Vegan Chocolate Cake

BY: ANDREA ALDEN — Napoleon's Digital Writer, Food Blogger, Food Photographer & Stylist

This recipe for Vegan Chocolate Cake on the barbecue will blow your mind. It is delightfully chocolatey and you wouldn’t know at all that there are no eggs or dairy in there. This inclusive recipe produces a moist cake with an open sponge and a brilliant hit of citrus. This simple cake recipe can be as fancy as you like. Dump it into a bundt, a baking tray, or make layers, whatever you are comfortable with. One thing you will know for sure is the satisfaction that you made an incredible dessert on the barbecue and everyone can enjoy it.


  • 2/3 cup (158 ml) soy milk
  • 1/3 cup (79 ml) orange juice
  • 1¾ cups (219 g) all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup (75 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1½ tsp. (7 g) baking powder
  • 1½ tsp. (7 g) baking soda
  • 2 tsp. (6 g) ground cinnamon
  • ¾ tbsp. (13 g) salt
  • 2 cups (402 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp.(10 ml) vanilla
  • 1/3 cup (80 ml) maple syrup
  • ½ cup (120 g) canola oil (flavor neutral oil)
  • 1¾ cups (15 oz/444 ml) can pumpkin puree
  • Zest of an orange


  1. Preheat the barbecue to 350°F (177°C), preparing for indirect heat by using the two outside burners set to medium-low.
  2. Grease your chosen pan(s) with your favorite combination of (vegan) spray, parchment paper, oil and cocoa powder. This recipe will fill a large bundt pan, a 9 by 13 baking pan/dish, a couple 9-inch round, or four 6-inch round cake pans.
  3. Pull out all of your ingredients.
  4. Whisk together the soy milk and orange juice and rest for 5 minutes, until thickened.
  5. In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients and whisk until homogenous.
  6. In a large bowl (this one will hold all of the ingredients in the end) combine the sugar, vanilla, syrup, and oil. Use a mixer to beat until smooth. Then add the pumpkin and half of the zest, beating again.
  7. Alternating between the two, add the flour and the soy mixture in several batches, with the final addition being the flour mixture. Mixing on low until just combined each time.
  8. Fill your desired cake pans and then place them into the barbecue over the unlit burners and close the lid. The smaller the cake pan, the less time it will take to bake. Check the small rounds at 15 minutes and bake up to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out with a couple moist crumbs. A rectangle will take up to 45 minutes, and the bundt will take up to 70. Keep checking and rotate the pans to ensure even baking on all sides.
  9. Remove the cake(s) from the grill and allow them to cool for at least half an hour before trying to turn them out and finish cooling.
  10. Ice with your favorite vegan icings – Duncan Hines and Pillsbury are two popular brands that have naturally vegan options. You can also make a ganache with dairy free dark chocolate, vanilla and a can of coconut milk, warmed up. Decorate with the remaining orange zest.

Quick and Easy Vegan Ganache

  • 1 tsp. (5 ml) vanilla
  • 16 oz (454 g) dark, dairy-free chocolate
  • 1 can (400 ml) coconut milk

Chop the chocolate into small, evenly-sized chunks. Gently warm the coconut milk over medium-low heat until steam is rising from the surface and tiny bubbles form around the edges of the pan. Add the warm coconut milk to the chocolate in a heat-safe bowl and let it sit for about 5 minutes. Add the vanilla and whisk gently until smooth. Allow it to cool a little and then drizzle over the cake.

Happy Grilling!


Fill cake pan(s)

Bake the cake using indirect heat

The size of cake pan will directly determine how long to bake your cake

Once fully cooled, ice the cake how you like

Easy vegan ganache really made this cake

The longer the cake rests, the more orange flavor comes through

Super rich and yummy