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Vegan Zebra Cake

Rate Vegan Zebra Cake

4 star  Avg. rating 4 from 76 votes.

Recipe Information

Category: Cakes
Recipe Created By: Kathy Przywara

Vegan Zebra Cake

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1 1/2 cups flour (see below for gluten free)
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup milk or milk alternative
1/3 cup oil
1 Tbsp vinegar
1 tsp vanilla (optional)
1 1/2 - 2 Tbsp cocoa powder


Preheat oven to 350 °F. Prepare an 8" or 9" cake pan. I use Cake Release and parchment, but you can also grease well and flour your pan.

Combine flour, sugar, salt and baking soda in a large mixing bowl. Whisk to combine. In a smaller bowl, combine the milk alternative, vinegar, oil, and vanilla. Pour the wet works over the dry works. Whisk gently until you have a smooth batter. Do not beat or overmix.

Pour half of the batter into another bowl - I use the bowl I had the wet works in. Add the cocoa powder to one half of the batter and mix well.

Here is where the zebra stripes get formed and technique is important. I use a #16 disher (like an ice cream scoop with a sweeper) for this which holds 4oz. You can use a 1/4 c measure. When using a disher, I was able to use the same one for both batters, but I don't recommend that if using a measuring cup unless you scrape it each time. Otherwise it will just mix the batters by the end.

Starting with the white batter, put one disher of batter into the center of the prepared pan. Let the batter spread naturally, don't try to move the pan around to get it to flow. Put one disher of chocolate batter in the middle of the white batter. Again, just let it flow naturally. Don't wait a long time between each addition - just keep going with an even rhythm. Continue in this manner until all of the batter is used.

Bake @ 350 °F for 25-30 min or until it tests done. All ovens are a little different, so go by doneness check and not time. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a rack for 15 min. Remove from pan and allow to cool completely on a rack. Transfer to serving plate.

You can frost this if you wish, but it's pretty and delish all on it's own.


This is a moist cake that is not overly sweet. It's not super chocolately either. It's perfect with a cup of tea or coffee or a casual dessert. My kids love it as a snack cake after school - they walk into the house that smells like cake baking and just can't wait for a slice!

Copyright © 2009 Kathy Przywara. All rights reserved. The copyright of this recipe is retained by the original recipe creator. If you would like to publish this recipe elsewhere in print or online, please contact us to find out how to obtain permission.


I use balsamic vinegar, but any vinegar will work. The balsamic makes the vanilla a little darker than a light colored vinegar would.

If you use vanilla flavored milk alternative, you can omit the vanilla if you wish. If you don't have a safe vanilla, it can be omitted altogether.

For gluten free:

1 1/4 c (145g) Kathy P's brown rice flour mix
1/4 c (32 g) cornstarch

Gluten: Gluten is a protein found in specific grains (wheat, spelt, kamut, barley, rye). Other grains are naturally gluten-free but may have cross-contact with gluten-containing grains. Look for certified gluten-free products if you need to avoid gluten. Find out more about wheat and gluten substitutions.

Milk and Soy Substitutions: Alternative dairy-free milk beverages and products will work in most recipes. Find out more about milk substitutions and soy substitutions.

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I use Cake Release to prep my pan. It's an all in one grease and flour prep for cake pans.

I use Cake Release to prep my pan. It's an all in one grease and flour prep for cake pans.

I love this with this frosting:

I use Cake Release to prep my pan. It's an all in one grease and flour prep for cake pans.

Melanie Carver 3/11/2015 1:36:07 PM

Yum! I used the technique you shared in this recipe for making "zebra stripes", but I used your gluten-free wacky cake recipe to make it. It worked great!

Pretty good made a demo today sons bday is aa few months away but new to cooking without eggs and milk I think next try will use a different milk product the one I used left a bit of a taste to me

Was in the oven for 40 minutes and still so uncooked it wobbled. Followed the recipe to a T. No substitutes made at all. How frustrating. What a waste of time and ingredients

Kathy P - KFA Admin 1/24/2018 2:46:56 PM

Leanne - I'm sorry the recipe didn't work for you. One recommendation is to check your oven temperature. Egg-free recipes tend to me more "finicky" about the oven temperature. You can get an inexpensive oven thermometer to use to check if the actual temp matches the dial setting.

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