Vegan lamingtons which are easy to make, fluffy, addictive and uses only common pantry staples. Enjoyed by vegans and non-vegans alike!
What are lamingtons?
Lamingtons are a very popular Australian snack or dessert where a fluffy vanilla sponge cake is covered in chocolate and dried coconut. Sometimes the lamington is filled with jam or cream. Lamingtons are often found in corner bakeries, supermarkets and enjoyed at social events such as barbeques!
However, lamingtons are also found in New Zealand (and it’s contested that Kiwis invented them) and the UK!
Are lamingtons vegan?
Normally, lamingtons are not vegan. The vanilla sponge conventionally has eggs, butter and dairy milk. The chocolate coating is often made with dairy chocolate which has milk solids.
However, it’s very easy to veganise the lamington! I used my classic vegan vanilla cake recipe (adapted from my cookbook). Instead of the conventional chocolate icing sugar frosting, I covered the lamingtons in a chocolate ganache made with dark chocolate and coconut cream. This lends a thicker and simply more delicious coating!
And of course, each of these lamingtons are classicly dipped in dessicated coconut.
Ingredients needed to make vegan lamingtons
Since lamingtons are a VERY ‘mainstream’ dessert, I chose ingredients that are easily accessible, affordable and found in supermarkets. These lamingtons have no vegan butter. Instead, I used oil in the sponge as it makes them more moist.
For the vanilla sponge, we need:
- self-raising flour
- plant-based milk such as soy, almond or coconut
- liquid vegetable oil or melted vegan butter
- apple cider vinegar (or vinegar of choice)
- baking powder
- vanilla extract + pinch of salt
And we’ll be decorating each vegan lamington using these ingredients:
- raspberry jam
- vegan-friendly chocolate
- coconut cream
- dessicated coconut
How to prepare the sponge for vegan lamingtons
Making the sponge is super easy. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix. Add the wet ingredients and mix til combined. Bake til golden!
I’d HIGHLY recommend making the sponge the day before then chilling it overnight. Chilled cakes are *always* easier to handle than fresh cakes.
I baked my cakes in an extra large sheet tin so my sponge was quite thin. However, if you have a smaller tin, feel free to slice your cake horizontally to create thinner layers.
For ease, I simply cut my thin sponge into 2 layers. I generously spread raspberry jam on one half then sandwiched it with the other half.
I wanted small lamingtons so I cut 16 squares from this slab. However, this made the lamingtons quite tall so if you make them for a crowd, I’d recommend cutting 12 lamingtons then cutting them diagonally.
Tips for coating the vegan lamingtons
I’ll be honest – this part can be a little messy so don’t do it when you’re in a rush or bad mood!
For dipping the sponge in chocolate, I’d recommend using a fork as that allows excess chocolate to drip away. Also, definitely scrape off the excess chocolate on the edge of the bowl. This recipe includes a little more chocolate than you need as it’s easier to dip each lamington when you have more chocolate.
When you coat the sponge in coconut, the key is to avoid touching the wet chocolate with your fingers otherwise most of the coating will end up on your hands rather than the cake. What I do is:
- Place the chocolate covered cake in the coconut
- Liberally sprinkle some excess coconut onto the wet sides of the cake. This acts as an initial barrier between the chocolate and your fingers.
- Lightly grab the vegan lamington, turn and toss it on the coconut until you’re happy with it. Voila!
These are some substitions you can make and some that you absolutely cannot!
- Replace cane sugar for coconut or rapadura sugar. The latter two sugars are great for baking as they still make fluffy sponges. However, those sugars will make your sponge brown and caramel in taste.
- Do not replace the liquid oil for coconut oil unless you live in a hot climate. Coconut oil is very solid at room temperature so it will make the sponge dense.
- I do not recommend using pre-made gluten-free flour blends for this recipe (or any recipe ever). The gf flour blends (in Australia at least) tend to make sponge cakes gummy, chewy and dense.
- I haven’t tried a blend of gluten free flours for this exact recipe but if you feel like experimenting, I’d recommend using a blend of almond meal, white rice flour and the smallest amount of tapioca starch.
Check out my other vegan Australian recipes:
- Decadent raw vegan lamington bliss balls
- Vegan Lamington Tart
- Vegan Cherry Ripe Cups
- Raw Vegan Lamingtons with cream and jam
- 2 1/2 cups (310g) self-raising flour*
- 1 1/4 cups (250g) cane sugar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- Pinch of any good-quality salt
- 1 1/2 cups (375mL) plant-based milk, such as almond, soy or coconut
- 1/2 cup (125mL) light-tasting vegetable oil, such as sunflower or rapeseed, or melted vegan butter
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar, or white vinegar
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
To make the cake:
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Line large baking tin with baking paper. I used a 33 cm x 23 cm (13 in x 9 in ) cake tin.
- Add all the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, salt) to a large mixing bowl. Mix until there are no big lumps. Add all the wet ingredients (milk, oil ACV, vanilla) to the bowl and mix until smooth.
- Pour the cake batter into the baking tin. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer can be inserted into each cake and it comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool in the tin.
- Cover the cake and chill it in the fridge for at least 2 hours or in the freezer for 1 hour. You can also chill the cake overnight.**
To make the ganache coating (after your cake has chilled):
- Add the chocolate and coconut cream to a small saucepan or double boiler over medium heat. Melt and mix the ganache until it's smooth. Set aside to cool slightly.
To assemble the lamingtons:
- If your slab of cake is thick, slice it in half horizontally with a serrated knife. Or if your cake is thin, slice it in half vertically (see pictures above).
- Spread the jam liberally on half of the cake and sandwich it with the other half. Slice the cake into 12-16 squares.
- Place your chocolate ganache in a shallow bowl and the dessicated coconut in another.
- Using a fork, fully coat a piece of cake in the ganache. Allow the excess chocolate to drip off. Then quickly toss the cake in the coconut until it's fully coated. Set aside and repeat for the remaining pieces of cake. Store the lamingtons in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to serve.
- The lamingtons can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.
Please leave a comment below if you made this recipe, have any questions or thoughts! Your comment will help other readers and Rainbow Nourishments.