Incredibly light and fluffy vegan chocolate mousse cake topped with a layer of glossy chocolate ganache. Nut free and made without aquafaba or tofu!
There has been some serious demand since I featured this vegan chocolate mousse cake on my socials, and today I finally deliver the lightest, fluffiest most decadent vegan chocolate mousse cake to your door. Well, not literally - I'm not a cake delivery guy - but you get the idea!
This cake features a thin layer of super soft, moist sponge, then fluffy chocolate mousse, topped with a velvety smooth dark chocolate ganache! It's incredibly easy to make (surprisingly!) and is obviously completely vegan! It's also nut free, made without coconut cream and there's no aquafaba or tofu in this recipe! Intrigued? You should be!
🧈 Vegan Chocolate Mousse Cake Ingredients
There are three elements to this chocolate mousse cake recipe - cake, mousse and ganache! Therefore you'd expect there to be loads of different ingredients, but actually the list is pretty simple.
Take a look below at what you'll require to get started on this recipe.
- Vegetable oil (or sunflower oil)
- Plant milk (unflavoured and unsweetened, ideally soy milk)
- White wine vinegar (or lemon juice)
- Vanilla extract
- Light brown sugar
- Caster sugar
- Espresso powder
- Plain white flour (aka all purpose flour)
- Baking soda (aka bicarbonate of soda)
- Baking powder
- Cocoa powder
- Vegan whipping cream (use my recipe or store-bought)
- Dark chocolate (aim for anything between 54-60% cocoa solids)
🎂 A Note on Vegan Chocolate
Obviously not all chocolate is vegan - this is vegan basics 101! But lots of dark chocolates ARE vegan. As a rule of thumb, most chocolates over 54% cocoa solids are made without milk. This isn't always true though, and it's always best to check the ingredients before buying!
For this recipe, and for most of my chocolate recipes (like my vegan chocolate cake, my vegan molten lava cakes and my vegan chocolate chip sheet cake) it's best to use chocolate with between 54% and 60% cocoa solids. This ensures a nice bittersweet 3 dimensional flavour!
🔀 Ingredient Substitutions
The Flour - If you want to make this recipe gluten free then you're in luck! Just use a nice 1:1 GF flour like Bob's Red Mill in the actual cake recipe. The rest of the recipe is completely gluten free.
The Plant Milk - Any plant based milk works in this recipe. I always recommend soy milk because of its super gentle flavour and its high levels of lecithin. Lecithin helps to stop cake batter from splitting as it cooks.
🍰 Making the Vegan Chocolate Mousse Cake
OK, big note! PLEASE use a digital scale for this recipe. I have provided conversions in the recipe at the bottom of the page but the cake element of this vegan chocolate mousse cake is so small and slim, that you'll struggle to use a cup measure for this one.
OK, caveat over, here's the method for making this incredible cake!
1. Bake the sponge. Don't worry - it'll look very small and slim but this is the vibe we're going for! Mostly mousse, a little cake!
2. Make the mousse. This process involves whipping vegan cream, so unless you've got a robot arm, you'll wanna use a stand mixer or hand beater.
3. Layer it up. Now you just need to add the mousse to the sponge. Do this inside the same tin you used to bake the cake. It'll keep the sides nice and neat.
4. Finally top with chocolate ganache! A little goes a long way as we're using dark chocolate, so just a thin layer on top will do!
🤷♀️ Vegan Chocolate Mousse Cake FAQs
A: Absolutely! You can easily adapt this vegan chocolate mousse cake recipe to be gluten-free by using gluten-free flour or almond flour for the cake base. The rest of the recipe is completely gluten free!
A: No. Vanilla extract is a natural product extracted from real vanilla beans. Vanilla essence is a synthetic version of vanilla flavour that's been made with various chemicals and artificial flavours. Vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste are far superior products.
A: This vegan chocolate mousse cake can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. It's important to keep it refrigerated to maintain its freshness and prevent the mousse from melting. Be sure to cover it with plastic wrap or store it in an airtight container to prevent any odors from the refrigerator from affecting its taste.
And just like that, the perfect vegan chocolate mousse cake! Woohoo!
Vegan Chocolate Mousse Cake
- 1 20cm cake tin with loose bottom
- 1 stand mixer or hand beater
- 2 Medium bowls
- 1 small bowl
- 1 wire cooling rack
- 1 microwaveable bowl
For the Cake
- 50 ml vegetable oil (or sunflower oil)
- 35 ml plant milk (unflavoured and unsweetened, ideally soy milk)
- ½ teaspoon white wine vinegar (or lemon juice)
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 50 g light brown sugar
- 25 ml boiling water
- 2 teaspoon espresso powder
- 60 g plain white flour (aka all purpose flour)
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda (aka bicarbonate of soda)
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 15 g cocoa powder
For the Chocolate Mousse
- 180 g dark chocolate chips (or finely chopped dark chocolate (see note 1 below))
- 130 ml plant milk (unflavoured and unsweetened, ideally soy milk)
- 250 g vegan whipping cream ((see note 2 below))
- 2 tablespoon caster sugar
For the Chocolate Ganache
- 85 g dark chocolate chips (or finely chopped dark chocolate (see note 1 below))
- 85 ml plant milk (unflavoured and unsweetened, ideally soy milk)
To Make the Cake
- Preheat the oven to 160 °C (fan). Grease and line a 20cm (7.8 inch) cake tin with baking parchment.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the vegetable oil, plant milk, white wine vinegar, vanilla extract and light brown sugar. Whisk until smooth.50 ml vegetable oil, 35 ml plant milk, ½ teaspoon white wine vinegar, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, 50 g light brown sugar
- In a separate small bowl, whisk together the boiling water and espresso powder until dissolved then add to the other wet ingredients and whisk to combine.25 ml boiling water, 2 teaspoon espresso powder
- In a separate medium bowl, sieve together the remaining dry cake ingredients. Add the wet ingredients mixture to the bowl and mix together until you just have a smooth batter.60 g plain white flour, ¼ teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon baking powder, 15 g cocoa powder
- Transfer the batter to the prepared cake tin and place in the oven to bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes on a wire cooling rack. Carefully remove the cake from the tin, remove the baking parchment and leave to cool fully on the wire cooling rack.
- Once cooled, return the cake to the cake tin and place in the fridge.
To Make the Chocolate Mousse
- Place the dark chocolate chips and plant milk in a microwaveable bowl. Heat in the microwave in 30 second bursts, whisking in between, until the chocolate and plant milk are melted together into a smooth glossy ganache. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.180 g dark chocolate chips, 130 ml plant milk
- Place the vegan whipping cream and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Alternatively place in a bowl if using hand-held electric beaters.250 g vegan whipping cream, 2 tablespoon caster sugar
- Whip the vegan cream and sugar to the stiff peaks stage.
- Once the chocolate plant milk mixture is cooled, pour half into the whipped vegan cream and use a spatula to carefully fold it in until no pale streaks remain and it is uniformly brown. Repeat with the second half until completely combined.
- Spoon the chocolate mousse over the cake in the cake tin. Firmly tap the cake tin on the counter to remove any large air bubbles then smooth out the top with a spatula or pallet knife.
- Place the cake tin back in the fridge for 30 minutes.
To Make the Chocolate Ganache
- Place the dark chocolate chips and soy milk in a microwaveable bowl. Heat in the microwave in 30 second bursts, whisking in between, until the chocolate and soy milk are melted together into a smooth glossy ganache.85 g dark chocolate chips, 85 ml plant milk
- Remove the cake from the fridge and pour the ganache over the top. Spread the ganache to the edges, if necessary, then place in the fridge to set fully for at least 3 hours before slicing and serving.