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The recipe for this cake originally came from one of the best bakers in my life, my friend Gabby Vega. I fell in love the first time I tasted it, so I got the recipe from her and modified it for the vegans in my life. I loved how it came out so much that I only make the vegan version now. The cake is light, flavorful (jasmine happens to be one of my favorite flavors), and moist.  It's the hearty topping of riesling soaked strawberries that steal the show tho.

Total time: 60 minutes
Active time: 50 minutes

Bake time: 20-30 minutes
Makes one 9x13 cake


Ingredients for the cake: 

1+1/2 cups unsweetened, plain almond milk

5 jasmine tea bags, divided into 2 and 3

2+1/3 cups (291 grams) all purpose flour

1+1/4 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1+1/4 sugar

3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce 

1 tsp vanilla extract

Ingredients for the topping:

1+1/2 lbs strawberries

1/2 cup sugar

1/3 cup riesling

Juice of half a lemon



1.) Begin by bringing the almond milk to a boil and then removing it from heat. Put two tea bags in the milk and allow them to steep for about 10 minutes, or until very fragrant. Remove the tea bags (smushing out all the milk), and make sure the almond milk still measures up to 12 fl oz. If not, top it off with a bit more. Put in the fridge to bring the milk to room temperature (15 mins should be sufficient).

2.) Pre-heat your oven to 350°F. Grease a 9x13 baking tin with vegan butter and line the pan in one direction with a strip of parchment slightly shorter than the length of the pan, but long enough for the parchment to come up and over the sides a bit for easy cake removal. Then, flip the parchment over and press it back into the pan so that both sides of the parchment are greased. Cut open the remaining three tea bags, and use a coffee grinder, food processor, mortar and pestle, or even just a spoon and a bowl to grind the tea lightly into a powder. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and tea until well combined.

3.) In a large bowl, use a hand mixer to cream together vegan butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes on medium high speed. Add applesauce 1/4 cup at a time and mix on medium speed for 15-20 seconds after each addition. Scrape bowl down after each one to incorporate fully. Add the vanilla and beat once more briefly until incorporated. 

4.) Add 1/3 of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Set the mixer to low, and beat until just barely combined. Scrape the bowl down so that all sides are incorporated. Next, pour half of the room temperature jasmine almond milk into the wet ingredients. Blend until just mixed together. Repeat the previous step with the remaining flour and jasmine tea. You should end with the dry ingredients - flour, milk, flour, milk, flour. 

5.) Pour the batter into your lined, greased pan and bake. Start off with 20 minutes and then check every five minutes, as the time will vary from oven-to-oven. When the cake is done, a toothpick inserted into the center should come out mostly clean.


6.) While the cake bakes, hull and slice your strawberries into 8ths. Transfer them to a medium bowl and add sugar, riesling, and lemon. Stir to combine and allow to sit for at least 30 minutes.


7.) Once the cake is done, allow it to cool in the pan for about 20 minutes and then use parchment to lift it out of the pan. Allow it to cool another 20 or so minutes. Cut into squares and top liberally with your riesling strawberries before thoroughly enjoying. 

Recipe adapted from my friend Gabby Vega (@gabrielavega)

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