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Vegan and Vegetarian Cake Toppings

Updated on March 1, 2018
GALAXY 59 profile image

Galaxy has been vegetarian for twenty years and a vegan 'dabbler' for six months. She loves exploring all aspects of alternative lifestyles.

Vegan and Vegetarian Cake Toppings

5 stars from 1 rating of Cake toppings

Pirate Chest Cake With Chestnut Frosting

Pirate Treasure Chest Birthday Cake.
Pirate Treasure Chest Birthday Cake. | Source

Vegetarian and Vegan cakes.

It isn't really all that hard for vegetarians to find recipes for cakes, or at least to find ones that can easily be adapted to suit them. But vegans can often feel very left out when it comes to finding suitable friendly recipes for cakes and cake toppings, but with a little research and some trial and effort it is possible to make very good cake toppings that few people would be able to tell were, in fact, meat and dairy free, if they hadn't already seen the recipe.

The homemade variety of cake toppings can save you quite a bit of money too, as in my experience shop bought vegan food can be very expensive.

Here are a few vegan-friendly toppings for cakes that not only look good but taste great as well. I have tried them all and they all taste wonderful and look good too.

A lot of these recipes call for vegan margarine to be creamed together with other ingredients, so a word of caution is needed first. I have found that some of these butter substitutes are better suited than others for this method, some split and separate and become very oily looking, which will ruin your recipe.

You just have to experiment with a few different spreads until you find the one you like best. If it does start to separate as you are creaming it you can try adding a spoonful of icing sugar at this stage, as this can help bind the ingredients together and save the mixture.

This is not a foolproof method, though, as sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't often for no apparent reason. It might have something to do with the room temperature or the length of time you have been working the mixture.

All of the following amounts will cover one large cake or twelve small ones.

Ingredients for Chestnut Frosting

  • 1 large can chestnut puree
  • 3 tsp vegan dark chocolate cocoa powder
  • 1 lbs icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 tbs rum or rum essence


  1. This topping really couldn't be any easier to make if it tried! You simply mix all of the ingredients together until they are smooth enough to spread, and that's it. This might sound like an odd mixture but it tastes really wonderful and looks great too.

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Ready in: 15 min
Yields: one large cake or twelve small ones.

Vegan Chocolate Coins?

I used this chestnut frosting to make a pirate chest birthday cake this last weekend and it worked out really well. The sweets are vegan-friendly but the gold coins contain vegetarian chocolate, I searched everywhere for vegan ones but couldn't find any. If anyone knows where you can buy them please let me know in the comments section below. They would come in handy at Christmas time too.

Coffee Icing With Walnuts.

Coffee walnut cake with frosting.
Coffee walnut cake with frosting. | Source

Variations/ More Frosting Recipes.

1.) Orange Frosting

7 oz vegan margarine

1 ½ lb icing sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp orange zest

2 tsp Soya milk


Cream the room temperature vegan margarine and add the Soya milk, zest and vanilla extract. Gradually beat in all of the icing sugar, adding more soya milk if it is too hard to spread. This can also be made using lemon or lime zest, or a mixture of all three. This is a very good frosting for sponge cake, lemon drizzle cake and cupcakes.

2.) Chocolate Flavoured Buttercream Frosting

4oz vegan margarine (room temperature.)

8oz fine icing sugar

3oz vegan dark cocoa powder

2tbs instant coffee powder.

½ tsp good vanilla extract.


Cream the room temperature vegan margarine in a bowl with a wooden spoon then add the other ingredients and beat until smooth. Don't use a metal spoon for this mixture it just doesn't have the same effect. Also, don’t try to substitute coffee granules for the powder as it really doesn’t work. Use decaffeinated coffee if you are going to give this cake to children or if you are trying to cut down your own caffeine intake, which is never a bad thing.

3.) Peanut butter icing

10oz smooth peanut butter

4oz vegan margarine

1lb icing sugar

1-2 tbsp soya milk if needed


Cream the margarine until smooth then beat in the other ingredients adding a little soya milk if it is too stiff to spread easily. This is a wonderful topping for any chocolate or coffee flavoured cake. This icing can also be made using cashew nut butter if you can get it, I think it tastes even better than the peanut variety.

4.)Toffee frosting

8oz vegan margarine

8oz soft brown sugar

1 ½ lbs icing sugar

1 tsp good vanilla essence

2oz soya milk


Mix the sugar and margarine together in a heavy based pan, bring to the boil over a low heat stirring all the time. Cook this mixture for a couple of minutes until it turns a dark brown colour. Remove the pan from the heat and slowly whisk in the soya milk and the vanilla, keep stirring until the mixture becomes smooth and creamy. Cream the vegan margarine and half of the icing sugar in a separate bowl until nice and smooth. Keep stirring this mixture as you add alternate amounts of the brown sugar mixture and the remaining icing sugar. Don’t panic if the mixture starts to separate at this stage just keep beating it like mad and it will turn out fine.

5.)Coffee Icing.

3 tsp cold strong black coffee - espresso is perfect.

5oz vegan margarine

10oz icing sugar

1tsp vegan cocoa powder

Handful walnuts (optional).


Cream the margarine and icing sugar together until smooth then add the cold coffee and the cocoa powder and stir well. As with all of them, If you are making this recipe for children then use decaffeinated coffee, unless you want them to be up all night. Decorate your cake with walnuts too if desired.

All of these toppings spread much better if you use a warm knife, just keep a jug of boiled water next to the cake and keep dipping the knife in it. Enjoy.

© 2010 Galaxy Harvey


Submit a Comment

  • GALAXY 59 profile imageAUTHOR

    Galaxy Harvey 

    7 years ago from United Kingdom

    Icing sugar in Europe doesn't contain any egg, Avril barker, are you from the US? If so does it have egg in it over there? I find this really interesting that common products can be veggie in one part of the world and not in another.I always use vegan friendly products in my cooking anyway just to be on the safe side.I think the only way to be really sure just what is in our food is to only buy things clearly marked with a vegetarian or vegan friendly sign. Thank you for the information, it does make you think doesn't it. I know that a lot of wines have fish in them!!Why fish? If only the majority of people knew just what was in their food I think they would be horrified.

  • profile image

    avril barker 

    7 years ago

    Just to let you know that normal icing sugar is not vegan - it contains traces of egg.

  • GALAXY 59 profile imageAUTHOR

    Galaxy Harvey 

    7 years ago from United Kingdom

    Thank you deepakkumaarr.Glad you enjoyed it.

  • profile image


    7 years ago

    This is very tasty


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