This healthy baked vegan cake donut recipe is so good, you’d never know it’s also vegan, gluten-free, Paleo, sugar-free, and dairy-free! Topped with a dairy-free chocolate icing, they’re the perfect bite!

These baked vegan cake donuts seriously stole my heart. They’re completely gluten free, paleo, and don’t contain topped with a dairy free, vegan chocolate icing that is just out of this world delicious. You could even eat the icing with a spoon, it’s that good! But back to these donuts: they’re the perfect consistency of airy and moist with a beautiful hint of vanilla and sweetness without any added sugar!

mini vegan baked cake donut

I’m actually quite proud of myself, considering I’m not the world’s best vegan baker. I’m not quite sure what magic happened in the oven while I was baking these baked vegan donuts, but they some how turned out perfectly cake-y, perfectly airy, and so deliciously sweet without any eggs, butter, or milk! They’re also completely paleo, so that means that these baked vegan cake donuts are also gluten free 🙂

Riddle me that!

I’m sure you’re probably wondering what’s actually in these baked vegan cake donuts, so let’s get to it!

plate of chocolate frosted vegan cake donuts

The secret ingredients:

Well, ladies and gentlemen, we have another sweet potato recipe on our hands! Are you sick of them yet? 😉 In all honesty, the Japanese sweet potato just provides the perfect base for any baked goods recipe and allows the recipe to be paleo without a bunch of flours that most of America doesn’t actually buy.

Yes, I do love those flours, like cassava, and tiger nut, and almond, etc, but I also understand that it’s not something to go cold turkey on! So I figure, sweet potato is a pretty innocuous ingredient that most people know, so why not use that to bridge the gap?! 😉

Anyways! So yes, sweet potato is the biggest ingredient in this recipe!

Next we have the chia and or flax egg! You heard me right at the beginning, these are baked vegan cake donuts! So to replace the egg, I mixed about three tablespoon of ground chia or flax seed with about five tablespoons of water. When you let the mixture sit, it thickens up to be like the consistency of an egg white. This helps the donuts stick together and produce that cake-like texture without regular flour.

The next big ingredient for these baked vegan cake donuts is coconut flour. You don’t need too much here, since the sweet potato is really moist and it’s really to just absorb some of that moisture from the sweet potato!

Of course you need your baking soda and baking powder, but I have a trick to make the baking powder paleo! So to make the baking powder paleo, you actually just combine 1 tsp of baking soda with about 2 tsp of white vinegar! Mix it and watch it foam, then add it to the batter 🙂 Simple, right?

Then we have the spices: cinnamon, vanilla, and sea salt!

3/4 shot of vegan cake donuts

So what’s next?

You simply add the batter of the baked vegan cake donuts into the donut pan and bake! You could absolutely pipe the batter into the donut pan, but I think it’s just easiest to spoon the batter in and bake 🙂

Now with sweet potato, it can sometimes take a bit longer to bake and become airy. The sweet potato is already cooked once it’s in the batter. However, it needs time to combine and airate with the other ingredients! I gave my donuts about 35 minutes in the oven, and they were lightly golden on top. Then I allowed them to fully cool before taking them out of the pan- you don’t want a broken donut before you frost it!

And then while you’re baking the donuts, you can prep the chocolate frosting glaze! Now, for this recipe, I used my chocolate avocado mousse that I shared in my easy Paleo Chocolate Cupcakes recipe! It’s super simple.

All you need is cacao powder, avocado, and a little almond or coconut milk! You can add in stevia or maple syrup, like the recipe calls for, for a little sweetness too 😉 I used a food processor to puree it until it’s completely smooth. It will give you the best results!

up close shot of vegan baked cake donut

Now I wanted to talk to you about the biggest debate of the century.

Is it donut or doughnut?!

So the official dictionary word is doughnut, which originated from the 1800’s, but the Americanized version of the word is in fact: donut.

But you probably won’t find the word donut in any fancy European cafe or patisserie so keep on the look out for doughnut! For the sake of this recipe, since we are in America and these baked vegan cake donuts are far from the ingredients of a traditional doughnut (but I’ll bet you they taste just as good, if not better!), we shall be using the word donut!

Phewf, I’m glad we got that settled! I feel a lot better, don’t you? Haha!

plate of vegan baked cake donuts with one missing a bite

I don’t know about you, but I truly love all things vanilla. That’s why I went for vanilla baked vegan cake donuts rather than chocolate. Chocolate is great and all (I mean, I use it for the frosting, so no hate there!), but vanilla is just the true winner for me. It’s the foundation of every flavor and it can stand on its own! I mean, it’s a pretty strong and amazing flavor.

If you use vanilla bean instead of vanilla extract, you can also get those nice little flecks of vanilla seeds in there! I always love that look, and the flavor is even better that way. Plus it has a really nice sweetness to it that I really believe is the reason why you can have these donuts and not need to add maple syrup or any other sweetener to the mix. Although, if you’re like my mom, best to just go ahead and add the sugar in because she likes it really sweet!

These baked vegan cake donuts are truly perfect for breakfast, dessert, or an anytime snack! They go perfectly with a warm cup of coffee or cocoa 🙂 I bet they would even taste great with a big scoop of coffee or chocolate ice cream on top!

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Healthy Baked Vegan Cake Donuts | This healthy baked donut recipe is so good, you’d never know it’s also vegan, gluten-free, Paleo, sugar-free, and dairy-free! | The Banana Diaries #thebananadiaries #glutenfree #donutrecipe #paleo #sugarfree #dairyfree #healthydessert

Baked Vegan Cake Donuts

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  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x

Description

These healthy baked vegan cake donuts are so good, you’d never know they’re also vegan, gluten-free, Paleo, sugar-free, and dairy-free! Topped with a dairy-free chocolate icing, they’re the perfect bite!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 large Japanese sweet potato (about 15 ounces, baked and skin removed)
  • 3 tbsp ground chia or flax seeds
  • 5 tbsp warm water
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 mixture paleo baking powder (see note below) (or 1 tsp baking powder)
  • 3 tbsp almond butter
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Chocolate Frosting

  • 1 cup Chocolate Avocado Mousse from my Paleo Chocolate Cupcakes Recipe

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375F and grease a small donut pan with coconut oil.
  2. In a small bowl, combine ground chia or flax seed and warm water. Mix and let sit.
  3. In a large food processor, puree Japanese sweet potato until smooth.
  4. Add in ground chia/flax seed mixture, vanilla, coconut flour, cinnamon, almond butter, baking soda, baking powder and sea salt. 
  5. Puree until smooth.
  6. Spoon batter into the donut pan evenly and bake in the oven for at least 35 minutes or until the tops of the donuts are golden.
  7. Remove from the oven and let cool.
  8. While the donuts are cooling, prepare the chocolate avocado frosting according to directions.
  9. Ice donuts with the frosting and enjoy!

Notes:

  1. To make paleo baking powder, mix 1 tsp baking soda with 2 tsp white vinegar. Let foam and add to batter!