Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake (grain-free, vegan)

Recently, Iris from The Daily Dietribe contacted me asking me if I’d like to make a grain-free version of a recipe she was working on for a reader. It also happened to be a vegan recipe. A vegan baked recipe. Grain-free and vegan and baked? That’s a challenge. But, I was willing to give it a go.

The majority of this recipe is really Iris’. To make it grain-free, I reduced the liquid a little, swapped out the grain-based flour, and amped up the vanilla. Mostly, I added extra vanilla because there’s a tipping point for me with psyllium husks. It seems to be at about 2 T. Anything beyond that and I can taste them, and I’m not a huge fan of the taste. But, I tried to sub in some flax seeds. Nope, it doesn’t work as a cake. A gooey pudding, yes. (And, honestly, the kiddo devoured that version.) But, it wasn’t a cake.

Truth be told, this final version still isn’t quite what I want. It will fall a little bit as it cools. But, once fully cool, it has a firm, tight cake crumb. (It really is better the second day. This photo was taken the first day and it was still a bit moist.)

If grains do not bother you, be sure to check out Iris’ version.

Grain-free and Vegan Coffee Cake

Grain-free and Vegan Coffee Cake

Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake

6 tablespoons (84 g) Earth Balance
2 heaping teaspoons cinnamon (go wild if you like cinnamon)
1/2 cup dairy-free chocolate chips (Enjoy Life) (Or sub in 2 T cocoa nibs for a refined sugar free version)
1 cup coconut palm sugar (granulated and brown sugar both also work)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional – but really better with them)

3 tablespoons whole pysllium husks
1 cup non-dairy milk
2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 T pure vanilla extract
2/3 cup (85 g) coconut flour
2/3 cup (94 g) tapioca or arrowroot starch
1 packed cup (128 g) blanched almond flour
3/4 cup coconut palm sugar (granulated cane sugar works, too)
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted


1. Prepare filling in a small bowl and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease/flour a tube pan.

2. Mix psyllium, milk, applesauce, apple cider vinegar, and vanilla extract in a food processor.

3. Stir together flours/starches, sugar, baking soda and baking powder in a medium sized bowl. Pour into wet mixture and process until well mixed.

4. Add in coconut oil and process until completely mixed.

5. Pat half of batter into tube pan (it will be sticky), followed by half of topping. Repeat. Bake for 50 minutes. Allow to cool completely before taking out of pan. (Really. Seriously. You have to wait. Make it the night before if you want it for breakfast the next day.)

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16 Responses to Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake (grain-free, vegan)

  1. says:

    This looks delicious.

    Do you have a grain-, gluten, sugar, dairy, & egg-free recipe for pancakes? I am craving them 🙂

  2. Kathryn says:

    Looks amazing! It seems I’m the only one not baking with psyllium husks these days. May have to play with this one as we can’t do cinnamon or apples but it looks so good. 🙂

    • Deanna says:

      You could swap out the applesauce with coconut yogurt and use a little nutmeg/allspice/ginger for the spicing, I’m pretty sure. Or, just leave out the spicing entirely.

  3. Iris says:

    Yum! Go Deanna! I think that photo looks amazing! Almost like a bread pudding cake…and personally I like my baked goods more moist anyway.

  4. Johnna says:

    This looks amazing! Can’t wait to give it a try. Beautiful photo!

  5. Sarah says:

    What a beautifully moist looking cake, I always like my cakes extra moist instead of a texture that is more like a sponge than a sponge cake!

    • Deanna says:

      Thanks. I’m not a huge traditional cake fan, but moist and dense, that I can do. I think it’s because it’s 1 step away from being a cookie. 🙂

  6. letitia says:

    This looks great! ❤

  7. Pingback: Classic Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake Goes Grain Free, Vegan, and Good! | All Gluten-Free Desserts...All the Time

  8. Pingback: Gluten-Free Coffee Cake Recipes for National Coffee Cake Day! | All Gluten-Free Desserts...All the Time

  9. I should have read this post BEFORE I tried to convert a 6 egg honey cake to using flax and water as eggs… AWFUL.. tried all kinds of combo and can’t seem to get one that works.. From now on, I’m just looking for tried and true vegan cake recipes .. hopefully like your coffee cake. It looks fabulous.

    • Deanna says:

      Oh ouch! I don’t think I’ve ever had much luck with converting anything more than 2 or _maybe_ 3 egg recipes to vegan. It’s just too much of a jump.

  10. Libbie says:

    Made your cake for 4th of July breakfast. It was wonderful! Very very tasty and moist. I left the chocolate chips out because I’m not used to the concept of them being in coffee cake. Thanks so much for the recipe! I know how hard to make coconut flour goods without eggs and you totally succeeded!

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