This is an easy recipe for a vegan mug cake that is sure to become your go-to sweet treat. Most all mug cake mixes and their frosting packets contain palm oil. The great news is you can make cake in a mug with frosting from scratch for a fast, palm oil free dessert.
This little cake is cooked in the microwave so it’s ready fast. You can use a mug, ramekin, bowl, or other small microwave-safe dish.
Now, when you are craving cake, you have a quick, easy option that is full of homemade deliciousness.
Vegan Mug Cake
Table of Contents
We aren’t vegan in our household but we avoid palm oil because my son gets sick from it. Because of this, I bake everything from scratch. Here’s how to make vegan mug cake. It’s fast and uses simple ingredients. You can also make it in the oven if you prefer.
It’s delicious as is or topped with homemade whipped cream, vegan yogurt, palm oil free peanut butter or nut butter.
I’ve included ingredient substitutions if you aren’t vegan. The biggest concern for me is I can’t find a plant-based milk that doesn’t contain Vitamin A Palmitate, Vitamin A Acetate, Natural Flavors and/or Tocopherols. These ingredients are often derived from palm oil and common in dairy-free milks.
Because my son gets sick from palm oil, I use organic whole milk from O Organics. It’s made without Vitamin A Palmitate. Whole milk typically doesn’t contain the palm oil derivatives above but read labels before buying.
Sometimes I use my Vitamix and make almond milk, walnut milk or cashew milk. However, I haven’t tried using homemade nut milk in this mug cake recipe.
Here are the ingredients you need to make it vegan along with the step-by-step directions below.
For the base cake:
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon cane sugar or Stevia
- 3 tablespoons of non-dairy milk
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil or avocado oil – Another option is to use mashed banana instead.
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Additions and variations to add into the base mug cake ingredients:
- Cocoa powder
- Lemon juice instead some of the milk – See recipe card for the amount to replace.
- Dried fruit
- Peanut butter or another nut butter – Read labels and choose peanut butter without palm oil. It shouldn’t contain mono & diglycerides either.
- Crushed blueberries
- Chopped strawberries
- Cinnamon – I use Red Ape Cinnamon which is Certified Palm Oil Free.
- Chocolate chips – Read labels to ensure it’s vegan and palm oil free.
Substitutions to make non-vegan mug cake:
- You can replace the non-dairy milk with whole milk.
- Use real butter to replace coconut, avocado oil, or mashed banana.
How to Make Vegan Mug Cake
- In a microwave safe mug or bowl, combine all ingredients including any of the additions or variations.
Whisk all ingredients together until well combined. The batter should be smooth without any clumping.
Set microwave to 800W and bake mug cake for 90 seconds. Keep in mind that microwave ovens vary so if cake is not done after 90 seconds, add 20 seconds until it is cooked through.
Enjoy straight out of the microwave with the topping of your choice or enjoy it as is.
NOTE: You can cook this in the oven if you prefer. Put batter in an oven save dish and bake at 180 degrees F for 10 – 12 minutes.
This delightful vegan mug cake recipe serves one. If you want to multiply the recipe for multiple servings, you need to microwave them separately. The great news is they bake quickly so no one will be left waiting too long.
Vegan Frosting for Mug Cake
Canned frosting contains palm oil. Use an easy frosting recipe to make your own frosting. You can make vegan mug cake frosting by mixing the following together:
- Powdered sugar
- Softened vegan butter – Be sure it doesn’t contain palm oil.
- Non-dairy milk
- Pure vanilla extract
As if this mug cake and vegan frosting isn’t enough, there’s more! You can add to the frosting to enhance it even more. You can make different frostings each time to see which are your family’s favorites.
- Chocolate frosting – Add 1 teaspoon of cocoa powder.
- Strawberry icing – Add 1 teaspoon of crushed strawberries.
- Peanut butter frosting – Mix in 1 teaspoon of peanut butter.
You can also sprinkle a coating of confectioners sugar on the microwave cake and forgo the frosting. Or top with some fruit preserves or strawberry compote.
As you can see, this mug cake recipe is easily adaptable for a wide variety of flavor choices.
Baking Cake at Home
Cake in a mug in under 5 minutes? Yes!
Desserts at the store contain palm oil. It’s very difficult to find palm oil free desserts. In addition to seeing palm oil and palm kernel oil on ingredient labels, you’ll see many other palm oil derivatives that don’t have “palm” in the name.
My son has a palm oil allergy and palm oil intolerance. These are ingredients common in pre-made desserts and processed foods. Because of this, I learned to bake palm oil free from scratch. It’s easy to do when you know the ingredients to avoid. Learn about palm oil free desserts to find out how.
Once you have the basic vegan pantry staples, baking at home really easy to do. If you want to bake vegan as well, watch for palm oil on labels. Many vegan foods contain palm oil because it’s plant-based. Other vegan recipes I make include vegan biscuits, vegan bars, and this vegan worcestershire sauce.
While I typically use this chocolate cake recipe for parties and birthday celebrations, when it’s just my family, I will often make mug cake. It’s easy to whip up as a fast dessert when everyone is wanting something warm, sugary, and delicious.
If you make this vegan cake recipe, please leave a Comment below. Let me know if you added anything or made it as is. Remember, even adding a sprinkling of powdered sugar makes it look more special. I appreciate hearing from readers. Thank you for being interesting in vegan and palm oil free baking.
The more we can bake and cook at home, the less dependent we are on processed foods and unnecessary chemicals in our foods. Even sugary desserts are “better” when you bake them at home.
Vegan Mug Cake
- 4 tbsp all-purpose flour
- ¼ tsp baking powder
- 1 tbsp stevia or 2 tbsp sugar
- 3 tbsp non-dairy milk or whole milk for a non-vegan option
- 1 tbsp coconut oil or avocado oil
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Additions and variations to add to the base cake before microwaving
- 1 tbsp mashed banana instead of the butter/oil
- 2 tbsp lemon juice instead of 2 tbsp of the milk
- 2 tsp cocoa powder
- 2 tbsp vegan chocolate chips
- 1 tbsp peanut butter or nut butter
- 2 tbsp crushed blueberries
- 2 tbsp chopped strawberries
- 2 tbsp dried fruit
- 1 tsp cinnamon
Vegan mug cake frosting once it has cooled
- 2 tbsp powdered sugar
- 2 tbsp vegan butter
- ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 tsp non-dairy milk
- In a microwave-safe mug, ramekin, or bowl, combine all ingredients including any additions or variations.
- Whisk ingredients together until well combined. The batter should be smooth without lumps.
- Set microwave to 800W and bake mug cake for 90 seconds. Microwave ovens vary. If cake is not done after 90 seconds, add 20 seconds until it is cooked through.
- NOTE: You can cook this in the oven if you prefer. Put batter in an oven save dish and bake at 180 degrees F for 10 to 12 minutes.
- It will be hot when it comes out of the microwave. Enjoy cake when warm. Add the topping of your choice, or eat it plain.
- To make vegan mug cake frosting, get a small bowl and combine all the ingredients together. Add more dairy-free milk if it's too thick. Add more confectioners sugar if it's too runny.