This is truly the best classic vanilla vegan pound cake ever made! It’s super fluffy, tender, soft, and moist, and full of vanilla flavor. Absolutely no one will know that this vanilla pound cake is entirely dairy free, eggless, and easily gluten free!

best ever vanilla pound cake

Why you’ll love this classic vanilla pound cake turned vegan

If you love pound cake but went vegan, then look no further. This classic vanilla pound cake made entirely vegan, eggless, dairy free, and easily gluten free is about to be your favorite vegan baking recipe.

After many recipe tests and attempts, I finally was able to achieve a vegan pound cake that is nearly identical in taste and texture to a classic vanilla pound cake.

Super fluffy, soft, tender, moist, and full of vanilla flavor, absolutely no one will know this pound cake is vegan. And guess what? It’s just so easy to make! You’ll only need a few simple ingredients:

  • Vegan butter
  • Sugar
  • Flour
  • Unsweetened applesauce
  • Vanilla
  • Baking powder
vegan vanilla pound cake recipe ingredients

Mixed together and baked to perfection, this eggless pound cake is perfect with a cup of coffee, at an afternoon tea party, birthday party, or any time treat!

vanilla pound cake

What’s the difference between pound cake and vanilla cake?

If you’re a seasoned Banana Diaries reader, then chances are you’ve probably already made my vegan vanilla cake. It’s one of our most popular recipes! So you might be wondering… is this just Britt’s vegan vanilla cake baked into loaf form?

The answer is no, it’s not! In fact, pound cake and vanilla cake are actually quite different in both how they’re made and the texture of the cake. Pound cake is a much denser version of vanilla cake. It actually dates back to the 1700’s, and gets its name from quite literally how it was made back then: a pound of butter, a pound of sugar, a pound of flour, and a pound of eggs. Thus you achieve pound cake!

Traditionally, a pound cake is also not made with any leavening agents, whereas a vanilla cake will typically use baking soda and powder.

sliced vegan pound cake

The texture and taste of pound cake is much denser than vanilla cake, and was originally made without vanilla (hence, it lacked that classically light vanilla flavor!). However, as the recipe evolved, bakers began to add in flavorings, which is why one might confuse vanilla pound cake with vanilla cake.

This vegan pound cake is a spin off of the traditional pound cake recipe, this time much lighter in ingredients all while maintaining that same classic pound cake flavor. If you’re new to vegan baking, then I highly recommend trying this easy vegan pound cake recipe!

What can you substitute eggs for in pound cake?

Beyond substituting dairy, we also have to substitute the eggs that are traditionally found in pound cake in order to achieve a completely vegan pound cake recipe.

The best egg substitute for pound cake is actually applesauce. It acts quite identically to whole eggs that are used in a more traditional cake recipe, yet is completely eggless and no added flavor that would alter the intended taste. I love using unsweetened applesauce here, and you can easily make your own applesauce too (just be sure to really mash the apples).

How to make a secretly vegan pound cake from scratch (overview)

For the full written instructions and ingredient measurements, see the bottom of this post in the recipe card. You can also hit the “jump to recipe” button at the top of this post! Here, we’ll go over a brief overview of the steps, along with providing visuals for a better understanding of the recipe.

Much like a classic pound cake, the most important part about this vegan pound cake will be the creaming of the vegan butter and applesauce. This is a crucial step that helps to create the super fluffy and tender texture that pound cake is known for.

vegan pound cake

You’ll also want to make sure that your ingredients are at the proper temperature. Dairy free milk and applesauce should be room temperature, and your vegan butter should be room temperature as well- HOWEVER: vegan butter at room temperature is actually more like 65F! This is super important as vegan butter any warmer will not cream as well.

To make a completely vegan vanilla pound cake:

  1. Cream together the vegan butter and sugar until light and fluffy. This should be about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add in the applesauce and vanilla extract. I also added in vanilla bean powder to achieve the specs of vanilla seed in the actual cake. Plus it tastes AMAZING.
  3. Sift in the flour and add in the vegan buttermilk (dairy free milk and apple cider vinegar) in increments of two, gently mixing until JUST combined.
  4. Pour the vanilla vegan pound cake batter into your prepared loaf cake pan.
  5. Bake the vegan pound cake until a toothpick comes out clean.

Once the pound cake has cooled, you can top with your desired toppings or simply serve with sliced fresh fruit!

how to make vegan pound cake overview

How do you make a vegan cake rise more?

The key to a pound cake rising is in the creaming of the butter and sugar. That’s the first step. Making sure that your butter mixture is truly creamed and fluffy helps to create the air pockets in the batter that ultimately help the cake to rise.

As I noted above, pound cake does not use any leavening agents typically, so this is really important. However, the rise also comes from the eggs. Seeing as this is a vegan pound cake recipe and we’ll be using applesauce, I did need a bit more help in achieving the perfect rise for a pound cake. That’s why you’ll see that I have included a touch of baking powder to really help the pound cake rise perfectly.

Can I make this vanilla pound cake gluten free?

Yes, you can easily make this vegan pound cake entirely gluten free by using gluten free 1:1 baking flour, such as Bob’s Red Mill in the blue bag. This recipe has not been tested yet with oat flour. I suspect it would need more than 250 grams (2 cups) of oat flour in order to get the ratio right, so I cannot guarantee results.

sliced vanilla pound cake on a plate

This secretly healthier vanilla pound cake is:

  • Super tender & lush
  • Moist & flavorful
  • Full of vanilla
  • Incredibly easy to make
  • Naturally eggless and dairy free
  • Easily refined sugar free
  • Free from the Top 8 Allergens
  • Suitable for all eaters, including those who aren’t vegan
  • Perfect for birthdays, tea parties, graduations, brunches, holidays, and more!

You’re just going to absolutely love this easy vegan pound cake recipe! It’s truly such a breeze to make, and the result is incredible.

Top with vegan buttercream frosting and sliced fruit, and enjoy!

Happy pound cake baking!

slice of pound cake

More vegan loaf cake recipes you’ll love:

Vegan Lemon Loaf Cake

BEST Ever Vegan Pumpkin Bread

Vegan Chocolate Zucchini Bread

Classic Vegan Banana Bread

Easy Vegan Gingerbread Loaf Cake

Want to save this recipe for later? Add it to your favorite recipe board on Pinterest!

Best Ever Classic Vegan Pound Cake (Gluten Free option)

If you make this recipe, please be sure to leave a comment and a rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ below. This helps others to find the recipes! As always, I absolutely love to see your beautiful creations on Instagram and Pinterest, so be sure to tag me there as well!

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vegan pound cake

Best Ever Classic Vegan Pound Cake (Gluten Free option)

  • Author: thebananadiaries
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 45
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 16 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This is truly the best classic vanilla vegan pound cake ever made! It’s super fluffy, tender, soft, and moist, and full of vanilla flavor. Absolutely no one will know that this vanilla pound cake is entirely dairy free, eggless, and easily gluten free!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 250 grams all purpose flour or gluten free 1:1 baking flour (see notes)
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot starch
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 180 grams grams unsalted vegan butter, room temperature (65F)
  • 200 grams unrefined granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract and/or 1/4 tsp vanilla bean powder
  • 150 grams unsweetened applesauce, room temperature
  • 75 grams dairy-free milk, room temperature
  • Toppings: 1/2 serving vegan vanilla buttercream frosting + fruit

Instructions

  1. Read through the instructions fully before beginning. 
  2. Prep: Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease a 9″ loaf pan with vegan butter or coconut oil and set aside. Measure out all ingredients before beginning.
  3. Whisk together the dry ingredients: in a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, and sea salt. Set aside.
  4. Cream the vegan butter: in a large mixing bowl with hand mixer or a stand mixer with whisk attachment, cream the vegan butter on high speed for 2-3 minutes, or until whipped and creamy. Add in the sugar and vanilla extract, and cream together until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Next, add in the applesauce while mixing on medium-high speed in 1/4 cup increments until fully integrated into the vegan butter. 
  5. Finish the batter: add in half of the flour mixture at first, and mix on medium-low speed until JUST integrated. Then add in the remaining flour mixture, along with the dairy free milk, and mix again on medium-low speed until the dry ingredients are JUST integrated. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the bottom and ensure that all flour and wet ingredients are combined.
  6. Bake: pour the cake batter into your prepared loaf pan, and bake the pound cake for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow the pound cake to cool for 10 minutes in the pan. Then carefully flip the pound cake onto a cooling rack and back over to be right side up to cool completely (about 30 minutes). 
  7. Top: make a half batch of vegan vanilla buttercream frosting per the instructions once the cake is cooled. Top with your desired toppings, including freshly sliced fruit. Slice and serve. Enjoy!
  8. Storage: store any leftover slices in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge or 1 month in the freezer.

Notes

Gluten free: use gluten free 1:1 baking flour for a completely gluten-free version. I recommend Bob’s Red Mill in the blue bag. 

Refined sugar free: swap in coconut sugar or your favorite zero sugar granulated sweetener. Keep in mind that using coconut sugar will alter the color of the pound cake.

Vegan butter: I recommend Flora Plant Butter for a completely soy free and nut free vegan butter.

Applesauce: there are currently no swaps for applesauce at this time that will yield identical results. You can use mashed banana, but that will yield a banana-flavored pound cake.

Keywords: vegan pound cake, classic vanilla pound cake, easy vanilla pound cake, dairy free pound cake