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A slice of vegan olive oil cake topped with powdered sugar glaze held on a spatula over the whole cake below it.

Vegan Olive Oil Cake

  • Author: Deryn Macey
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 35 mins
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 8
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan


A light, moist and tender vegan olive oil cake that’s perfect for everyday and special occasions. Serve with the lemon glaze, a dusting of powdered sugar or plain topped with whipped cream and fresh raspberries.


For the Olive Oil Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose (white) flour (260 g)
  • ½ cup unsweetened applesauce (118 g)
  • ¾ cup white granulated sugar (150 g)
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil (118 g)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt 

For the Glaze (Optional)

  • 1 ½ cups powdered sugar (287 g)
  • ¼ cup lemon juice (59 g)


  1. Prepare: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease or spray the bottom of a 9-inch can pan with non-stick cooking spray then line with parchment paper. You can also use a springform pan or if you don’t have a round pan, an 8 or 9-inch square pan.
  2. Cream Oil & Sugar: In a large mixing bowl, use a hand mixer to combine the sugar and olive oil until homogenous and fluffy. If you don’t have a hand-mixer, you can use a fork or metal whisk to vigorously mix to combine.
  3. Add Applesauce & Vanilla: Whisk in the applesauce and vanilla until the ingredients are fully incorporated into the sugar mixture.
  4. Add Dry Ingredients: Gently fold in the flour, salt, and baking powder until there are no dry clumps of flour remaining in the batter. Once the dry ingredients are incorporated, stop mixing the batter.
  5. Add Batter to Pan: Pour the mixture into the prepared cake pan and bake for 35 minutes, or until a toothpick can be cleanly removed from the center of the cake. Let the cake cool for 10 minutes in the pan then invert the cake into your hand or onto a wire cooling rack, and remove the parchment paper. When you’re ready, transfer the cake to a serving platter or stand.
  6. Prepare Glaze: Prepare the lemon glaze by whisking together the lemon juice and powdered sugar until smooth and runny.
  7. Ice Cake: Spoon the glaze over the cake, serve, and enjoy!


  • You can store this cake in the fridge or on the counter in an airtight for up to one week. After that, it will become a bit too dry. I do not recommend storing this cake in the freezer as it will change the cake’s texture after it thaws in the fridge.
  • For extra lemony flavour, you can add up to 1 tbsp of lemon zest. You can also add 1-2 tsp lemon zest or orange zest to the cake batter. If using zest, be sure to only use the outermost peel and avoid the bitter white pith.
  • The lemon glaze is optional. As an alternative, dust the top of the cake with powdered sugar or serve plain with fresh berries or other fruit, whipped cream or ice cream.
  • Nutrition facts include the glaze. Without the glaze, each slice of cake is 317 calories per slice with 14g F/45g C/3g P.


  • Serving Size: 1 slice
  • Calories: 406
  • Sugar: 42 g
  • Sodium: 295 mg
  • Fat: 14 g
  • Carbohydrates: 68 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Protein: 3 g

Keywords: vegan olive oil cake