Vegan Panettone

by Zelda Green

Get in the festive spirit this month with this fluffy, sweet, citrus Italian bread know as Panettone. Thanks to Healthy 'n Happy for another delicious creation and for putting a healthy, vegan, and dairy free twist on this old favourite.

Serves 10-15


1 cup + 2 tablespoons (285mL) warm soy milk (temperature between 43°- 46°C / 110°-115°F)

1 ½ tablespoons (14g) instant dried yeast

½ cup (75g) Niulife Coconut Sugar

½ cup (120g) Niulife Coconut Oil

1½ teaspoon vanilla extract

zest and juice of 1 orange

zest of 1 lemon

3 ½ cups (550g) plain all-purpose flour

¼ teaspoon salt

½ cup (150g) mixed dried fruit

2 tablespoons (30mL) water


  1. Mix the warm soy milk with the yeast and 1 teaspoon of the coconut sugar. Leave to activate for 10 minutes. The mixture will look foamy on top.
  2. Add the remaining sugar, coconut oil and vanilla into the bowl of a stand mixer with the mixer attachment on and cream together for 1 minute, until fluffy and creamy. Add in the orange and lemon zest and mix to combine.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour and salt. Add to the coconut oil mixer and begin mixing on a low speed. Slowly pour the activated yeast mixture into the bowl and mix to combine. Swap the attachment to the kneading hook and knead for 10 minutes, until it is soft and stretchy.
  4. Form the dough into a ball and place in a large greased bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel and place in a warm environment for 1-2 hours until doubled in size. Here's what I do. Preheat my oven to 40°C, turn it off and place the bowl in there with the oven door closed.
  5. Meanwhile mix the dried fruit, water and the orange juice into a small saucepan and gently simmer over a low heat for 4-5 minutes, until the liquid has been absorbed and the fruit is plump. Leave to cool.
  6. Lightly grease and line with baking paper a panettone tin or a 20cm round cake tin. If using a cake tin, allow the baking paper to come up 5cm from the top of the cake tin. This is to help keep the panettone contained as it rises and bakes.
  7. Once the dough has finished rising, place on a lightly floured surface and gently knead to push out the air. Gradually knead in the dried fruit mix until it’s evenly incorporated. Form into a ball and place into the lined tin, cover with the kitchen towel and prove again for an hour until it has doubled in size and risen to the top of the cake tin.
  8. Preheat oven to 180°C /355°F and remove any racks from the oven so the panettone has plenty of room to bake.
  9. Brush the top of the cake with a little soy milk and sprinkle a generous amount of coconut sugar over the top. Bake for 35-45 minutes until golden and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Optional to dust with icing sugar before serving.