baking, Cakes, plant based, vegan

Vegan Jaffa Cakes!

So, The Great British Bake Off returned to our screens this week. I absolutely LOVE this show but because we don’t eat meat, eggs or dairy, they very rarely feature anything I can actually make for my family. So imagine my excitement when I read that there was a vegan baker competing this year! Unfortunately, it turns out he’s not vegan at all, but “enjoys vegan baking” so while we may yet see some good recipes, it’s still down to me to veganize everyday treats for my little girl. This week, for the technical challenge, the contestants were asked to make 12 jaffa cakes. Now, to be honest, if you’re not vegan, life is probably too short to make your own, but for those who can’t eat the familiar McVitie’s chocolate coated cakes (and they’re definitely cakes, not biscuits! ) I thought I’d have a go at making some quick and easy ones. I had all this stuff in the kitchen but you will probably need to buy some vegan jelly. I used this one but if you can find ready made orange jelly, all the better – or  – and this may sound a bit blasphemous -you could make a different flavour!

Vegan Jaffa Cakes
makes approx. 24.


(This recipe is based on a recipe from this book).

1 cup of soya (or other plant) milk
1 teaspoon of cider vinegar (or lemon / lime juice)
1 1/4 cups plain flour
2 tablespoons of cornflour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil (any mild flavoured one is fine. I use rapeseed but sunflower is also good).
3/4 cup caster sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 sachet of Hartley’s What’s Your Flavour? jelly
2 large oranges.

Chocolate coating
300g vegan dark chocolate


2 x 12-hole tart trays
Pyrex (or other heatproof) jug.
Cooling rack
Medium pyrex bowl
Swiss roll pan / shallow tray.

To make the sponges

  • Grease and flour two 12 hole tart trays. (If you don’t have tart trays, you could use muffin pans and only half fill each hole). 
  • Preheat the oven to 180 C/350 F/ gas mark 4.
  • Whisk together the milk and vinegar in a large bowl and leave to curdle for a few minutes. 
  • Add the oil, sugar and vanilla extract to the milk/vinegar mixture and stir thoroughly.
  • Sift in the all of the dry ingredients and mix until all the large lumps are gone. 
  • Pour into tart trays (each hole will be 1/2 – 3/4 full) and bake for about 15 mins or until a cocktail stick comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool in the tray for 5 – 10 mins then turn out onto a wire cooling rack. 

To make the jelly
  • Add the zest and juice of the oranges* to a large pyrex jug. 
  • Add 1 sachet of jelly crystals and make up to 500ml with boiling water. 

  • Allow flavour to develop for a few mins then pour liquid through a sieve into a non stick tray (or tray lined with cling film). You want the jelly to set about 3mm thick. I used a non stick swiss roll pan. 
  • Chill in the fridge until properly set.
*You could make this even easier by making up the jelly as instructed on the packet, with your favourite orange flavoured cordial/juice. 

Assembling the jaffa cakes. 
  • Once the jelly is set firmly and sponges have fully cooled, use a small cutter to cut 24 jelly discs and place one disc on top of each sponge. 
  • Melt the chocolate – I usually break it up and heat it in short bursts in the microwave. 
  • Let the chocolate cool so that it is still workable but not hot as it will melt the jelly and just slide straight off! If this happens, all is not lost! Just whack that one back in the fridge for a while, until the jelly and chocolate are both cool enough, and try again. 
  • Spread the chocolate over the top of the jelly and sponge – a teaspoon or 2 of chocolate per cake is about right. Take the chocolate right to the edges of the sponge with the back of the spoon. 
  • While the chocolate is still wet, make a criss cross pattern on the top of each cake with a cocktail stick. 
  • Allow to cool. 
Thanks for visiting my blog! If you like this recipe, you might also enjoy this!

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