How to Veganize a Cake Recipe - The Food Science behind Vegan Cakes


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Hi Mattie. Three words: angel food cake. There is a group of people trying desperately to create a vegan version of this classic using the newly discovered magic of "chickpea water". Would you be interested in helping this effort?
go to to start.... Which mentions the fb group where people are posting their results. Thanks!

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Theres one missing from your troubleshooting guide! Cooked outside, pudding in the middle. Ive been experimenting with vegan recipes, and veganizing my own and not succeeding at all. Cook the recommended time and temp, and it looks good outside but soft in the middle. Can cook double the time and this is still happening. Any ideas?

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Just one correction...Quick bread method-is the same as the muffin method or blending method; one stage method is different. It's when you combine all of the room temperature ingredients into one bowl with a paddle until it's all combined. Didn't want to be a troll, just wanted to make sure the info was correct. Great read!

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Thank you, thank you, thank you for this post!!! I'm into the science of baking and have been (attempting - ahem! ;) to veganize recipes for several years now. This helps me to have the right mindset, and I can't wait to try these techniques out on some recipes!

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This article (or guide rather) is so awesome...really glad I stumbled upon this! I think it will help me a lot in my vegan baking endeavors

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Mattie, you are a god!!! Thank you so much for this article. I am just starting to learn vegan baking and this is perfect, it answered every question I had & I'm sure will save me many failed cakes!

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Wow, great job. I love the details and the explanation for each ingredient. I shared this with my customers.
Thank you.

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My guinea pigs... ahem! family thank you so much f

I can't thank you enough for spreading this science about vegan baking! You really save me tons of disappointing results and spare my family a few unpleasant bites, since I use them as test dummies for my "I have to veganize that recipe" obsession they're often exposed to unknown results.

I hope you keep sharing these kind of knowledge, is really hard to find good information about vegan baking and now I feel like I know what should I do instead of just guessing!

Owner's reply

I'm so glad you find this vegan cake science stuff helpful CherryZu! Thanks!

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This is all great info. Since you have knowledge on the whole science behind vegan baking, I was hoping you could help me figure this out... This weekend I wanted to make a checkerboard cake. I bought Duncan Hines classic white and Duncan hines devils food. For the white I substituted melted butter for the veg oil and added ener-g egg replacer (first time I used it and was surprised it worked well). For the devils food, I used flax egg and the melted butter (smart balance light w flax oil is vegan). My cakes seemed to work out, I thought I had made a huge discovery! My excitement was short lived. Upon trying to cut into the cake I realized it was moist, too moist to the point where it almost broke apart. Of course, since I was doing a checkerboard cake, I had to cut circles inside the cake so I waited til the next day to do this step. I could barely stack the cakes on top of each other because the circles would break apart into pieces. I usually underbake my cakes by 1 min or so, as to promote moistness. When I finally finished the cake and got to cut into it, it didn't look too pretty on the inside. The checkerboard effect was there, but the cake was so moist that it would still almost fall apart. Can you shed some light on this? I usually make my cakes from scratch. The first time I actually use cake box and it's not a failure, but not a success.

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Can I veganize this cake?

Hi, I'm from Italy, and I'm not so used to veganize cake or biscuits!
I tried plenty of your recipe, I love them all, at the beginnig was quite hard finding the ingredients, but now I can make a lovely cake (always the same in actually!)

So I came here today lookin for something very specific like this reciper ( but I didn't find anything similar, can you help me?
It seems really nice ^_^
Thanx in advance, I love your work!

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Hi, would like to veganize some recipes, but i also have to substitute sugar (i use erithritol) and flour to lower GI ones (coconut, oat and whole grain wheat). Do you know how that might change things?

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Science of Baking - finally!!!

Hi Mattie,

You have no idea how excited I was to see this post! I have been wondering for years what the science behind baking is. I was so curious, I even googled "baking science classes" at one point to see if there was some sort of chemistry course in the science of baking. Super nerdy, I know, but I like understanding how things work. I've also always wanted to be able to explain to people why eggs are not actually necessary for making incredible cakes, cookies, and other baked goods.

Thanks for sharing this information! I can't wait to apply it to a recipe of my own sometime soon :)

Owner's reply

So glad you yearn to know the answers behind why things work out the way they do in the baking world Jessica! When I first got into baking, I was confused by how recipes often requested certain steps, without saying why they were necessary. Why should we just blindly follow just because it's written in the recipe? Are we allowed to ask why? For me, it's so much more fun when you know more about the building blocks and how they work in unison to make the final product. Thanks for reading!

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Wow! i love this post

The scince of baking is something that i was trying to understand since a lot of time cause i'm vegan and i wanted to veganize some desserts, and i fail a lot. I really understand this about embrace failure. i think i have to read this post at least 3 times to understanding perfectly.

But i still have a question, I was trying to make donuts in the past but i never could make it perfect how could i adjust a donut recipe knowing this, because donut dough is soft soft but not than soft as a cake, I shoud try it using the quick bread method but with more flour?

Thanks for this i will study it...

Owner's reply

Thanks manrique_e! Regarding the doughnuts, if you want to give them more structure, try mixing the dough a bit longer to activate more gluten or substitute some of the flour with bread flour to increase gluten. If you're adding fat to the dough, reducing it should also allow the gluten to work more effectively. Good luck!

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