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vegan coffee cake with swiss meringue buttercream on marble cake stand.

Vegan Coffee Walnut Cake

Delicious fluffy vegan coffee walnut cake with eggless espresso brown sugar Swiss meringue buttercream. Perfect for birthdays, other special occasions, or simply served with a cup of coffee.
Course Dessert
Cuisine British
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 229kcal


  • 100 g walnuts plus extra for garnish
  • 250 g plain flour sifted
  • 220 g soft light brown sugar
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder sifted
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 15 g instant coffee
  • 295 ml soy milk or other non-dairy milk
  • 15 ml apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • 112 g rapeseed oil/sunflower oil or other neutral oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract



  • Preheat your oven to 175°C (350°F). Line two 6" cake tins with parchment paper and set aside. Add the walnuts to your food processor and blitz until finely ground. Alternatively, you can use a knife to chop them finely.
  • Mix the instant coffee with a ¼ cup of boiling water and set it aside to cool for 5 minutes. In a glass, mix together the soy milk and apple cider vinegar and allow to sit for 5 minutes. To a large bowl add the coffee, soy milk mixture, rapeseed oil, and vanilla extract and whisk to combine.
  • Add the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and walnuts to the bowl with the wet ingredients, gently folding the mixture each time. Be careful not to over-mix, a few pockets of the flour are fine.
  • Add the cake batter to the prepared cake tins and bake for 40-45 mins. Check the cake is ready by inserting a knife or toothpick into it, which should come out clean.
  • Allow the cakes to cool in the pans for about 20 minutes before carefully transferring them out onto a cooling rack. Allow them to fully cool before transferring them to the fridge in an airtight container until ready to use.
  • To assemble the cakes, first, use a serrated knife to cut off the domes if there are any. Note: you can leave the dome on the top piece if preferred.
  • Pipe some buttercream on one of the cakes and place the second cake on top. Coat the entire cake with buttercream or just frost the top of the cake as preferred.


  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up 4-5 days. Remove from the fridge about an hour before serving to allow the cake and frosting to soften a little. This cake tastes best when served fresh. You can however freeze any leftover cake in an airtight container to serve another time. 


  • Nutrition calculation is based on one serving without buttercream.
  • A sparse amount of coffee beans on top of the cake will add a little crunch as well as a beautiful garnish. 
  • If you're a fan of all things mocha a few dark chocolate shavings would be amazing on top of this cake.
  • Another way to decorate this coffee walnut layer cake would be to add chopped walnuts on top. You could also stick them to the sides of the cake if you'd like!

Freezing instructions



Calories: 229kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Sodium: 150mg | Potassium: 140mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 98IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 97mg | Iron: 1mg