This Mangonada Cake was inspired by the classic Mexican street snack! It’s a sweet cake made from natural mango purée with sweet, tangy, and spicy chili lime buttercream, accented with chamoy and adorned with Mexican spicy candy, this cake is addictive in all the right ways!
It’s also totally dairy-free, egg-free, and soy-free if you use the recommended products. It can be modified to be gluten-free and no-added-sugar, as well. And it makes darn good cupcakes for those who don’t like to do cakes!
By far, this is my most popular cake flavor sold out of my little vegan cottage bakery in Texas.
So what is a mangonada? A mangonada (also known as a chamoyada or chamango depending on what part of Mexico you’re in) is frozen mango blended up with ice and served with chamoy sauce (explained below), chili powder, lime juice, and usually a tamarind-covered straw.
There’s just about nothing better on a crazy hot summer day.
The body of the cake is made with the mango version of my fruit smoothie cake. I use mango-peach Koolaid powder to really up the ante flavor-wise, but you can omit this if you’re wanting to go au natural.
The frosting is my chili-lime version of my easiest vegan buttercream ever. I use fresh squeezed key lime juice as the “liquid” addition as well as in place of the vanilla, and add a teaspoon of Mexican fruit chili seasoning with the powdered sugar. Trechas is my favorite commercial brand (and Tajin is wonderful if you want to avoid added sugar), but feel free to use whatever you prefer or even make your own! (And make sure you try it on your favorite fruit if you never have before!).
Apart from the buttercream between each layer, I also add a healthy amount of chamoy. If you’re not Hispanic or haven’t been exposed to a lot of Mexican food, you may not know what that is.. so, what is chamoy?
Chamoy is a glorious sauce made from concentrated fruit (usually plums) with chili and salt, and no mangonada is complete without it. It’s tangy, sweet, spicy, and all round wonderful. It’s used on fruit most of the time, but it gives this cake a wonderful, exotic kick! Its deep maroon color is also beautiful against the brilliant yellow frosting. My favorite is a brand I recently discovered called Joy Chamoy – it’s made just a few miles from where I live and it’s the most flavorful variety I’ve tasted!
If you prefer to order from Amazon, you can grab this variety and it will taste great as well.
Or just skip the shops and make your own!
I brush it directly on top of each layer of leveled cake – like one would a sugar syrup – before a healthy layer of buttercream and the next cake on top.
So this cake is, from the bottom up, mango cake – chamoy – chili lime buttercream – mango cake – chamoy – chili lime buttercream, as many layers as your heart desires. Then I cover the whole cake in the chili lime buttercream, pipe some sort of decoration in the buttercream on top (usually swirls or rosettes), and pour more chamoy all over the cake.
Watch me make it in this quick timelapse:
As the final touch, the cake gets adorned with spicy Mexican candy and another generous sprinkling of the fruit chili.
Just the Cupcakes, Ma’am.
For cupcakes instead of cake, just do the swirl of frosting, chamoy drizzle, chili sprinkle, then the candy on top. I’ve even served them with the chamoy inside a pipette instead of drizzled (for less mess during transport and sale).
You should be able to find the chamoy, fruit chili, and Mexican candies at your local Hispanic grocery or aisle, otherwise click on my links to find them on Amazon.
If you want to avoid the candy on the cake, it can definitely be served without. Try substituting dehydrated mango slices instead! Even better if you can find the chili lime variety!
The cake can be made up to five days before serving, but wait to put the chamoy and candy on until just before the cake is presented, though – as they can melt with the buttercream.
That’s it! It looks complicated, but once you have all the ingredients in order, it comes together easy peasy. And if you’ve ever had the privilege of enjoying a cool mangonada, hopefully this mangonada cake will bring back great memories!
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- 2.5 cups mango purée (540g)
- 2 cups sugar (400g)
- 2 tablespoons ground flax seed
- 5 tablespoons hot water
- 3.5 cups flour (440g)
- 2 teaspoons baking SODA (bicarb)
- 1 packet of Peach Mango Koolaid Powder (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 c chamoy
- Preheat your oven to 325°F (160°C) and prepare your cake pans (I like to use nonstick spray and a parchment paper circle inside the bottom).
- Prepare your flax eggs by mixing the ground flax and hot water in a small bowl or cup (1 tbsp of flax + 2.5 tbsp water = one flax egg - so you’re making two eggs here. Also, using hot water speeds up the process). Set aside.
- Add your flour, baking soda, salt, and KoolAid powder to a medium mixing bowl. Sift or whisk if you’d like.
- Add your mango purée and sugar to a large mixing bowl.
- Add your flax egg to the fruit/sugar once it’s goopy - after about ten minutes.
- Pour your dry ingredients into the wet, and fold them together using a silicone spatula until the batter doesn’t have any dry bits. Don’t stir! Fold!
- Pour half of the batter equally into your prepared pans.
- Drizzle equal parts of chamoy into each pan
- Pour the remaining batter equally into each pan
- Use a toothpick or knife to swirl the chamoy around
- Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. (Cupcakes take about 17 minutes)
- Proceed as usual and enjoy your cake!
*Use cup-for-cup stevia if you'd like to avoid added sugar, and substitute the chamoy with reduced prune juice with cayenne to taste.
*Use a cup-for-cup gluten-free flour replacement if you'd like to avoid gluten
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 148Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 8mgSodium: 153mgCarbohydrates: 33gFiber: 1gSugar: 18gProtein: 2g
This nutrition information has been calculated based on the recipe as written and with strawberry purée. These values will change if you alter the recipe.
- 1 cup room temp high-fat vegan butter* (two sticks)(I prefer Country Crock Plant Butter sticks for best and soy-free results)
- 3 cups powdered sugar (use Swerve Confectioner’s for a sugar-free version)
- 2 tbsp + 1 tsp lime juice
- 1-2 tsp chili lime fruit seasoning
- Yellow gel food color
- Add butter and two cups of powdered sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer equipped with the paddle attachment
- Mix on low/stir until completely incorporated
- Add the final cup of the powdered sugar and chili lime seasoning, and mix again on low/stir until completely incorporated
- Add your lime juice
- Mix on low until completely incorporated
- Use a rubber spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of your bowl
- Mix on low just until the mixture is fully combined and smooth
- Adjust the consistency by adding more juice by the teaspoon to thin, or more powdered sugar by the quarter cup to stiffen until desired consistency is reached
*For more info on vegan butters to use, check out my post at www.cookingoncaffeine.com/easiest-vegan-buttercream-ever
*If you use shortening, whip the mixture for 15 minutes or until it no longer has a greasy/waxy mouthfeel
*if you want the buttercream as silky smooth as possible, turn the mixer on low/stir and let it go for about a half an hour after you’re done mixing it
*for butter without palm oil, give Miyoko’s cultured butter a try
*for butter without soy, use Country Crock Plant Butter Sticks, Earth Balance Soy-Free, or Miyoko’s cultured butter.
*feel free to sift your powdered sugar if it’s very lumpy
*for crusting buttercream, add another one to two tablespoons of liquid, and use powdered sugar to bring back to consistency