Rich, moist, and decadent chocolate cupcakes that bake up so big and fluffy… sounds pretty good doesn’t it?
What makes them even sweeter? They’re gluten free!
I’ve lived the last few years of my life confident that I had the perfect recipe for chocolate cupcakes. It’s been my go-to recipe for birthday parties, office potlucks, and please-give-me-an-A grad school schmoozing networking events. (Which totally worked by the way, although I’d like to think it was my painstaking attention to AP formatting that earned me that 98%… I guess we’ll never know!)
This week I decided to give my trusty dusty recipe a little makeover. In this latest baking experiment I swapped out traditional sugar for coconut sugar and made everything gluten free. Gluten free baking is something that I’m getting used to, but to this point I hadn’t had a lot of success baking with coconut sugar. Let’s face it, without sugar it isn’t a cake, it’s just bread (very weird bread)! This time I tried a new tactic in hopes of having better baking success- pulsing my coconut sugar in the blender. It broke down the grittiness that coconut sugar can often have, making the texture finer and more like that of regular sugar.
I wasn’t sure how things would turn out, or if the end result would even be edible. But then, as soon as the pan came out of the oven I knew maybe, just maybe, I had a winner. The cupcakes baked up super fluffy and held their height even when they cooled. Pretty, yes… but could they pass the taste test? I carefully pealed off the paper baking liner and took a nibble, which promptly turned into a giant bite because OMG these cupcakes were amazing! Super moist, full of rich chocolaty flavor, and with the perfect crumb, these cupcakes exceeded my expectations.
My trusty recipe has forever been retired to the back of my kitchen binder. This updated version of gluten free Chocolate Cupcakes is my new go-to for a delicious and decadent sweet treat. Now, if only I could use them to bump up that 91% into solid “A” territory in my grad school class! Guess I should spend a little more time writing my final paper and less time baking.
PS- Come back soon to see the frosting I created for these chocolate cupcakes. Hint- it involves mascarpone cheese and you don’t want to miss it! For a sneak peak, visit me on Instagram!
Chocolate Cupcakes (Gluten Free)
Makes about 24 chocolate cupcakes
- 1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, softened
- 1 1/2 cups coconut sugar***
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup low-fat buttermilk, at room temperature
- 4 Tbsp brewed coffee
- 1 ¾ cup gluten free all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ cup high quality cocoa powder
- 1 ½ tsp baking soda (gluten free)
- ½ tsp salt
- Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare two muffin pans with cupcake liners.
- Add the butter and coconut sugar to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. On high speed, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 4-5 minutes. Reduce speed to low and add the eggs, one at a time. Once the eggs are fully incorporated add the vanilla and mix well.
- Then, in a separate small bowl whisk together the buttermilk and coffee.
- In large mixing bowl, bowl sift together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt.
- Next, with your mixer on low speed, add the wet mixture and the dry ingredients alternately, in thirds. Begin with the wet and end with the dry. Mix only until blended. Turn off the mixer and fold the batter by hand a few times to be sure that everything is well mixed.
- Divide the batter evenly between your cupcake liners, filling them about 2/3 full. I like to use a batter bottle to evenly (and cleanly) divide the batter, but a spoon works just as well.
- Bake at 350* for 18-22 minutes, depending on your oven (mine take exactly 19 minutes). Let cool completely on a wire rack.
*** For best results, pulse the coconut sugar in a blender until the texture is fine and the granules are much smaller