Cinnamon Donut Cake

I set out to make a cinnamon flavored bundt cake.  I ended up with a gigantic cinnamon glazed donut.

Or at least that what it tastes like.

Mmmm…. donuts.

Cinnamon Donut Cake – Vegan and Gluten Free

makes 1 small cake, or 1 very big donut



  • 3/4 cup sorghum flour
  • 3/4 cup potato starch
  • 1/2 tapioca flour
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups vegan granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 2 tbsp vinegar
  • 2-3 tsp cinnamon


  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 3 tbsp non-dairy milk
  • 1 tbsp corn syrup


Preheat oven to 325 °F.  Lightly grease a standard sized bundt cake pan.

In large bowl, mix together sorghum flour, potato starch, tapioca flour, brown rice flour, xanthan gum, baking powder and salt. In mixing bowl, combine olive oil, vanilla and sugar.

Add flour mixture to sugar and olive oil gradually, alternating with the almond milk until all ingredients have been used. Your batter will be very sticky!  Add vinegar, one tablespoon at a time. Fold in cinnamon.

Spread batter evenly into prepared cake pan.

Bake at 325 degrees about 55 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.

Let cake cool and make icing by combining all icing ingredients until very smooth.  Drizzle, slather and spread onto cake. Sprinkle with a touch more cinnamon.

Let icing become hard and serve with coffee. :)

This cake seriously tastes like a cake donut.

I ate so much of this stuff. I would recommend you do the same.

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62 Responses to Cinnamon Donut Cake

  1. julie says:

    Hi there, could I use a prepared gluten-free flour mix instead of mixing my own like your recipe calls for? I have xanthan gum… also do you think the icing would work without the corn syrup? I have to make a gluten-free cake for a baby shower, and I’d really like to try this one! :)

    • admin says:

      Hi Julie!
      yes, I think that all should work. Many of the mixes come with xanthan added too, so be sure to check. If you have agave or maple, try subbing the corn syrup with either of those. Have a great shower!

  2. Jen says:

    This cake was super yummy! I am not very experienced with gluten free baking, but your instructions were spot on. The cake was a little more doughy/chewy than traditional wheat-based cakes I’ve made, but still totally delish. My icing didn’t look quite as nice as yours – more runny. Still, this cake was a hit, both for dessert and for breakfast :)

  3. Karen says:

    One more question! Do you think it would work with all sorghum instead of sorghum and brown rice? Thanks!

  4. Karen says:

    This looks delicious! Could the olive oil be replaced with canola oil?

  5. Linda says:

    In the case of a nut and soy allergy,can I substitute rice milk for the almond milk?

  6. Laura says:

    This is the first gluten-free cake I’ve made and for some reason it did not work out. It came out really really dense and hard to cut. I could not find sorghum flour so I replaced it with brown rice flour. Could that have been the culprit? Or do I just really suck at gluten-free baking? :)

    • allyson says:

      Not seeing exactly what happened in the kitchen (baking can be super finicky, and if you’re not used to gf baking, it can SEEM even more finicky than regular ;) but I’d guess yes, it’s the flour switch. In my experience, regular brown rice flour is just too grainy/dense to sub in for sorghum in many of my recipes 1:1. I use sorghum a lot because of it’s similarity to wheat flour and it works best with brown rice flour if it’s the majority of the mix. Another one to experiment with is Authentic Foods Superfine Brown Rice flour. It’s fast becoming a standard in many gf baker’s kitchens… and for good reason, it rocks!

      –And I’m sure you don’t just really suck at gluten-free baking! A good cake made with all regular brown rice flour would be a tricky one to pull off! <3

      • Laura says:

        Thanks a lot Allyson! I will be sure to try this recipe out again once I find some sorghum flour. I’m determined to go a month gluten-free, to see if I feel better off gluten.

  7. jo says:

    Can I substitue anything for the sugar? agave, maple syrup?
    Also, instead of coconut oil what else could I use?

    Looks amazing!

  8. rachel says:

    anything i could use in the icing besides corn syrup? hmm maybe agave? corn syrup scares me

    • allyson says:

      Hey Rachel,

      You could try maple syrup or agave absolutely. You could also just leave it out entirely and get a less “glossy” of a glaze. :)

  9. […] I’ve been very happy to find some sites with recipes that are both gluten free and vegan to explore.  But with the pain and exhaustion of RA I don’t always have the energy to bake the things I have researched.  Yesterday, for Mark’s birthday, I tried Manifest Vegan’s Cinnamon Donut Cake.  http://www.manifestvegan.com/2010/09/cinnamon-donut-cake/ […]

  10. Jen says:

    I am thinking of making this for my husband’s birthday. We are allergic to potatoes here, though. What do you think would be the best sub for the potato starch?

    • allyson says:

      Hi Jen…. I bet cornstarch would work well in place of potato. :)

      • Jen says:

        I used a little extra of each of the other flours and this was AWESOME! The best vegan and gluten free dessert I’ve made so far. I blogged about making it, linking back to your recipe. Thanks for such a wonderful one!

  11. Erika says:

    This is so inspiring! I was Googling “Donut Cake” for a recipe for my boyfriend’s birthday. Little did I know, this already existed in my “fav blogs” list. :)

  12. KT says:

    I made this for my partner’s birthday! He didn’t have an opinion on what cake he wanted, so I asked if I could make a giant cinnamon donut and he said yes! We are not gluten-free, but I made it that way because one of the b-day party guests was. The gluten-eating omnivores all loved it. Only one person told me she didn’t care for the texture with the GF flour, but the others couldn’t even tell. I did serve it with soy ice cream and would highly recommend this!

  13. Stephanie says:

    We love this! We are not gluten free so I normally only use your older recipes, but the kids spied this while I was looking for a cake recipe and begged for it. It looked so good I was glad to try it. I put 1 cup whole wheat flour and 1.5 cups unbleached white flour. It seemed to much like dough and not batter so I added about 1/4 cup more almond milk and it turned out amazing. I don’t know how it compares to the GF version, but it really turned out yummy! Even hubby who is not big into sweets had 2 pieces. We will make this again!

    • allyson says:

      So glad Stephanie! Thank you for your kind words, and especially for sharing that it worked with gluten… a definite plus with the versatility! (this gluten free version is one of my favorites, and I am sure it would be just as tasty the way you made it) <3

    • Stephanie says:

      This is still our go to cake. My son requests is for his birthday and we make it for almost every holiday….and sometimes just because!

  14. Brandae says:

    Hi! I just found your blog and am incredibly excited!!!! I am a new vegan (since October 2010) and also have food allergies to work around (soy, corn, peanut, walnut, wheat). Your recipes look very promising to me. I do have a question that you might be able to help me with – I keep running into desserts that call for confectioner’s sugar – is there a corn-free alternative? Can I process sugar myself and add arrowroot starch if needed? Thanks!

    • allyson says:

      hi Brandae,

      Thank you… I am so glad that you think that some of my recipes will work for you!
      Regrading the confectioners sugar: that is a good question! I would think that per 1 cup of regular sugar if you added 1 tbsp of arrowroot and pulverized them together, that it would work out great. You could also try subbing the cornstarch with tapioca starch. :D Best of luck!

  15. Alta says:

    OMG. Strongly considering making this for breakfast. If only I could somehow rationalize that eating a giant cinnamon cake donut was healthy…lol! Is that a regular sized bundt pan? Thanks for linking up to GF Holiday!

    • allyson says:

      haha :) Yep, that’s a regular sized bundt cake pan.
      ~it’s totally healthy, btw. Cinnamon has many nutritional properties! ;)

  16. Yum. With Hanukah coming, these are on my must make list. One of the classic Hanukah foods, besides potato latkes, is soufganiyot – typically a fried donut. But I will bend the rules and make this cake as its’ cousin. Thanks for the inspiration!

  17. Mo says:

    Donut cake?! Drool.

  18. Keesha says:

    I just made this cake, and my donut-loving husband is so very glad I did! Everyone else in the house is pretty happy about it, too. :) Glad I found your website through glutenfreefeed…can’t wait to try some of your other recipes!

  19. MB says:

    Just curious as to whether you can make this glutenized? I don’t have all the gluten-free flours/specialty ingredients but this looks scrumptious. Would replacing them with whole wheat pastry flour or all purpose flour work? Thanks!

    • allyson says:

      Hi MB,

      I would think if you replaced all the gf flours and xanthan with ap or wheat flour, the recipe would work similarly. The texture may be a tad different… but I think it would be worth a shot! :)

      If you give it a go..lemme know how it turns out!

  20. HbNKt says:

    Looks divine! We just bought local apple cider, so I think the two will go hand in hand. Mind if I repost this recipe to my blog (with due credit, of course)?

    • allyson says:

      I do not mind if you repost this recipe, and would very much appreciate you giving me the credit. :) Hope it turns out good for you!

  21. I am seriously about to RUN to my kitchen to make this. I love cinnamon, I love donuts, and I love cake….this looks like a WIN WIN WIN. You, as always, are a genius! Thank you for yet another fabulous recipe. Gorgeous photos, too!

  22. Mihl says:

    There’s too much donut talk around me these days. Way too much. That cake looks like it has the perfect cake texture.

    • allyson says:

      thank you Mihl! I really enjoyed the texture, especially against the thin crackle of the icing covering it. So good!
      Sorry about adding to the donut talk- must be in the air. :)

  23. […] am very pleased to post my first fellow vegan blogger interview.  I reached out to Allyson at Manifest Vegan when I first started blogging because while searching for gluten free, vegan dishes for my daughter […]

  24. Laurel says:

    Oh my gosh! I tuned in to glutenfreefeed first thing this morning as always and what did I see? Oh my gosh, oh my goodness, oh do I have any sorghum flour, should I try it with the flour mix I do have? Why am I typing when I should be in the kitchen making this? If it only takes like 2 hrs to make, bake and cool would I still be able to eat an entire blueberry cake donut the same day? Yeah for cake donuts. I never could decide if my favorite was blueberry or chocolate but c’mon cinnamon? And I don’t have to fool with yeast and even better I don’t have to wait. I do however, have to order new pants because I had to lie down on my bed and suck in my stomach to get my pre Manifest Vegan addiction ones on.

  25. Noelle says:

    So I have the cake in the oven right now. I had a question about the vinegar. What does this do? Were you making a “buttermilk” substitution? Very curious as to why it is not in the milk. I am looking forward tasting this! Thanks for the inspiration!

    • allyson says:

      oh wow, that was quick! cool!
      Since I very first started baking vegan, I have always relied on vinegar or lemon juice as my favorite egg substitute in cakes… and have always added it the end, just because it kinda foams everything together nicely at that point. But, yeah, in this case, it very well may double as a “buttermilk” too— I’d like to experiment with that one and see how much (if any) a difference it makes when and where the vinegar is added! Thanks for the question, Noelle… and I hope it turns out well! :)

  26. Katrina says:

    Holy yum!! A giant donut is heaven in my book!!

  27. Completely brilliant! I will try this soon…cinnamon + donut + cake…does it get better?! Also, thanks for submitting to GlutenFreeFeed!!!

  28. Love this…we make cake donuts, but never a large one. YUM!

  29. Ill take a cinnamon donut cake over a cinnamon bundt cake anyday! ;)

  30. Ricki says:

    I’ve always hated yeast-based donuts but LOVED the cake ones. I’d be afraid to make this cake!

    • allyson says:

      Ricki, I always felt the same way! Never understood all the hype over “Krispy Kremes”… but I could devour a few cake donuts in one sitting! I especially loved the blueberry ones -drool.

  31. Amey says:

    whoa. my mind is blown. sounds incredible, looks beautiful, and gluten-free!!! most excellent!

  32. that looks insanely delicious!

  33. SugarBear says:

    Must. Have. Now.

  34. Dianne says:

    A giant cinnamon glazed doughnut? How could I not be drooling right now?

  35. Lauren says:

    A giant glazed doughnut! LOVE it :)

  36. Noelle says:

    You gave me a raison d’etre! At least a reason to bake tonight! I have everything in my pantry! Yay!

  37. Kristin says:

    WOW!!!!!! looks so awesome! thanks!!!