Vegan Recipe: Vanilla Cake with Fresh Strawberries and Coconut Whipped Cream

Vanilla Cake with Fresh Strawberries and Coconut Whipped Cream

Photo credit: Vicki Brett-Gach

By Vicki Brett-Gach

I have been wanting to create a vegan version of strawberry shortcake for a long time, and all I can say is this recipe is just as good as it sounds.

With sweet strawberries piled high on warm vanilla cake and garnished with coconut whipped cream, this is every bit as decadent and delicious as its traditional counterpart.

To me, the best part of classical strawberry shortcake used to be the sliced strawberries, buried in mountains of whipped cream. Ironically, the shortcake itself was my least favorite element.

This easy vanilla cake changes all that, because it is delicious even on its own. But it really shines as a member of the team.

The cake can be mixed by hand in a single bowl, and bakes in just about 30 minutes. Because it stays nice and moist for at least a couple of days, it could most certainly be baked a day ahead of serving.

Smothered with fresh berries and mounds of coconut whipped cream, this scrumptious dessert makes a perfect finale for any summer celebration.


Vanilla Cake, ingredients

1 3/4 cups cake flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plain or vanilla soy yogurt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup plain or vanilla soy milk
1/2 cup water

Strawberries, ingredients

3 cups fresh strawberries, washed, and drained well
1/3 cup brown sugar

Coconut Whipped Cream, ingredients

1 14-ounce can of coconut milk, chilled, (recommended: Thai Kitchen or 365 Whole Foods brand, not lite), NOT stirred
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat an 8×8-inch square baking pan with vegetable spray.

Whisk together cake flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add yogurt, vanilla extract, soy milk, and water. Mix together until just blended. Do not over mix. Pour batter into prepared baking pan.

Bake about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to rest on cooling rack. The cake can be served either cooled, or while still warm.

While cake is baking, slice berries, sprinkle with sugar, and mix gently. Chill sweetened berries in the refrigerator.

To make the Coconut Whipped Cream, skim the solidified coconut cream off the top half of the can of chilled coconut milk. Transfer solids to the bowl of a stand mixer. Do not add any of the coconut water. (Discard the coconut water or reserve for another use, such as for smoothies.) Add the powdered sugar and vanilla, and whip for a few minutes until mixture begins to stiffen and turn into whipped cream, Work quickly so everything stays cold. Chill whipped cream in covered container in the refrigerator.

When ready to serve, top each slice of cake with plenty of sweetened berries and dollops of chilled whipped cream.

(Vanilla Cake recipe inspired by Coconut Whipped Cream adapted from Chloe’s Kitchen by Chloe Coscarelli)

Vicki Brett-Gach is a Certified Vegan Lifestyle Coach and Educator through Main Street Vegan Academy, a Certified Personal Chef through Wellness Forum Health, and a graduate of the Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate program through the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies. She coaches clients, teaches heart-healthy vegan cooking classes, and writes the “Honestly Vegan” column for Honest Cooking, an international online culinary magazine. Connect with her on Facebook and follow her Ann Arbor Vegan Kitchen blog for new recipes as soon as they are published.

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