Vegan Chocolate Lava Cakes

Vegan Molten Lava Cakes | minimalistbaker.comOK, here’s what you need to do. Call your favorite person – your best friend, your spouse, your secret crush, your cute neighbor, your therapist, whoever – and tell them to come over to your house for a delicious vegan treat. LAVA CAKES. Hubba hubba.

Beet PureeIf you haven’t caught on yet, my new favorite phrase is “hubba hubba.” But hey! Can I really help it? Look at the goodness that is these healthy, beet-powered chocolate lava cakes! Valentine’s Day is gonna rock so hard this year, single or not.

These lava cakes were initially inspired by a version I tried in Bali last summer. But I have to be honest. The one I tried at a practically 5-star restaurant wasn’t that good! I immediately thought “I can do this better.” And, I did! Vegan and butter-free style. Plus, coconut whipped cream > dairy whipped cream.

Mini Vegan Chocolate CakesThe ingredients for these cakes are simple:

Pureed beets
Cocoa Powder
Coconut oil
Cane sugar
Semisweet chocolate
Unbleached flour

A few other basic baking essentials round out the rest of the ingredients. And if you don’t have beets you can sub applesauce. The best part? These little gems come together in about 30 minutes (post beet-roasting) and require one bowl! Score.

Vegan Chocolate Lava Cakes | MINIMALISTBAKER.COM

Vegan Lava Cakes for 2! | #vegan #valentinesdayWhat do they taste like?

Cakey on the outside
Mega moist in the middle
Perfect with coconut whipped cream or ice cream
Begging to be shared with a friend or significant other

If you share this with anyone they will be your best friend for your life – there’s just no getting around it.

Vegan Chocolate Lava Cakes! minimalistbaker.comGood news! These cakes are the first of SEVEN vegan Valentine’s Day recipes I have in the works.

Expect some indulgent, some raw, some heatlhy, some chocolatey, some hot pink! I listened to your votes on Facebook and have come up with quite a varied list. BE STOKED! And in the meantime, eat cake. Cheers!

Vegan Chocolate Cake | Mini lava cakes for 2 with a fudgy middle | A surprise ingredient gives them a gorgeous hue and tons of nutrients |

Vegan Chocolate Lava Cakes | 2 little cakes perfect for a special occasion | #vegan #dessert #chocolate

4.8 from 13 reviews
Vegan Chocolate Lava Cakes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Easy, one bowl vegan chocolate lava cakes with beets, cocoa powder and coconut oil. Super foods packed into a super luscious dessert for two.
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Vegan
Serves: 2
  • scant 1/4 cup beet puree (or sub unsweetened apple sauce)
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk + 1/2 tsp vinegar
 or lemon juice
  • 2.5 Tbsp organic cane sugar (or sub granulated sugar)
  • 1 Tbsp melted coconut oil or Earth Balance
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • pinch sea salt
  • 2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup + 1/2 Tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp semisweet chocolate chips, melted
  • For topping/middle: 2 squares quality vegan dark chocolate + coconut whipped cream
  1. See this post for instructions on roasting a beet. Otherwise, you could sub another fruit puree, such as butternut squash or applesauce (adjusting added sugar depending on fruit's sweetness).
  2. Butter two standard size muffin tins with dairy-free butter and coat with cocoa powder - shake out excess. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  3. Add the almond milk and vinegar to a small mixing bowl and mix. Let set for a few minutes to activate.
  4. Add the sugar, oil, vanilla, and beet puree and beat until foamy. Then add cocoa powder, flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix until no large lumps remain.
  5. Lastly, add the melted semisweet chocolate and mix once more.
  6. Divide the batter evenly between the two muffin tins - it should come up about to the top, which is OK. Break up one square of the dark chocolate and push it down into the centers of the cakes. Cover with batter using a spoon. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until the edges have pulled away slightly and the top no longer appears wet. It's OK if it's a little fudgy but you definitely don't want underdone cake.
  7. Let rest in the pan for 4-5 minutes before removing. Then gently loosen the edges with a butter knife and top with a cutting board or plate and carefully invert. Gently transfer to serving plates. Immediately top each cake with the remaining square of vegan dark chocolate (for extra gooey-ness - optional) and serve with coconut whipped cream. Dig in.
  8. Other garnishes might include a dusting of cocoa powder, powdered sugar, fresh berries, fresh mint or edible flowers.
* Nutrition information is a rough estimate for 1 cake topped with extra chocolate and coconut whipped cream.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 cake Calories: 353 Fat: 16 g Saturated fat: 12 g Carbohydrates: 51 g Sugar: 31 g Sodium: 190 mg Fiber: 4 g Protein: 4 g


danaHi, I'm Dana! I am a food stylist, photographer, and author of the Food Photography School and the 31 Meals Cookbook.

Find me on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

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Talk About It

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  1. says

    Lava cakes = my absolute weakness when the waitress/waiter asks “Do you want dessert?” and I am stuffed to the brim. These look so awesome and I love the coconut whipped cream!

  2. Katherine Oberwager says

    These look divine and I can’t believe they are so healthy! Can’t wait to see the other Valentine’s Day recipes you created. I am sure they will all be great!

  3. Ann Oliverio says

    You’re killing me (in such a good way) over here! I think it’s very wise of you to begin the V-Day celebrations early – that’s a lot of treats!

  4. Lizzie says

    What do you think would happen if you replaced the liquid in the recipe with…whiskey? (I sound like a drunk, I know.) I’m supposed to make a vegan whiskey-themed dessert for a birthday party tomorrow and I SO want this to be it!

  5. says

    Holy moly, this sound out of control good! I’ve been saying “yowza” right and left, but I may have to steal “hubba hubba”. It’s a good one!


          • Melissa says

            Super delish! My BF didn’t know about the beets until mid way though when I told him and he said, “You can make me chocolate and beet treats anytime you want.”

            This morning i put some of the left over beet puree in my chocolate protein smoothie. I had intended to put them on salad, but these two uses were far better!

          • says

            ha! I love this. I’ve snuck beets into John before – he doesn’t seem to mind if it tastes good! Glad you two enjoyed and thanks for sharing your experience, Melissa!

  6. says

    Ohhhh… I wish I had seen this earlier – Im cooking a special dinner for the boy tomorrow night and have already gone out and bought ingredients for Snickers ice-cream bars for dessert! Definitely pinning this one for another time though, they look amazing!

  7. annie @ chase that i love says

    I love cooking with beets! They get the worst rap and it’s totally unwarranted. These look right up my alley.

  8. says

    Wow, the use of beets here is genius! They add such beauty and earthiness to these delicious looking cakes.

    I’m obsessed with your blog and love that you put together a lot of unique dairy free treats! You give the people with food sensitivities such hope :)

    • says

      Thanks jessica! You’re too kind. We have way too much fun taking our photos :D And yes, dairy free treats are bomb. Glad you’re enjoying the content and thanks for saying hello!

  9. says

    Made these last night and they were yummy! I had to mash the beets with a potato masher as I don’t have a food processor right now but that worked fine. Also my cocoa powder dusting was a little too thick and it burned so lesson learned there.

    Made a simple vegan custard to go with them and they were yummy but will be even better on a second run.

  10. Kaite says

    Wow, these look amazing… but is there any chance I could use a gluten-free flour like oat flour or teff flour instead of wheat flour????? Thanks!

  11. says

    Great stuff!!! Just about to make this…can i pre-make a few hours before or is it better right out of the oven? Can i make the batter before if its better to serve right out of the oven?

  12. AMEE says

    Can I do these steps ahead of time (as in the batter) and then bake it when I am ready to eat???Will that work or if it sits for a few hours, will it be less likely that it will bake properly??

    • Dana Shultz says

      Yes, you can! I’d recommend making it the morning of and then letting set to room temp before baking just before serving. Hope that helps!

  13. Taylor says

    I’ve made these at least 3 times by now. They are AMAZING. So moist and chocolatey. My fiancé loved them and he is by no means vegan ;). I am baking them now with applesauce because I had a chocolate craving but no beets. I’ll let you know how they turn out!

  14. Eellyn Ramos says

    Two questions, do you have a recipe for the coconut whipped cream, or you bought it?
    And I know beets have a “sand” like taste. You can’t taste them in the cake?

    • Dana Shultz says

      1) no you don’t taste the beets, in my opinion. 2) there’s a link to the coconut whipped cream in the recipe box.

  15. Jolanda de Jong says


    I tried your recipe yesterday. My bakes always tastes better the day after. That’s too bad, because I wanted a warm lava cake! Do you have any tips or tricks? Is it possible to bake it and heat it up the other day to get a nice warm lava cake?

    I had a slight changes on the recipe. I used spelt flour and red cabbage instead of flour and beets. Spelt flour is healthier. I was hoping to get a nice purpple/pink/red colour from the red cabbage, but it didn’t. I’ll try the beets next time!

    Thanks in advance. Excuse me if I wrote in poor English. English isn’t my native language.

    Greets, Jolanda

  16. Nikita Vasa says

    Looks so damn good! Gonna try it! Have you tried making vanilla based vegan lava cakes? Would love to know and try some!

  17. Brigitte Lapointe says

    I have made these 2 nights in row at like 10pm because we are craving something sweet and chocolatey!!! THese are amazing!!! and my spouse didn’t even realize there was beets in them and when i told her after she was shocked!!! and now she is asking for more tonight!!!

  18. Danielle says

    I haven’t tried this yet, but I’m so happy to find a dairy free recipe for Chocolate Lava Cake :D I’m super allergic so vegan recipes tend to work the best for me :) Thanks so much for sharing!

  19. Pia says

    Hi dana. If i want to triple this recipe, can i? If yes, wat abt the baking time? I have 6ppl coming over and I really want to try this recipe.. Plz reply. Thanks so much

  20. Stephanie says

    Loved these! The beet color didn’t come through once mine were baked, but these cakes were moist and lovely and exactly what this tired mommy needed on my night off! My husband and I ate them with raspberries and port.

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