Find out if frosting is vegan, which brands to buy, and lots of vegan frosting recipes to practice your pastry decorating skills!
The three contestants clasp their hands tightly and hold their breath as they watch excitedly.
The man in the suit picks up a large knife.
Then, he hovers it over the exquisite designer handbag on the pedestal before asking the magic question.
“Is it CAKE?!”, the host shouts the famous question.
The knife astonishingly cuts through the fancy handbag like vegan butter, revealing its clever secret.
The bag’s exterior folds down and the fondant icing collapses. Inside, you see a yummy cake and colorful layers of frosting.
That was no handbag. It was a carefully-detailed, edible work of art!
If you watch a lot of reality baking shows like this one, you know the side effects, especially if you already own an electric stand mixer and coordinated mixing bowls.
You will spend the next few days searching online for frosting recipes and ingredients.
But where can you buy ready-made vegan frosting? And if it’s hard to find in stores, can you make it at home with simple ingredients?
Let’s explore your options, starting with frosting sold in grocery stores.
Is store-bought frosting vegan?
Frosting is the ultimate in indulgence - a divine mix of butter, powdered sugar, and flavorings like vanilla extract or lemon. You can dye it in neutral hues, soft pastels, or the brightest of colors.
The good news is that many store-bought frosting brands are vegan.
It’s more of a coincidence though - it’s not that they specifically use vegan items like vegan margarine, coconut oil, or almond milk.
Before we examine the popular brands, let’s talk about what ingredients can make frosting non-vegan.
What non-vegan frosting ingredients should I avoid?
The vegan diet excludes any product made from animal products or animal-derived ingredients, such as:
- Dairy (e.g. milk, cream, cheese, and whey)
Strict vegans may also avoid any products with these ingredients:
- Palm Oil (not animal-derived but farming and harvesting practices for palm oil are controversial)
- Sugar (confectioner’s or powdered sugar) that has been processed with bone char
- Artificial Food Coloring (not animal-derived but tested on animals)
- Mono- and Diglycerides (emulsifiers that are sometimes animal-derived)
- Lactic Acid (created through the fermentation of certain starches or dairy products)
- Confectioner’s Glaze (made from bug secretions to give candy and other food products a shiny exterior)
For our classification below, we still consider these six items as vegan. If you do not, please verify the product ingredients for each frosting brand carefully before you buy.
And don’t worry, we have plenty of vegan frosting recipes for you to try!
|Betty Crocker||Rich & Creamy: Vanilla, Creamy White, Dark Chocolate, Milk Chocolate, Cherry and Lemon Whipped: Vanilla, Butter Cream, Chocolate, Fluffy White, Milk Chocolate, Strawberry Mist, and Whipped Cream||Rich & Creamy: Chocolate, Coconut Pecan, Cream Cheese, and Rainbow Chip Whipped: Cream Cheese|
|Duncan Hines||EPIC Fruity PEBBLES™ Creamy: Chocolate, Vanilla, Dark Chocolate Fudge, Cream Cheese, and Lemon Supreme Whipped: Vanilla, Chocolate, Cream Cheese and Fluffy White||EPIC Cookie Dough Creamy: Milk Chocolate and Strawberries ’n Cream|
|Pillsbury||Creamy Supreme®: Buttercream, Chocolate, Chocolate Fudge, Coconut Pecan, Cream Cheese, Lemon, Milk Chocolate, Strawberry, Vanilla, White, Salted Caramel, Cinnamon Bun, and Peppermint Funfetti®: Vanilla Marshmallow, Hot Pink Vanilla, Vanilla Frosting with OREO® Cookie Pieces, Aqua Blue Vanilla, Bold Purple Vanilla, Chocolate Fudge, Vanilla, Neon Yellow, Orange All Star™ Vanilla, Radiant Red Vanilla, Vanilla, Vibrant Green Vanilla, Galaxy Space Blue, Unicorn Vanilla, Llama Vanilla, Mermaid Strawberry, Midnight Black Chocolate, Halloween Vanilla, Holiday Vanilla, Spring Vanilla, Stars & Stripes® Vanilla, Valentine's Day Vanilla, Holiday Red Vanilla, Slime, and Winter Blue Vanilla||NOTE: The sprinkles or ‘candy bits’ included in the Funfetti varieties on the left contain confectioner’s glaze. If it doesn’t bother you, feel free to indulge!|
There are a few companies that focus specifically on vegan options:
Check your local grocery store or Whole Foods for availiability for these products, or try ordering online.
How to make homemade vegan frosting
If you want to skip the commercial frosting, we have many fun and easy vegan frosting recipes.
You can store your extra frosting in an airtight container in the fridge for a few weeks or freeze for up to six months.
Glaze is usually the thinnest type of frosting that you gently pour over your cake or other baked treats.
- This cream cheese glaze from One Green Planet looks delish!
- Try a mirror glaze from Cooking by Laptop to get a shiny effect on your more adventurous cakes.
- The brown sugar glaze from Simple Vegan Blog will soon cover all your new baking creations!
This type of frosting combines chocolate and cream so your spoon will be licked clean before it even reaches the dishwasher!
- Detoxinista shows you how to make vegan chocolate ganache with only two ingredients
- Try Addicted to Dates’ white chocolate bar recipe to make a luscious base for your white chocolate ganache frosting.
Ah, the frosting that will fool you into thinking that the pair of high heel shoes on the dessert table are totally wearable…until the birthday girl slices into them!
- Veena Azmanov’s recipe uses agar agar, a vegetarian gelatin, to create this incredible icing
- Bake with Neetu makes a version with plenty of flavoring
If you're looking for a versatile frosting recipe that rivals traditional frostings, try making a vegan buttercream frosting. It can be piped in gorgeous swirls over dainty cupcakes, in between layers of cake, or smoothed on thinly for a naked cake effect.
- My vegan buttercream recipe is creamy and easy to work with.
- Instead of a vegan vanilla frosting, try this version with rich chocolate flavor...it's sublime!
- Here’s a great tutorial on a mess-free way to fill your piping bag with frosting
This is the ideal frosting for holiday sugar cookies because it hardens within a few hours. To achieve that effect, you typically use powdered sugar, meringue powder, and water. Since you’re omitting eggs, Wallflower Kitchen shows you how to use an egg white substitute like aquafaba.
The best kind of fudge frosting is the chocolate kind!
- Jessica in the Kitchen converted her original recipe into a stunning vegan chocolate frosting and is perfect for pairing with not only chocolate cupcakes, but also delightfuly complements your favorite vegan vanilla cake
- Green Smoothie Gourmet proves naysayers wrong with this ‘healthy fudge’ recipe, using cocoa powder and melted chocolate
This thick, tangy vegan cream cheese frosting serves as the irresistible companion to vegan carrot cake or red velvet cupcakes, but it’s amazing on other baked goods too.
This fluffy frosting is light, refreshing, and pairs well with fruits for the ultimate summer dessert: strawberry shortcake. Keep it chilled since whipped cream frosting will not hold up well at room temperature.
While most store-bought frosting is vegan, you can easily make your own in your kitchen with classic vegan ingredients. Whether you're frosting cakes for special occasions or just because, we've got you covered.
And besides, you’ll need something nourishing and delicious to eat while you’re studying the antique sewing machine on your television screen to figure out, “Is it CAKE?!”.
More "Is it vegan?"
- Is cocoa powder vegan?
- Are M&Ms vegan?
- Are Oreos vegan?
- Are bagels vegan?
- Are pretzels vegan?
- Is peanut butter vegan?
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