Deconstructed vegan roulade

Deconstructed Chocolate Kahlua Vegan Roulade

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This week in veganising Great British Bakeoff I decided to veganise a roulade. After observing that no one on Bakeoff was making vegan bakes, and the baker that many vegans had hoped would showcase plant-based baking turned out not to make any vegan bakes, I accepted a challenge from a friend to veganise a bake from Bakeoff each week.

Last week’s Bakeoff saw the bakers compete in Dessert Week to make three desserts — a roulade, marjolaine cake and mini mousse cakes. I’m not a huge fan of mousse and the marjolaine looked amazing but complex (I’ll save that for a special occasion I think!) so I decided to veganise the roulade.

I had never had vegan roulade – or for that matter any roulade – before and imagined it to be a kind of posh rolled Twinkie. According to the internet, a roulade is made of either sponge cake or meringue rolled around filling. The filling usually seems to be some kind of cream but some people use jam. I decided to make a whipped cream type filling with aquafaba (the amazing chickpea water that can be used to replace egg whites in vegan baking), though a taste tester, who is familiar with roulades, said that usually it’s a thicker cream filling.

I decided that the best flavour option for the roulade would be a vegan roulade version of my alcoholic chocolate Kahlua milkshakes, which I’m sure would be Mary Berry-approved (every baker on Bakeoff seems to know to always include a bit of alcohol in their bakes to please Mary).

I used the very first of a series of experimental aquafaba roulade cakes I found on the Facebook group Aquafaba (aka “Vegan Meringues Hits & Misses”). Unfortunately my sponge cake went a bit wrong and I ended up with a very thin cake in a large pan, and it didn’t roll. If I did it again, I’d use Moira’s most recent roulade recipe, which she developed after much testing. It’s a bit more complex though. Either that or I’d use a smaller cake tin!

At any rate, after my sponge cake crumbled upon rolling, I did what any desperate baker would do — I decided to rename my vegan roulade. Now it’s a deconstructed chocolate kahlua vegan roulade (see what I did there?!).

The flavour is amazing at any rate, deconstructed or not. Beware there are quite a few tablespoons of Kahlua in the cream so this cake packs a little punch!


Deconstructed Chocolate Kahlua Roulade



For the cake

  • Liquid from one tin of chickpeas
  • Caster (superfine) sugar 1/4 cup (60 g)
  • Flour 1/2 cup (65 g)
  • Cocoa powder 1/4 cup (25 g)
  • Vegetable oil 2 tsp
  • Baking powder 1 tsp

For the kahlua whipped cream

  • Liquid from 1 tin of chickpeas
  • Cream of tartar 1/4 tsp
  • Caster (superfine) sugar 1/2 cup (120 g)
  • Kahlua 5 tbsp



For the cake

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C / 350 F / gas mark 4.
  2. Whip the chickpea water with a stand mixer or a hand mixer until it forms soft peaks, then add the sugar and whip until stiff peaks.
  3. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and oil and fold in.
  4. Line a baking tin (I used a 12 x 6 tin but you might want to go smaller as my cake proved too thin) with parchment/baking paper.
  5. Spread the cake mix onto the parchment paper-lined tin and bake for 10-15 minutes, until the top is baked and is springy to the touch.

For the whipped cream

  1. Put the chickpea liquid and cream of tarter into a stand mixer or large mixing bowl and whip with a mixer until soft peaks form.
  2. Add the sugar, a little bit (about a tablespoon) at a time and whip until hard peaks form.
  3. Add the Kahlua one tablespoon at a time while whipping with the mixer.

To assemble the roulade

  1. If you’ve managed the make a cake that doesn’t fall apart when rolled, congratulations! Cool the cake on a cooling rack (with the parchment paper) for 10 minutes, then turn over onto another piece of parchment paper and peel off the parchment paper you baked it in.
  2. Spread the whipped cream onto the cake and roll up. Leave in the fridge for about an hour.
  3. If it starts to crack while you’re rolling, don’t panic. A few cracks in the cake are normal. And if there are too many, you can just scoop yours into a bowl for a deconstructed roulade, like I did. ;)


  • Kahlua is a coffee-flavoured liqueur from Mexico. Substitute other coffee liqueur if you can’t find it.
  • If you’re not sure what soft and stiff peaks are, there’s a handy video explaining what to look for here.

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4 thoughts on “Deconstructed Chocolate Kahlua Vegan Roulade”

  1. Oooh Kahlua – I love the stuff, and definitely need to cook with it more (or just buy a bottle). I’m with Mary – a bit of booze makes any bake better! I was so hopeful that there would be some vegan baking on the GBBO – but until there is, I’ll take this any time!

    • Cook with it, drink it, make milkshakes with it…endless possibilities! You definitely need a bottle! ;) I know, it’s a shame there hasn’t been more vegan baking but in the meantime I’m determined to veganise as much of it as I can!

  2. Tried this – a first for me with chickpea water. It whisked up beautifully but when I folded the flour and cocoa through it sank, and lost half its volume. Do I need to whisk it for longer or is this just what happens with chickpea water? Still tasted good though.


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Caitlin Galer-Unti

Hi, I’m Caitlin and I’ve been vegan since 2008 and vegetarian my whole life. Since going vegan, I’ve lived in 4 countries and travelled to over 30! I’ve also published two bestselling vegan books (The Essential Vegan Travel Guide and The Barcelona Vegan Guide) and had my work featured in The New York Times, Vegetarian Food & Living and Vegan Life magazine. I’ve veganised my life and I’m here to help you design your life around your vegan values. 


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