You won’t believe how amazing this vegan funfetti cake is!! Super moist, tender, and “buttery” sweet, full of rainbow sprinkles, and secretly vegan, eggless, and dairy free with a gluten free option! Absolutely no one will know this funfetti cake is vegan!

vegan funfetti cake with candles

When it comes to vegan birthday cakes, you just need all the sprinkles.

And with this ultra tender and moist vegan funfetti cake, you’ll be sure to please a crowd. All you need is one bowl, 9 ingredients, and some patience while this cake bakes (trust me, the aroma that will be coming from your kitchen will be very hard to resist!).

Why you’ll love this homemade funfetti cake:

This is truly the best homemade vegan funfetti cake; you are just going to love this homemade vegan funfetti cake for a few reasons.

I’ve had not one, not two, not three, but four random taste testers confirm that this is the best funfetti cake they’ve ever had…period.

Yes, vegan or not! Of course, this birthday cake is vegan, but not all of my taste testers subscribe to a vegan diet, so this made me extra excited.

The homemade vegan funfetti cake is:

Moist & fall-off-the-fork tender

Rich with sweet and buttery notes of vanilla

Sprinkled with pops of all natural plant based color

Light & fluffy

Undetectably allergy friendly for those that need dairy free, egg free, easily gluten free, and nut free

slice of vegan funfetti cake

Trust me when I say, this is truly the only birthday cake recipe you’ll need. Make this once, and you’ll get requests from just about every single family member, friend, and colleague.

You also only need one bowl, and you can easily make this funfetti cake by hand or by stand mixer.

This is the perfect vegan cake recipe for birthdays, graduation cake, wedding cake, or any celebration. (Be sure to check out our vegan cakes section and my vegan cookbook for more vegan cake recipes!).

Is funfetti cake just vanilla cake with sprinkles? What’s the flavor?

Contrary to popular belief, funfetti cake is NOT just vanilla cake with sprinkles. It actually has a slightly denser and richer taste to it than the super light and tender vegan vanilla cake.

However, the flavor is similar. You have the notes of vanilla, but there’s a bit more butter to the cake, and then the sprinkles add their own flavor to it. When people are trying to associate the taste with funfetti cake, they’re actually thinking of the taste that the sprinkles leave when baked into the cake batter! So no fancy trick is needed on your part, just some good really fun and vibrant sprinkles!! 🙂

slice of vegan funfetti cake

Funfetti cake ingredients:

Making an amazing vegan birthday cake comes down to the process. Of course, you’ll need some key ingredients, but this vegan funfetti cake is made with all natural and simple ingredients.

For this vegan cake, you’ll need:

  • Cake flour: you can also use all purpose flour or gluten free 1:1 baking flour. Just make sure to see the section below on how to still reach that tender texture
  • Sugar or coconut sugar: if using coconut sugar, the color will be slightly darker, but still beautiful!
  • Leavening agents
  • Dairy free milk with apple cider vinegar: this creates a vegan buttermilk. You can use soy milk, almond milk, oat milk, coconut milk, or whatever your favorite is!
  • Vegan butter: the true way to get that traditional funfetti flavor!
  • Unsweetened applesauce: instead of going through the process of making aquafaba “eggs,” you can simply use applesauce! I also love using dairy free yogurt instead of applesauce.
  • Vanilla extract: the recipe card says 2 tablespoons and YES, you really need that much!
  • Vegan sprinkles: I’ve used homemade vegan sprinkles for this (which I talk about down below! and store-bought. If you don’t want to go the homemade route for your homemade funfetti cake, you can use store bought vegan sprinkles!

A note about sprinkles: many sprinkles are not vegan; if you do follow a vegan diet specifically, please ensure that the sprinkles that you’re using are indeed plant based. I found a wonderful vegan brand that I use consistently throughout my bakes. I’ve listed my favorite vegan sprinkle brands in the below sections, as well as in the recipe card.

vegan funfetti cake ingredients

How to make vegan funfetti cake (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.

The cake:

Now let’s talk about the process.

Here are some tips on making the cake batter:

  1. Whisk the dry ingredients. Be sure to use a whisk here, as this will ensure that the leavening agents are evenly distributed throughout the flour.
  2. Use room temperature ingredients. When adding in the wet ingredients, make sure that they are room temperature. Room temperature wet ingredients will make sure that your vegan cake doesn’t turn out gummy!
  3. Don’t over mix the batter! Once all the wet ingredients are combined into the wet, add in the sprinkles and gently fold together just enough to evenly distribute.
  4. Add in the sprinkles last. Especially if you’re making homemade vegan sprinkles. This will make sure that the sprinkles don’t start to run their color into the batter before it’s even in the oven!
  5. You can use a stand mixer or mix by hand. Either or works! I have directions for both down below.
  6. You can make a two or three-tiered 8″ cake or a three-tiered 6″ cake. The photos of the cake shown here are a three tiered 8″ cake. Each cake layer is approximately 1″ tall. If making a three-tiered 6″ cake, the layers tend to be 1 1/2-1 3/4″ tall.
how to make a vegan funfetti cake

The Vegan Vanilla Buttercream

Making an American vegan buttercream frosting is actually not hard at all. It’s just like making a traditional buttercream frosting!

I actually have a whole separate post for how to make vegan buttercream, which is definitely worth a read. You could also do vegan cream cheese frosting, like on my vegan red velvet cake.

To do this, you’ll simply beat the vegan butter until whipped.

Then sift in the already sifted powdered sugar into the vegan butter while you beat. You can use a stand mixer for this or a hand mixer. Either works!

Once the buttercream is fluffy, smooth and creamy, frost your vegan funfetti cake!

vegan buttercream in stand mixer

You can reserve some extra frosting if you’d like to do some fun designs, and definitely add some sprinkles on top, as this signals to everyone that this is a rainbow cake (not just your average cake!).

How to make homemade cake flour

If you’re a cake connoisseur like me (jk, I’m not Paul Hollywood, but I do love a good cake), then you know that cake flour is essential for making a tender and moist cake.

Now, if you only have all purpose flour or even if you want to make this a vegan gluten free funfetti cake and use 1:1 gluten free baking flour, you can still reach that desired tender cake texture.

To do this, simply add in an additional teaspoon of arrowroot powder or cornstarch, and whisk it into the flour. By adding this powder, it magically transform your cake from a good birthday cake to a fantastic birthday cake.

If you’re still unsure as to whether or not you should use cake flour or all purpose flour, here’s a great post by Sally’s Baking Addiction on what the difference is between cake flour and all purpose. I typically use cake flour, but at times, have made my own cake flour in a pinch. You can use all purpose, but if you want to really take your cakes to the next level, use cake flour!

bite taken from funfetti cake

What are the best vegan sprinkles?

For this vegan funfetti cake, I used Sweetapolita vegan birthday sprinkles. They’re my go to for amazing vegan sprinkles. Fancy Sprinkles is also great. If you don’t feel like specially ordering the sprinkles though, Whole Foods has great plant-based sprinkles in their baking section!

I have made my own vegan sprinkles in the past. There is a great recipe for this found on Gretchen’s Vegan Bakery. We absolutely loved it. It’s just water or aquafaba and powdered sugar.

For the colors, I used beet powder for red, turmeric powder for yellow, matcha powder for green, a plant-based blue food dye from Whole Foods for blue, beet + turmeric powder for orange, and beet + the blue food dye for purple.

That being said, vegan sprinkles are a lot of work. They turn out beautiful. But if you really want to go a super plant-based route, then go for it!

If you don’t want to go through the hassle of making homemade vegan sprinkles, there are many plant based sprinkles on the market that are great! I really love the 365 Brands vegan sprinkles for their fun pastel colors.

vegan funfetti cake decorated

Funfetti cake FAQ’s + Tips

  • Can I use gluten-free 1:1 flour or oat flour? I have tested this cake with gluten-free 1:1 all purpose flour, such as King Arthur Flour Measure for Measure. I have not tested this specific recipe with oat flour. However, I have recently tested my chocolate cupcakes using all oat flour and they came out wonderfully. And my vegan vanilla oat flour cake. I will be testing this recipe as well! My inclination is to say yes but I can’t guarantee the results!
  • Can I use ground flaxseed in place of applesauce? Your cake won’t be as moist if you do this. I recommend sticking with the applesauce, as it will yield the best texture and taste. Sometimes, flaxseed leaves a bit of aftertaste in baked goods. To ensure that your vegan funfetti cake tastes like a true out-of-the-box (only better) funfetti cake, use applesauce.
  • How do I avoid a gummy cake? Please please please use room temperature ingredients. It’s so important in order to avoid any baking mishaps. Also be sure to not over-mix the batter!
  • My sprinkles’ colors are streaking through the cake batter- help! Unfortunately, this is due to the quality of vegan sprinkles you’ve used. Some vegan sprinkles, the “dye” fades fast, since it’s usually all natural. That’s why I recommend using either Sweetapolita, Fancy Sprinkles, or Go supernatural. They have the best vegan sprinkles I’ve seen!
  • Can I use this cake recipe for a wedding cake? Absolutely! I’m actually planning on having one of my tiers be my vegan funfetti cake as well for our wedding! 🙂 If you’re having trouble figuring out ratios, you can use Chelsweets’ cake batter calculator. It helps so much! Here’s what you need to know on your end: this cake can yield three 8″ layers that are each 1″ tall. Then plug those numbers into the equation!

Some final cake tips:

  • Always remember to sift your flour and powdered sugar. This will ensure that the cake batter won’t bake too gummy, which is especially an issue for vegan cakes. By sifting the flour, you’ll ensure that your vegan funfetti cake will be perfectly tender!
  • You can use cake flour, all purpose flour, or 1:1 gluten free baking flour. If using either of the latter two, please make sure to add in 1 tsp arrowroot powder or cornstarch, as this will help achieve that tender cake texture.
  • Double check your leavening agents to make sure that they’ve been stored properly or that they aren’t expired.
  • Vegan sprinkles: we’ve gone over that you can use homemade vegan sprinkles here, but you can also use store bought as well. The ones I’ve used in the photos are from WholeFoods. However, Sweetapolita and Go Supernatural both have wonderful vegan sprinkles. India tree also sells some vegan colored sugar sprinkles.
  • Have fun with the decorations! You can reserve some leftover frosting and pipe it on the top, as I’ve done, as well as gently pressing sprinkles up the top of the cake sides.
  • Make vegan funfetti cupcakes: Looking for cupcakes instead? Try these vegan funfetti cupcakes for an easy cupcake recipe!

How do I decorate a funfetti cake?

This is my absolute favorite part of any cake process. The decoration part! You should have enough vegan buttercream to even color some of the frosting. But if you’re concerned about not having enough, you can easily make a double batch.

You can use these recommended tools for making a layer cake:

  • Cake turntable
  • Offset spatula
  • Bench scraper
  • Parchment paper

But you really just just need a cake stand and some patience. I do love the the offset spatula and the bench scraper, as that helps to achieve a really smooth outside edge. However, you can also do swoops like I did! To do this, simply use the back of a spoon.

You can also use a bench scraper, which creates a really smooth edge. Another idea is to roll the sides in sprinkles all together!

I also chose to make a batch of my vegan edible cookie dough using sprinkles instead of chocolate chips for a fun topping that was kind of similar to a Milk Bar-style cake.

For the middle layers of frosting, I use about 1/2 cup of frosting per layer. That seems generous, but I do love a really frosted cake!

Then I use the remaining frosting to frost the outside of the cake.

The really important item to note about making a layer cake is that you need all layers to be fully cool so that the frosting doesn’t melt. This ensures that your cake layers won’t slip and slide onto the floor!

vegan funfetti cake slice

You are just going to absolutely love this super easy and delicious vegan funfetti cake! Absolutely everyone will be raving about it, vegan or not! This homemade funfetti cake is:

  • Perfect for birthdays, weddings, baby showers, graduations and more!
  • Super soft, tender and moist
  • Full of vanilla and “buttery” flavor
  • Bursting with colorful sprinkles
  • Naturally eggless and dairy free (yet you wouldn’t know it!)
  • Suitable for vegans and vegetarians
  • Easy and quick to make
  • Approved by non vegans as well!

If you make this recipe, be sure to let me know how it went down below in the comments section, as well as giving it a rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ so that others can see it!

As always, I love to see your beautiful creations on Instagram and Pinterest, so be sure to tag me there!

Happy funfetti baking!

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

funfetti cake recipe

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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slice of vegan funfetti cake

The ULTIMATE Vegan Funfetti Cake

  • Author: Britt Berlin
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 1618 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

You won’t believe how amazing this vegan funfetti cake is!! Super moist, tender, and “buttery” sweet, full of rainbow sprinkles, and secretly vegan, eggless, and dairy free with a gluten free option! Absolutely no one will know this funfetti cake is vegan!


Ingredients

Units Scale

Vegan Funfetti Cake:

  • 1 1/4 cup (300 mL) vegan buttermilk
  • 3 2/3 cup (450 g) all-purpose flour (or gluten free 1:1 baking flour + 1 tbsp arrowroot or cornstarch)
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 3/4 cup (350 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (220 g) salted vegan butter (I recommend Miyoko’s or Flora Plant butter), room temperature
  • 1 cup (240 g) unsweetened applesauce or dairy free yogurt, room temperature*
  • 2 tbsp vanilla extract (yes, 2 tablespoons!!)
  • Optional (but recommended): 1/4 tsp vanilla powder
  • 1 cup vegan sprinkles or homemade vegan sprinkles (see notes for recommendations)
  • 2 batches of vegan buttercream frosting (depending on if you want more frosting to decorate the outside of the cake with)
  • More sprinkles to decorate

Instructions

  1. Please read through all instructions before beginning.
  2. Prep: Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease three 6″  or 8″ cake pans with cooking oil, and line them with parchment paper. Set aside. You can also use 8″ if desired. Just be aware that the cakes will bake differently (if you’re doing two 8″ cakes, it will bake longer, if you’re doing three, it will bake quicker). Measure out all ingredients. 
  3. Make the vegan buttermilk: Prepare the vegan buttermilk. Combine the dairy free milk with the apple cider vinegar, and set aside to sit for 5-6 minutes. You can weigh and measure the remaining ingredients during this time.
  4. Make the batter: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and baking soda (add in 1/8 tsp salt if you’re using unsalted vegan butter). In a stand mixer with paddle attachment or a large bowl with hand mixer, cream together the vegan butter and sugar until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the sides as needed. Then add in the applesauce and vanilla extract. Mix again on medium speed until combined, scraping down the sides and at the bottom of the bowl as needed. Add in about half of the dry mixture, along with half of the vegan buttermilk, and mix on medium speed until just combined. Add in the remaining dry mixture and vegan buttermilk, and mix on medium speed until there are just no more dry streaks. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl as well as the sides. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer (if using a stand mixer) and fold in the sprinkles just until they are evenly distributed throughout the batter.
  5. Bake: Divide the batter between the cake pans evenly, and bake for 27-30 minutes, or until the toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Cool: Remove from the oven and allow the cakes to cool in their pans for 10 minutes, then transfer them to a cooling rack to cool completely. Once cooled completely (there is absolutely no warmth to the touch!), then you can prepare your chocolate buttercream.
  7. Prepare the buttercream: make the vegan buttercream according to the directions in the post. 
  8. Assemble the cake: on a cake stand or a cake turntable, spoon about 1/3-1/2 cup of frosting onto the first layer. Use an offset spatula to smooth the frosting to the edges. Then place the second layer on top and repeat. Place the third layer on top and frost the outside of the cake, creating a crumb coat. You can either smooth the edges even more after chilling the crumb coat layer, or you can make swoops in the frosting. Decorate with sprinkles and serve! Enjoy!
  9. Storage: store any leftover cake wrapped in parchment paper and tinfoil, and in the fridge for up to 4 days or the freezer for up to 3 months.

Notes

Vegan sprinkles: I used Sweetapolita vegan birthday cake sprinkles here. Another great brand is Fancy Sprinkles; both have wonderful vegan options. 

Gluten free: I recommend using King Arthur’s Measure for Measure gluten free flour.

Nut-free:  use all nut-free vegan products for an entirely nut-free cake!

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 slice
  • Calories: 369
  • Sugar: 46.3 g
  • Sodium: 209.4 mg
  • Fat: 10 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.4 g
  • Carbohydrates: 67.3 g
  • Fiber: 0.8 g
  • Protein: 3 g
  • Cholesterol: 10.2 mg

Keywords: vegan funfetti cake, vegan birthday cake, homemade funfetti cake, vegan rainbow cake, homemade vegan sprinkles

slice of vegan funfetti cake