Monday, April 4, 2011

Milk- free Vanilla Cream Cake

Last week i made a cake for the lactose-intolerant members of our family. We didn't expect it to be so good but it really was. The consistency of both cake and frosting isn't quite as creamy as my whipping cream version, but this cake was very good and it worked when I added gel food coloring, so I was very pleased.

I started with my regular recipe, sans milk and I must say it is hard make the cake fluffy without the buttermilk. The texture is not quite as good but it is the original version but acceptable. The cake didn't rise as high as usual. Disappointing, but acceptable.

The frosting was good and I was a bit surprised that it turned out as well as it did. You must use the canned coconut milk and refrigerate it for at least 8 hours so that the milk and water separate. Then you use only the solid and store the coconut "water" plus the leftover "milk" to use in another recipe. It only takes about a half cup, or less, of the coconut milk for the recipe. For frostings like this one, I like to add milk slowly to the mixture because the humidity in the air will make a difference to the recipe. Add slowly, a teaspoon at a time for best results.

There was a slight coconut flavor to this version. I like it and everyone who tasted it thought the flavor was good and weren't troubled by the coconut milk taste. Coconut oil and milk are a good alternative because even though they are a saturated fat, they are better for you than the saturated fat from butter and heavy whipping cream that I usually use when making vanilla frosting.

I also didn't expect to be able to decorate this cake but it held the coloring and didn't run. I am hoping to work with this recipe to see if I can make it better by adding some other ingredients. I would love to make this without eggs with a good consistency, so I will be working on it for our next birthday.

What did people think? Starting with my husband -- he loved it and said he couldn't tell the difference between this and my original recipe. The lactose intolerant reported that it was good and no stomach problems occurred as a result.

Here's the recipe with no milk and plenty of flavor:

Vanilla Layer Cake (Milk-free)

1/2 cup coconut oil
1-1/2 cups sugar
3 eggs
2 cups self-rising flour
3/4 cup almond milk
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla flavoring

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix coconut oil and sugar until well-blended, add eggs and beat until they are well-mixed and mixture is creamy. Add 1 cup of flour and half the milk. Mix well. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well, scraping the sides of the bowl and blades of the mixer. Blend a few moments longer and the batter will be ready for baking.

To prepare the pans, cut parchment paper to fit the bottoms of two round nine-inch cake pans. Spray pans with cooking spray, insert parchment paper and divide batter between the two pans. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until cakes are done. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

Vanilla Cream Frosting (Milk-free)

1 cup Earth Balance Buttery Spread
1 can coconut milk, chilled for at least 8 hours so that milk separates, a full can will not be used.
2 pounds Confectioner's sugar
1 to 2 teaspoons vanilla flavoring
Gel food coloring

Mix margarine and Confectioner's sugar. Add 1/4 cup of the solid coconut milk and the sugar. Add remaining coconut milk a spoonful at a time and whip until mixture is smooth and creamy. Frost cake and use the remaining for decoration, if desired. Add gel food coloring for the desired color and pipe onto cake using a decorator's bag.


  1. Your cake is beautiful, and I admire the efforts you take to accommodate special food needs in your family!

  2. Oh, that cake looks delicious! I may try this -
    thank you for sharing the recipe. Have a great week, Joanie