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The Best Vegan Lemon Olive Oil Cake

Vegan Lemon Olive Oil Cake

  • Author: Michelle Cehn
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 9-inch cake 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Stove
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Diet: Vegan


This light and fluffy sponge-like cake is absolutely delicious and oh-so-easy to make—no eggs necessary. It’s hands-down the best vegan lemon olive oil cake recipe I’ve ever made! 


  • 1 ¾ cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons of baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • ½ cup of olive oil (we used Bono Olive Oil)
  • ½ cup of applesauce
  • 1 large ripe banana, mashed completely with a potato masher
  • ½ cup of fresh squeezed Meyer lemon juice
  • 3 teaspoons of fresh lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
  • powdered sugar, for dusting


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together until evenly incorporated. 
  3. In a large bowl add the sugar, olive oil, and applesauce. Using a hand mixer, mix on high for 2 minutes. Add in the mashed banana and whip to combine. Add in the lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla extract and mix with a spoon just until combined. 
  4. Slowly add the flower mixture into the wet mixture and stir with a spoon just until combined. Do not overmix.
  5. Scoop the batter into a greased 9″ cake pan and tap it roughly on a hard surface to remove any pockets of air.
  6. Bake for 35 minutes, or until golden on top and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. 
  7. Remove from oven and allow to cool fully in the pan before gently removing and plating and dusting the top generously with powdered sugar. If desired, decorate the top with a few thin slices of lemon that have been patted dry before adding to the top, and a sprig of rosemary. 

Keywords: vegan, vegetarian, dessert, cake, Italian, olive oil, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free, baking, spring, holiday