The 20-year-old fly-half had been due to start the game on the bench as he takes the first steps in his recovery from serious injury.
He played 51 minutes in Wasps' defeat by Bath on Wednesday after four months out with a dislocated fracture of the ankle and Wasps decided not to risk him so soon after his return.
Wasps boss Ian McGeechan played down Cipriani's absence, insisting: "Danny is just sore. It's a three-day recovery and it was just too quick - there is certainly no problem."
Both sides fielded a number of youngsters and England Under-20 winger Mark Odejobi was first to show as Wasps opened the scoring at a wild and windy Kingsholm.
Gloucester captain Mike Tindall was a forceful presence on Saturday
The visitors turned over possession at a Gloucester line-out and after Odejobi made the initial break through the middle Tom Voyce carried play on down the left wing and Robinson picked up a loose ball to dive over in the corner.
Walker got the hosts on the board with a penalty after 16 minutes and after Jeremy Staunton - who missed three shots at goal - failed with a penalty attempt, Lamb gave the hosts the lead.
The young fly-half, who was dropped earlier in the season after one flaky display too many, coolly popped over a snap drop-goal to make it 6-5.
Lamb then conjured a fine delayed pass to prompt a searching Gloucester attack and although Wasps managed to halt second-row Alex Brown, Lamb kicked to the far corner from the next phase and Vainikolo was on hand to dot down.
Reaction: Gloucester 24-19 Wasps
Walker could not add the conversion and a penalty apiece from Wasps fly-half Staunton and Gloucester full-back Walker meant the hosts led 14-8 approaching the break.
Haskell went over from close range just before the interval but Staunton's missed conversion meant Gloucester led by one point at half-time and they extended their advantage early in the second half with a fine try.
Lamb's superb long pass set Vainikolo free down the left and the powerful winger drew two men before flipping an inside pass to Walker, who dotted down under the posts before adding the conversion.
Staunton trimmed the gap with a penalty with half an hour to play but Walker kicked his third penalty with 11 minutes left to keep the visitors at arm's length.
Dave Walder landed a late penalty of his own to get Wasps within five points but Gloucester were much the better side and Wasps, the champions of England, have now won just one game out of six this season.
Wasps boss Ian McGeechan: "We played well to get the (losing) bonus point here and the forwards were outstanding today.
"There were a lot of players there playing in a competition like this for the first time and I thought they did well, particularly up front."
Gloucester boss Dean Ryan: "I am happy with that win. We lost in the last minute last year and it was almost set up for a repeat.
"When you play Wasps, you want the result. Performances are there week in and week out but if you have a ding-dong against Wasps, you are happy to come out on top.
"This gives us a chance to push some resources at this competition in the later games. We will look at this and think we let them back into the match but I'm pleased with the win."
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