I have been on the hunt for a springy, tasty cupcake recipe ever since we switched our youngest to a gluten free diet a few months ago after already being dairy and soya free. Having to omit butter and wheat flour (the main staples of a cake recipe) made everything I baked either very dry and crumbly, or extremely wet after an hour or two and either way, everything had a grainy, dusty after texture. All the recipes seem overly complicated too, adding random ingredients which to me seemed unnecessary.
So after a little bit of playing and going back to the basics of cake baking ratios of 2:2:2:1 I learnt as a child (2oz each of butter, sugar, flour to every egg used) I think I have created a gluten free, dairy free and soya free cupcake that is light and springy and holds just like a wheat flour cupcake.
I have also been desperate to find a dairy free frosting that doesn’t split and go oily and can hold up to piping without collapsing into a soggy mess. I have tried numerous methods, both from following recipes as well as from experimenting but nothing really looked or tasted how I wanted. Until now!
So here I give you my gluten free, dairy free and soya free cupcakes:
Please visit this site to convert this recipe to cup measurements.
For the cupcakes you will need:
- 6oz/170g of vegetable shortening such as Trex or dairy free spread you can use 50/50 if you prefer
- 6oz/170g caster (or granulated) sugar
- 6oz/170g gluten free self raising flour I use Dove’s
- 1/2 teaspoon of gluten free baking powder
- 3 eggs (you can replace the eggs with 1.5 mashed bananas or 3/4 cups of applesauce)
- zest of 1 lime
- zest of 1 lemon
- juice of 1/2 lime
- 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon of Poppy seeds
For the frosting
- 9oz/280g icing sugar
- 2oz/50g coconut oil
- 1.5oz/40g shortening/Trex
- 1/2oz/10g Dairy free spread
- Juice of 1/2 lime
- powdered/gel food colouring Optional
- 1-2 tablespoons of dairy free milk (or extra lime juice) just in case the mix is too stiff
Keep the shortening and dairy free spread in the fridge and the coconut oil cool right up until needed.
Preheat your oven to gasmark 4/180 centigrade (for Fahrenheit see my printable conversion chart)
Add your cupcake cases to your muffin/cupcake tray.
- In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar.
- Add the eggs (or your chosen substitute) one at a time, beating well each time.
- Add the lemon and lime zest and juice and mix thoroughly.
- Add the flour and baking powder and mix until completely combined. You don’t have to worry about overmixing, because there is no gluten to build up!
- stir in the poppy seeds until they are evenly distributed.
- Fill each cupcake case until they are between half and two thirds full.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes in the centre of your oven. Test by either using a skewer (if it comes out clean they are ready) or by pressing gently on the top, if it springs back they are cooked, if not leave for another few minutes.
- Leave to completely cool on a rack
To make the frosting
- In a bowl, mix together the shortening, coconut oil and dairy free spread.
- Beat in the icing sugar a small amount at a time. Don’t worry if the end mixture seems dry.
- If you are using powdered food colouring add this to 1 teaspoon of the lime juice in a small bowl
- Add the the remainder of the juice to the mix and beat thoroughly.
- mix in a few drops of the coloured juice (or gel colouring) at a time and mix until you get your desired colour.
- cover with clingfilm and allow to rest in the fridge for 10 minutes
- After 10 minutes, beat your mixture again. If it is too slack add extra icing sugar a tablespoon at a time. If it is too stiff to pipe, taste it, then depending whether you want it sharper or not add either the dairy free milk or the extra lime juice a teaspoon at a time until you reach the right consistency.
- Cover the frosting with clingfilm pressed down on to the surface to avoid it drying out and keep somewhere cool until you are ready to use.
When the cakes have fully cooled pipe your dairy free frosting on top and enjoy with a nice cup of tea!
Quick tip: If you don’t have any piping bags, put your mixture into a sandwich bag and snip off the corner.