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oval uncut king cake with beads and mask.

Mardi Gras King Cake (Vegan)

Course: Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Mardi Gras Vegan King Cake
Prep Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 25 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 524kcal
Author: Cindy Rainey
This traditional Mardi Gras King Cake is dairy free and egg free.  This recipe gives many vegan replacement options.  The filling is a rich brown sugar pecan center.  Make this vegan king cake to enjoy your Mardi Gras celebration!
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Ingredients

The Pastry Dough

  • .25 ounce Active Dry Yeast Package
  • 1/3 cup warm water 100°-110°
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cashew milk or plant milk of choice
  • 1/4 cup vegan butter
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Bob's Red Mill Egg Replacer sub flax meal
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour use 1/2 more if necessary
  • A little extra melted butter to brush on the top of the baked pastry.

Brown Sugar Pecan Filling

  • 1/2 cup vegan butter melted
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Colored Sugar

  • 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • purple, green, and yellow food dyes

Powdered Sugar Icing

  • 2 Tablespoons vegan butter melted
  • 2 Tablespoons unsweetened cashew milk or plant milk of choice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cup confectioners (powdered) sugar
  • pinch salt

Instructions

The Pastry Dough

  • Sprinkle yeast packet on warm water.  Gently stir in 1 1/2 teaspoon of sugar. Let sit for about 10 minutes.  Yeast mixture will be frothy and bubbly.
  • While the yeast is rising, prepare the other ingredients EXCEPT for the flour.   
  • Melt 2 Tablespoons of vegan butter with the cashew milk in the microwave for about 30 seconds.
  • Pour milk/butter mixture into a medium-large bowl.  Add in the 1/3 cup granulated sugar, egg replacer (Bob's Red Mill), nutmeg, salt, and vanilla. With a hand mixture, mix till well incorporated.
  • When the yeast is ready, pour all at once into the milk mixture. Stir well.
  • With your hand mixer, mix in flour 1/2 cup at a time. When you have mixed in two cups, your mixer probably can't handle the rest of the flour.  Incorporate the rest on the flour by hand. 
  • Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead for 8-10 minutes. You will know your dough is ready when it is smooth and elastic.  Do not over knead or your king cake will be too tough.
  • Lightly oil another large bowl.  I sprayed in coconut oil.  Put the dough ball in and then turn so that all surfaces are oiled.  Cover with a plastic wrap or damp cloth.  Let rise for 2 hours in a warm spot in your kitchen.

Brown Sugar Pecan Filling

  • Melt the vegan butter into a small mixing bowl.
  • Add the other ingredients: packed brown sugar, ground cinnamon, pecans, flour, and salt. mix together till crumbly. Set aside

Colored Sugar

  • You can make the sugar anytime during the rising/resting/baking process. 
  • Divide the sugar evenly into 3 baggies. Working with one color at a time, drop a couple of drops of food coloring into the baggie. 
  • Shake and smooth until the color incorporates. You can always add more until you have achieved the desired color. 

Powdered Sugar Icing

  • You can wait until your king cake has baked and you've taken it out of the oven for this step.
  • Melt vegan butter into a small bowl.
  • Add in the plant milk, vanilla, powdered sugar, and pinch of salt.
  • Whisk together till all powdered sugar is incorporated.  Set aside. 

Baking and Decorating the Mardi Gras King Cake

  • After the dough has risen for 2 hours, punch down.
  • On a floured surface, roll your dough into a 9x12 rectangle. 
  • Evenly spread prepared brown sugar pecan filling on the rectangle.
  • Starting at the long end roll up into a large tube. 
  • Place on the prepared surface of your cookie sheet in an oval ring. Place seam side down and pinch the ends together to make a complete oval.
  • With a sharp knife, cut into the ring just down to the filling in one-inch intervals. 
    dough ring with slits for King cake
  • Let rest and rise for 45 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350° while oval ring is resting.
  • Bake for about 25-30 minutes in a 350° oven.  You will know it is done when it is lightly browned on top.
  • If desired, brush about 1 Tablespoon melted vegan butter on the top of the baked king cake.
  • If you haven't already made the icing, make it now. See instructions above.
  • Transfer the baked king cake to your serving platter.  Don't forget to tuck the baby into the baked king cake! 
  • Pour icing on top (see directions in post for wax paper trick).
  • Sprinkle colored sugar in a pattern around the ring.
  • Party on!  Whoever finds the baby in their slice has good luck for a year and gets to host next year's Mardi Gras party!  Really! It's the rule:)

Nutrition

Calories: 524kcal | Carbohydrates: 87g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 375mg | Potassium: 110mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 61g | Vitamin A: 635IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 54mg | Iron: 1.9mg