes did suck.
They were a bit dry and tasted a bit of sadness. NOT ANY MORE!
It all started with this rich and delicious vegan chocolate cake.
It worked so well and so many readers have loved it, that I started baking more and more vegan cake recipes!
I realised that you don't need flax eggs or any other unusual ingredients.
Sure, those add a bit of extra nutrition, but you can just make a really really awesome vegan cake that just happens to be egg free and dairy free.
And tastes like cake heaven!
This vegan lemon cake is light, fluffy and zingy!
Nobody would ever guess that it's vegan - it just tastes like a typical cake, but it's egg-free and dairy-free.
(I seem to be using a lot of exclamation points here, but the cake merits them, so I'll leave them in. Yay!)
This easy vegan lemon cake is as light as air, with a perfect texture and a great zing from the lemon.
I shared it with family and friends, and even the non-vegans very quickly devoured it and declared it the best lemon cake and that they couldn't tell it was vegan.
It's funny, but there really is a myth that vegan cakes are somehow inferior.
However, I've been proving again and again with my recipes that vegan cakes are every bit as delicious as standard cakes.
Plus, they're egg-free so you can go ahead and taste the batter - win win!
Why is this the best vegan lemon cake recipe?
Light, fluffy and moist
No unusual ingredients (no chia or flax, just store cupboard staples)
One-bowl easy recipe
Great zingy and zesty lemon flavour
A pretty three-layer cake that makes a great vegan birthday cake
A classic flavour perfect year round
Step by step tutorial pictures so you can't go wrong
How to make vegan lemon cake video tutorial
Delicious with lemon frosting, vanilla frosting or even vegan cream cheese frosting.
Step by step tutorial
It's sooo easy to make this one-bowl easy vegan lemon cake.
With just a few simple steps, you'll have these zingy lemony cakes cooling in your kitchen with that zesty scent wafting through the air.
Go on, grab some lemons and get baking.
Check out these pictures for guidance and then scroll down to the recipe card for the full ingredients list and instructions.
1: mix lemon juice into the vegan milk and set aside. This will create a dairy free vegan 'buttermilk'.
2: Melt the butter and syrup together. You can do it in a pan on the stovetop or in a microwave.
3: Sift the dry ingredients together
4: Mix the wet and dry ingredients together gently. Make sure you can't see any flour, but don't overbeat it if you want a light and fluffy vegan lemon cake.
5: pour into the tins and bake. Meanwhile, make the frosting!
Scroll down to the recipe card for the full ingredients list and instructions.
- Don’t over-mix the batter when adding the dry ingredients. Combine well, but don’t beat.
- Substitute orange zest and juice for a totally different flavour.
- Freezable: you can freeze the un-frosted cakes for up to 1 month.
- Decorate the cake with edible flowers to make it extra special. I used edible borage flowers.
- Turn this into vegan lemon cupcakes by filling the cups of a lined muffin pan and bake for 15-20 mins.
- I used 3 x 6" baking pans that I found on Amazon (affiliate link). I like that I can make a cute little cake with three layers without it being huge.
- You can make this cake in two layers by using 2 x 20cm / 8 inch round baking pans and baking for 30 minutes.
- Increase the ingredients by 50% to make this cake in 3 x 20cm / 8 inch baking pans.
More Vegan Cake Recipes
You must also try my vegan Victoria sponge, vegan vanilla cake, vegan chocolate cupcakes and even vegan kale orange cake!
They're all really moist, light and decadent.
Or even my vegan carrot cake and vegan banana bread. Looking for something different?
Try vegan red velvet cupcakes or vegan vanilla cupcakes.
Did you make this recipe? Please let me know how it turned out for you!
Leave a comment and star rating below and share a picture with the hashtag #veggiedesserts. I love seeing your recreations of my vegetarian and vegan recipes and cakes.
Thanks for checking out my recipe! I love hearing from my readers. You all allow me to do what I love and write this food blog, sharing vegetarian and vegan recipes.
Vegan Lemon Cake
- 300 ml (1 ¼ cups) dairy free milk (soy, almond etc...)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 150 g (¾ cup) dairy free margarine
- 3 tablespoon golden syrup or use agave or maple syrup (maple will make a slightly less sweet cake)
- Zest of 2 lemons
- 275 g (2 ¼ cups) plain (all-purpose) flour
- 150 g (½ cup) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
For the vegan lemon frosting (double to cover the sides as well)
- 150 g (¾ cup) dairy free margarine
- 400 g (3 ⅓ cups) powdered icing sugar (confectioner's sugar)
- 3 tablespoon lemon juice
Yellow drizzle (optional)
- 100 g (¾ cup) powdered icing sugar
- 1-2 tablespoon lemon juice
- Yellow food colouring
- Preheat the oven to 180° C/160° C fan (350F). Lightly grease 3 x 6" baking pans or 2 x 20cm/8" round baking pans.
- Stir the lemon juice into the milk and set aside.
- In a pan over a medium heat, melt the dairy free margarine and syrup together. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Sieve the flour, sugar, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) into a large mixing bowl.
- Pour the milk, melted margarine mixture and lemon zest over the flour mixture and stir well until it becomes a smooth batter.
- Divide the mixture between the two prepared pans and bake for 30-35 minutes (for 2 x 20cm/8") or 25-30 minutes (for 3 x 15cm/6") or until an inserted skewer comes out clean.
- Allow the cakes to cool in the tins for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
For the lemon frosting
- Beat together all the frosting ingredients until smooth.
- When the cakes are completely cold, sandwich together with some icing. Spread the remaining icing over the top and sides of the cake.
- For the drizzle
- Mix the powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice until smooth. If necessary add a little more lemon juice. Add a small amount of yellow food colouring until the desired colour is reached. Spoon into a piping bag with a small nozzle inserted. Pipe drizzles over the cake edge.
Cook's TipsDon’t over-mix the batter when adding the dry ingredients. Combine well, but don’t beat. Substitute orange zest and juice for a totally different flavour. Freezable: you can freeze the un-frosted cakes for up to 1 month. Decorate the cake with edible flowers to make it extra special. I used edible borage flowers.
Different SizesTurn this into vegan lemon cupcakes by filling the cups of a lined muffin pan and bake for 15-20 mins. I used 3 x 6" baking pans that I found on Amazon (affiliate link). I like that I can make a cute little cake with three layers without it being huge. You can make this cake in two layers by using 2 x 20cm / 8 inch round baking pans and baking for 30 minutes. Increase the ingredients by 50% to make this cake in 3 x 20cm / 8 inch baking pans.
More Vegan Cake RecipesYou must also try my vegan Victoria sponge, vegan vanilla cake, vegan chocolate cupcakes and even vegan kale orange cake! They're all really moist, light and decadent. Or even my vegan carrot cake and vegan banana bread. Looking for something different? Try vegan red velvet cupcakes or vegan vanilla cupcakes.
The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary depending on several factors, so is not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietician for special diet advice.
Delicious! I’m not usually a fan of lemon cakes but this was amazing! So delicious and moist/syrupy whilst feeling really fresh! The recipe was very easy to follow (originally going to do a two tier but it smelt so good we baked a third!). Was made as a birthday cake and went down an utter treat (the icing is lovely too). Won’t be long before we make this again I’m sure! Thank you for a lovely recipe!
This worked a treat! Great recipe.
Great recipe! Made great cupcakes!!
Delicious lemon cake that has gone to the top of my family's list of favourites! Thank you!
My 12yr old son followed this recipe , he baked them as cup cakes, they were outstanding, really light and moist, the best recipe we have tried
Im obsessed with trying and making 6 inch 3 layer cakes This is a great cake and tastes good. I used fresh lemon and agave in my recipe. Thank you. I will hastag my picture on instagram.
This recipe is delicious! While family enjoyed it and it kept very well too! Easy to make will make again!
I am new to vegan baking, and I made this recipe into cupcakes and used Gluten free flour for my cousins boyfriend who has allergies, worked out amazingly. filled them with a vegan lemon curd and topped them with a different Vegan lemon Buttercream, they raved about them. said they had never better vegan/GF cupcakes in their lives! I can't to try out your other recipes. your Vegan chocolate cake one looks decadent!
I used this recipe but in bun cases for work mates as 2 are vegan and it worked perfectly! Everyone commented on how they didn't believe they were vegan as they were so light and fluffy.
Hi- I love your recipes- they are great! I was wondering if this could work as a loaf cake and if so would the quantites be the same? I want to make some to take for a picnic and I thought a loaf cake would be more portable! Thank you!
Amaaaaazing! So moist, so fluffy, perfect amount of lemon, so easy to make, so perfect! I went for 2 layers of a bigger size and really loved how many timing/size/flavour/alternative options you gave to help modify the recipe (also loved how you gave grams/cups/celcius/faren - it really made such a difference with how long I spent in the kitchen because I wasn't having to convert everything - it allowed me to just enjoy the process instead)! I didn't trim the sides and even the slight crunch around the edges were so delicious! Amazing, amazing, amazing - can't wait to try other recipes!) It just eats like cake, you would never know its vegan - and I've made some terrible vegan desserts hahahaha. So wow - Amazing!
I made this as my first vegan bake. Was a bit of a gamble as it was for a contribution to a wedding afternoon tea however the feedback was amazing. Having seen the photos I was confident this was going to turn out well!I adjusted it a little by adding fresh raspberries in between the layers then had freeze dried raspberry flakes around the bottom. Also sprinkled them on top and drizzled vegan white chocolate over the top then decorated with the buttercream and some candied lemon slices and more raspberries. I did taste the icing and that was delicious. It was a test for my own wedding in two weeks time. I have some vegans and also some coeliacs coming too. I'm wondering if I subbed the flour with gluten free stuff and made sure all ingredients were gluten free it would work out? Anyone tried to convert this? Any help would be appreciated!
I’d you try this with gluten free flour?
Did it work for you
The first vegan cake I ever made. So delicious!
I love this recipe. Thanks for sharing.
I made this today and want to know if I can leave some of the baking powder out? I did it as is and I can taste the leveling agents after it has been baked.
Wow! This is such an amazing dairy-free and egg-free cake. It certainly is moist and full of flavor!
What a success this was! Was a definite hit with my colleagues. So nice to find a recipe which gives different timings for different tin sizes - I found this really useful, thanks.
My daughter is vegan and I wanted to make her a birthday cake. I’m not a baker but this was so easy to follow and although mine didn’t look as good as yours it sure tasted fabulous. The cake went down a treat. Thank you.
I'm so pleased that you loved the cake Tracy!
Thank you for the awesome recipe!
Can the vegan milk and margarine be substituted for regular?
Rebecca | AAUBlog
lemon cake is one of my favourites. and even better is it is dairy free! 🙂
Is there a reason why you use granulated sugar rther than caster sugar here Kate? Thanks
Vanessa @ VeganFamilyRecipes
I can totally relate. I used to think vegan cake was also just this miserable excuse of cake and that the frosting was the only edible part. Vegan cakes are so easy to make though and I've never had anyone complain to me about it being dry or a sad mess 😀 Your lemon cake looks fantastic! Can't wait to try it!
What a gorgeous looking cake! Lemon cake is one of my faves, never made a vegan one before though - I’ll have to give it a try x
You haven't used an egg substitute which is something I always do. I will have to try your method. I have to say it looks stunning. Shared!
I love Lemon cake, it's one of my favourites! This sounds delicious
Kaz | Ickle Pickles Life and Travels
Oh my goodness - I love lemon cake and this looks amazing! Kaz
Oh this looks DIVINE! One of my most favouritist (yes, that's a word) things since going vegan was finding out that baking is still possible and that my family ouldn't even notice that I'd swapped out the eggs! My youngest loves a lemon cake so I'll definitely be making this one for him!
Ohh this sounds amazing! I LOVE lemon cake and this sounds so simple! Im not the best baker but I will try it!
mmmm, this lemon cake sounds amazing, lemon cake is probably my favourite. I will 100% try this recipe!
I lobe lemon cake it’s so refreshing and great with a cup of tea. I love how this is dairy free as my daughter has a milk allergy so I’ll be giving this easy recipe ago
Lemon cake is my absolute favourite so this would be my number one choice of cake, and it looks so tasty x
You had me at one bowl! Marvelous recipe darling, thank you!
Lauren Vavala @ DeliciousLittleBites
Lemon desserts are so good! This is such a beautiful cake and that drizzle is everything!
we love lemon cake vegan is a bonus, What a lovely cake its sure looks great with the drips on it nice shot !
I absolutely love lemon cake and though I'm veggie not vegan I absolutely love how delicious this looks considering it's dairy free! x
Oh, hello! Dang, I desperately want some lemon cake now. Why, oh why do I even visit your site when I'm trying to be 'good' 😀
Lemon is one of my favourite dessert flavours! This cake looks wonderful. Perfect with a cup of tea!
This sounds delicious! I love desserts with lemon.
OH MY GOSH!!!!! lemon drizzle is my favourite cake, let alone a vegan version! THE DREAM!