Apple Spice Cake with Maple Buttercream Frosting (Hot For Food)

This recipe is by HotForFood, and it’s absolutely amazing. This is a favourite in my family, and my husbands grandma even demanded that we make it for her birthday! You would never know that this cake was vegan, and insanely easy to make (with no ‘weird vegan ingredients’ haha).

If you make it with regular flour (like in the recipe), it’s fluffy and moist and everything you dream a cake could be. I’ve also made it once with Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free Flour, and it still totally worked out, it’s just a little firmer and not so fluffy. Definitely still worth making.

ALSO - the frosting is SO GOOD that I put it on every cake that I make.

The first photo is the regular recipe. The second photo was using the gluten free flour.

The recipe is by Hot For Food and can be found below, or on their website here.

My notes are italicized.



  • 1 C soy milk (Almond milk works too. The brand I use is Silk)

  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

  • 2 C all-purpose flour (or Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free flour. Makes a denser cake, but still works)

  • 1 tsp baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger

  • 1/2 tsp allspice

  • 3/4 C packed brown sugar

  • 1/3 C vegetable oil or coconut oil (melted) (I use coconut oil)

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1 1/2 tsp unsulphured molasses (you can buy a tiny amount at Bulk Barn if you only need it for this recipe)

  • 1 C peeled & shredded apple

  • 3/4 C pecans, finely chopped (If you don’t want to splurge on the nuts, it still tastes great without it!)


  • 3 to 4 C powdered sugar

  • 1 C vegan butter, cubed and chilled (I use Earth Balance)

  • 1/4 C maple syrup

  • 1 tbsp soy milk (again, almond milk works fine)


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F

  2. Prepare 2 cake pans that are between 7" to 8" wide. You can also bake one at a time if you only have 1 pan. Generously oil or butter the pans and then dust with an even layer of flour to help easily remove the cake from the pans.

  3. In small mixing bowl whisk together the soy milk and apple cider vinegar and set aside to curdle for about 5 to 10 minutes.

  4. In a large mixing bowl sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, all-spice, ginger, and sea salt.

  5. Once the soy milk and vinegar has thickened add brown sugar, oil, molasses and vanilla extract and combine until smooth. 

  6. Add the liquid ingredients and shredded apple to the dry ingredients. Fold the batter until it’s just combined, ensuring not to over mix it. Small lumps in the batter are fine, but you shouldn't see pockets of dry ingredients that aren't incorporated.

  7. Divide the batter evenly between the cake pans. Spread out the batter so it’s even and to the edge of the pan.

  8. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes on the centre rack. Cake is done when a toothpick comes out mostly clean from the centre of the cake.

  9. Allow the cakes to cool on wire racks for 10 to 15 minutes before removing them from the cake pans. To remove the cakes, place the wire rack on top of the cake pan and flip it upside down. Let the cakes cool completely before frosting and assembling. 

  10. To make the frosting beat together in a food process, with a hand mixer or in stand mixer the chilled vegan butter with about 1/4 cup of powdered sugar. Only once combined and smooth add a bit more sugar and then add a little bit of maple syrup. Continue mixing portions of sugar and maple syrup along with the soy milk until a smooth and fluffy frosting is achieved. Be sure you don't add any liquid too soon in the process as it can sometimes start to separate the butter. 

  11. Place one cake bottom side down on your serving plate and spread frosting evenly with a spatula across the entire top of the cake. Place the other cake, bottom side down, on top of the frosting. Use remaining frosting to cover the entire cake.

  12. Using the palm of your hands gently press small handfuls of roughly chopped pecans along the entire side of the cake until well coated.