Gluten-Free Hostess-Style Cupcakes

Prep time: 1 hr 0 min
Cook time: 20 mins
Calories: 217

Prep: 60 minutes
Bake:18–20 minutes

These tasty gluten free delights are filled with rich marshmallow creme and topped with luscious chocolate ganache. They’re just like the famous American Hostess snack, only safe for us gluten-intolerant folks! These cupcakes freeze well. For egg-free cupcakes, see instructions.

gluten free hostess cupcake

Oksana Charla



2 1/3 cups + 1 tablespoon Beth’s Gluten-Free Flour Blend (below)
1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter or dairy-free buttery spread, softened
1 2/3 cups sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup low-fat buttermilk, soy milk or rice milk
2 cups Creme Filling
Chocolate Ganache (below)


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 24 muffin cups with vegetable oil.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour blend, cocoa powder, baking powder and baking soda. Set aside.

3. In a separate medium bowl, beat softened butter on medium-high speed until fluffy. Add sugar and beat 1 minute. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until blended. Add flour mixture and beat until smooth and incorporated. Add buttermilk and beat to combine.

4. Fill prepared muffin cups halfway with batter.

gluten free hostess cupcake

5. Place in preheated oven and bake 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

6. Remove from oven and let cupcakes cool in pans 10 minutes. Then remove from pans and let cool completely on a wire rack before filling.

7. Scrape Creme Filling (reserve ½ cup for curlicue decoration) into a pastry bag fitted with a ¼-inch round tip. Gently insert the tip of the pastry bag about ½ inch into the top of each cupcake and lightly squeeze some filling into each cupcake. Alternatively, hollow out the center of each cupcake with a cupcake corer and fill.

8. Frost cupcakes by dipping the top of each into warm Chocolate Ganache. Place frosted cupcakes on a baking sheet and refrigerate 5 to 10 minutes to set.

9. To decorate with curlicues, combine reserved Creme Filling with ¼ to ½ cup additional confectioners’ sugar. Test for consistency by swirling a small amount on a sheet of wax paper to see if it retains its shape. Spoon into a pastry bag fitted with a #2 or #3 round tip or a plastic zip-top bag with a small corner snipped off. Pipe curlicues across the top of each cupcake.

Each cupcake contains 217 calories, 10g total fat, 6g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 48mg cholesterol, 150mg sodium, 31g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 18g sugars, 3g protein, 20Est GL

For Egg-Free Hostess-Style Cupcakes, omit 3 eggs. Add 1 tablespoon arrowroot powder or cornstarch to flour blend in step 2. Reduce butter to 10 tablespoons in step 3. Combine 2 tablespoons flax meal with 6 tablespoons hot unsweetened applesauce; let sit 5 minutes to thicken. When cool, use this mixture in step 3 to replace 3 eggs.

Chocolate Ganache

Prep: 10 minutes


Use this frosting to top Hostess-Style Cupcakes. Let it harden on the cupcakes before decorating them with curlicues.

¼ cup heavy cream, coconut milk or soy milk
4 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped, or mini chocolate chips
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
or dairy-free buttery spread, softened

1. In a small pan over low heat, heat cream until it begins to steam, stirring constantly to keep it from scorching. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate until melted and mixture is smooth. Add butter and stir until smooth.

2. Dip the top of each cupcake into ganache. Place frosted cupcakes on a baking sheet and refrigerate 5 to 10 minutes to cool.

Each tablespoon contains 94 calories, 7g total fat, 5g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 4mg cholesterol, 3mg sodium, 10g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 8g sugars, 1g protein, 6Est GL.

Beth’s Gluten-Free Flour Blend


This recipe makes enough for both Hostess-Style Cupcakes and Twinkies. Store in the refrigerator in a zip-top bag and bring to room temperature before using.

1¼ cups rice flour
1½ cups sorghum flour
1¼ cups cornstarch or potato starch (not potato flour)
1/3 cup tapioca flour/starch
3 teaspoons xanthan gum
1 teaspoon salt

Mix all ingredients until well blended.

Each cup contains 510 calories, 3g total fat, 0g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0mg cholesterol, 600mg sodium, 114g carbohydrate, 6g fiber, 0g sugars, 9g protein, 76Est GL

Food editor Beth Hillson is a chef and cooking instructor. She is founder of Gluten-Free Pantry, one of the first gluten-free companies in the United States, and author of Gluten-Free Makeovers, and, The Complete Guide to Living Well Gluten Free (Da Capo Lifelong).

1 cupcake contains 217 calories, 10g total fat, 6g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 48mg cholesterol, 150mg sodium, 31g carbohydrates, 1g fiber, 18g sugars, 3g protein.