One of the most popular cakes I made back in my bakery days was the Chocolate Mint Cake.
I am more than thrilled about this vegan version because mint and chocolate is another one of my favorite combinations and now it is better than ever!
Chocolate cake and buttercream is really all you need!
But before we get started I want to talk for a minute about mint extract.
There are so many different options for buying mint extracts and they range by brands and also by prices.
I can get a small bottle for about $1 in my local Shop Rite
However I find that it will give my cakes and pastries more of a toothpaste taste than anything else, so I try to stay away from that low grade stuff whenever possible.
There is one more thing to consider and perhaps you just haven’t noticed
But there is Mint Extract and then there is Peppermint Extract and there are differences between the two
Mint Extract is most often a combination of Spearmint and Peppermint together.
Whereas Peppermint Extract is just that~ Peppermint.
The best way to describe the difference between the two is that Spearmint is the taste you get when you have a stick of Spearmint Gum; whereas Peppermint has a high level of menthol.
That menthol is going to give you a cool mouthfeel and will seem like it is stronger mint flavor because of that.
I find that using straight up peppermint extract in my recipes (especially those that have chocolate in them) give it a much better flavor than one of those “mint” extracts that have levels of spearmint which I am just not sure how to measure.
And nine times out of ten (OK 100% of the time) I am pairing mint with chocolate anyway, so the real deal Peppermint Extract is the winner in my book.
Also I am going to share a quick way to make your own mint extract with the abundance of mint that is growing in your yard!
So let’s first get to the making of the New Improved Vegan-ized Version of the Chocolate Mint Cake and then be sure to go all the way through to the end of this post for the homemade Mint Extract recipe!
CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL YOUTUBE VIDEO TUTORIAL FOR HOW TO MAKE THIS CAKE
Tips for success:
You will notice in the pictures of this cake, the ganache is cracking.
I have since altered my ganache recipe to include coconut oil which will add some much needed fat and prevent cracking.
I make note of it in the recipe linked below
For more mint recipes click the links below!
Vegan Thin Mint Girl Scout Cookies- Copy Cat Recipe
- For the Cake:
- All Purpose Flour 1½ cups + 3 Tablespoons (212g)
- Granulated Sugar ¾ cup (150g)
- Salt ½ teaspoon (3g)
- Baking Powder 1½ teaspoon (6g)
- Baking Soda 1½ teaspoons (6g)
- Coconut Oil 7 Tablespoons (98g)
- Boiling Water 1½ cup (360ml)
- Dutch Process or Natural Cocoa Powder ¾ cup (70g)
- Ground Flax Seeds 6 Tablespoons (48g)
- Hot Water 9 Tablespoons (135ml)
- Vanilla Extract 2 teaspoons (10ml)
- 1 Recipe Buttercream of your choice
- 1 Recipe Vegan Ganache
- Grease & parchment line 3-7" cake pans and preheat the oven to 350°F
- For the Cake:
- Combine ground flax seed with the 9Tbs of hot water and whisk smooth
- Let stand for at least 5 minutes or up to 30 minutes to thicken to a paste
- Combine the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder & soda together in a large mixing bowl
- Combine the coconut oil, 1½ cup boiling water and cocoa powder together and whisk smooth
- Add the cocoa mixture and the flax eggs mixture along with the vanilla extract to the flour mixture and whisk smooth
- Pour batter into 3 greased and parchment lined 7" cake pans and bake immediately in a preheated 350°F oven for approximately 25-30 minutes or until the layers are springy to the touch when you gently press the centers
- Cool cakes in the pan then flip them out onto a cooling rack to cool completely while you prepare the buttercream recipe of your choice
- Add the mint extract and the green food color (*if using) adjust the extract to your taste, so start with just 2 teaspoons and add more as desired
- Prepare the ganache and then decorate as shown in the video tutorial
For longer storage keep refrigerated wrapped to prevent drying for up to 1 week.
Homemade Mint Extract Recipe
So you can make as much or as little as you like depending on how much mint you have on hand.
The extract have to nature for at least 2 months though for best flavor so be sure to plan ahead!
- 2 Bunches of Mint
- 10 ounces Vodka or Vegetable Glycerin
- Remove the stems from the mint and discard.
- Rough chop the leaves, or crush them to release the oils
- Add to the jar and cover with vodka or vegetable glycerin
- Store in a cool, dark place for at least 2 months and up to 1 year
How can I convert this recipe to non-vegan?
Sure click here for the original recipe
I was wondering if this recipe will turn out if doubled? I was hoping to make 4 layers of 8 inch pans. Or should I make 2 different batches?
Also thanks for all your delicious recipes.
yes! You can double!
This new recipe looks amazing Gretchen! Just one question though, I noticed with your new vegan chocolate cake the ratio of cocoa powder to sugar is almost 1:2. Normally from other recipes on the internet I’ve found that the ratio is 1:4 at the very least. Is this chocoalte cake a more bitter recipe? Also can coconut oil be replaced by butter or vegetable oil? Thanks
Thanks! Yes this is my original “Black Chocolate cake” recipe I converted from my non vegan days and it is very dark, not really bitter (in my opinion) but many love it so you will have to see for yourself if you do also!
Yes to any oil will be fine
Oh my goD! I just made this cake (didn’t turn out as perfect as yours but it was close) and it is truly incredible. Literally would not even be able to tell that this is vegan. DELICIOUS THANK YOU GRETCHEN!
this looks deeelicious! Could I possibly convert this cake recipe to make a 6inch 4 layer cake? Thanks 🙂
yes sure just divide the batter evenly
Hey Gretchen! You’re work is an inspiration to me–thank you for all the research you do. I prefer to not use shortening in my recipes for frosting, can I substitute all vegan butter? If I can, are there any alternations that I need to make? Thank you again.
Hi Thanks! yes all vegan butter is fine, no changes
Hi Gretchen! Love your site and all the recipes look wonderful. I am a first time baker and tried to make this mint chocolate chip cake as my very first bake. The only thing is that I am not vegan, but rather lactose-intolerant, and so I used eggs rather than making the flax eggs, and I read that 1 tbsp of flax is the replacement for 1 egg, so I used 6 eggs. The cake, buttercream and ganache all tasted great, but the cake itself ended up very dense, fairly rubbery, and did not rise as much as expected. Still, I’m happy with the overall result for my first bake, and your flavors are spot on here.
Since you have experience with both non-vegan and vegan baking and have probably done a lot of experimentation with different ratios of just about everything… Would you suggest that if I tried again, I cut down to maybe 4 or 5 eggs so that it would rise better and have a bit more crumb and lightness?
Hi Josh thank you so much, YAY to first time baking but Booooo to your first experience with it! (Im sorry that happened) Let’s see if we can clear up some things:::
I will always advise to follow the recipes (not only mine but all recipes) as they were written. But if this is not possible, it is Sometimes a better idea to just use cake recipes that are already worked out to use eggs, if indeed you MUST use eggs.
This recipe is really great with the flax meal, and has been worked out specifically to use the flax. While yes, it is “a rule of thumb” as we convert eggs to flax eggs in vegan baking to use 1Tbs flax + 3Tbs liquid per egg- it doesn’t always work out to go backwards ad now try to re-convert the flax back into eggs. Too many other things have changed in the recipe like the liquid amounts (to compensate for the eggs not being there) the fat amounts change (to compensate for the fat in the yolk not being there) and sometimes even flour amounts have to change to make a perfect vegan cake.
This is a good example of where I used 6 Tbs flax meal, but that was not to say the original recipe had 6 eggs (I can assure you it did not). So again while the “rule of thumb” for replacing eggs in a recipe is 1Tbs per egg, as we (I) got into perfecting recipes to make them better than ever and even better than the Non -vegan counterpart, I gravitated away from the rule of thumb method and started tweaking recipes alot more.
All that being said- you can probably see right away why just adding eggs instead of flax caused this result, but again so many other things change (sometimes) in a recipe that is is hard to go backwards.
Hopefully you could one day try this recipe as written and see how great it really is!
If the problem is that you just don’t want to buy flax meal? I would suggest to try this Chocolate Cake recipe! it is so easy, no mixer required and doesn’t require ANYTHING weird that you may not have or want to buy (like flax!)
Hi Gretchen, thanks so much for the detailed response! I don’t have an aversion to buying different ingredients, I just didn’t account for the scientific side of the baking process and was too confident that my 10 seconds of egg/flax research would give me the desired result! I have purchased some flax meal and am ready to give it another shot. It’s really encouraging to see that you’ve crafted so many vegan recipes with such care and attention to detail. Because of the whole lactose thing I have been missing out on a lot of my favorite desserts for years, so with your help I’ll just have to make them myself! Thanks again!
I am a huge fan of your book and have tried making several recipes from your vegan blog. All of your cakes are so delicious!
Have you maybe tried this recipe with peppermint essential oil? I love using EOs in cooking and am definitely going to give it a try with this recipe ❤️🙌🏻
Best regards from Denmark,
Hi Anastasia yes I also use Peppermint oil!
Gretchen, i would like to buy a kitchenaid stand mixer…but there are different size mixing bolws…4.5 quart…5 quart…6 quart…which one do you use that will cover most recipes? they are very expensive as you know and i dont want to get the wrong size. thx a lot!
I prefer the 6Qt but the 5qt will be just fine too
Hi Gretchen! I love following on your recipes, I used to have the written down original recipe but I misplaced it and it seems none of the links to the original recipe are now working. Could you provide me the original recipe please? It’s the best I’ve ever tasted. Thank you so much
I just wrote to you asking for your non-vegan chocolate mint layer cake, I must apologize. A few years ago I went through two major spine surgeries and hadn’t watched recent videos due to Long hard years of recovery. I just found your video stating why you took your original website down, and I feel like such a dumb person for having asked for the original recipe. Please believe me, I didn’t mean to disrespect your beliefs by asking for the original recipe. Thank you so much! And again, I’m so sorry.
Hi Blanca! Please do not be sorry! How would you have known?? While that video was quite “reactive” of me – to the negative people commenting and emailing me with such vitriol, there were many many more people who were simply left in the dark as to where all my recipes had gone! So naturally those folks deserved an answer too, and while again the object of that particular video was indeed with much aggression on my part- I hoped to also convey in that same video to the beautiful kind understanding people (like YOU) the reasons for my taking down the old website after nearly 5 years for keeping it open.
So again I took no disrespect from you! Thank you for your understanding though! 🙂
I just made this cake for my boyfriend’s 41st birthday and it came out amazing. I added a party tiger cake topper I got from Etsy.
I loved the touch of the chocolate in the buttercream. I used all the mint after testing along the way. It was the perfect amount for me.
awesome! Thank you for your feedback!
First off thank you for all our amazing recipes! I just started baking and found out i have a knack for vegan baking all because of your recipes (have made most of your cupcake recipes thank you,). Since a newbie in baking, can you please advise which of your recipes can be made into cupcakes and how do I alter the measurements? I’m still finding my footing so I’m still hesitant on baking layered cakes since it is just me and my husband devouring them.
awesome thank you too! Basically ALL the cake recipes can be made into cupcakes with no changes to the recipes.
I typically fill cupcake liners 3/4 full and bake with a starting temperature of 375°F to help them get a good jump and then after 8-10 minutes of baking turn the temp down to 350 to bake the rest of the way which is usually just a total of 22-30 minutes depending on the recipe
Instead of 2 tsps. vanilla extract, should it say mint extract?
Hey there, I see where that looks confusing.
The vanilla extract in the chocolate cake is correct, since I only used mint extract in the buttercream recipe along with some green food coloring
You can of course use mint in the cake as well if you like, but I did not do that here
The vague instructions at step 10 is where I realize I need to be more clear, thank you!