BabyCakes’ gluten-free cupcakes recipe

Hubby doesn’t remember asking me about carrot cake last month, but nonetheless it’s great time to break out the recipe. Cinnamon, nutmeg, vegetables, and warm cake. Who could ask for more?

This is the recipe from the BabyCakes cookbook, but I’ve suggested some subs in case the ingredients aren’t your jam. I also haven’t tried any of BabyCakes’s icing recipes as they’re pretty tedious and I like to bake for breakfast, which makes storing stuff with icing difficult. But despite me not having used the icing, I’ve included that recipe for you, and IMO, vegan cream cheez sweetened with a bit of maple syrup and cinnamon sprinkled on top would work just as well.


3 c Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Baking Flour*
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tbsp baking soda
1 tsp xanthan gum
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
2/3 c coconut oil (melted)
1 c agave nectar*
1 c rice milk
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 c hot water
3 c shredded carrots (about 3 large)
Vanilla frosting (See below)

Preheat the oven to 325 F. If you want, line 2 standard 12-cup muffin tins with paper liners. Shred the carrots. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Add the oil, agave nectar, rice milk, and vanilla to the dry ingredients and stir until a thick batter is formed. Add the hot water and continue mixing until the batter is smooth. Using a plastic spatula, gently fold in the carrots just until they are evenly distributed throughout batter. Pour 1/3 c batter into each prepared cup, almost filling it. Bake the cupcakes on the centre rack for 25 minutes, rotating the tins 180 degrees after 14 minutes. The finished cupcakes will bounce back slightly when pressed, and a toothpick inserted in the centre will come out clean.

Let the cupcakes stand in the tins for 20 minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack and cool completely. Using a frosting knife, gently spread 1 tbsp vanilla frosting over each cupcake. Store the cupcakes in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Makes 24.

*Bob’s Red Mill flour isn’t my favourite as you can sometimes taste it, but this recipe hid it pretty well. I think you could sub it for another brand of gluten-free flour. I’d also swap the agave for maple syrup next time, but would probably start out with 3/4 c to see if that would be sweet enough.

Modifications I made:

  • Instead of using paper liners, I greased one 12-muffin tin with coconut oil and added 10 minutes to the cooking time (25 mins + 24 mins after rotated). The result was some awesome, large, hard-topped muffin-like cupcakes instead of 24 smaller ones.
  • Instead of icing, I topped them with chia seeds and coconut shreds just before baking.
  • When I made these I accidentally left out the salt and the hot water, so they weren’t as sweet as they probably should have been, but hubs and I agree that they tasted healthier! Less salt in your diet, the better. I did notice that the bottom half of the cupcakes were more dense than the top half, and there were a few flour-y bites; not sure if that was due to the lack of hot water, but they were still pretty fluffy. Also, adding the water would have likely made a bit more than 12 cupcakes, since I pretty much filled the cups to the brim.
  • Leo can’t stand the taste of coconut in desserts, but he was able to eat these just fine without the coconut shreds on top. Sharing is caring!

Vanilla Frosting

1 1/2 c unsweetened soy milk
3/4 c dry soy milk powder
1 tbsp coconut flour
1/4 c agave nectar
1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 c coconut oil
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

In a blender or food processor, combine the soy milk, soy powder, coconut flour, agave nectar, and vanilla. Blend the ingredients for 2 minutes. With the machine running, slowly add the oil and lemon juice, alternating between the two until both are fully incorporated. Pour the mixture into an airtight container and refrigerate for 6 hours or for up to 1 month. If you plan to use it as a sauce, store the mixture at room temperature for up to 1 week. Makes enough to frost 24 cupcakes.

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