Vegan Pumpkin Mochi Cake

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Rich, chewy slices of mochi infused with pumpkin and studded with chocolate chips. Vegan, gluten-free, and perfect for the holidays!

An autumn-y pumpkin version of my original vegan mochi cake, studded with chocolate chips this time because pumpkin + chocolate is the perfect dessert combo. This vegan pumpkin mochi cake is addictively chewy and dense like regular mochi, but sweeter and richer like a typical American dessert (but maybe not quite as heavy). If you’ve never had Hawaiian butter mochi before, you’re in for a treat!

Key Ingredients

  • Pumpkin Puree
  • Sugar ⟶ I used coconut sugar but brown sugar or regular granulated sugar will work. Coconut sugar and brown sugar add a slight molasses flavor that I think works well with the pumpkin.
  • Full-Fat Coconut Milk ⟶ This is essential to make the mochi rich and decadent! Do NOT replace with low-fat coconut milk or any other plant-based milk.
  • Mochiko*⟶ Japanese sweet rice flour. I don’t recommend using other types of sweet/glutinous rice flour as they likely won’t be as chewy as mochiko.
  • Chocolate Chips* ⟶ Technically optional but highly recommended.

How to Make

This pumpkin mochi cake is easy to throw together in just one bowl (yay for less dishes to wash!):

  1. Combine pumpkin, sugar, coconut milk, and vanilla. Sift in mochiko and baking powder and mix until well combined and smooth. Add chocolate chips and mix.
  2. Add batter to a greased baking dish. If your batter is lumpy, pour it into a sieve first and use a spatula to press the batter down into the baking dish to smooth out any clumps of flour.
  3. Tap the pan on the countertop a few times to release any air bubbles.
  4. Bake at 350°F for 1 hour, then cool completely at room temperature before slicing.

Pumpkin Mochi Cake Tips & Tricks

Make sure your batter is smooth ⟶ Mochiko often gets clumpy and if you’re not careful, you can end up with clumps of raw flour in your finished cake. To avoid this, sift the mochiko when you first mix the dry ingredients and again when you pour the batter into the pan. Do this by pouring some batter in a sieve and using a spatula or spoon to press the batter down, smoothing out any clumps.

Tap pan on counter ⟶ After all the batter is in the pan, tap the pan onto the counter a few times to release air bubbles from the batter.

Cool completely ⟶ As tempting as it is to dig in right when you take it out of the oven, don’t! Let the mochi cool completely to room temperature before cutting, otherwise you will end up with a sticky mess.

Shake the coconut milk and do NOT refrigerate ⟶ Shake your can of coconut milk so it is one coherent mixture; you do not need the liquid and solid parts separate.

Make your own pumpkin puree with other pumpkins/squashes ⟶ I used canned pumpkin puree for convenience, but homemade pumpkin, kabocha, or even butternut squash puree would also work (and probably be even more flavorful!).

How to Store

Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature. Do NOT refrigerate or freeze them, as they will become hard and inedible. How long they last will depend on the environment they’re stored in, but generally I’d give them about 3 days.

Helpful Equipment

More Vegan Fall Treats!

If you try out this pumpkin chocolate chip mochi cake, don’t forget to tag me in your photos on instagram @ellielikes.cooking and/or leave a comment down below and let me know how you liked it! I love seeing all of your tasty recreations 🙂 Happy baking!

Vegan Pumpkin Mochi Cake

Rich, chewy slices of mochi infused with pumpkin and studded with chocolate chips. Vegan, gluten-free, and perfect for the holidays!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Course Dessert
Cuisine Asian, Japanese, Vegan
Servings 9

Ingredients
  

  • ¼ cup + 2 tbsp (90g) pumpkin puree
  • ½ cup (96g) brown sugar, coconut sugar, or granulated white sugar
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp (270ml) full-fat coconut milk
  • ¾ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups (240g) mochiko*
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice optional
  • ¼ cup chocolate chips* optional

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease an 8×8" baking dish and set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine sugar, pumpkin, coconut milk, and vanilla. Use a sieve to sift in the flour, baking powder, salt, and spice (if using) then mix until well combined. Add chocolate chips and briefly mix to combine.
  • Add batter to baking dish. If your batter has lumps in it, pour some batter in the sieve and use a spatula or spoon to press the batter down, smoothing out any clumps. Repeat with remaining batter.
  • Tap the pan on the countertop a few times to release air bubbles from the batter. Bake for 45-60 minutes, until the top begins to crack and the edges are slightly brown.
  • Let the mochi cake cool completely to room temperature before slicing. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

*Disclosure: This page may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases, but the price remains the same to you. Thank you for supporting Ellie Likes Cooking!

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