Who else is suffering from post-holiday weekend blues? It seems like after a long, lovely summer weekend of cookouts, mint chocolate chip cake, and just spending time outside, it’s a lot harder to get back into the swing of things for the week! We had a pretty great long weekend here (outside of a few car issues) celebrating birthdays, attending an outdoor music festival, and soaking in all the patio time we could. My husband and I have birthdays 1 day and two years apart, so we always partake in a joint celebration, sharing a layer cake and usually gathering together our friends at a bar nearby to toast the occasion with old fashioneds. This year our birthday cake was inspired by the dessert and cozy queen, Adrianna at A Cozy Kitchen. When I saw her post the recipe for a mint chocolate cake a few months back, I knew it was going to be our birthday cake this year. We’ve always gone for chocolate cakes, but this year I knew I wanted something a bit different. My husband is a sucker for anything mint chocolate flavored and I’m always looking for another way to incorporate chocolate into my desserts, so why not combine the two?
One of the best things about this cake is that it’s mint-y, without being overpowering and the cake base is simple, easy to bake, and stays moist for days on end. One of my biggest struggles with making the perfect vegan cakes is avoiding the dry cake layer issue, so I knew this chocolate cake recipe from Sarah at The Vanilla Bean Blog was going to be the perfect layer for our mint chocolate chip cake. Add a healthy amount of mint frosting with chocolate chips throughout, and you have yourself the perfect mid-summer birthday cake! Also, you can totally make this into a more fancy situation by cutting each layer into two layers and frosting them in between, but I honestly don’t have the patience for that and tend to get frustrated when my layers are never cut evenly.
I hope you had a lovely and relaxing 4th of July! I’m getting back to more of a regular posting schedule next week, crossing my fingers that a batch of coffee brownies turns out for me this weekend and brainstorming a few savory recipes to share to round out the summer months. Cheers to almost Friday!
For the chocolate cake:
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup olive oil (affiliate link)
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
For the mint frosting:
- 1 1/2 cups vegan butter
- 2 tablespoons almond milk
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
- 1/3 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
To make the cake:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 2- 9 inch round cake pans and line bottom with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond milk, water, olive oil (affiliate link), vanilla, and apple cider vinegar. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt on low until combined. With the mixer still running on low, slowly add in the almond milk mixture and continue to mix until combined.
- Pour the batter evenly into the two cake pans. Bake for 27-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Set aside to cool before frosting.
To make the frosting:
- In a food processor (affiliate link) or blender (affiliate link), pulse the chocolate chips until they are broken into small pieces. Alternatively, you can chop the chocolate chips finely, but I found the blender (affiliate link) works better. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat together the vegan butter and almond milk on medium until fluffy and combined, about 2 minutes. Add the powdered sugar and mix on low until combined. Add the peppermint extract and food coloring and mix on low until incorporated. Taste and if needed, add a bit more peppermint extract or food coloring to achieve the desired color. Add the chocolate chips and mix until just incorporated.
To assemble the cake:
- On a cake stand or large plate, place the first cake layer directly on the plate. Spread about 1/2-3/4 cup of frosting onto the layer and spread evenly. Place the second layer on top and frost the entire cake (sides and top) with the remainder of the frosting. Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.