What is an Olive Oil Cake?
A simple moist cake that uses olive oil instead of butter as a main ingredient for its fat content. It ads tons of moisture and beautiful fruity flavor but you won’t really be tasting the olive oil per se. It’s the perfect lemon cake for Christmas, New Year’s, Easter, Summer Garden Parties, Thanksgiving and Birthdays! It’s the Cake!
Easy and relatively quick to make in spite of the multiple steps and components. I wanted to go all out with the fillings and really indulge here, however the cake is perfectly delicious on its own with a heavy sprinkling of powder sugar and a double espresso. That being said, don’t feel like you have to go all if you don’t want to. It’s ok to keep it simple or make these vegan brownies instead!
How to Make Vegan Lemon Olive Oil Cake
- You’ll only need one 9 inch spring form cake pan to bake one cake from which we are going to make a two layer cake.
- Start by making your fillings a day in advance if possible. The lemon curd, cream cheese frosting and blueberry sauce all need to be chilled completely before assembling the cake.
- Bake the cake according to the easy recipe and allow it to cool off completely before slicing in half and dressing it up with all the fillings.
Vegan Lemon Olive Oil Cake Fillings
- Lemon Curd – For extra lemony flavor I used my eggless mango curd recipe as the base filling in lieu of the classic lemon curd.
- Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting – Whipped plant based cream cheese mixed with whipped coconut cream yields the most luscious dairy-free frosting reminiscent of mascarpone.
- Blueberry Sauce – Fresh blueberries and lemon juice are cooked down together with maple syrup and vanilla for an extra layer of berrylicious flavor. This also adds extra moisture to the cake so don’t skip it. Alternatively raspberries or strawberries can be used instead of blueberries.
The Cake Batter
It’s a rich batter made with extra light olive oil and full fat coconut milk whisked together with lemon, sugar and vanilla. It’s perfection really, and it comes together in no time. The wet and dry ingredients are combined separately then folded together just before baking.
The Baking Time
Keep a close eye on your cake and check for doneness at the 45 minute mark. For some reason sometimes it takes longer than other times, just take care not to overtake it. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean or almost dry when the cake is ready.
I used fresh blackberries and lemon thyme blossoms, you could choose raspberry or candied citrus instead, favorite edible flowers, whatever is having a moment.
- The cake can be kept at room temperature for a few days without the fillings and frosting. Wrap in parchment paper or place in a cake box.
- Once filled the cake must be stored covered in the refrigerator for up to one week. Because of the cream cheese frosting and blueberry sauce I don’t recommend keeping it at room temperature for more than a couple of hours.
- Freezing – If desired the cake can also be frozen without any of the fillings. Wrap in parchment paper or place in a freezer proof lidded container.
Serving + Make Ahead
Vegan Lemon Olive Oil Cake
- 9 Inch Spring Form Cake Pan
- 1 batch vegan lemon curd
Cream Cheese Layer
- 3/4 lb vegan cream cheese
- 1.5 cup whipped coconut cream stiff (store bought is great)
- zest from 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup edible flowers
- 1 lb fresh blackberries
- Prepare the lemon curd in advance and refrigerate until needed. This step can be done a couple of days in advance.
- Combine the blueberries, lemon juice, vanilla and maple syrup in a small saucepan. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook until the blueberries start to burst, a couple of minutes or so. Remove from heat, allow to cool and refrigerate until needed.
Make the Cream Cheese Filling
- Use a mixer with a whisk attachment to whip the cream cheese on medium low speed until soft and creamy.
- Using a spatula fold the whipped coconut cream into the whipped cream cheese until combined. Make sure to not over mix. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate while you make the cake.
Bake the Cake
- Preheat your oven to 350”F.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, lemon zest and sea salt.
- In another bowl whisk the olive oil, coconut milk, lemon juice and vanilla. Pour on top of the dry ingredients and using a spatula fold just until combined. Do not overmix as that will result in a dense cake.
- Lightly oil the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan and line with parchment paper cut to size. Place on a baking sheet.
- Pour the cake batter inside the cake pan and bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Transfer the cake to a cooling rack and allow to cool off completely. Once cooled remove from the springform pan by releasing the sides first, then remove the bottom. (this step should be really easy specially if you lined the bottom with parchment paper).
Assemble the Layer Cake
- Use a serrated knife and very carefully slice a thin layer off of the top of the cake to remove the crust and expose the soft center.
- Proceed with care and now slice the cake in half as to have two circles. Place the bottom part on a plate or cake stand, whatever you want to serve your cake on.
- Spread the lemon curd on top of the bottom layer of the cake. Spoon half of the cream cheese filling on top followed by half of the blueberry sauce and a few fresh blackberries.
- Add the second cake layer and cover with the remaining of the blueberry sauce. Top with the remainder of the whipped cream cheese mix and use the back of a spatula to spread it around as best as you can.
- Sprinkle the top of the cake with the fresh blackberries reserving some to decorate the sides of the cake by gently pressing each berry into the filling on the sides.
- Garnish with edible flower blossoms and chill for a couple of hours or overnight before serving.
- Keep it Simple - This cake is also absolutely delicious with just a sprinkling of powder sugar on top.
- Lemon Glaze - Alternatively you can skip all the fillings and frosting and cover the cake with a simple lemon glaze made with 1 cup powdered sugar + 1/4 cup cashew milk + 1 tbsp lemon juice. Whisk until smooth and pour over the cake once it has cooled down completely.
- Line the Cake Pan - To prevent the batter from sticking line the bottom of the cake pan with parchment paper cut to fit the size and shape of the pan.
- Avoid Over-Mixing - Folding your ingredients is key here to avoid a dense heavy cake.