Delicious, decadent, and fragrant, this stunning layer cake is infused with the fragrant flavors of masala chai. It's a perfect dessert for a special occasion, or any day you just feel like treating yourself to a richly-spiced treat!
Vanilla Masala Chai Tea Cake [Vegan]
- 2 cups, minus 2 tablespoons, plus 1/2 cup vanilla almond milk*
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 chai tea bags
- 3 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon cardamom
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon allspice
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon pink salt
- 1 1/2 cup sugar, processed until fine (I used a coffee/spice grinder)
- 1/4 cup organic canola oil
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract or paste
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- Start by preheating the oven to 350°F. Then, pull out a large bowl and a small saucepan. Put 2 cups of vanilla almond milk in the bowl. Remove 2 tablespoons and put it in the saucepan. Then add the remaining 1/2 cup of vanilla almond milk into the saucepan.
- Add the apple cider vinegar to the large bowl, Gently stir a few times and let sit for 5 minutes to activate.
- Meanwhile, put the small saucepan over low heat and add the two tea bags. Heat up the milk but make sure it doesn't come to a boil; you are looking for steam to come off the milk. Once it reaches that point, turn off the heat, cover and let steep for up to 20 minutes.
- In another medium mixing bowl combine all the dry ingredients and sift to combine well. If you do not have a sifter, use a whisk or fork to remove the clumps.
- Add the oil, and the extracts into the bowl with the almond milk and apple cider vinegar. Stir to combine. Then add in the flour mixture in half cup intervals, mixing as you go. You want this to be as smooth as possible.
- Once it is combined, remove the saucepan from the stove and pour the contents into the mixing bowl. Then cut (or rip) the tea bags open and pour the contents right into the batter. (Trust me – do this, so good!)
- Then transfer your batter into your cake pan. I used five small cake pans. I put 3/4 cup batter in each cake pan and it worked out almost perfectly.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- If you are using two 9-inch cake pans, line with parchment paper, divide the batter up evenly and cook for 30-35 minutes.
- After the cream cheese and butter have had some time to soften, combine them in a bowl and cream them together with a hand mixer or fork. Add in the spices, mix again, and then a half cup at a time add in the powdered sugar until it reaches a thick consistency and the fork or whisk leaves trails when mixing.
- Put this in the fridge until cakes are ready.
- Once the cakes are done baking, remove from the oven, let cool for 10 minutes, remove cakes from the pans and transfer to a wire a rack to cool further. After about another 10 minutes, move the cakes to the freezer and let chill for one hour or so.
- Then cut off the rounded portion from the top of the cake (this is like the muffin top of a muffin). You want to have your cakes be completely flat on top so when you layer the cakes it does not make a peak at the top.
- It's important for your layers to all be the same height so if necessary use a ruler to measure each one and determine how much needs to be cut off of each. You can, of course, eyeball this as well. Use a serrated knife to remove the cake tops. Take your time during this step.
- Once they are all flat, start layering! Add about 1/4-1/2 cup of frosting in between each layer of cake, and frost all the sides and top. I decorated mine with brown sugar and cinnamon!