So GoodFeb/Mar 2014 Issue

Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes

Amazing treats for Valentine’s Day and every day

I wasn’t always into health food. Back in my corporate days, I would think nothing about eating frozen yogurt for lunch and cookie dough ice cream as an after-dinner chaser. That is, until I started to look like Miss Piggy with an attaché case.

Reading about the ill effects of refined white sugar, I realized my long-term prognosis wasn’t good. I never thought of myself as a pioneer in anything, let alone baking, but I got a boatload of all-natural, low-glycemic ingredients and went to work in the kitchen. After about a year, I came up with an assortment of delicious goodies containing only organic and healthful ingredients.

I had to share. So I opened up my Los Angeles bakery, Sweet Debbie’s Organic Cupcakes. Just as I was enjoying the momentum, I found out—after several anaphylactic episodes—that my son has life-threatening allergies to almost every food in the USDA pyramid. I revamped my bakery so it would be a safe haven for those with dietary restrictions similar to my son’s.

Food allergies and sensitivities don’t mean cupcake denial. These kick-it-up-a-notch, nutritious, allergen-friendly treats will keep you and family members healthy, happy and unharmed.


 

Ruby Red Wine Chocolate Cupcake

Photograph by Carl Kravats

Ruby Red Wine and Chocolate Cupcakes

MAKES 12 CUPCAKES

I used to whine a lot during the week until Friday came, but now I just add wine to my chocolate cupcakes and Friday comes rather quickly. You should try it. It’s like having your very own cupcake vineyard right in your kitchen.

¾ cup unsweetened plain rice milk
¼ cup pinot noir
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1¾ cups all-purpose gluten-free flour blend
⅓ cup cacao powder or unsweet- ened pure cocoa (not Dutch)
1¼ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon guar gum or xanthan gum
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
¼ cup grapeseed oil
¼ cup coconut nectar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
⅜ teaspoon stevia powder
⅓ cup plain yogurt of choice

Chocolate Avocado Frosting

½ cup coconut nectar
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons mashed ripe avocado
1 cup powdered erythritol or powdered sugar
½ cup cacao powder or unsweetened pure cocoa (not Dutch)
1 tablespoon warm water
⅛ teaspoon stevia powder
⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt

Pinot Noir Pink Frosting

½ tablespoon coconut oil
½ tablespoon coconut nectar
¾ cup powdered erythritol or powdered sugar
½ tablespoon pinot noir
½ tablespoon cranberry puree
⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a standard 12-cup cupcake tin with paper baking cups.

2. To make cupcakes, mix together rice milk, pinot noir and apple cider vinegar in a 2-cup measuring cup.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together flour blend, cacao powder, baking powder, baking soda, guar gum and salt. Make a well in the middle.

4. Add grapeseed oil, coconut nectar, vanilla and stevia to the middle of the flour mixture and stir to combine. Then add rice milk mixture and stir until it is absorbed and batter is smooth. Stir in yogurt until well combined.

5. Pour batter into prepared cupcake tin, dividing it evenly. Each cup should be about two-thirds full.

6. Place cupcakes in preheated oven and bake 16 to 17 minutes or until they bounce back slightly to the touch and a toothpick inserted in a cupcake center comes out clean.

7. Remove cupcakes from oven and cool on a wire rack 10 minutes before removing from pan to cool completely.

8. To make Chocolate Avocado Frosting, mix together coconut nectar, coconut oil and avocado in a medium bowl. Add powdered erythritol, cacao powder, warm water, stevia and salt and stir until smooth and well incorporated.

9. To make Pinot Noir Pink Frosting, microwave coconut oil and coconut nectar in a small microwave-safe bowl for 20 seconds. Add powdered erythritol, pinot noir, cranberry puree and salt and stir until smooth and well combined.

10. Frost cupcakes with chocolate frosting when completely cooled. Place a dollop of Pinot Noir Pink Frosting on top of each.

Each cupcake with frosting contains 190 calories, 9g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 23g carbohydrates, 135mg sodium, 2g fiber, 2g protein, 15g sugars.

TIP To make cranberry puree, toss 6 fresh or frozen cranberries into a clean spice or coffee grinder or blender and puree until smooth. You can add pinot noir or ½ teaspoon water at this time to blend.


 

Photograph by Carl Kravats

Black and White Delight Cupcakes

MAKES 12 CUPCAKES

Since I’m from New York City, I was inspired to create these cupcakes as an ode to the classic delicatessen cookies of the same name. In a world where most issues fall into the gray zone, it’s comforting to know that you can count on your cupcakes to be black and white.

¾ cup unsweetened plain rice milk
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1¾ cups all-purpose gluten-free flour blend
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
⅜ teaspoon guar gum
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
¼ cup grapeseed oil
¼ cup coconut nectar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon lemon extract
⅜ teaspoon stevia powder
¼ cup plain yogurt of choice

Vanilla Frosting

1 cup powdered erythritol or powdered sugar
2 tablespoons warm vanilla rice milk
1 tablespoon coconut oil
⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt

Chocolate Frosting

½ cup coconut nectar
3 tablespoons coconut oil
¾ cup cacao powder or unsweet- ened pure cocoa (not Dutch)
¾ cup erythritol or powdered sugar
2 tablespoons warm water
⅛ teaspoon stevia powder
⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a standard 12-cup cupcake tin with paper baking cups.

2. To make cupcakes, mix together rice milk and apple cider vinegar in a 2-cup measuring cup.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, guar gum and salt. Make a well in the middle.

4. Add grapeseed oil, coconut nectar, vanilla, lemon extract and stevia to middle of the flour mixture and mix well to combine. Then add rice milk mixture and stir until liquid is absorbed and batter is smooth. Stir in yogurt until well combined.

5. Pour batter into prepared cupcake tin, dividing it evenly. Each cup should be about two-thirds full. Bake cupcakes 15 to 16 minutes or until they bounce back slightly to the touch and a toothpick inserted in a cupcake center comes out clean.

6. Remove cupcakes from the oven and let sit on a wire rack 10 minutes before removing from tin to cool completely.

7. To make Vanilla Frosting, mix together powdered erythritol and vanilla rice milk in a small bowl. Add coconut oil and salt and stir until smooth and well combined.

8. To make Chocolate Frosting, mix together coconut nectar and coconut oil in a small bowl. Add cacao powder, erythritol, warm water, stevia and salt and stir until smooth and well combined.

9. When completely cooled, frost one half of each cupcake with vanilla frosting, the other half with chocolate frosting.

Each cupcake with frosting contains 200 calories, 9g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 23g carbohydrates, 110mg sodium, 2g fiber, 2g protein, 15g sugars.

Photograph by Carl Kravats

Mocha Italian Espresso Cupcakes

MAKES 12 CUPCAKES

When I was a new mom, my favorite food group was caffeine. Since the local coffee shop didn’t accommodate my request for an IV of their mocha java blend directly into my bloodstream, I was left to my own devices. This cupcake is the result. The tender and moist mocha cake gets an extra spike from an espresso frosting.

¾ cup unsweetened plain rice milk
¼ cup black coffee, room temperature
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour blend
2 tablespoons espresso powder
1 tablespoon cacao powder or unsweetened pure cocoa (not Dutch)
1¼ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon guar gum or xanthan gum
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
¼ cup grapeseed oil
¼ cup coconut nectar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
⅜ teaspoon stevia powder
⅓ cup plain yogurt or dairy-free plain yogurt

Espresso Frosting

2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons coconut nectar
2 cups powdered erythritol or pow- dered sugar
2 tablespoons hot water
2 tablespoons espresso powder
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a standard 12-cup cupcake tin with paper baking cups.

2. To make cupcakes, mix together rice milk, coffee and apple cider vinegar in a 2-cup measuring cup.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together flour blend, espresso powder, cacao powder, baking powder, baking soda, guar gum and salt. Make a well in the middle.

4. Add grapeseed oil, coconut nectar, vanilla and stevia to the flour mixture and stir to combine. Then add rice milk and coffee mixture and stir until it is absorbed and the batter is smooth. Stir in yogurt until well combined.

5. Pour batter into prepared cupcake tin, dividing it evenly. Each cup should be about two-thirds full.

6. Place cupcakes in preheated oven and bake 16 to 17 minutes or until they bounce back slightly to the touch and a toothpick inserted in a cupcake center comes out clean.

7. Remove cupcakes from oven and let tin sit 10 minutes on a wire rack before removing to cool completely.

8. To make Espresso Frosting, mix together coconut oil and coconut nectar in a medium bowl. Add powdered erythritol, hot water, espresso powder and salt and stir until smooth and well combined. Frost cupcakes when they are completely cooled.

Each cupcake with frosting contains 180 calories, 8g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 23g carbohydrates, 150mg sodium, 2g fiber, 2g protein, 7g sugars.

Photograph by Carl Kravats

Gluten-Free Chocoholic Cupcakes

MAKES 12 CUPCAKES

No need for a 12-step program here because being addicted to chocolate—or these cupcakes, for that matter—is a good thing. Chocolate is high in healthy flavonoids and antioxidants, while avocado adds potassium. Avocado also makes this frosting smooth and creamy with an undetectable taste. No one but you will know it’s in there.

1 cup unsweetened plain rice milk
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1¾ cups all-purpose gluten-free flour blend
⅓ cup cacao powder or unsweetened pure cocoa (not Dutch)
1¼ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon guar gum or xanthan gum
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
¼ cup grapeseed oil
¼ cup coconut nectar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
⅜ teaspoon stevia powder
⅓ cup plain yogurt or dairy-free plain yogurt

Chocolate Avocado Frosting

1 cup coconut nectar
¼ cup coconut oil
¼ cup mashed avocado
2 cups powdered erythritol or powdered sugar
1 cup cacao powder or unsweetened pure cocoa (not Dutch)
2 tablespoons warm water
¼ teaspoon stevia powder
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a standard 12-cup cupcake tin with paper baking cups.

2. To make the cupcakes, mix together rice milk and apple cider vinegar in a 2-cup measuring cup.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together flour blend, cacao powder, baking powder, baking soda, guar gum and salt. Make a well in the middle.

4. Add grapeseed oil, coconut nectar, vanilla and stevia to the flour mixture and stir to combine. Then add rice milk mixture and stir until the liquid is absorbed and batter is smooth. Stir in yogurt until well combined.

5. Pour batter into prepared cupcake tin, dividing it evenly. Each cup should be about two-thirds full.

6. Place cupcakes in preheated oven and bake 16 to 17 minutes or until they bounce back slightly to the touch and a toothpick inserted in a cupcake center comes out clean.

7. Remove cupcakes from oven and let sit on a wire rack for 10 minutes to cool before removing from tin to cool completely.

8. To make Chocolate Avocado Frosting, mix together coconut nectar, coconut oil and mashed avocado in a large bowl. Add powdered erythritol, cacao powder, warm water, stevia and salt and stir until smooth and well combined.

9. When completely cooled, frost cupcakes.

Each cupcake with frosting contains 180 calories, 9g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 22g carbohydrates, 135mg sodium, 2g fiber, 2g protein, 12g sugars.

 

Debbie’s All-Purpose Flour Blend

MAKES 3 CUPS

Double or triple this recipe for a nice big batch that’s ready whenever you need it. To save money, buy flours in bulk and store them in an airtight container in the freezer. This extends their shelf life up to a year.

1 cup tapioca flour
¾ cup sorghum flour
¾ cup millet flour
¼ cup ivory teff flour
¼ cup quinoa flour

1. Thoroughly combine all ingredients.

 

Debbie Adler is owner of Sweet Debbie’s Organic Cupcakes, an allergy-friendly vegan bakery located in Los Angeles. Recipes and text excerpted with permission from Sweet Debbie’s Organic Treats, Allergy-Free & Vegan Recipes from the Famous Los Angeles Bakery (© Harlequin 2013), by Debbie Adler.

Comments (2)

Ev - typically you can sub out with another liquid sweetener like agave.

Posted by: Moderator | February 12, 2016 9:37 AM    Report this comment

Want to make the cupcakes .. what can I use instead of coconut nectar?

Posted by: ev | February 12, 2016 9:24 AM    Report this comment

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