Even if you have food allergies, you can still indulge a little! These Gluten Free Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes are top 8 allergen free and delicious. They’re vegan, nut free, peanut free, soy free, and fit many special diets.
I’m back this week with another great cupcake recipe! I took a little time off last week to have hip surgery (thanks to torn labrum from hip impingement), but I was able to get a bunch of recipes made up ahead of time so I can keep posting while I’m stuck not moving around very much. Planning ahead saved my bacon!
Our Vegan Vanilla Cupcake recipe is one of One of my older recipes, Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes, has always been a fan favorite, but it was made with wheat, so I decided to make a gluten free version that’s also vegan and nut free so everyone can have it!
Quite a while ago, I had made a gluten free vanilla cupcake recipe, but decided instead of just redoing that old one, I needed to make a completely new recipe to make sure that it works great. So these new gluten free cupcakes are better than my old recipe and easier to make. Yay!
Baking notes for our vegan cupcakes
Since our gluten free and vegan cupcakes are whole grain and don’t have eggs, they are a bit more dense and don’t peak as much as regular cupcakes do. But these are still moist and delicious!
These cupcakes sink slightly in the middle. You can reduce or prevent this by dividing the batter into 14 cupcakes rather than 12. I didn’t mind that these sank slightly since it will be covered in frosting and no one will see it 🙂
When making our gluten free cupcakes, make sure that you don’t skip the ground flaxseed. We use ground flaxseed as an egg substitute regularly in our baking, and it works great. It acts as a binder for baked goods since there are no eggs or gluten to bind the ingredients together. Don’t skip the ground flaxseed!
Gluten Free Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes (Nut Free)
Top 8 allergen free, gluten free, vegan, nut free; Free of: soy, eggs, dairy, peanuts, tree nuts
- 1-1/3 cups + 2 Tablespoons whole fine sorghum flour (OR fine brown rice flour, both work in this recipe)
- 2/3 cup unbleached cane sugar (coconut sugar can also be used)
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons ground golden flaxseed (this acts as an egg replacer, don’t skip this ingredient!)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1-1/4 cup rice milk
- 1/4 cup oil (I use light-tasting olive oil)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- Vegan Vanilla Buttercream, recipe below
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin tin with muffin papers or silicone muffin liners and set aside. Both silicone liners and paper liners work for this recipe, just make sure not to leave the cupcakes in the silicone muffin liners too long if you choose silicone.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, ground flaxseed, salt, and baking powder.
- Add to the flour mixture the rice milk, oil, and vanilla and stir to evenly mix to form the batter.
- Divide the batter evenly between the 12 lined muffin cups.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 20-24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. I found that it takes slightly longer (just a few minutes) to bake cupcakes in a stoneware pan than a metal pan.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes before removing the cupcakes from the pan to cool on a wire rack.
- Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before frosting. Store in an airtight container for about 3-4 days. Enjoy!
Vegan frosting recipe notes
Here’s the Vegan Vanilla Buttercream frosting recipe below. If you store this vegan frosting recipe in a container, it does separate a little bit in the container. If you make this frosting ahead of time, just make sure to beat it again with a hand mixer before topping your cupcakes with it.
I like to add a few drops of dairy-free imitation butter flavor to my frosting just to add a bit of butter flavor, but this is completely optional and tastes fine without it. I also like using the non-dairy butter-flavored palm oil shortening when I can find it for homemade frosting, it’s delicious!
If you’d like to add color to your dairy free frosting, there are great natural food colors available now. I use the McCormick natural food color powder since it’s available in my local stores, but you can use whichever brand you prefer. We used the pink McCormick natural color for this frosting, and it turned out beautiful!
Vegan Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
- 1/3 cup palm oil shortening* (I use sustainably sourced Spectrum or Nutiva palm oil shortening)
- 1.5 cup powdered sugar
- 2 Tablespoons rice milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- Couple drops of imitation butter flavor (optional, if you use non-dairy butter-flavored palm oil, you can skip this)
- Natural food color powder, optional (I use McCormick natural food colors)
- With a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat the palm oil until softened.
- Add in slowly the powdered sugar, rice milk, and vanilla. Beat until mixed thoroughly and smooth.
- If you need, you can adjust the thickness to your liking by adding a little bit of rice milk (1 teaspoon at a time) to make it less thick, or powdered sugar (1 Tablespoon at a time) to make it more thick.
- Optional: add some natural food color powder to add color. I use McCormick natural food color powders, start out with a small amount and add more until you reach the color you like.
Sarah Jane Parker is the founder, recipe creator, and photographer behind The Fit Cookie. She’s a food allergy mom and healthy living blogger based in Wyoming. Sarah is also an ACSM Certified Personal Trainer, ACE Certified Health Coach, Revolution Running certified running coach, and an ACE Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist