Vegan Cranberry Red Velvet Cake with Dairy-Free Cream Cheese Frosting
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 10 - 14 Servings
Vegan Cranberry Red Velvet Cake
  • 2½ cups cranberries, fresh or frozen
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 small steamed beet (about ¼ cup finely diced)
  • ⅔ cup olive oil
  • ⅔ cup plain dairy-free milk alternative
  • ¼ cup beet juice
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2⅓ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup natural cocoa powder*
  • 1½ teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 2 (8-ounce) packages dairy-free cream cheese alternative
  • 1 cup dairy-free margarine (such as Earth Balance), at room temperature
  • 5 cups powdered confectioner's sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch salt
  1. To prepare the cake, preheat your oven to 350ºF and lightly grease and flour two 8-inch round cake pans.
  2. Combine the cranberries, brown sugar, and lemon juice in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir periodically and allow the mixture to stew for 10 -15 minutes, roughly mashing the cranberries against the side of the pan to help thicken the mixture. Once it reaches a jammy consistency, thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, turn off the heat and let cool for at least 15 minutes.
  3. In the meantime, toss the cooked beet, oil, milk alternative, beet juice, vanilla, and vinegar into your blender and puree on high speed. Blend until completely smooth, pausing to scrape down the sides of the canister if needed.
  4. In a separate large bowl, whisk together the flour, granulated sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Make sure that all of the dry goods are equally distributed within the bowl before adding in all of the blended wet ingredients along with the stewed cranberries. Stir with a large spatula to bring everything together into a fairly smooth batter, being careful not to over-mix. A few remaining lumps are just fine.
  5. Distribute the batter equally between the two prepared cake pans and slide them gently into your oven. Tent the pans loosely with foil to prevent the tops from browning, and bake 28 - 32 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the centers pulls out cleanly. Let cool completely before frosting.
  6. To prepare the frosting, simply combine the vegan cream cheese and margarine in your stand mixer with the whisk attachment installed. Beat the two together thoroughly until smooth and homogenous before adding in half of the confectioner's sugar with the vanilla and salt. Start the mixer on a low speed to incorporate the sugar, pausing to scrape down the sides of the bowl with your spatula. Add in the remaining sugar in the same fashion, giving the mixer plenty of time to blend it in. Turn up the speed to high and whip the frosting for a full 5 - 10 minutes, until light and fluffy. Apply to your cake as desired.
  7. Because this frosting is fairly soft, it's advisable to store the finished cake in the fridge just prior to serving if you want to make it in advance.
*Using natural cocoa is VERY important for maintaining color integrity; do not use dutch-processed cocoa powder in this recipe if you want the crumb to remain red.
Recipe by Go Dairy Free at