Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone

Light and fluffy vegan panettone oozing with chocolate spread and crunchy hazelnuts. This panettone is worth the time and is delicious sliced thickly and served with tea or coffee.

I have wanted to make my own panettone for a long time now. Being half-Italian, this sweet Christmas bread has been a big part of Christmas for me growing up. Either with dried fruits or with chocolate chips or pieces, panettone is traditionally enjoyed at Christmastime and the New Year and originates from Milan. Nowadays you can find it all year round, although there is something special about this sweet bread dusted with icing sugar during the winter months.

Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone
Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone

Like a lot of traditional desserts, it is not usually vegan but making a few easy swaps, this Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone is fully vegan and tastes even better as it is homemade. The simple vegan swaps:

  • Aquafaba: lightly whisk the aquafaba (or chickpea water) instead of whisking eggs.
  • Plant-based milk: this replaces dairy milk. You can use any plant milk like oat, almond or soya.
  • Vegan butter or margarine: a simple swap for dairy butter.
  • Dairy-free chocolate spread: use this instead of dairy-containing chocolate spread or chips.
Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone
Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone

The rest of the ingredients are what you’d expect from a yeasted bake:

  • Quick dried yeast: this is essential for the rise. Make sure your yeast in still in date and that you use accurate measurements.
  • Sugar: either caster or coconut sugar.
  • Strong white flour: the stronger flour works better for this sweet bread and gives it its lovely texture, rise and flavour.
  • Vanilla and salt: essential for flavour.

The ingredients really are very simple and so is the method, too, once you’ve read it through and planned your timings in. It takes a few hours start to finish but most of the time is for proofing so you can get on with something else. Here are the basic steps, be sure to read them through a few times:

  • Make the milky yeast mix: this first activates the yeast. Check that the temperature of milk  isn’t too hot to scald and kill off the yeast but not too cold otherwise the yeast will not start to work its magic.
  • Lightly beat the aquafaba: this is easiest to do with an electric whisk and only takes a few minutes.
  • Make the dough: this is done using a dough hook attachment of a free-standing mixer and I have not tried this by hand. I can imagine it would need about 10-15 minutes of kneading by hand but only 10 minutes on a low setting when using the mixer. It really is a game changer: add in the yeast-milk mix, aquafaba “eggs”, sugar, flour, vanilla and salt and after 10 minutes you have a lovely soft, springy dough.
  • Allow the dough to proof: this is the first proof in a warm draught-free place and takes about 2 hours.
  • Prepare the chocolate spread: freeze the chocolate spread in small teaspoon amounts to work into the dough do you don’t end up with a pure chocolate dough but one studded with chocolate.
  • Knead the dough by hand: to work in the add-ins of the chocolate drops and the hazelnuts. Lightly grease your hands to make this easier.
  • Shape and proof again: this second proof is done in the prepared baking tin lined with parchment paper and takes about 30-45 minutes. It will not double in size, but it will fill up the tin nicely.
  • Bake until golden: the top will darken a fair amount, but this crisp exterior is perfect.
  • Cool and glaze: top with more chocolate spread, hazelnuts and that classic dusting of icing sugar.
Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone
Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone

That’s all there is to this Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone! As you can read, it is simple enough but takes some forward thinking. I made this the day before I wanted to shoot it and it turned into a really fun (but nerve-wracking) weekend project.

Like most fresh bakes, this Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone is best the same day or the day after and the days after that it will start to dry out slightly but make sure to wrap it up tightly and it will last for 5 days (if you can resist).

Panettone will always have such a special place in my heart especially at Christmastime and I am so glad that this recipe for Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone ticks all the boxes. It is light and fluffy, sweet but doughy too with lovely chocolate spread running through almost in a marble-effect pattern. This is perfect sliced thickly and served with tea or coffee and if you do have staler leftovers, make bread and butter pudding!

I hope you will love this vegan take on the traditional Italian chocolate panettone, if you are looking for more bakes, how about my:

Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone

  • Servings: 1 loaf
  • Difficulty: easy-medium
  • Print

Light and fluffy vegan panettone oozing with chocolate spread and crunchy hazelnuts. This panettone is worth the time and is delicious sliced thickly and served with tea or coffee.


  • 150ml plant-based milk, warmed
  • 2 tsp quick dried yeast
  • 100g caster or coconut sugar
  • 9 tbsp aquafaba
  • 175g vegan butter or margarine butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 500g strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Filling:
  • 150g vegan chocolate spread
  • 50g hazelnuts, chopped
  • oil, for greasing
  • Toppings:
  • 1 tbsp plant-based milk
  • 20g hazelnuts, chopped
  • 4 tbsp vegan chocolate spread, warmed
  • Icing sugar, for dusting


  1. Make sure the milk is lukewarm and stir in the yeast. Leave to one side for 5-10 minutes. 2. Lightly beat the aquafaba with an electric hand whisk until bubbly and frothy and slowly add in the sugar while whisking. Continue to whisk as you pour in the melted butter and vanilla.
  2. Place the flour and salt in the bowl of a free-standing electric mixer with the dough hook attached. Pour in the yeast mixture and the aquafaba mixture and knead for 10 minutes on a low setting.
  3. Once soft, springy and shiny, remove the dough, place in a greased bowl and cover. Leave to double in size in a warm place for about 2 hours.
  4. Meanwhile, divide the chocolate spread into half teaspoon amounts, place on parchment paper and freeze to solidify and then lightly dust with flour. Chop the hazelnuts.
  5. Prepare a 20-cm round tin with parchment paper.
  6. Pour the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and grease your hands a little with oil. Add the chocolate spread balls and hazelnuts to the dough and knead for 3-4 minutes with your hands to incorporate the chocolate and hazelnuts. Transfer to the lined tin, cover and leave somewhere warm for 45-60 minutes to increase in volume (it will expand to fill the tin).
  7. Preheat the oven to 160Fan/180*C. Brush the dough with the milk, sprinkle over the chopped hazelnuts and bake for 45-50 minutes until really golden on top and risen.
  8. Allow to cool on a wire rack. To serve, slightly warm the chocolate spread, drizzle over the panettone, sprinkle over the hazelnuts and dust with icing sugar.
  9. Store wrapped up in an airtight container for a few days.
Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone
Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone

I cannot wait to hear what you think of this Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone and I hope you will enjoy it! Let me know what you think in the comments below and tag me if you give this panettone ago this Christmastime. I’m @nourishing.amy on Instagram and use the hashtag #nourishingamy. I’m also on TwitterFacebook and Pinterest  – please say hello!

With panettone love x

  1. Anna says:

    This looks amazing! I’ve always wanted to make a panettone as it’s my dad’s favourite Christmas treat and was my set Christmas breakfast when I was little. So many happy memories. Bookmarked to make for this Christmas!

  2. Looks so tasty

  3. This lookssss sooo delish!

  4. […] Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone […]

  5. Hey my great friend Amy! Looks amazing and I never tried Panettone bread cake 🍰 before but looks delicious 😋 and amazing. Love vegan chocolate 🍫 for sure and wow loving the marble effect inside it. Can I replace the hazelnuts to choc chips or almonds/coconut? Saved to my WordPress saved collection and I think my mum and dad once had this one xmas. I have been so enjoying your vegan 🌱 food recipes and love your blog and your socials. I will definitely tag you into the recipes I do from your blog/socials for sure lol 😂 you know me
    Best Wishes Sophs and my Ben says woofs 🐶😊🌱xxxxxx

  6. […] Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone […]

  7. Stunning!

  8. […] Vegan Chocolate and Hazelnut Panettone […]

  9. […] Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone (Yeast) […]

  10. […] half-Italian, I have so many fond memories of slicing into a huge panettone and enjoying the sweet bread with tons of fruit and icing sugar with a cup of milk or tea. Now, a […]

  11. Marilyn Fattorusso says:

    So excited to make this – could you provide the dimensions of the “baking tin” you suggest and/or the size of the panettone wrappers (would the wrappers work with this recipe !?)

  12. […] Vegan Chocolate Hazelnut Panettone […]

  13. Miriam Attard says:

    I adore pannetone- it was always part of our xmas breakfast growing up. Could I replace the chocolate & hazelnuts with the traditional peel & sultanas, omitting the hazelnut spread? I’m a purist at heart!

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