This is a super quick and easy recipe for a delicious, moist classic German fruit cake (fruit flan) made of vegan sponge cake, creamy dairy-free custard, juicy fresh fruits and colorful mixed berries. With these foolproof step-by-step instructions, the recipe video and helpful tips, your vegan fruit cake will be the best you ever had!
The Best German Fruit Cake made Vegan
A simple fruit cake recipe is something you should always have on hand, right? And as we know, grandma’s recipes are always best! So once again, I created the vegan version of grandma’s favorite fruit cake with custard, also called fruit flan or “Obstkuchen” in German!
What should I say? This fruity cake is just a dream, although it is made super easily and vegan! You have to try it!
Simple eggless sponge cake base
The vegan vanilla sponge cake batter is super easy to make in just 5 minutes without eggs, dairy milk or butter and takes less than 30 minutes to bake. Once it’s done and cooled, you can top it with desired toppings!
Vegan fruit cake like grandma’s original
For the vegan cake batter you need only simple and inexpensive pantry staple ingredients such as flour, cornstarch, baking powder, sugar, plant milk, oil and a pinch each of salt and vanilla. While my grandma uses butter and eggs for her traditional sponge cake base, I used oil and cornstarch in combination with a little more plant milk as an egg substitute instead, which works just as well!
The result is a wonderfully soft, fluffy and moist vegan fruit cake base that comes very close to the German original!
What fruit to use for topping?
I topped my fruit tart with apricots, kiwi, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cherries, and watermelon. However, feel free to use other fruits like apples, grapes, nectarines, peaches, mango, etc. – just get creative!
If you don’t have fresh fruit, you can use drained canned ones like tangerines, pineapples, peaches and more!
No matter which fruit mixture you choose – your colorful fruit flan is guaranteed to impress your whole family!
How to make German fruit cake
As always, I recommend watching the recipe video and these step-by-step instructions first. Then you’ll find the full recipe with exact measurements in the recipe card below!
Step 1: Whip up the cake batter
First, make a classic vegan sponge cake batter. To do this, first sift flour, cornstarch, baking powder and vanilla into a bowl. Then add sugar and salt and whisk everything together. Next, combine soy milk, oil and apple cider vinegar in a container. Then add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir everything together to form a smooth batter.
Tip: If you like, you can also bake a vegan chocolate sponge cake and top it with chocolate pudding and bananas. However, you can also make a traditional fruit tart or pie using this vegan pie crust recipe.
Step 2: Bake the cake and cook the custard
Now pour the batter into a greased fruit tart pan, smooth it out and bake for about 25 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Then allow to cool while cooking the custard cream according to this recipe.
Note: For my fruit tart, I used soy quark (thick dairy-free greek-style yogurt) instead of vegan cream cheese to make the tart higher in protein and lower in fat. However, feel free to fold in whipped cream to make a custard mousse or just cook a classic vegan custard with no extras.
Step 3: Top your tart with custard and fruits
Immediately spread the custard on the cake base and top with fruit. Finally, cook the cake glaze according to package directions and drizzle it over the fruit slowly. Allow to set and garnish with pomegranate seeds, daisies and desiccated coconut. Enjoy!
How can I make vegan cake glaze?
If you can’t find packaged vegan cake glaze in the supermarket, you can easily make it yourself by stirring 1 tablespoon of cornstarch into 1 cup of liquid. Then bring to a boil and cook until thickened.
- To make red cake glaze, you can use red fruit juice such as grape, strawberry, raspberry or red currant juice.
- To make white cake glaze, you can use light fruit juice such as apple juice, white grape juice or just water with a little sugar or syrup to taste.
Which baking pan for fruit tart?
If you want to top your German fruit cake with custard, I recommend using an original German fruit cake pan with folded edges and non-stick coating. It has a convenient flat mold in the center into which you can add the custard and the fruit along with the cake glaze.
If you don’t have that baking pan, you can also bake the cake in a regular round springform pan and layer it using a cake ring (as shown in my strawberry custard cake recipe). Or you can bake small tarts that you can easily eat out of your hand. Especially with kids, at birthday or summer parties, colorful fruit tarts are always a hit!
Can I make the cake ahead?
The sponge cake can be baked the day before and topped the next day. However, you can also assemble the entire fruit cake in advance. Then you can serve it to your guests the next day with no fuss.
What to store fresh fruit cake?
The cake glaze helps the fruit to stay fresh and juicy longer. So you can keep fresh fruit tart, pies and cakes in the refrigerator for around 3 days, depending on the fruit you use. However, fresh fruit tart and pies do not freeze well.
This colorful German Fruit Cake is:
- Dairy-free (lactose-free)
- Can be made gluten-free
- Quick and easy to make
- Soft and fluffy
- Topped with creamy custard and fresh fruit
- Juicy and fruity
- The perfect dessert for any occasion!
More delicious vegan fruit cake and tart recipes:
- Lemon Strawberry Tart
- Mango Cheesecake
- Strawberry Cheesecake
- Blueberry Cheesecake
- Blackberry Mousse Tart
- Summer Fruit Tart
- Raspberry Cheesecakes
- Apricot Cakes
- Blackberry Mini Cheesecakes
- Coconut Raffaello Cheesecake
- Strawberry Cream Cake
- Lemon Bars
- Blueberry Chia Pudding Cake
- Strawberry Custard Cake
If you try this fluffy and moist vegan fruit flan, feel free to leave me a comment and a star rating! And if you take a photo of your cake and share it on Instagram, please tag me @biancazapatka and use the hashtag #biancazapatka because I love seeing your remakes! Happy baking! 🙂
Vegan Fruit Tart with Custard (German Fruit Cake)Author:
You do not have a fitting cake pan at hand right now? Try my Cake Pan Conversion Calculator!
- 2 cups (240 g) all-purpose or spelt flour or gluten-free flour
- 2 tbsp cornstarch or vanilla custard powder
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ⅔ cup (120 g) sugar
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 pinch ground bourbon vanilla or 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup (240 g) soy milk or other plant milk
- ½ cup (100 g) vegetable oil e.g. canola, sunflower, or Alba oil
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar or white vinegar
- 1 recipe vanilla custard cream
- 17.6 oz (500 g) fruits variety of choice
- 1 package vegan cake glaze see notes for homemade version
*Note: Check out the recipe video + step-by-step instructions above!
- Preheat the oven to 356 °F (180 °C) and grease an 11-inch (28-cm) fruit tart pan.
- Sift the flour, cornstarch, baking powder and vanilla into a bowl. Then add the sugar and salt and whisk together.
- In a measuring cup, combine soy milk, oil and vinegar, then stir it into the flour mixture.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smooth it out and bake for about 25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Then turn out onto a cake plate as shown in the recipe video and allow to cool completely.
- Prepare the custard according to this recipe. Then spread on the cake and top with desired fruits.
- Prepare the cake glaze according to package directions and drizzle over the fruits. Allow to set before cutting and garnish with pomegranate seeds and desiccated coconut if desired.
- Baking pan: You can also bake the sponge cake base in a round springform pan as instructed in this recipe. Just make sure to adjust the quantities as you will need less batter when using a round pan.
- Chocolate fruit cake: If you like, you can also bake a chocolate sponge cake and top it with chocolate pudding and bananas.
- Pie Crust: You can also make a traditional tart or pie using this vegan pie crust recipe.
- Custard: When making the custard cream, I used soy quark (thick dairy-free yogurt) instead of vegan cream cheese for my fruit tart to make it higher in protein and lower in fat. However, you can also fold in whipped cream to make a vanilla custard mousse or simply cook a classic vegan vanilla custard with no extras.
- Cake glaze: I used this vegan cake frosting. Optionally, stir 1 tbsp cornstarch into 1 cup apple juice (or water + 2 tbsp sugar) and bring to a boil until it thickens.
- More helpful tips and information, including instructions for making ahead, storing, and freezing, as well as recipe variations for other toppings and fruits, are mentioned in the blog post above!
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