This lemon lime coconut vegan cake is gluten free, easy to make, and topped with fluffy whipped coconut cream frosting. A citrus flavored frosted vegan cake that’s perfect for Any season. So simple to make! All you need are a few ingredients to bake this cake in under 45 minutes.
PRAISE THE LORD it kinda feels like Spring! And yes, that means we breeze on into the week feeling light and zesty. Right? Light and refreshed as this coconut lemon lime vegan cake… errr or something like that. Mmm k?
But in all seriousness ya’ll, this last week has been cloudy with a chance of meatballs and I’m certain that we all deserve a day a tropical vacation. Well, I can’t offer a tropical vacation, but I can channel my inner hula girl and serve us up a slice piece of this vegan cake. You know I used to live in Hawaii, yes? That’s a story for another day. Unless you want to search the Cotter Crunch archives, gasp!
But I digress… where was I? Hmmm… tropical warm thoughts and a slice of cake.
Are you ready to feel light, refreshed, and bake up this goodness? It’s kinda sorta perfect for Easter ( I may be bias).
First, we gotta make the icing. It’s similar whipped frosting to this classic paleo/vegan cake recipe, but with citrus and coconut flavors. If we are lucky and have a little leftover we can put in our coffee.
It really is so simple and all you need it a can COLD coconut cream. Extra sweetener if you’d like. Then Whip it, whip good!
See what I did there. Haha!
Next comes this SUPER EASY 3 step approach to making this vegan cake. I’m really into 3 step recipes these days, can’t you tell? We’re all busy, we need simplicity. I get it.
Moving on. Cake… the ingredients.
Gluten Free Flour Mix. I used Bob’s Red Mill’s Gluten Free 1:1 Ratio because it ROCKS! Then we just need a little lemon, a little lime, coconut, agave nectar (or maple syrup), melted coconut oil, and baking soda.
The key to making this vegan cake so AMAZING is in fact that Lemon Lime combo.
Yep, that’s the whole trick to making it FLUFFY without an egg. An acid-base reaction WONDERS y’all! In luckily, for us, lemon lime is the best naturally acidic ingredient you can use. The science/nutrition geek in me just has way too much fun making it. Really! My mission is to not only create a super simple, healthy, gluten free vegan cake, but also to make it FUN!
I highly recommend adding edible flowers and fresh citrus fruit (FOR FUN) when you decorate. It totally makes you feel like a cake wars champion. Just sayin…
Alright friends, I think I’m one too many tangents past my limit for a Monday. Let’s get to the real focus. THE RECIPE!Print
Gluten Free Citrus Coconut Vegan Cake with Coconut Cream Frosting
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 9 slices 1x
A citrus flavored gluten free vegan cake that’s perfect for Any season. So simple to make! All you need are a few ingredients to bake this cake in under 45 minutes.
For the Cake:
- 1 ⅔ cup gluten free multipurpose flour mix, preferably a 1:1 flour mix. (I used Bob Red Mill 1:1). See notes for other options
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoons lime juice
- ½ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup xylitol baking sugar (for less sugar content) or cane sugar works too
- 1 cup water
- ¼ cup agave nectar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ – 1 teaspoon lemon extract (depends on how strong you want it)
- ¼ cup melted coconut oil
For the Frosting:
- 1 can coconut cream (cream NOT milk)
- ¼ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Optional: sweetness powdered sugar (¼ cup)
- ½ Tablespoon lime zest
For the Cake:
- SPECIAL NOTE – > Before you bake the cake and if you are making coconut frosting with this, first place 2-3 cans of coconut cream in back of fridge for 24 hrs. You only need one, but I place 3 just in case one doesn’t harden.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a cake pan or 8×8 baking dish.
- Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl (the baking soda, flour, sugar, salt).
- In another bowl, mix the water, agave nectar, coconut oil, lime juice, and extracts.
- Combine the wet ingredients to dry ingredients and SLOWLY mix. Fold in the shredded coconut. DO NOT OVER-MIX.
- Gently pour batter into greased pan. Bake for 35-45 minutes or until golden brown. Some baking mixes and ovens might take closer to 50+ minutes. Check progress at 35 minutes by inserting toothpick or knife in center until in comes out clean.
- Remove from oven and let cool completely before frosting.
For the Frosting:
- Make sure the coconut cream can (10oz) is chilled 24 hrs and you have coconut cream not milk.
- Once chilled, spoon out the hardened cream mixture into a bowl.
- Add the sugar and vanilla; beat until fluffy and smooth. Mix in the shredded coconut last.
- Keep cool until ready to frost the cake.
- Frost the cooled cake and add lime zest on top if desired.
- nutrition shown for recipe made with xylitol versus cane sugar.
- See this recipe for Paleo option.
- If you don’t have a gluten free flour mix, try using a boxed gluten free cake mix and reduce the sugar in the recipe by half. This has worked well before but not all cake mix is made the same. I would advise to test one first. Reduce cooking time if needed. 35-45 minutes.
- Prep Time: 10 min
- Cook Time: 35 min
- Category: dessert
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: 1 slice
- Calories: 252
- Sugar: 7.4g
- Sodium: 219.5mg
- Fat: 20g
- Saturated Fat: 17.6g
- Carbohydrates: 40.8g
- Fiber: 2.5g
- Protein: 2.4g
- Cholesterol: 0mg
Keywords: vegan cake, coconut cake, spring desserts, gluten free desserts, coconut cream frosting
I really have no other words except the fact that you need this in your life. And it will take all of 45 minutes or less to make. Yes, for a gluten free vegan cake.
Not only is this citrus coconut vegan cake light and gluten free, but it also has a lower sugar and nut free (in honor of allergy awareness week). See, that just means you can have your cake and eat it (a slice) too!
Don’t worry, I saved you a piece. I know, I am to please.
Cheers to the weekend! I’m hoping to remake this for Easter! Will you join me? Tag me in IG stories or leave a comment if you do. I’m kinda a dork like that. #Cottercakes
What’s your favorite springtime or summer cake? Coconut for me, hands down!
Anyone else have a favorite vegan cake recipe. I always need more. Share.. Pretty please.
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MORE EASY GLUTEN FREE EASTER RECIPES HERE!
This recipe is part of our Easy Gluten Free Easter Recipes collection. Check it out!
This cake really has those spring vibes. I want to try the cake. Can you provide the measurement of the ingredients in gms?
Hi Richa! I can remeasure for you later this week, just in case. But with calculations, the all purpose GF flour is around 240grams and the sugar around 200grams. That’s if you xylitol, not cane sugar. Does that make sense?
Hello! Would coconut sugar or honey work for the sugar substitute?
Sure! I think coconut sugar would be ok. Maybe grind it up so it’s a bit more fine, like regular sugar. Not as heavy/packed. Does that make sense?
I would love to make this for my upcoming birthday but I’m trying not to eat refined sugar and also make the cake friendly for a 1yo. Any thoughts on subbing honey, monk fruit extract or stevia? Coconut sugar is another option, but I’d still like to not use much if any. Really hope to try this cake!
For the cake or icing or both? Coconut sugar definitely works. I think Monk fruit would as well. it might be a little sweeter though.
Hi I made it according to the recipe but mine came out extremely bitter and inedible!
Is it the xylitol?
Oh no! That’s strange. Which xylitol brand did you use? Did you use lemon or apple cider vinegar?
Looks so good! I’m planning on making a version with plain flour, do you think that would come out okay?
Should be! Just use a multipurpose flour. KEep me posted!
Absolutely fantastic. My comment could have easily been just one word borrowed from comic books ..Slurp!
Thanks, i need to try doing this on my own
It look delicious dear and I ‘m quite sure it tastes even better. Great idea! p.s Better avoid tequila 🙂
Would you transfer the Birds Nest Cake? into a dairy free recipe?
I think so! can you email me your recipe and I can help adjust it?
You had me at coconut cream frosting!
SO dang gorgeous!
Gorgeous! I’ll take two slices!
Liz @ Floating Kitchen
We have yet to have Spring arrive here. I’m dying! It better hurry up. Because until then, I’m gonna just keep stuffing my face with coconut-citrus goodness! This cake sounds so fav!
I will take one slice of cake please AND a picture of Lindsay in her hulu skirt.
I’ll go get my coconut bra ready to match my skirt
So pretty with the fresh citrus on top! Until recently I was not a coconut fan, but now everytime I see a recipe with coconut in it I just have to try it.
Coconut and citrus make for the perfect spring dessert!
Totally agree Erin!
This looks like spring on a plate!
it so is! 😉
Katie | Healthy Seasonal Recipes
At this time of year, I am all about the coconut cake, so this recipe is right in time!!
Mega yummmm time!!!
Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious
Gorgeous! Almost too pretty to eat.
Just one question. Why is the cake brown? There doesn’t seem to be anything in it that would do that, such as yolks, brown sugar, etc. Is it the agave nectar? Just curious.
No prob! It depends on the flour. Each kind reacts to heat differently depending on the GF grain. I’ve made this with gluten free pastry flour too and it’s more brown. I used a bit of cane sugar in this one so it’s more golden. Hope that helps!
Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness
I wanna eat this cake all day long!
How absolutely gorgeous is this! And gluten-free too!
Traci | Vanilla And Bean
Light and fluffy FTW! The chemistry of baking is fascinating! I love how you love it too! This cake is gorgeous and perfect for Spring! Delicious work my dear! xo
Thank you friend! <3 Love the science of baking, hehe.
This cake is absolutely delightful!
I’d eat shoe leather topped with that coconut cream frosting!! Of course, this cake sounds a heck of a lot better!
Is there any shame in the fact that I want this cake for breakfast? I don’t think so 😉 this looks absolutely phenomenal with the coconut frosting and fluffy yellow batter!
Put the lime in the coconut and mix it all up!! ….like a party in my mouth! YUMMMMM
Erin @ Erin's Inside Job
Oh man this looks so good. I ate such crap this weekend though I think I need to go eat a sweet potato now.
haha i feel ya. Save this for another day. or party!
I am gluten, dairy, egg, nut and grain free as well. Is there a substitute to the gluten free flour that I can use? Coconut flour, cassava, etc? Thanks!!
Have you seen my other cake like this? It’s it might be better to use. I tried cassava and it worked but very dense. So not sure if that’s what you want.
This cake sounds absolutely perfect for summer parties! I can’t wait to try it out. The flavors sound so fresh, I know it will be a crowd pleaser.
let me know if you do!
Kristy @ Southern In Law
This looks so fluffy and delicious! I kind of want to eat a whole bowl of that frosting on its own ;P
I almost did! it’s dangerous. LOL!
GiselleR @ Diary of an ExSloth
I’ve always been intimidated by making an actual cake, but this looks too good not to make! Pinned 🙂
Girl! It’s like so easy and addicting
Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table
I loooooove coconut cream icing! I’ve only done it once, and it’s been WAY too long. I’m dumping kaluha right into my next batch though. Because Friday. (As if I needed an excuse.)
I literally added the kaluha for you!!
EVERYTHING COCONUT for me too! Come up to Nantucket and bake me a coconut cake…and then we can go on long walks with Little Lucy…One of these days I WILL get you up here! XOXO
Omg ! this looks amazing ? can’t go wrong with coconut and lime! The texture looks absolutely perfect too…love Bob’s red mill ? have a a lovely weekend friend~xoxo
Bobs makes our life easy! Haha
Lauren @ The Bikini Experiment
“Let them eat cake” WOW this cake looks amazing. Perfect for the summer holidays! xo Lauren
Yes! Except it would melt here fast in summer haha
Nothing says WEEKEND like a hunk of deeelish lemon lime coconut cake. UGH this looks marvelous! I’m so on top of that coconut whip like whoa. Just gorgeous, m’dear!
Me too! WEEKEND WHIP time. haha
Erin @ The Almond Eater
I’m all about icing made from coconut cream and, well honestly, I’m just all about CAKE to celebrate Friday and the weekend. TGIF, friend!
Will you bring your GORGEOUS blood orange cake over and we can have a cake party?
michele @ paleorunningmomma
Yes yes yes! It’s like you know me or something, lol 🙂 Coconut whipped cream is my life right now, also in my coffee as we speak 🙂
Bring your cupcakes over and let’s party!
OMG so good in that coffee!
Marina @ A Dancer's Live-It
Oooo im totally going to make this for Memorial Day! Love the simplicity of the recipe, thank you so much for sharing!! 🙂
wonderful! The coconut icing can get soft at warmer temps, so wait to serve that last if you can. Keep me posted!
rachel @ Athletic avocado
this combo of lemon-lime is so perf for summer ! And the fact that posted this today and my bday is on monday could not be more perfect timing! Come make this for me 🙂
On my way! We will celebrate BIG!
Linz @ Itz Linz
oh lindsay you’ve done it again, just like always!!
Ahh thanks friend
Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious
Have fun in CA! This cake I’m pinning for a special occasion because info make it, I will devour it all!
i shared with my family. THANK GOD!
I’m a cake lover, and this is calling my name! I could face-plant in that frosting!!!
come for coffee?
Susie @ Suzlyfe
I feel like you should call this a margarita cake. NOMS.
should i add some tequila?