Baking · Light Lunches · Vegan

Vegan Sausage Rolls (Easy Puff Pastry Sausage Rolls)

Homemade sausage rolls made with vegan sausages, herbs and black pepper incased in flaky puff pastry. This easy sausage roll recipe is perfect to pack up for lunch, picnics and all kinds of gatherings.

Sausage rolls are something I’ve loved since childhood. They’re available in most bakeries and supermarkets, I used to make a lot of sausage rolls when I worked as tea room baker and nowadays in my current job role these feature on the menu rotation.

Making your own couldn’t be easier or quicker. I cheat and use ready rolled puff pastry, which saves a job rolling out a block of puff pastry.

Most supermarket puff pastry is vegan, but always check the label.

Lots of vegan sausage roll recipes use a mix of beans, vegetables or nuts to make the filling. I like to keep the recipe as easy and traditional as possible by using vegan sausages. I take a pack (8 in total) of my favourite vegan sausages, remove the outer skin layer and mash the sausage ‘meat’ with a heaped teaspoon of dried sage and lots of black pepper.

You can add whatever flavourings/spices you desire. Swap the dried sage for rosemary, oregano or leave it out entirely. I sometimes use fresh herbs from our garden. Also, if you want, then why not add a spoonful or two of caramelised onion or tomato chutney? I’ve linked my favourite onion chutney further down in this blog post…

Making these sausage rolls is pretty straight forward. Take your pastry and divide it up into 3 long slices. Evenly spread the sausage mixture down the centre of each piece of pastry and press together to form an even roll of sausage meat. Lightly brush a little water down either side of the pastry and roll the pastry up and seal the edges together.

Wrap the pastry rolls up and chill for about half an hour – this is optional but it makes slicing the sausage rolls neatly a lot easier. You can slice and bake the sausage rolls straight away if you’re pushed for time.

Trim the edges and then slice each roll in half, then each half in half again – you’ll have 4 sausage rolls and once you’ve sliced up the other two, you’ll have 12 sausage rolls in total. You can make mini sausage rolls too, if you prefer – just slice each roll in half, then each half into 3 and you’ll have 18 mini sausage rolls.

A plate of these sausage rolls goes down brilliantly at parties. My grandad was the biggest fan of sausage rolls and also homemade bacon and cheese pastry turnovers. I know he would’ve loved these and happily eaten his way through a plate of these!

Food evokes memories and this recipe certainly reminds me of good times spent enjoying food with my family.

I’ve baked these sausage rolls countless times, we serve them with lots of different condiments: recently I served these with salad and some chutney, my Caramelised Onion Chutney is a reader favourite and definitely worth making to go alongside these.

These never last long in our house, we took them to an afternoon tea recently and we came home with an empty container. That’s proof of just how good these sausage rolls taste as they impressed the non-vegans too!

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Vegan Sausage Rolls

Homemade sausage rolls made with vegan sausages, herbs and black pepper incased in flaky puff pastry. This easy sausage roll recipe is perfect to pack up for lunch, summer picnics and all kinds of gatherings.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 12 -
Author What Jessica Baked Next

Ingredients

  • 320-375 g pack ready rolled puff pastry check the label to see if it's vegan
  • 8 vegan sausages (I use a 336g pack of Richmond Meat Free)
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage use your favourite herbs
  • Black pepper add a generous amount
  • 1-2 tablespoons plant milk for brushing
  • A couple of drops of soy sauce (this helps give the sausage rolls a golden colour when baked) optional
  • Nigella seeds, sesame seeds or poppyseed's optional

Instructions

  • Take your puff pastry from the fridge and unroll on a chopping board. Leave the pastry a few minutes to warm up, whilst you prepare the sausage filling.
  • Remove the skins from each sausage and place the sausage meat in a small mixing bowl. Add your herbs and seasoning (I use dried sage and black pepper) and mash together to combine.
  • Split the puff pastry into thirds lengthways and equally distribute the sausage filling down the centre of each piece of pastry.
  • Brush each pastry edge with water and then roll the pastry up to cover the sausage meat filling completely and seal the edges. Cover the sausage rolls with cling film and chill in the fridge or place in the freezer for 30 minutes - this is optional, but it makes cutting them up easier.
  • Using a sharp knife (I find a serrated knife best for this), trim the edges and then slice each roll into four equal pieces (if you want to make 12 sausage rolls in total) or slice each roll into 6 pieces for mini sausage rolls (you'll have 18 mini sausage rolls in total).
  • Preheat oven to 200°C / 180°C Fan / 400°F / Gas Mark 6. Line a large baking tray with parchment paper. Evenly spread the sausage rolls out on the baking tray. Mix the plant milk with a couple of drops of soy sauce and generously brush each sausage roll.
  • At this point, sprinkle the tops of each sausage roll with either nigella, sesame or poppyseed's (optional but it looks and tastes great). We love ours with nigella seeds because it works really well paired with the sage.
  • Bake the sausage rolls for 20-25 minutes or until lightly golden. Leave to cool for a few minutes then serve. The sausage rolls taste amazing when served warm or cold.

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Baking · Cakes · Loaf Cakes · Vegan

Pistachio Lemon Drizzle Cake

Take the classic lemon drizzle cake to the next level by adding pistachio. This vegan cake is soft, fluffy and a taste of spring.

Spring has arrived, well maybe not in the UK at the moment as we’ve been experiencing a mixed bag of weather after having beautiful weather last month.

The dismal weather tends to make me crave all things spring and summer even more.

A few weeks ago, I fancied baking a lemon cake. I thought about sharing a vegan lemon drizzle cake, but I wanted something slightly different. I’ve always loved adding nuts to cake, before going vegan, this Greek-style Honey Walnut Cake was one of our favourites.

This Pistachio Lemon Drizzle Cake is a fabulous recipe from So Vegan. The recipe was straight forward to follow and the finished bake was everything I’d hoped it would be.

Fluffy, packed with gorgeous lemon flavour and with a nuttiness coming through from the pistachio.

We devoured this cake in record time. It barely lasted two days and there were only four of us in the house! We kept going back for slice after slice…

With Easter this week, this cake will be a delicious addition to your Easter menu served with fresh berries of your choice.

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Pistachio Lemon Drizzle Cake

Take the classic lemon drizzle cake to the next level by adding pistachio. This vegan cake is soft, fluffy and a taste of spring.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 8
Author What Jessica Baked Next

Ingredients

Pistachio Lemon Cake:

  • 80 g shelled pistachios plus extra for decoration
  • 200 g plain flour
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 1 lemon zested and juiced
  • 80 ml melted baking block/dairy-free spread or vegetable oil
  • 200 ml plant milk I use oat

Lemon Syrup:

  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 70 g caster sugar

Lemon Icing:

  • 100 g icing sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice (add more or less depending on your preferred consistency)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 180°C / 160°C Fan / 350°F / Gas Mark 4. Grease and line a 900g / 2lb loaf tin with parchment paper and set aside.
  • In a food processor, process the shelled pistachios until they're a crumb like consistency. Set this mixture aside for later on.
  • Place a sieve over a large mixing bowl and sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and sugar. Give these ingredients a quick stir together to combine. Add the pistachio crumbs and lemon zest (zest of one lemon) to the bowl and mix.
  • In a small jug, whisk together the juice of the lemon you zested earlier, along with the melted baking block/dairy-free spread or vegetable oil and the plant milk. Add these wet ingredients to the dry and gently fold together until no lumps of flour remain - be careful not to over mix the cake batter.
  • Pour the cake batter into the loaf tin and bake for 45-60 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean without any uncooked batter remaining. Test directly in the centre of the cake to ensure it's baked all the way through. Mine took about 55 minutes to bake fully, but all ovens are different so keep checking.
  • Once the cake has baked, prepare the lemon syrup. In a small bowl or jug, stir the lemon juice with the sugar until all the sugar has dissolved. Take a tooth pick and prick holes all over the top of the cake. Pour the syrup over the warm cake and leave it cool in the tin for at least 30 minutes, then carefully remove from the tin and place on a wire rack to finish cooling completely.
  • Now the cake is cool, prepare the lemon glacé icing. In a small bowl, stir together the icing sugar with enough lemon juice until you have a thick but slightly runny icing.
  • Drizzle the icing over the cake as you desire and decorate with an sprinkle of extra chopped pistachios. Allow the icing to set before slicing. Store the cake in an airtight container or a cake plate with a cover for up to 3 days.

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Baking · Breakfast · Gluten-Free · Granola · Vegan

Basic Homemade Granola

Easy and healthy homemade granola. This recipe will soon be a staple for your weekday breakfast and it can be topped anyway you like!

Originally posted in January 2015, recipe and photographs updated March 2022.

Looking for an affordable, healthy and delicious breakfast recipe? If so, I have a great granola to share with you – a recipe my Mum created. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day as it’s what sets you up for the day ahead.

Granola just like cake and cookies is another one of my favourite things to make. Most granola recipes I make usually tend to be crunchier, clustered-style granola, which is typically higher in fat and sugar. But since I like to keep as healthy as I can I wanted to share a healthier and lighter granola that can be eaten for breakfast or that could also even be enjoyed as a nourishing snack.

To make my granola, oats are combined with maple syrup, oil and vanilla, the last ingredient of which is an optional addition, but I love the flavour it adds.

Granola is one of my go-to breakfasts to enjoy before heading to work and my favourite way to eat this granola nowadays is with vegan milk or yoghurt and fresh berries or some sliced banana. If you wanted to try something different you can even layer the granola with yoghurt and fruit compotè in a jar and make yourself a granola parfait.

With this basic recipe you can add anything extra you’d like such as different nuts or even dried fruit like apricots, cranberries or raisins. If you’re a chocoholic just like me you can add chocolate chips once the granola is baked and cooled.

This is a speedy breakfast recipe idea, it takes around 15 minutes to prep ready for the oven and then only needs 10 minutes in the oven to bake!

You can adjust the recipe to your taste, add less or more maple syrup depending on how sweet you like it and add a different mix of nuts/seeds you enjoy – this recipe is super customisable.

The recipe makes one large and one small jar of granola, so plenty to keep you going for breakfast throughout the week and beyond!

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Basic Homemade Granola

Healthy homemade granola. This recipe will soon be a staple for your weekday breakfast and it can be topped anyway you like!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Author What Jessica Baked Next

Ingredients

  • 350 g jumbo rolled oats
  • 150 g mixed chopped nuts I use 50g of each almonds, hazelnuts and walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons milled or whole flaxseeds optional - you can also use other seeds you like
  • 5-6 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 5-6 tablespoons vegetable oil I use rapeseed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract optional

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 200°C / 180°C Fan / 400°F / Gas Mark 6.
  • Mix the oats, chopped nuts and flaxseed (or seeds of choice if using) in a large mixing bowl.
  • Add the maple syrup, oil and vanilla to the oats. Stir the ingredients together until the oats are moistened. Spread the granola out on a large baking tray and bake for 10 minutes or until lightly golden and toasted.
  • Allow the granola to cool before transferring to a jar or airtight container to store it. The granola will keep for up to a month.

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Baking · Biscuits and Cookies · Vegan

Easter Bunny Shortbreads

Easter bunny-shaped shortbread biscuits, a simple and easy bake for your Easter table.

 

I made these cute bunny shortbread biscuits a couple of weeks ago in preparation for Easter. I’ve been cracking on with my Easter recipes, having recently updated my favourite Chocolate Orange Hot Cross Buns.

For my latest recipe idea, because that hot cross bun recipe that takes a fair amount of time to make, I wanted my next Easter bake to be easier and something kids and adults alike will enjoy baking!

I took this Vegan Shortbread recipe and used a bunny biscuit/cookie cutter I’ve had for years and only really ever used occasionally. I used the cutter to stamp out adorable bunny-shaped shortbreads. They might even be too cute to eat?!

Then once the shortbreads were baked and then cooled down, I made a very small amount of white glacé icing – I made sure the icing was quite thick and then I popped it in a piping bag, snipped the end and piped small ‘blobs’ of icing on the tail end of each bunny shortbread. If you don’t use homemade glacé icing, you can also use those tubes of readymade icing or melted chocolate of your choice instead.

The final decoration was a mini chocolate egg on the end of each biscuit to resemble a bunny tail. I used a 75g bag of vegan mini chocolate eggs. Some of the biscuits I didn’t decorate, so I made do with one bag of chocolate eggs, so if you want to decorate every biscuit, you might want to grab another bag of mini chocolate eggs.

You might also need more chocolate if you’re like me and find yourself snacking your way through the bag as you decorate…

This shortbread recipe was one of my late grandma’s favourite biscuits. My grandma was half Scottish and she always loved her shortbread. When I first made them, she enjoyed them so much, she asked me to bake them again. I unfortunately never got the chance to, but this recipe will hold a special place in my heart, because I know just how much she loved it.

I’ll be baking these shortbread biscuits again over Easter. They’re fun, cheap to make and are a great Easter baking project!

Further decoration of these biscuits is optional, you can leave them as they are with an extra sprinkle of sugar, or drizzle with melted chocolate and sprinkles.

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Easter Bunny Shortbreads

Easter bunny-shaped shortbread biscuits, a simple and easy bake for your Easter table.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 20 biscuits
Author What Jessica Baked Next

Ingredients

  • 200 g vegan baking block softened
  • 100 g sugar I use vanilla sugar
  • 150 g plain flour
  • 150 g self-raising flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Glacé icing or melted chocolate of your choice
  • 75 g mini chocolate eggs (I use vegan)

Instructions

  • Line two large baking trays with parchment paper or silicone baking mats and set aside. Preheat oven to 160°C / 140°C Fan / 325°F / Gas Mark 3. Cream the softened vegan baking block and the sugar until light and pale in colour (about 1-2 minutes).
  • Now sift the flours and add to the creamed baking block and sugar mixture along with the vanilla extract. Continue to mix until a crumbly and soft ball of dough comes together. Don’t overwork the dough, try to touch it as little as possible. At this point you can wrap the dough in clingfilm and chill it for 15 minutes, however this is an optional step - it does make rolling the dough out easier.
  • On a lightly floured surface roll the dough out to about 1/2 cm thickness. Using your favourite biscuit/cookie cutters (I use a bunny-shaped cutter), cut out shapes from the dough and transfer to the lined baking trays. Sprinkle the top of each biscuit with a little extra sugar or you can dust each baked biscuit with icing sugar after baking if you prefer.
  • Bake the biscuits for 15-20 minutes until they’re crisp and slightly golden around the edges - all ovens are different so they may need baking for longer. I like adding a little extra sugar to the tops at this point.
  • Once baked, leave to cool on the baking trays for 5-10 minutes, then carefully transport to a wire rack and allow the biscuits to cool completely to room temperature. 
  • Now decorate with a dab of glacé icing on the end of each bunny shortbread to attach the mini chocolate egg, which will look like the bunny tail. Allow the icing to set before serving.
  • Shortbread will keep in an airtight container for up to one week.

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Baking · Brownies · Buttercream and Frosting · Chocolate · Vegan

Vegan Chocolate Orange Brownies

Vegan Chocolate Orange Brownies: rich and fudgy chocolate orange flavoured brownie with a chocolate orange buttercream.

In case you missed them, the festive recipes I’ve blogged so far: 3 Ingredient Oreo Truffles (perfect Xmas gift idea), Orange Chocolate Chip Cookies, Vegan ShortbreadVegan Gingerbread Loaf Cake and Vegan Cinnamon Rolls. My first year baking entirely vegan Christmas recipes!

Since sharing this Vegan Brownies recipe last year, I’ve been desperate to put a twist on the recipe. These vegan brownies are perfect for fans of fudgy brownies. I know I am, I’ll take a fudgy brownie over a cakey brownie any day.

The orange flavour in these brownies comes with a real punch, the way I’ve incorporated so much orange flavour is by adding orange extract instead of vanilla and adding the zest from one large orange.

I make my own vegan chocolate orange – they’re delicious and so easy to do! I have a 9-segment mould and melt 75g of vegan chocolate and once the chocolate has melted I stir through 1/4 teaspoon of orange extract.

The buttercream is optional, these brownies taste divine without it just served warm with vegan whipped cream or ice cream. The chocolate orange buttercream is made by creaming softened vegan butter and sifted icing sugar until lightened. Then adding orange extract and gently mixing in melted chocolate plus enough vegan cream or milk until the buttercream is a spreadable consistency.

I also decorate with extra orange zest and homemade chocolate orange segments. This brownie will make an impressive Christmas Day dessert, it’s pretty rich so only a small piece is needed – though I went overboard with these pictures as three of us ended up sharing one piece!

The recipe serves 16 depending on how big or small you slice the brownie up.

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Vegan Chocolate Orange Brownies

Vegan Chocolate Orange Brownies: rich and fudgy chocolate orange flavoured brownie with a chocolate orange buttercream.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 16
Author What Jessica Baked Next

Ingredients

Brownie Batter:

  • 100 g dark chocolate
  • 200 g caster sugar
  • Zest from 1 large orange
  • 140 g plain flour
  • 20 g cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 80 ml vegetable oil
  • 240 ml plant milk
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • 100 g vegan chocolate chips/chunks (optional)

Chocolate Orange Buttercream:

  • 75 g vegan butter softened
  • 150 g icing sugar sifted
  • 1/4 teaspoon orange extract
  • 75 g vegan chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons vegan cream or plant milk

Instructions

Make The Brownie Batter:

  • Preheat oven to 180°C / 160°C Fan / 350°F / Gas Mark 4. Line a 20cm square cake tin with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Break the dark chocolate up and add to a small heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water (bain-marie) - make sure the base of the bowl is not directly touching the water. Gently melt the dark chocolate until it’s smooth.
  • In a large mixing bowl, mix the sugar and orange zest together. Now sift together the flour, cocoa powder and baking powder. Give these ingredients a quick whisk together to combine then whisk in the oil, plant milk and orange extract until you have a smooth batter. Whisk in the melted chocolate until incorporated. Finally, if using fold through the extra chocolate chips/chunks.
  • Transfer the brownie batter to the lined tin.
  • Bake the brownies for 25-30 minutes - I always bake mine for 25 minutes because I like the brownies extra fudgy. Leave to cool completely in the tin before cutting in to 16 squares. We left ours overnight before cutting.

Make The Buttercream:

  • Cream the butter and icing sugar for about 2 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the orange extract, melted chocolate and vegan cream and mix until combined. Spread the buttercream over the top of the brownie or slice the brownie up and pipe the buttercream on top.
  • The brownies will keep stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week.

My other Christmas recipes you’ve been enjoying!

Scottish Shortbread

Vegan Biscoff Cheesecake

Terry’s Chocolate Orange Cheesecake

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Baking · Bread · Breakfast · Vegan

Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

The BEST fluffy vegan cinnamon rolls. Enriched dough filled with a buttery cinnamon sugar filling and once baked decorated with icing.

The next bake in my Christmas recipe instalment is Vegan Cinnamon Rolls.

I based this vegan cinnamon roll recipe on the Cinnamon Rolls already on my blog. I’ve altered the recipe and taken out a bit of the strong white bread flour and replaced that with cornflour, which makes these cinnamon rolls super moist and fluffy without any dairy or egg.

The cinnamon filling I’ve kept exactly the same, we’re using equal measures of vegan butter and brown sugar with a tablespoon of ground cinnamon. We find this has just the right amount of cinnamon flavour, but if you love more cinnamon then add extra.

Prepare the enriched dough and leave it to rise for around an hour until doubled in size. Once the dough has doubled in size, make the buttery cinnamon sugar filling. Now roll the dough out into a large rectangle, then spread the cinnamon filling over the dough, then from the long side roll the dough up into a log. Trim the edges (I usually bake these off to enjoy as well) and slice the dough up into 12 pieces.

Liberally grease a baking tin with vegan butter and then place the cinnamon rolls in the tin. There should be some space between the cinnamon rolls so they have room to join up on the second rise.

I love those cinnamon swirls you simply take out from the fridge, unroll, slice and bake. Those are great for ease, but these homemade cinnamon rolls are far superior with their soft pillowy texture. This recipe does require quite a bit of time investment, but the finished bake is absolutely worth all the waiting!

It won’t be at all long before I make these cinnamon rolls again! They are one of our favourite breakfast recipes along with these incredible Fluffy Vegan Pancakes!

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Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

Best fluffy vegan cinnamon rolls. These make a delightful weekend breakfast, brunch or sweet treat. You cannot even tell they're plant-based!
Prep Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 35 minutes
Servings 12
Author What Jessica Baked Next

Ingredients

Dough:

  • 475 g strong white bread flour
  • 25 g cornflour
  • 50 g caster sugar
  • 14 g fast-action dried yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 325 ml plant milk
  • 75 g vegan butter

Cinnamon Filling:

  • 125 g vegan butter softened
  • 125 g dark or light brown sugar
  • 1 - 1 + 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

Icing:

  • 100 g icing sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons water (add more or less depending on your preferred consistency)

Instructions

  • To make the dough: In a large mixing bowl, place the flour, cornflour, sugar, yeast and salt. Mix to combine.
  • In a small pan, gently heat the milk and butter until the butter has melted and the milk is just warm.
  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until a dough comes together. Knead the dough by hand or with a dough hook attachment in a stand mixer for 7 minutes until smooth and elasticated. Place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover and leave the dough somewhere warm for 60 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.
  • To make the filling: Cream together the sugar, butter and cinnamon until thoroughly combined. Set aside for later.
  • Grease the base and sides of a 23cm x 30cm / 13 x 9-inch baking tin with extra butter. When the dough has doubled in size, tip it out the bowl and knock the air out. The dough is very soft, so you might need to add some extra flour to make rolling out easier. Lightly flour a work surface and roll the dough into a large, neat rectangle about 50cm x 30 cm / 20 x 12-inches and with one of the longer sides nearest to you.
  • Evenly spread the cinnamon mixture over the dough, ensuring the mixture reaches all the edges.
  • Starting with the long side of the rectangle, roll the dough up into a sausage shape. Using a sharp knife (I find a serrated bread knife best for this), trim the edges of the dough and then cut the dough into 12 rolls.
  • Place the rolls side by side in the baking tin, with the spiral facing upwards. Cover and leave somewhere warm until they’ve all joined up and have nearly doubled in size – this should take approx. 45-60 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 200°C / 180°C Fan / 400°F / Gas Mark 6. Bake the rolls for 10 minutes, then turn the oven down to 180°C / 160°C Fan / 350°F / Gas Mark 4 and bake for a further 15-20 minutes until the rolls are a light golden colour on top. Leave to cool in the tin for about 15-20 minutes.
  • To make the icing: Mix together the icing sugar and enough water until the icing reaches your preferred consistency. Drizzle the icing over the top of the cinnamon rolls and leave to set for about 5-10 minutes.
  • Once the icing has set, the cinnamon rolls are ready to eat. The rolls will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2-3 days.

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Baking · Cakes · Vegan

Vegan Gingerbread Loaf Cake

Gingerbread loaf cake that’s free from dairy and egg. This vegan cake has all the yummy spices you associate with autumn and winter.

‘Tis the season to start baking all the autumnal and wintery cakes.

When I made this gingerbread loaf it lasted less than 24 hours! Because it was thoroughly enjoyed so much by my taste testers, I’ve been keen to share this special cake recipe with you.

I’ve got my festive bake on and I’ve been getting busy in the kitchen creating some recipes for you to enjoy over Christmastime. The whole of November and up to Christmas Day, all the bakes you see will be festive so you have some new recipes to try out in December to celebrate Christmas and the New Year.

I made this Gingerbread Loaf Cake using a fabulous recipe from Cozy Peach Kitchen a couple of weeks ago and honestly I’ve dreamed of it ever since. This cake is the epitome of gingerbread perfection if you love a fiery ginger flavour in your bakes, it has various spices in the cake batter and once baked, the top and sides they’re drizzled with orange glacé icing.

With gorgeous flavour from ground ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg. This cake is stunning and perfect for baking throughout the autumn and winter months. A slice of this gingerbread loaf cake and a mug of coffee, tea or hot chocolate is complete and utter bliss.

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Vegan Gingerbread Loaf Cake

Gingerbread loaf cake that's free from dairy and egg. This vegan cake has all the yummy spices you associate with autumn and winter.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 8
Author What Jessica Baked Next

Ingredients

Gingerbread Cake:

  • 300 ml hot water
  • 80 ml golden syrup (substitute with black treacle or molasses)
  • 100 g dark or light brown sugar
  • 80 ml vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 240 g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 + 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Orange Icing:

  • 100 g icing sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons orange juice (add more or less depending on your preferred consistency)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 180°C / 160°C Fan / 350°F / Gas Mark 4. Grease and line a 900g / 2lb loaf tin with parchment paper and set aside.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the hot water and golden syrup until combined. In a jug mix the brown sugar, vegetable oil, apple cider vinegar and vanilla extract to combine.
  • Place a sieve over a large mixing bowl, sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and a small pinch of salt.
  • Add both liquid mixtures to the bowl of dry ingredients and whisk until you have a smooth batter - it will be very runny.
  • Transfer the batter to the loaf tin and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  • Once baked leave the cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes, then carefully remove and place on a wire rack and allow to cool completely - at this point I recommend leaving the gingerbread overnight to let the flavours develop, but this is optional.
  • When the cake is cooled, now is the time to make the icing. Combine the icing sugar with the orange juice, adding more or less until you have the desired consistency. You don't want it too runny, but thick enough to coat the cake.
  • Drizzle the icing over the top of the loaf cake. Leave the icing to set before slicing. Store the cake in an airtight container or a cake plate with a cover for up to 3 days.

I love the flavour this tangy orange icing adds, but if you don’t have orange then a lemon is a good alternative or make your icing with water instead. The icing is optional as the loaf tastes gorgeous without it too.

We sliced our cake up and I served my slice with vegan whipped cream and orange zest. We all enjoyed this so much, we’re now even contemplating having it for Christmas Day pudding with toffee sauce. Yum!

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Baking · Biscuits and Cookies · Vegan

Vegan Shortbread

Easy 5 ingredient recipe for vegan Scottish-style shortbread biscuits. 

We’re edging closer to Christmas and now it’s November, I think it’s about time to let the festive baking truly begin. My first one of which I shared last week with these Orange Chocolate Orange Chip Cookies. As well as my previous recipe and this one I’m sharing with you today, over the weekend I photographed another Christmas recipe too. I’m on a roll with my festive creations for the blog and can’t wait to bake more!

One bake we indulge with over the festive season is shortbread. My shortbread recipes are greatly popular, with this Scottish Shortbread being one of the most viewed recipes ever and many of you have made this recipe and enjoyed it.

These shortbread biscuits have a delicate vanilla flavour and are crisp, crumbly and will just melt in your mouth. I used this Shortbread Biscuits recipe and swapped the butter for vegan baking block and upped the amount of sugar in the recipe slightly.

I use vanilla sugar and find that really enhances the flavour in this shortbread dough. You could also add some grated lemon, lime or orange zest. If you don’t have vanilla sugar, then add the seeds from a vanilla pod to your shortbread dough.

The shortbread dough is easy and speedy to make. Take softened vegan baking block and cream together with the caster sugar until fluffy. Now add the sifted flours (this recipe uses a mix of plain and self-raising flour, but using just plain flour is fine). Mix until a crumbly dough has formed and then wrap the dough up in clingfilm and chill it for a recommended 15 minutes.

Chilling the shortbread dough makes it easier when rolling the dough out and ensures that the biscuits will hold their shape during baking.

I sprinkle my shortbread biscuits with sugar before baking and little extra sugar after they’ve baked. But a light dusting of icing sugar also looks and tastes great too!

Once baked, decoration is optional, I add another sprinkling of caster sugar to the tops of my shortbread biscuits. You could dip or drizzle the biscuits with melted chocolate also.

Beautiful, sweet and crumbly shortbread biscuits. Skip buying tins of readymade shortbread this Christmas and make your own instead!

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Vegan Shortbread

Easy 5 ingredient recipe for vegan Scottish-style shortbread biscuits. 
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 20 biscuits
Author What Jessica Baked Next

Ingredients

  • 200 g vegan baking block softened
  • 100 g caster sugar (I use vanilla sugar)
  • 150 g plain flour
  • 150 g self-raising flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Decoration:

    Instructions

    • Line two large baking trays with parchment paper or silicone baking mats and set aside. Preheat oven to 160°C / 140°C Fan / 325°F / Gas Mark 3. Cream the softened vegan baking block and the sugar until light and pale in colour (about 1-2 minutes).
    • Now sift the flours and add to the creamed baking block and sugar mixture along with the vanilla extract. Continue to mix until a crumbly and soft ball of dough comes together. Don’t overwork the dough, try to touch it as little as possible. At this point you can wrap the dough in clingfilm and chill it for 15 minutes, however this is an optional step - it does make rolling the dough out easier.
    • On a lightly floured surface roll the dough out to about 1/2 cm thickness. Using your favourite biscuit/cookie cutters, cut out shapes from the dough and transfer to the lined baking trays. Sprinkle the top of each biscuit with a little extra sugar or you can dust each baked biscuit with icing sugar after baking if you prefer.
    • Bake the biscuits for 15-20 minutes until they’re crisp and slightly golden around the edges - all ovens are different so they may need baking for longer. I like adding a little extra sugar to the tops at this point.
    • Once baked, leave to cool on the baking trays for 5-10 minutes, then carefully transport to a wire rack and allow the biscuits to cool completely to room temperature.
    • Shortbread will keep in an airtight container for up to one week.

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    Baking · Chocolate · Cookies · Vegan

    Orange Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Orange chocolate chip cookies ready in one hour – these zesty cookies are sure to steal your heart if you love all things chocolate orange!

    I shared these Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies in January and have made those cookies many times since. Lately, I’ve been experimenting adding different flavours/ingredients to the original recipe.

    I will pretty much find any way of combining chocolate into a recipe! Chocolate can be paired with so many different flavours, my favourites are white chocolate and cranberry, dark/milk chocolate and peanut butter and chocolate and orange.

    The last flavour combination inspired me to share this new vegan cookie recipe!

    If you’re from the UK like me, then you’ll be familiar with Terry’s Chocolate Oranges. For anyone who’s never tried one of these, they’re basically chocolate shaped like an orange and you break off segments of the chocolate. Before going vegan, I was literally obsessed with TCO and would eat so much of this chocolate. But seeing as there’s no exact vegan version of a TCO currently available, I’ve made my own so I don’t have to miss out anymore!

    The cookie dough before baking: I love the big chunks of chocolate!

    To really get the orange flavour to come through in each bite of this cookie, I do my usual trick of rubbing the sugar and orange zest together before creaming with the butter. The natural oils in the orange zest release and they infuse into the sugar, making the baked cookies taste incredible with a hint of citrus.

    I took a few cookies into work for my colleagues to taste and they were well received, with one of my co-workers requesting the recipe. That’s the best feeling when you’ve made something, knowing someone has enjoyed what you’ve put your love and effort into!

    This recipe makes 15 deliciously soft, gooey cookies that have perfectly crispy edges. We love ours eaten fresh from the oven, but they are amazing warmed up in the microwave and topped with vegan whipped cream or ice cream!

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    Orange Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Prep Time 45 minutes
    Cook Time 12 minutes
    Total Time 57 minutes
    Servings 15
    Author What Jessica Baked Next

    Ingredients

    • 200 g dark or light brown sugar
    • Zest from 1 large orange
    • 112 g dairy-free baking block softened
    • 60 ml plant milk (my favourites are soya and oat)
    • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
    • 250 g plain flour
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
    • 2 teaspoons cornflour
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 100 g bar vegan dark chocolate broken into pieces
    • 125 g vegan dark chocolate chips plus extra to press into the tops of each cookie

    Instructions

    • In a large mixing bowl mix the sugar and orange zest together until the orange starts to release it's aroma. Now add the the softened plant butter to the bowl and beat until the mixture is creamy and fluffy.
    • Now add the plant milk and vanilla extract and mix to combine. The mixture might look like it's seperated at this point, but don't worry as once the dry ingredients are added the cookie dough will come together.
    • Place a sieve over the top of the mixing bowl and sift all the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cornflour and salt) and mix until a dough starts to come together.
    • Stir through the chocolate chips/chunks until evenly distributed throughout the dough. Cover the bowl and leave the dough in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes – this an optional step but I find it makes rolling the cookie dough easier, you can skip this step and roll the cookie dough straight away.
    • Preheat oven to 180°C / 160°C Fan / 350°F / Gas Mark 4. Line two large baking trays with baking parchment or silicone baking mats. Divide the dough into 15 equally sized pieces. I like to weigh mine to be exact (aim for approx. 60g portions). Place the balls of cookie dough out on the baking trays and leave room between each piece of cookie dough to allow the cookies to spread - I bake my cookies in batches, and usually only bake 4 on a tray at one time.
    • Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes or until they’ve turned a light golden colour. Once the cookies are out of the oven press a few extra chocolate chips/chunks into the tops of each cookie if desired.
    • Allow the cookies to cool completely on the baking trays – as they cool they’ll firm up.
    • Once the cookies are cooled store them in an airtight container. The cookies will keep for up to 3 days, but like most baked goods they’re best enjoyed on the day of baking. Try warming the cookies in the microwave and serving with either whipped cream or ice cream.

    Try these vegan cookie recipes next!

    Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Pret’s Dark Chocolate Almond Cookies

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    Baking · Biscuits and Cookies · Cheesecake · Chocolate · No-Bake

    3 Ingredient Oreo Truffles

    Cookies and cream cheesecake truffles. Crushed Oreo cookies are mixed with cream cheese, rolled into balls and coated with melted chocolate. This is an easy and fun recipe everyone will enjoy getting involved in making!

    Originally posted in February 2015, recipe and photographs updated October 2021.

    Oreo + cheesecake + chocolate = one heavenly creation!

    I first made this recipe for my blog in 2015 and now years later, I’ve updated the recipe with clearer instructions and improved photography.

    This year I’ve been focussing on vegan baking and cookery, but some recipes like this one can easily be veganised with some simple ingredient swaps.

    The biscuit/cookie we’re using is a Oreo. If you weren’t already aware, Oreos are 100% vegan-friendly so there’s no need to substitute. If you fancy something different to Oreos, why not try bourbon cream biscuits instead or another biscuit/cookie you enjoy.

    My original recipe uses full-fat cream cheese, I’m using a tub of my go-to vegan cream cheese, which is a coconut based cream cheese alternative. I use it in my Vegan Biscoff Cheesecake and No-Bake Vegan Cheesecake recipes.

    So to make this easy truffle recipe, you start by crushing the Oreos – there’s no need to remove the crème filling.

    Tip the Oreo crumbs into a mixing bowl and add the cream cheese. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, mix the two ingredients together until the mixture has begun to clump/stick together.

    Take a teaspoon measure and scoop pieces of the creamy Oreo mixture and roll into balls. Continue doing this until all the mixture is used up. I made 25 truffles in total, but how many you make will depend on how big or small you roll the truffles.

    Place the Oreo truffles on a tray or container that’s been lined and chill for at least one hour. This allows the Oreo balls to firm up enough, so they won’t fall apart when dipping into the melted chocolate in the next step.

    You can make the recipe up to this step and leave them to chill overnight, I did this and found coating the truffles easier.

    To coat the truffles, take your favourite chocolate, either dark chocolate, milk or white chocolate and melt the chocolate. Dip each Oreo ball one at a time in the melted chocolate, coating the entire Oreo ball completely, shake off the excess chocolate using a fork and place the Oreo balls on a lined baking tray.

    Once they’re all coated in chocolate, place the Oreo truffles back in the fridge for another 30 minutes or until the chocolate has set – at this point you can decorate further by drizzling the tops of each truffle with melted white chocolate and scatter over extra Oreo crumbs.

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    3 Ingredient Oreo Truffles

    Cookies and cream cheesecake truffles. Oreo cookies are crushed and mixed with cream cheese, rolled and then generously coated in melted chocolate.
    Course Dessert
    Prep Time 1 hour 10 minutes
    Servings 25
    Author What Jessica Baked Next

    Ingredients

    • 400 g Oreos (don't remove the crème filling)
    • 200 g cream cheese
    • 375 g chocolate (dark, milk or white chocolate)
    • 35 g white chocolate (optional for decoration)

    Instructions

    • Line a large baking tray with parchment paper and set aside. Crush the Oreos in a food processor or in a sealed food bag until they're fine crumbs.
    • Tip the Oreo crumbs into a large mixing bowl and add the cream cheese. Stir the Oreo crumbs and cream cheese together until the mixture starts to clump/stick together.
    • Take a teaspoon of the Oreo mixture at a time and roll into a ball. Place the Oreo truffles on the lined baking tray and chill for one hour until firm. You can chill these overnight if you want to.
    • Melt the chocolate and dip each Oreo truffle one at a time in the melted chocolate, coating the truffles completely. Using a fork, carefully remove the truffles and leave and place on the lined baking tray. Pop the truffles back in the fridge for about 30 minutes or until the chocolate has set.
    • This step is optional, but I like to decorate my truffles with some melted white chocolate and extra crushed Oreos. Once I've decorated the truffles, I place them back in the fridge until the chocolate drizzle has set and then serve.
    • The Oreo truffles will keep stored in the fridge in an airtight container/covered plate for up to one week.

    The truffles will keep in the fridge for up to one week, but they can frozen for up to 3 months. I saved some truffles and stashed them away in the freezer ready for when a chocolate craving hits!

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