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Giovanna's True Tiramisu

What you need: 

Lady finger cake:
2 cups flour (accidently subbed half with soy flour and it still worked)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup soy milk
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3 tablespoons of ground flax with 3 tablespoons water (mixed separately) you can use E-Nerg
5 tablespoons vegan margarine (like earth balance i used the olive oil one)
Custard 1:
2 cups soy milk
1 cup sugar (you can reduce if you wish, this recipe is high in sugar!)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup arrowroot powder (can use cornstarch too)
Custard 2:
14 oz firm tofu
1/4 cup soy milk (can try rice or almond too)
3/4 cup sugar
4 tablespoon arrowroot (or cornstarch)
3 teaspoons vanilla
4 tablespoons rum
3 tablespoons amaretto (find little bottle at liquor store if you don't want to buy a big bottle)
1 cup of brewed espresso (the best way!) or strong coffee
cocoa powder

What you do: 

It's really not that hard. It's amazing. There's a place in Asheville called Old Europe Cafe, that has the best tiramisu I've had since my aunts. We used to get all the time until I went vegan and then raw. I made this for my husband for valentines and it was a hit! (I made raw version for myself, that I'll post later, but of course I had to taste this and I was tasting it all along to make sure it would be right and not taste like sweet tofu.
Preheat oven to 350 degress Fahrenheit.
Ladyfingers:In a bowl stir together flour & baking powder. Set aside.
In a pot, heat soy milk and vegan margarine. Let vegan margarine melt, careful not to scald soy milk (it will burn at the bottom if heat too high). Now mix sugar, vanilla, and flax egg in a bowl. Then add dry ingredients. Stir.
Remove soy milk from stove, pour into bowl with dry ingredients, and mix until just moistened, don't overmix.
Place in 9" x 13" pan. NOTE: You want this thin, so a bigger pan is good. I made mine in two bread pans and it was too thick (check picture!) and I didn't wanna cut it all in half. So I couldn't layer this like normal tiramisu is.
Bake about 20 minutes, until springy and just starting to brown on edges, you know "fork comes out clean."
Moving on!
Custard 1:Mix all Put all Custard 1 ingredients in a saucepan.Whisk over medium heat until thick.Refrigerate.
Custard 2:Press tofu, get it dry, place in food processor (or blender, it makes a lot!! so only use processor if you have a big one!)Add other CUSTARD 2 ingredients and process until smooth.
Cut cake into finger-sized pieces. Soak these in coffee and place in medium sized casserole dish (all facing on direction if you can). Don't leave them to soak, just make sure they are saturated, but not so wet they crumble.
Now take Custard 1 out of the fridge, put in blender with Custard 2 and blend! Pour over lady fingers. sprinkle a very good layer of cocoa powder over the top, covering it completely.
For the classic Tiramisu look, use a smaller dish, and place half of lady fingers on bottom, pour half of the custard on top, no cocoa, then another layer of lady fingers, and pour the rest of the custard. THEN cocoa dust.
Refrigerate for 3-4 hours, preferably overnight.
I didn't soak my fingers enough this time, so I poured some espresso on my plate before placing the piece down.
Enjoy! Tiramisu means 'Pick me Up!"
Source of recipe: I invented this!!

Preparation Time: 
1 hour, 3 hours
Cooking Time: 
Recipe Category: 


Does anyone have any suggestions for completely subbing out all of the tofu?  I am avoiding it


This is a fantastic recipe! I have made it a couple times and both times it turned out delish! My first experience the custard was too runny--but the second time it came out perfect--I think it's just a matter of tweaking the amounts is all! Instead of putting this together the traditional way, I like to layer it up inside big wine goblets to serve it in adding decorative chocolate sauce to the glass--it looks so pretty and is also really easy to eat--plus, if the custard turns out a little runny, or doesn't set overnight, who cares! It's in a glass, it's beautiful and it tastes great!!!

I also agree that this is actually a really easy recipe to make--not daunting at all!! Props to Giovanna for laying out the recipe so well! Thank you!! <3


I thought I had arrowroot but I didn't, and was concerned when I was putting this together that it wasn't going to work...
I also didn't have amaretto, and can't remember whether I just omitted it or increased the rum, but it was plenty flavourful, so I don't know that I'd ever bother sourcing it if I didn't have it on hand.
Though it looks/sounds complicated, the recipe was actually really easy to follow and the whole thing came together without any drama.  I was worried that it wouldn't set enough to slice/serve, so I made it in individual ramekins, which looked great, but as it turned out, it was plenty well enough set after ... about four hours? so if I make this again I'll probably do it in one big dish.

Not exactly an every day recipe, but for a special occasion, it's well worth the effort.
Also, I served this to a table of omnis without mentioning it wasn't 'real' tiramisu, and none of them suspected it wasn't dairy.  The strong coffee/rum flavours help, but honestly, this doesn't taste like a tofu based dessert at all : )


Just made this earlier tonight and it was pretty good. It helped subside my cravings for tiramisu for now. The end result did not turn out to look as nice as the picture on this recipe as my custard turned out to be thick but runny. Not sure why . . . perhaps because I used cornstarch instead of arrowroot? Next time I might try using Agar Agar and see if that helps it stand better and keep it's form. Also, I used one cup of Starbucks double strength coffee, but could barely taste it in the finished product. I think next time I will definitely take the tip to use espresso and get some fresh brewed from Starbucks right before making the recipe as I don't have an espresso machine. The flavor was pretty close to real tiramisu . . . I couldn't taste too much of the tofu. I used imitation rum though as I didn't have any real rum on-hand. I think I'll try that next time too and see if that makes a difference. Thanks for the recipe! :-)


I thought this was a great recipe!  I had been wanting to make vegan tiramisu for a long time and knew I would finally try it when I found this.

I followed the recipe exactly, except I left out the amaretto, because I didn't have any and it was a Sunday.  I wish I had added almond extract to make up for it, but will know next time.  I didn't have arrowroot so I used cornstarch, as recommended.

I found that there was a little too much custard compared to the lady fingers, but whether others would have that issue would depend on the ratio you desire as well as the size pan you use.  I didn't have a very large dish, so I used just half the custard and refrigerated the other half to make later in the week (later this week is Christmas, so I am going to make it for Christmas!).

I also did not think it was very good after being in the fridge for only three hours, but was very pleasantly surprised at the overnight transformation, so I would say you should aim to make it the day before you want to eat it, especially if you are serving it to others.  It hadn't set up all the way, and the flavors weren't combined together enough after just three hours (you could really taste the soy milk).

Finally, there are only two things I would alter.  First, I would leave out a little of the sugar in each step.  The end result is verrrry sweet.  Perhaps some people will prefer it that way, but I'd like the other flavors to stand out a little more.  Next, I would try to substitute the soy milk with almond milk or some other type of milk.  It was just a little chalky tasting with all the soy milk, and I'd prefer to limit the processed soy for health reasons.  It is still very good as is!  Those are just minor adjustments I would make for my own preferences.

Thank you for making a great recipe!  I'll definitely make it again.

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