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Veganized: Pig Pickin’ Cake

Have you ever been to a pig pickin’? I know: weird topic for a vegan blog, but stay with me here. A pig pickin’, also known as a pig roast, is where an animal that’s smarter than a three year old is roasted over a pit. Once roasted, the pig is laid out, pulled apart, and served. Sometimes, it’s even served whilst still in the shape of a pig. In college, when I first heard about this, I was appalled- how barbaric! However, I was south of the Mason-Dixon– and these cookouts are pretty common down south.

Anyway, at some of these pig roasts, there’s this amazing cake they’ll serve, appropriately called a “pig pickin’ cake”. I love cake, but frankly, you’d be hard-pressed to find a *~vegan~* recipe for this one. I mean, really: how many vegans do you think attend these cookouts? Zero. But with pineapple in the frosting and mandarin oranges in the cake, you can’t really beat it– especially for these warm, summer nights… so I was determined to make one myself!

To start off, I used this recipe from All Recipes and these ingredients, plus a banana.

pig pickin'

A banana in cake? Yes. There’s already so much added sugar from the Duncan Hines cake mix that I didn’t want to add in so much unnecessary oil. Instead of 4 tablespoons of coconut oil, I used one tablespoon plus a mashed banana. Did it work? Dave said it did– and it added even more fruitiness to the already delicious cake.

But this is important: make sure to specifically get this cake mix and the French vanilla pudding mix. These are the  “accidentally vegan” ones!

pig pickin'

Basically, you’re going to mix the egg replacer, cake mix, oranges + juice, mashed banana, and oil with a mixer. I highly recommend using a stand mixer, as this will help break up the oranges, but mixing roughly by hand should work too; you just don’t want any chunks in it.

pig pickin'

Separate this into three well-greased cake pans. Line the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper, if you have it, and bake according to recipe instructions.

pig pickin'

While this is baking, dump your frosting into a bowl. Make sure to get the larger can of whipped vanilla frosting; you’ll need it. Traditionally, this would be whipped cream or Cool Whip, but those aren’t vegan.

Next, you’re going to need to drain all of the liquid out of your crushed pineapple.

pig pickin'

This looks like sauerkraut, but it worked. Once pressed, pour it into the bowl with the frosting and pudding mix, and mix together.

pig pickin'

Once cooled, frost the cake. I wasn’t sure that the frosting would stick to the sides, so I didn’t frost them. However, I’d ‘lost’ a layer when removing them from the pans, so I used the remaining frosting to make ‘parfaits’ with the crumbled cake! Add pecans or walnuts if you have them– I had some left over in my freezer, which helped the cake feel a little more put-together.

pig pickin'

Ultimately, I’d say that this veganized cake is a win. Sure, you aren’t getting the “richness” from the eggs (or so they say), but who needs it? I wanted cake, and I got an even sweeter version of it… and I can live with that!

Questions for you:

What kinds of recipes have you tried to veganize? How did they turn out?

Have you ever seen this (or something like it) at a cookout?

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