Vegan Chai Spiced Cake

A delicious, fluffy vegan chai spiced cake that's infused with orange zest and masala chai. Served drizzled with an orange and cardamom glaze.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
4.96 from 21 votes
sliced loaf cake with icing, orange slices and star anise on cooling rack.

This chai spiced cake loaf is moist, flavoursome, zesty, fresh and sweet. Subtle notes of South Asian inspired masala chai is married with fresh zesty orange and fragrant cardamom to make this cake irresistible, whether or not you’re a lover of chai.

If you haven’t yet tried infusing your baking with tea then you’re in for a treat! Adding tea to both baked and no-bake desserts is one of my favourite ways to create delicious and interesting flavour combinations.

When we think of autumn, the most popular flavours that come to mind are pumpkin spice, apple pie and s’mores, but chai is also a wonderful wholesome flavour that can be enjoyed during fall and well into the colder months. Chai spices are probably the most underrated flavours of autumn in my opinion!

Chai spiced loaf cake with cardamom orange glaze

WHAT INGREDIENTS DO I NEED TO MAKE THIS CHAI SPICED CAKE?

  • Loose leaf tea: I use a masala chai blend of assam tea, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, orange peel, cardamom, juniper berries, liquorice root, dandelion root, black pepper, fennel and Angelica root. However, feel free to use your favourite blend of chai in this recipe.
  • Chia seeds: The seeds are mixed with water to become a “chia egg” and act as an egg replacer, binding the ingredients together.
  • Plant-based milk: I like to use soya milk but you can opt for any plant-based milk of your choice here. Oat milk or coconut milk work well. This becomes the base of the vegan “buttermilk” when mixed with the apple cider vinegar.
  • Maple syrup: My go-to liquid sweetener, together with the coconut sugar, it also deepens the flavour and compliments the spices in the cake.
  • Apple puree: As well as adding a touch of sweetness to the recipe, apple sauce helps this bread loaf stay moist after baking – and for several days afterwards!
  • Olive oil: The oil adds moisture and helps the loaf cake feel fluffy and springy to the touch.
  • Vanilla extract: This enhances and adds another layer of flavour to your cake. You can swap it out for half a teaspoon of vanilla bean paste or the seeds from half a vanilla pod if you have one to hand.
  • Orange zest: Grated orange zest adds a zingy freshness to this loaf which pairs really well with the spices in the cake.
  • All purpose flour: Regular plain flour works great for this cake loaf. You can however, substitute in a third of the flour for wholemeal if you would like to add some fibre in to the loaf.
  • Coconut sugar: This adds a deep caramel-like sweetness to the cake and is a great alternative to refined sugar.
  • Baking powder: The rising agent for this loaf cake.
  • Chai spices: Ground cardamom, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, allspice
  • Sea salt: I always add a pinch of salt to desserts, as it helps to bring out the individual flavours of ingredients as well as marrying them together.
  • Icing sugar: This makes the base for the icing/glaze for the cake.
  • Orange juice: Instead of using water/plant-based milk to make the glaze, we’re using orange juice to bring the flavours of this cake to life!
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Chai spiced loaf cake with cardamom orange glaze

LET’S MAKE A CHAI SPICED CAKE!

PREPARE THE EQUIPMENT

Ahead of preparing the ingredients for this recipe first preheat your oven to 175°C (350°F).

Get your loaf tin ready by lining the inside with some parchment paper. Allow the parchment paper to hang over the sides of the loaf pan to act as a sling.

PREPARE THE INGREDIENTS

Giving the tea at least 10-15 minutes to steep before using it in this recipe is the key for getting a flavoursome “chai” taste in your finished loaf. I like to let the tea cool before combining it with the rest of the ingredients as this really allows the flavours of the tea to come out.

Chia seeds are the egg replacer for this loaf. To prepare the “chia egg” simply mix the seeds with water and allow them to sit until they form a gel. 

To make the vegan “buttermilk” add the soya milk and apple cider vinegar to a small bowl, stir and allow to sit for 10 minutes.

Pass the cooled chai tea through a sieve to separate the liquid and add it to a large bowl along with the prepared chia egg, vegan buttermilk mixture and the remaining wet ingredients. Set aside.

To prepare the dry ingredients, first sieve the flour, baking powder and spices. Add all of the dry ingredients to a bowl separate from the wet ingredients and whisk to make sure everything is evenly mixed.

PREPARE THE CAKE BATTER

Next you’ll want to carefully fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Don’t just dump the entire bowl in with the wet ingredients at once though! Add the dry to the wet in increments whilst gently folding with your spatula in between.

Add the cake batter to the prepared loaf pan and bake for 50-55 mins. Check the cake is ready by inserting a knife or toothpick into it, which should come out clean.

Allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before transferring it to a cooling rack.

MAKE THE GLAZE

To make the glaze, simply add the icing sugar,  ground cardamom, orange and vanilla extract to a bowl and whisk until the ingredients form a smooth paste. 

To glaze the cake, place a sheet of parchment paper under the cooling rack to catch any icing. Pour some of the glaze on top of the cake, wait a minute and allow the glaze to soak into the cake. Add more or less layers of glaze depending on your taste. Slice and serve.

WHY MAKE THIS RECIPE

  • Makes the perfect cake loaf!
  • Plant-based and vegan-friendly
  • Flavours of delicious chai spice with zest orange
  • Fluffy texture
  • Full of fall vibes
  • Easy to make
  • Free from eggs, dairy and all other animal-derived additives
 

Chai spiced loaf cake with cardamom orange glaze

OTHER RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE

sliced loaf cake with icing, orange slices and star anise on cooling rack.

Vegan Chai Spiced Loaf Cake

4.96 from 21 votes
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A fluffy, delicious loaf cake that's infused with orange zest and masala chai. Served drizzled with a orange and cardamom glaze.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 55 mins
Total Time 1 hr 25 mins
Servings 10

EQUIPMENT

  • Loaf pan (20 x 20 x 8 cm)

INGREDIENTS

WET

  • 4 tbsp loose leaf masala chai tea or other chai tea of choice
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds *see notes
  • cup soya milk
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • ¾ cup apple puree
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp orange zest

DRY

  • 1 ¾ cups all purpose flour sieved
  • ½ cup coconut sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder sieved
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon sieved
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom sieved
  • ½ tsp ground ginger sieved
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg sieved
  • ¼ tsp allspice sieved
  • Pinch sea salt

GLAZE

  • 1 ½ cups icing sugar sieved
  • 2 tsp ground cardamom sieved
  • 4 tbsp orange juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Preheat your oven to 175°C (350°F).
  • Line an 8" loaf tin with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Add the loose leaf chai tea to a cup and add 6 tablespoons boiling water. Cover the cup and allow the tea to steep for 10-15 minutes.
  • Prepare the chia egg by mixing the chia seeds and 2 ½ tablespoons water and allowing them sit and soak for at least 5 minutes.
  • To make the vegan "buttermilk" add the soya milk and apple cider vinegar to a small bowl, stir and allow to sit for 10 minutes.
  • Pass the chai tea through a sieve to separate the liquid and add it to a large bowl along with the prepared chia egg, vegan buttermilk mixture and the remaining wet ingredients. Set aside.
  • Add all of the dry ingredients to a separate bowl and whisk to make sure everything is evenly mixed.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in approximately 3-4 increments, gently folding the mixture each time. Be careful not to over-mix, a few pockets of the flour are fine.
  • Add the cake batter to the prepared loaf pan and bake for 50-55 mins. Check the cake is ready by inserting a knife or toothpick into it, which should come out clean.
  • Allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before transferring it to a cooling rack.
  • Meanwhile, prepare the glaze by adding the ingredients to a bowl and whisking until smooth.
  • Once the cake has cooled, place a sheet of parchment paper under the cooling rack to catch any icing. Pour the glaze on top of the cake, add more or less depending on your taste. Slice and serve.
  • Store this cake in an airtight container at room temperature.

RECIPE NOTES

*Chia egg= mix 1 tbsp chia seeds and 2.5 tbsp water and sit for at least 5 minutes before stirring.
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6 thoughts on "Vegan Chai Spiced Cake"

  1. Hi! I would love to make this recipe…. but how could I substitute the coconut sugar? It’s not something I buy regularly. Thank you so much!!

  2. 5 stars
    Absolutely PERFECT. Mind blown how incredibly and utterly delicious and perfect this cake is. Thank you so so much