This Vegan Vanilla Mug Cake Recipe is an easy single-serving, sugar-free dessert that’s ready to eat in less than ten minutes. Enjoy it plain, or add your favorite mix-ins and toppings! Since this is cake in a mug, you know it will be quick and easy to make.
What Is a Mug Cake?
A mug cake is just what it sounds like – a cake made in a mug! As a result of their small size, they’re usually enjoyed as a single-serve or two-person dessert.
In addition, they come together very quickly with minimal prep time and a total time of just a few minutes. The only caveat is that you need to make sure you use a large, microwave-safe bowl.
What’s in a Vanilla Mug Cake?
You’ll find that most mug cake recipes contain similar ingredients you’d expect to see in a vanilla cake. However, in true Cotter Crunch fashion, we took the opportunity to spruce ours up a bit.
Of course, it’s gluten-free, but it’s also made without eggs, dairy-free, nut-free, sugar-free, and high-protein, too! Here are the ingredients you need:
- Gluten-Free Oat Flour – This forms the base of the cake batter while adding more fiber than your standard all-purpose flour. You can find it in the baking section of your local grocery store, or make your own homemade gluten-free oat flour with certified gluten-free oats!
- Plant-Based Protein Powder – We love KOS protein powder, but any vanilla-flavored protein can be used.
Note: If you don’t have protein powder, you can use 30 grams of oat flour instead.
- Sugar-Free Sweetener – Raw sugar and xylitol also work great.
- Oil – Use a neutral oil like avocado oil or melted refined coconut oil to help create a tender, fluffy vanilla mug cake without impacting the flavor.
- Vinegar – Use white vinegar or apple cider vinegar to help the cake rise.
- Non-Dairy Milk – Any plain milk will work. Adjust the amount used as needed. (See the notes in the recipe card below.)
- Baking Essentials – Baking powder, salt, and pure vanilla extract are also used to create the best texture and a rich vanilla flavor.
What Kind of Mug Should I Use for a Microwave Mug Cake?
Before you begin, you’ll want to make sure you have a large, microwave-safe mug. You want to leave at least ⅓ of the space empty so the batter has plenty of room to rise. We love to use an 8-ounce ramekin!
Mix, Microwave, and Eat: How to Make the Best Vanilla Mug Cake
Once you learn how easy and delicious mug cakes are, you may never go back to baking a full cake again!
- Combine the dry ingredients. Whisk the oat flour, protein powder, sugar, baking powder, and salt together in a small bowl.
- Add the wet ingredients. Pour the oil, vinegar, and vanilla in three different spots on top of the dry mix. (Watch the video below to see how it’s done!) Pour the milk on top, and gently stir.
Note: You will see a few bubbles form. You aren’t doing anything wrong. They’re supposed to!
- Microwave. Pour the batter into a greased mug, and microwave on HIGH in intervals of 30 seconds until the top of the cake is firm.
- Enjoy! Allow the cake to cool slightly, and dig in while it’s warm.
Tips for Success
This vegan vanilla mug cake recipe is virtually failproof as is, but we’ve got a few extra steps to make sure it turns out perfect every single time!
- Use Fresh Ingredients. You’ll want to make sure all of the ingredients are fresh, especially the baking powder. Otherwise, the taste and texture might not be as great!
- Don’t Overmix. Combine the ingredients just until they’re smooth and no streaks remain. Continuing to mix will only result in a dense, tough cake.
- Avoid Overcooking. Check on your vanilla mug cake every 30 seconds, gently pressing the top. You’ll know it’s done when it’s solid yet still slightly spongy to the touch.
Optional Mix-Ins and Toppings
We kept this vanilla mug cake recipe plain, letting the flavor of the batter speak for itself. But that doesn’t mean you can’t switch it up! Try adding even more flavor with add-ins like:
- Vegan Chocolate Chips
- Peanut Butter Baking Chips
- Dye-Free Sprinkles for a funfetti mug cake
- Coconut Flakes
- Cocoa Powder
Common Questions About This Easy Vanilla Mug Cake Recipe
The most common reason why the texture of your mug cake isn’t soft and fluffy is that it was overbaked. Keep a close eye on it, and remove it from the microwave as soon as the center is set!
Technically, you could if there are no raw eggs, but it tastes a lot better baked!
We don’t recommend it as the taste and texture of your mug cake will be altered.
Yes, once baked, this mug cake recipe is completely safe to eat cold!
On the off chance you have leftovers, they can be covered and reheated in the microwave for 15-30 seconds. Just note that you run the risk of the cake becoming rubbery! If you can, we highly recommend eating this vegan vanilla mug cake recipe while it’s warm and fresh.
More Gluten-Free Vegan Dessert Recipes
Looking for more vegan recipes to satisfy your sweet tooth? Try out more of our gluten-free favorites below to satisfy any craving!
- Dark Chocolate Vegan Muffins
- Dark Chocolate Caramel Vegan Brownies
- Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Vegan Chocolate Protein Cookies