Easy Vegan Christmas Cake with Olive Oil and Orange

This easy vegan Christmas cake with olive oil and orange is spiced, zesty and full of fruit. Like all my favourite recipes it’s easy to tweak and create a flavour profile you prefer. But still, it is easy to make, one bowl, mix, pour and bake…it’s really that simple.

This vegan Christmas cake can be frozen and defrosted without affecting its texture or taste, so it’s ideal for making ahead. Bake a single family size one or mini-cakes for gifts or hampers. I have used a a bundt tin, while not traditional, a bundt is the shape of a wreath, perfect for a Christmas centre piece or cute little individual portions.

Easy Vegan Christmas Cake with Olive Oil and Orange

Ingredients

  • 1kg Fruit cake mix – or mix of dried fruits of choice
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • zest of an orange or two
  • 1 cup orange juice or water
  • 2 tbsp brandy or water

Method

In a pot with the lid on, bring all the above ingredients to the boil, reduce the heat and gently simmer for 15 minutes and cool before adding list below.

  • 1 tin 320ml tin coconut or oat condensed milk
  • 1/3 cup liquid – could be water, brandy, fruit juice or a mix
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 cups flour

Stir the condensed milk into the fruit cooled mix, then sieve in the flour and baking powder and fold through until the flour is combined.

Taste. This may not be a normal step in cake baking, but you can decide if you want more spice or zest and add it before baking.

Pour into a lined cake tin or portion into small lined or greased tins for baking.

Bake a large cake AT 120ºC fan bake for 2-2 ½ hours. For small tins, check after 30 minutes, continue baking until a skewer comes out clean. Cool before decorating.

Decorating your Vegan Christmas Cake

Vegan Christmas with different types of decorations

To decorate or not – naked or iced? It’s really a matter of preference so the choice is yours. A simple drizzle is perfect for a bundt cake, or just a dusting of icing sugar.

If you prefer a classic finish, there’s an egg-free royal icing recipe too. For the marzipan layer I recommend this vegan marzipan recipe by Vegan Dessert Queen Fran Costigan.

Top or wrap with dried fruit and trim with a bow.

A Simple Icing Drizzle
  • 1/3 cup icing sugar
  • 1-2 tsp water

In a bowl add icing sugar and start a teaspoon of liquid and whisk into a paste, add enough to create an icing the thickness you want. You could use juice, add orange zest or vanilla essence. Scale up the measurements for larger cakes.

Egg-Free Royal Icing
  • 60ml  aquafaba
  • 250g icing sugar, plus extra if needed  
  • 1 tsp vegetable glycerine
  • squeeze of lemon juice

Sieve the icing sugar.

Use a stand mixer or electric whisk and whisk the aquafaba until foamy, add the icing sugar, a spoon at a time, then mix for 10 more minutes, until the sugar is incorporated and the mixture is thick and glossy. 

Add the glycerine and a squeeze of lemon juice keep whisking until soft peaks are a pipeable consistency, if not add more icing sugar. 

Transfer to a piping bag or store in an airtight container until needed, whip the icing again before using.

Food allergens that need to be clearly identified on food packaging differ around the world. This recipe is free-from egg, dairy, sesame, soy, peanut and treenuts – but does contain coconut condensed milk. Should coconut need to be avoided, an oat condensed milk may be available. Should you need an allergy friendly gluten free bake, you might like to bake a Panforte or try Free-From Florentines for a tasty Christmas treat.

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