Review & giveaway: Wholesome Chow
Though I’m usually more than happy to make cakes and cupcakes from scratch, life sometimes gets in the way. Maybe I’m out of an ingredient, or I’m low on time, or I’m already so mentally taxed that even searching for a recipe sounds grueling. It’s in these moments that a boxed or bagged cake mix starts to sound appealing to me.
Enter Wholesome Chow’s decadent vegan baking mixes. In luscious flavors like Chocolate Lavender Cake, Chai Spice Cake, and Homestyle Cornbread, there’s a mix for everyone in their line. Southern Californians are lucky to have Jeffrey and Veronica, the co-creators, in their area, where they hold awesome-sounding monthly veg cooking club events, but fortunately for the rest of us, the fruits of their talents are just a click away. Veronica was kind enough to send me two of their cake mixes to try out for myself, Lemon Poppyseed Cake and Vanilla Cupcake.
I’m a huge fan of anything vanilla (more so than chocolate, even), so I couldn’t wait to try the cupcakes. I immediately loved the ingredient list: organic unbleached white wheat flour, organic evaporated cane juice, vanilla extract powder, all-natural cornstarch, aluminium-free baking powder, baking soda, evaporated sea salt, and pure love. In other words, there’s nothing there that I wouldn’t put in a from-scratch cake in my own kitchen. All I had to supply was some nondairy milk, canola oil, and apple cider vinegar. The batter mixed up creamy and pale yellow, and it tasted fabulous.
I made my cupcakes mini—portion control, you know, although that backfired a little as I spooned out the batter (there was enough there for probably 26-28 mini cupcakes, and my pan only held 24, so what’s a girl to do with leftover egg-free, dairy-free batter?!).
They baked up to be some of the most precious and perfect little cuppycakes I’ve ever made!
Seriously—just look at those flawless domes!
Too cute! Obviously, I couldn’t serve them naked, so I whipped up a quick vegan vanilla buttercream to pipe on top.
Quick vegan vanilla buttercream
½ cup (1 stick) Earth Balance margarine, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp almond milk
Cream the margarine with an electric mixer until smooth. With the mixer on low speed, add the sugar, vanilla, and almond milk and beat until combined. Turn the mixer to high speed and beat for 3-5 minutes, until light and creamy. Add more powdered sugar if the frosting is too thin, or more almond milk if it’s too dry. Then frost away!
My frosting is pretty damn good, but these cupcakes were EXCELLENT. The flavor was exactly what a vanilla cupcake should taste like, and the cakes themselves had a great fluffy texture and a tender crumb. The fact that they only required one bowl and 30 minutes to make is just icing on the [cup]cake! Whether you’re a baking novice, a time-crunched baker, or just in the mood to try something new, I’d recommend giving Wholesome Chow a try.
ALMOST VEGAN GIVEAWAY #5
Since Veronica at Wholesome Chow sent me two mixes, I’m giving the second one away to one of you! The winner will receive one bag of Wholesome Chow’s vegan Lemon Poppyseed Cake mix. (Ingredients: organic white wheat flour, organic evaporated cane juice, vanilla extract powder [vanilla extract, dextrose], organic poppyseeds, all-natural cornstarch, aluminium-free baking powder, baking soda, evaporated sea salt, and pure geniune love. In order to bake it, you will need: nondairy milk, canola oil, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice and zest, and lemon extract.)
HOW TO ENTER: Leave a comment below telling me which of Wholesome Chow’s decadent vegan baking mixes sounds yummiest to you!
For extra entries (***leave an additional, separate comment for each one***):
–“Like” Wholesome Chow on Facebook
–Follow Wholesome Chow on Twitter
–Sign up to receive the Wholesome Chow newsletter
–Link to this giveaway on your blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc.
–Subscribe to my blog by email, RSS, Google reader, etc.
–Add me to your blogroll (or let me know I’m already on there)
–“Like” Almost Vegan on Facebook
–Follow Almost Vegan on Twitter
The deadline for entries is Friday morning, August 27th, at 9:00am CST. Since I’m footing the bill on shipping for this giveaway, I’m leaving it open internationally!
I’ll be choosing the winner at random. Good luck!