The best easy gluten free chocolate cupcake recipe topped with rich and creamy dairy free chocolate frosting! They are super rich, moist, and chocolaty.
Best gluten free dairy free cupcakes
These gluten-free dairy-free cupcakes are perfectly moist and soft, decadent with chocolate, and indulgent. They are topped with the most delicious vegan chocolate buttercream, and every bite melts in your mouth.
That being said, I think the best thing about this recipe is how easy they are to make! You do not need to be a professional baker to make these insanely moist chocolate cupcakes.
This is one of my all-time favorite recipes! I love chocolate cake too, but there is something fun about cupcakes. Anything in mini form always tastes better…. right?!
You cannot tell these cupcakes are gluten-free. The texture is amazing, moist, fluffy, and soft. They taste better than any store-bought cupcake.
Why you’ll love this gluten free recipe
- These chocolate cupcakes are gluten free and dairy free.
- They are super moist and soft.
- These gluten free chocolate cupcakes are made with oat milk, coconut sugar, and gluten-free flour.
- Easily double this recipe to make 24 cupcakes.
- Beginner-level bakers can make this recipe.
- They are rich, decadent, and indulgent.
- You cannot tell they are gluten-free, the texture is that amazing.
Ingredients & substitutions
These extra moist gluten free chocolate cupcakes are so easy to make with the simplest ingredients. Here is a list of ingredients so you are prepared:
- Oat Milk: We use this to make dairy-free buttermilk. Oat milk is creamy and keeps these gluten free chocolate cupcakes extra moist. You can also use almond milk, cashew milk, or 2% cow’s milk.
- Lemon: You need a dash of fresh lemon juice to help “curdle” the oat milk to make dairy free buttermilk.
- Gluten-Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour: These are gluten-free cupcakes, so you need to use gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour. I always recommend Bob’s Red Mill.
- Unsweetened Cocoa Powder: For the richest chocolate flavor. I always recommend using Ghirardelli’s unsweetened cocoa powder or Hersey’s unsweetened cocoa powder.
- Baking Powder: To help the cupcakes rise.
- Baking Soda: Also to help the cupcakes rise.
- Salt: Just a little salt goes a long way for the perfect sweet and salty combo.
- Eggs: You need two eggs to make these dairy free gluten free cupcakes. It helps them stay together and rise.
- Granulated Sugar: We use a combination of white cane sugar and coconut sugar to sweeten these gluten free chocolate cupcakes.
- Coconut Sugar: Coconut sugar is similar to light brown sugar. It gives these cupcakes sweetness and helps with the moist texture. You can also substitute this with light brown sugar.
- Coconut Oil: There is no butter and no dairy in this cupcake recipe! You need melted coconut oil instead. You can also substitute this with melted vegan butter or melted regular butter.
- Vanilla Extract: A little vanilla goes a long way flavor-wise.
Dairy Free Chocolate Frosting:
- One batch of dairy free chocolate buttercream frosting
Kitchen tools required
You only need a few kitchen utensils to make these gluten free dairy free cupcakes. Clean-up will be super easy. Here is a list:
- Electric Hand Mixer or Stand Mixer
- Mixing Bowl
- Cupcake Tin
- Cupcake Liners
- Measuring Tools: 1/2 teaspoon, 1 teaspoon, 1 Tablespoon, 1/4 cup, 1/2 cup, and 1 cup.
How to make gluten free chocolate cupcakes
These cupcakes are perfect for all occasions and are super easy to make. Here are step-by-step directions with pictures for visual reference:
First, preheat the oven to 350°F and line a cupcake tin with 12 liners.
Then, mix the oat milk and lemon juice together, and let it sit for at least 5 minutes to make dairy-free buttermilk.
After that, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium mixing bowl and set it to the side. Make sure all the clumps are removed.
Then, in another medium bowl, whisk together the oat milk mixture, eggs, granulated sugar, coconut sugar, coconut oil, and vanilla until combined.
Then, add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk just until JUST combined. Make sure you don’t overmix the batter, or the cupcakes won’t be as fluffy.
Next, fill each cup with batter until about ½ to ⅔ full. Do not overfill, or the cupcakes will spill over the edges.
Finally, bake for 18 – 22 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. I baked mine for 20 minutes.
Let your gluten-free cupcakes cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then transfer to a rack to cool completely to room temperature before frosting.
While the cupcakes cool, make one batch of this dairy free chocolate frosting or this healthy vanilla buttercream. Then, frost the cupcakes and top with chocolate or colored sprinkles.
Tips for moist gluten-free chocolate cupcakes
Spoon and level your flour. Make sure you spoon and level both the cocoa powder and gluten-free flour; if not, you will add too much, and the cupcakes can get dry.
Use room temperature ingredients. Use room temperature oat milk and eggs because using cold ingredients straight out of the fridge will result in longer baking times, and the cupcakes might flatten out or sink.
Make sure your baking soda is NOT expired. If your baking soda is expired or open for more than six months, your cupcakes will sink. Check the expiration date! To avoid this problem, I always write the date I opened a new container on the box.
Don’t overmix the cupcake batter. If you overbeat or mix the cupcake batter, you will knock out the air bubbles, and the cupcakes can sink.
Don’t overfill your cupcake tin. This is super important! Only fill 2/3 of the way up, or else the cupcakes will sink, flatten out, and spill over the sides of the cupcake tin.
How to prevent cupcakes from sinking
I have two easy tricks to prevent cupcakes from sinking. The first is to ensure you only fill the cupcake tin 2/3 of the way full. If they are too full, the cupcakes will be flat, spill over the sides, and sink in the middle. The second trick is to NOT open the oven door until the 18-minute mark or minutes before the end of the bake time. The cupcakes will sink if you prematurely open the oven and let out the hot air.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best cocoa powder to use?
Not all cocoa powders are equally good for baking. I always recommend using Ghirardelli’s unsweetened cocoa powder or Hersey’s unsweetened cocoa powder.
What is the best gluten free flour for baking?
I recommend using Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour. It is the most similar to regular all-purpose flour.
Can I make this into a cake?
Yes, you can make this cupcake recipe into a cake recipe. Simple grease and line an 8-inch or 9-inch cake tin, fill with the batter and bake for 30 – 45 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.
Can I use vanilla frosting on these chocolate cupcakes?
Yes! I love this healthy vanilla buttercream recipe.
Can I make these cupcakes ahead of time?
You can make these cupcakes up to 1 day in advance. Simply covered the cupcakes and store them at room temperature and frost the day of serving.
Why did my cupcakes sink?
Cupcakes sink for many reasons, here are a few: (1) you overfilled the cupcake liners, (2) your baking soda or baking powder was expired, (3) you opened the oven door too soon and let the hot air out, or (4) you overmixed the batter. All of these issues are preventable!
Why are my cupcakes flat?
If your cupcakes are flat, you probably overfilled the cupcake liners with too much batter. Only fill them about two-thirds of the way full.
Can I freeze cupcakes?
You can freeze unfrosted cupcakes for up to 2 months. Just let them cool to room temperature, then store them in a freezer-safe bag. When you are ready to enjoy, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before frosting and enjoying!
How to store leftovers:
For best results, store leftovers in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or for 1 day at room temperature. If storing in the fridge, let the cupcakes come to room temperature for 10 – 20 minutes before enjoying.
If you love this recipe, try these next!
- Almond Flour Chocolate Cake
- Healthy Vanilla Cupcakes
- Healthy Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
- Dairy Free Chocolate Frosting
Did you make this recipe?
If you make this recipe, be sure to comment and rate it down below. Also, don’t forget to tag me @healthfulblondie on Instagram and use the hashtag #healthfulblondie so I can see your delicious creation and share it with my followers!
Best Gluten Free Chocolate Cupcakes
- ½ cup oat milk
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- ¾ cup gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour, spooned and leveled
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- ⅔ cup granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup coconut sugar
- ⅓ cup melted coconut oil
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 batch dairy-free chocolate frosting
- Preheat oven to 350°F and line a cupcake tin with 12 liners.
- Mix the oat milk and lemon juice together and let it sit for at least 5 minutes.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Make sure all the clumps are removed and then set it to the side.
- In another medium bowl, whisk together the oat milk mixture, eggs, granulated sugar, coconut sugar, coconut oil, and vanilla until combined.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk just until JUST combined. Do not overmix.
- Fill each cup with batter until about ½ to ⅔ full. Do not overfill or the cupcakes will spill over the edges.
- Bake 18 – 22 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. I baked mine for 20 minutes.
- Make Frosting: Meanwhile, make 1 batch of dairy-free chocolate frosting.
- Let cupcakes cool for 5 minutes in the pan then transfer to a rack to cool completely to room temperature before frosting. Top with chocolate or colored sprinkles, if desired, and store in leftovers in the fridge for up to 5 days.
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