Quite literally the best vegan tiramisu you will ever make, this easy dairy free tiramisu is layered with espresso soaked homemade ladyfingers, creamy and rich vegan mascarpone filling, and topped with a dusting of cocoa powder. Tastes just like the classic Italian “pick-me-up” layered dessert!

plate of vegan tiramisu

Why you’ll love this easy vegan tiramisu:

If you love tiramisu, just wait until you try this amazing vegan version! It has every flavor of the classic, along with those gorgeous layers of espresso soaked ladyfingers and mascarpone filling. Yet it’s undetectably dairy free, eggless, and vegan with the options of being gluten free, refined sugar free, and nut free!

This pick-me-up layered dessert is the perfect healthier treat to bring to a dinner party or serve at a holiday gathering, like Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Years, or even a summer party (since it’s chilly and refreshing!).

You just won’t believe that this tiramisu is vegan. From the fluffy and creamy dairy free mascarpone cream made with homemade vegan mascarpone to the soft yet delightfully soaked espresso homemade ladyfingers, this is the perfect dessert to test on your vegan skeptic friends and family 😉

In fact, it’s so perfect, I decided to make a banana pudding tiramisu and tiramisu cheesecake based off of this recipe!

sliced vegan tiramisu

What is tiramisu?

Aside from being my favorite dessert growing up that my great grandparents would make, tiramisu is a classic Italian layer dessert.

In Italian, tiramisu translates to “pick me up.” It consists of deliciously spongey vanilla “ladyfinger” cakes soaked in espresso and rum, and layered with zabaglione and mascarpone, finished with a dusting of cocoa powder.

Traditionally, tiramisu is not the easiest dessert, as it requires creating a custard from eggs, and layering the classic Italian dessert just right.

In all honesty, I wasn’t always allowed to have tiramisu as a little kid, since it contained wine and coffee. However, my great grandpa used to sneak me bites ha!

Since we’ve gone plant-based vegan, however, I actually haven’t had tiramisu in years. That’s why this year, I set out to recreate one of my favorite desserts from childhood!

The easiest tiramisu recipe ever!

This is truly the easiest vegan tiramisu recipe ever. I promise.

I wanted to be a bit different than the vegan and gluten free takes on tiramisu around the internet. Many use cashews or even tofu to make the layer of mascarpone. Others also slice a layer cake into vegan ladyfingers.

I wanted this vegan tiramisu to come as close to the traditional as possible, all while being tofu free, nut free, vegan, dairy free, and have the option of being gluten free.

And so, The Banana Diaries Vegan Tiramisu was created (based off of one of my grandma’s old recipes that she kept from my great grandparents!).

spoonful of vegan tiramisu

How to make vegan tiramisu from scratch

While this vegan tiramisu is easy, you will need to make it in layers. It’s not the quickest dessert, but it is straight forward and a wonderful treat for a dinner party or Christmas dinner.

First we’ll start by making the vegan ladyfingers (with a gluten free option). Then we’ll make the custard-like dairy free mascarpone, and then finally we’ll assemble the tiramisu!

Homemade Vegan Ladyfingers (Gluten Free Option)

Many recipes that are vegan essentially make a layer cake that we slice. I wanted to make the shape of the ladyfingers as close to the real deal as possible.

So that’s what we did.

Originally, I had developed this recipe using my vegan vanilla cupcake batter, and spread the onto a baking sheet to bake. It was a great vegan ladyfinger, but I wanted something a bit closer to the real deal.

This new version of a vegan ladyfinger is truly it. The lady fingers are light and fluffy, yet structured enough that when they soak up the espresso, the ladyfingers still maintain their shape and don’t become too sponge-like.

This batter will yield about 28 4″ lady fingers, which is just the right amount of homemade ladyfingers to use for your vegan tiramisu. You can pipe the batter onto the baking sheets, but I found it just easiest to spread the batter almost like a sheet cake, then slice when baked. Once in the tiramisu, you really won’t notice!

Once the vegan ladyfingers are baked, we’ll move onto making the dairy free mascarpone.

vegan ladyfingers on a plate

Vegan Dairy Free Mascarpone

Traditionally, the custard-like mascarpone also includes zabaglione (a custard of eggs, wine, and sugar). However, seeing as this vegan tiramisu is egg free and dairy free, we had to get a bit creative.

Mascarpone cheese tastes most similar to a ricotta, so I combined I actually combined my own homemade vegan mascarpone with vegan butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla. The result is a super fluffy and light mascarpone cream.

However, if you’re soy free as well, I do have my older version of mascarpone for you to try instead! It swaps in a dairy free yogurt and vegan cream cheese.

A note on vegan yogurt: the brand you choose will make or break this vegan tiramisu. I highly recommend using Forager Project cashewmilk yogurt or another yogurt that’s a little bit more on the liquid-y side. This could also be soy milk yogurt or coconut milk yogurt, but it can’t be a super thick coconut milk yogurt.

vegan mascarpone cream

How to assemble tiramisu

Now we get to the fun part: assembling the vegan tiramisu!

You’ll need a 6×9″ baking pan or an 8×8″ baking pan. Make sure that you’ve prepared the espresso. If you want rum in the espresso, you can add 1/4 golden rum.

Refrigerate the vegan tiramisu for at least 2-3 hours (so that it sets and can easily slice!). You can also refrigerate it overnight as well, which would be even better! Then when ready to serve, you can pipe coconut whipped cream on top and dust with cocoa powder.

Slice and serve!

Tips & Tricks

  • Make this a vegan gluten free tiramisu with homemade gluten free ladyfingers: the only ingredient you need to be aware of is the flour. I recommend a gluten free 1:1 baking flour, such as King Arthur Measure-for-Measure gluten free flour.
  • Keep this tiramisu alcohol free or add in golden rum: whichever you prefer! The alcohol version will taste closest to the traditional tiramisu. Kahlua would also be nice. However, I prefer mine without alcohol.
  • Make ahead of time! I recommend making this vegan tiramisu the day before so as not to rush yourself if you’re preparing it for a special occasion.
  • This vegan tiramisu is perfect for: Christmas, birthdays, Thanksgiving, weddings, graduations, baby showers, and more! It’s been served at our Christmas dinners for forever, so that’s why it always reminds me of the holidays!
  • The vegan cream cheese does NOT need to be room temperature: but other baking ingredients do, especially for when making the homemade ladyfingers! Check out this awesome article by Sally’s Baking Addiction for why it’s important for taste, texture, and consistency to use room temperature ingredients in baking.
sliced vegan tiramisu

You are just going to absolutely love this vegan tiramisu recipe! It’s perfect for all eaters, vegan or not! If you try this recipe, please leave a comment and a rating below ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ so that others may find it!

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

Happy vegan tiramisu making!

More vegan Italian desserts:

Vegan Cannoli Cheesecake

Amazing Vegan Tricolore Cookies

Vegan Pane di Pasqua

Vegan Panettone

Baked Vegan Cannoli

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Easy Homemade Vegan Tiramisu (No Cashews, No Tofu!) pinterest pin

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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!

Watch how to make vegan Tiramisu