Vegan lemon cupcakes, topped with a zesty lemon glace icing and sprinkled with pretty pastel sugar confetti. Rustle them up in no time for that last minute bake sale at school, children’s parties or for afternoon tea in the garden – Earl Grey with a slice of lemon for me!

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Lemon cupcakes in silicone cake cases sitting on a cooling rack.

Pastel colours and lemony flavours are markers for the beginning of spring for me.

My forsythia is covered in bright yellow blooms, delicate primroses are peeping at me prettily and daffodils are blowing their trumpets with aplomb. 

Close up of daffodils in a garden.

I love making cupcakes, it’s one of my favourite ways to de-stress and. I like the idea of meditation but I’m rubbish at it, my mind wanders about too much and I end up telling myself off, which doesn’t help me to calm down at all! Baking familiar recipes is much more calming.

Concentrating on weighing, mixing and tasting keeps my hands and mind occupied allowing stress to just drift away.

The heat of the oven, the comforting smell of baking permeating my home, hot cakes sitting on cooling racks waiting for all my people to tumble back in – this is my version of mindfulness. 

Glace icing topped with pastel star sprinkles on lemon cupcakes sitting on a wire cooling rack.

Cupcakes are also super easy to make with children, I think we have made more cupcakes and muffins together over the last 22 years than anything else! When three of us went vegan I was worried that these little bakes would be off the menu but no, vegan cupcakes turned out to be just as easy and just as tasty as the egg and dairy based ones – hoorah!

Close up of iced vegan lemon cupcakes on a cooling rack in front of potted hyacinth bulbs.

How to Make Vegan Cupcakes

Vegan cupcakes are so easy to make – no need for eggs or dairy here! Butter is easily replaced with a vegan option such as Vitalite and, for this recipe, I use cider vinegar and baking powder as my vegan egg replacer. They provide the fluffy lift which eggs traditionally give. I use this simple method in 99% of my baking but other vegan egg replacers include:

  • Bananas or apple sauce
  • Commercially produced egg replacement powder
  • Ground flax seeds and water
  • Silken tofu
  • Chia seeds
  • Arrowroot

For more information and suggestions to help veganise everything from butter to bacon try ‘The Complete Guide to Vegan Food Substitutions‘ by Celine Steen and Joni-Marie Newman (This is an affiliate link, if you buy through it it won’t cost you a penny more but will earn me a small commission)

Just take a look at that fluffy rise! The first bake of spring always has me reaching for these gorgeous reusable cupcake cases in pretty pastel colours – aren’t they adorable?!

Side view of Vegan lemon cupcakes topped with glace icing standing on a cooling rack.


Vegan Cake Decorations

  • These vegan cupcakes are topped with pastel icing flowers from Waitrose. It’s always such a delight to find vegan cake toppers but if you’re not sure what you are looking for on labels check out this Vegan Label Reading Guide on the Veganuary website. Label reading can seem daunting to begin with but it very quickly becomes second nature.
  • Edible flowers look beautiful on top of cakes. If you want to grow your own pansies, violas, nasturtiums, marigolds, tulips, sunflowers and honeysuckle work well. Alternatively buy edible flowers on line from Maddocks Farm Organics

Six vegan lemon cupcakes on a cake stand in front of a pot of hyacinths.

All that’s left is to serve them up on a pretty cake stand or wrap them up and put them in a basket before heading out for a picnic.

Vegan Lemon Cupcakes on a decorative plate.

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Vegan Lemon Cupcakes

Vegan Lemon Cupcakes

A simple recipe for vegan lemon cupcakes topped with lemon glace icing and pastel confetti. 
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Baked Goods, Cake
Cuisine: vegan
Keyword: lemon cupcakes, vegan cupcakes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 244kcal


  • 200 ml soya milk
  • 20 ml cider vinegar
  • 200 g self raising flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • pinch salt
  • 200 g golden caster sugar
  • 80 ml vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 unwaxed lemon
  • 150 g icing sugar


To Make Vegan Cupcakes

  • Preheat the oven to 180C/350F and line a 12 hole muffin tin with cupcake cases.
  • Mix the cider vinegar into the soya milk and leave to stand for 10-15 minutes until curdled.
  • Sift the flour, salt baking powder and bicarbonate of soda together into a large bowl. 
  • Stir in the caster sugar.
  • Whisk together the oil and vanilla and pour into the curdled milk.
  • Grate the zest of your lemon into the liquid mixture. 
  • Pour the liquid mixture into the flour mixture and fold together gently, using a metal spoon. Don't over mix your batter it should still be a bit lumpy. 
  • Spoon your batter evenly between your cake cases and pop into the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes until risen and brown. 
  • Leave to cool completely on a wire rack before icing.

To Make Lemon Glace Icing

  • Cut the lemon in half and squeeze to extract the juice. 
  • Sift the icing sugar into a large bowl.
  • Add lemon juice and mix together until smooth and runny.  
  • Spoon the icing onto your cupcakes, decorate with sugar confetti if desired and leave to set for about half an hour. 
  • These cupcakes keep well in an airtight tin for two to three days.


Nutritional information is only an approximate guideline. Calculations will vary according to the ingredients you use and your cooking methods.


Calories: 244kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Sodium: 36mg | Potassium: 63mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 66IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 1mg
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Iced lemon cupcakes on a metal cooling rack. Text says 'Easy Lemon Cupcakes, egg free, dairy free, vegan'.

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