29 October 2010

Velvety Vanilla Cupcakes - That Just Happen to Be Gluten-Free

Velvety Vanilla Cupcakes - That Just Happen to Be Gluten-Free / www.delightfulrepast.com

If you're like me, you don't just want a gluten-free cupcake that is "good, for gluten-free." You want a cupcake that everyone, GF or not, will enjoy. And, like I told you last month, I don't care if cupcakes (or fairy cakes, as they are sometimes called in the UK) have been declared by some to be cliché, passé and "so over." I'm going to just carry on as if I hadn't heard the news.

I developed this recipe to make for my gluten-free friends, but everybody loves them. It is so easy. No need to separate eggs and fold in the whipped egg whites—not that there's anything difficult about that, but it does mean another bowl and another beater and several more minutes, and who needs that! I like to keep the mess down as much as possible, but some days I have a tendency to make more of a mess than usual (and it's usually a day when I'm wearing black and decide to live dangerously and skip the apron).

The cupcakes are frosted with strawberry buttercream frosting. They would have piped more "sharply" and been prettier if I had added the strawberry jam before I added milk. But I had already made the vanilla buttercream when I spotted the homemade strawberry freezer jam in the fridge and decided to make it strawberry frosting. Oh well. Next time. And there will be a next time. This strawberry frosting was soooo good. It tasted like homemade strawberry ice cream.

Update 11 Nov 2022: I wanted to add a "pinnable" photo to this pre-Pinterest post, so added this later photo with the frosting spread on rather than piped.

Velvety Vanilla Cupcakes - That Just Happen to Be Gluten-Free / www.delightfulrepast.com

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Velvety Vanilla Cupcakes (that just happen to be gluten-free)

(Makes 24)

3 large eggs
1 cup milk, divided
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup sorghum flour
3/4 cup potato starch
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons (6 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put 2½-inch paper bake cups in two standard muffin tins. In small bowl, lightly whisk together the eggs, 1/4 cup of the milk and the vanilla.

2 In large mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and mix on low speed for one minute to "sift." Add the softened butter and remaining milk. Mix on low speed until combined. With mixer on medium-high speed, beat for a minute and a half. Scrape the bowl.

3 Gradually beat in the egg mixture in three batches, beating for 20 seconds after each addition. Scrape the bowl.

4 Using a 1/4-cup measure, fill the bake cups with a scant 1/4 cup of batter. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 to 23 minutes or until they test done with a toothpick.

5 Immediately remove from pans and cool on wire rack for an hour. They must be thoroughly cool before frosting.

Strawberry Buttercream Frosting

8 tablespoons (4 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 pound powdered sugar, unsifted
1/16 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 tablespoons homemade less sugar strawberry freezer jam

In bowl of stand mixer, or with a hand mixer, cream the butter until smooth. With the mixer on low speed, gradually beat in the powdered sugar. Scrape the bowl. Add the salt, vanilla extract and jam and beat on high speed until frosting is light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. You will likely have to add the liquid ingredients before adding all the powdered sugar. With a pastry bag fitted with a 2D or 1M tip, pipe frosting on cupcakes in a classic swirl.



Unknown said...

Oh wow, those a beautiful... I'd like to have one right now! YUM!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Jenn. I would too! But they're long gone.

Meghan@travelwinedine said...

Cupcakes are never over! These look delicious, and you make it look very easy. For some reason I am afraid to make butter cream frosting, but this might just be the push I needed!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Meghan, I agree! What's not to love (and keep loving) about a cupcake? I really like this frosting and hope you'll try it. Usually I scrape the frosting off cakes and cupcakes, but this I actually enjoyed every bite of.

Thomas "Sully" Sullivan said...

I'll take 6 dozen. Course, with gluten-free I'll have to figure another way to develop my "glutes."

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Sully, you're so funny. That didn't even occur to me!

Diana said...

That looks YUMMMMMY! Thank you for posting this!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Diana! I hope you'll try the recipe soon.

Grant said...

Hey Jean, those look awesome, I'm salivating already!!! That frosting looks good enough to eat by itself. Thank you for posting such interesting and delicious recipes. And along with those great recipes, your blog always provides interesting food for thought as you subtly share your thoughts and philosophies.

cheers, Grant

Danielle said...

Those do look yummy. Could you use regular jam out of a jar? I wonder if my local supermarket has those types of flours and starches (she asks as she contemplates making them...). I guess that is the gluten free part of the equation? I think cupcakes are great. I suppose they are so over--in Omaha we still don't even have more than one or two cupcake bakeries--and none near my house.

P.B. Lecron said...

These look yummy! I doubt that they'll ever dislodge the macaron in popularity, but cupcakes--a novelty item in France-- are still all the rage in Paris, by the way!

Anna Johnston said...

I'm with you Jean, who cares if they are yesterdays fashion, I love beautifully iced & tasty cupcakes, these look great too.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Grant, Danielle, PB and Anna, thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. It's very encouraging to me!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Danielle, I can get some of the gluten-free flours at my local supermarket, but some I get from a health food/natural food store. You can also get them through the mail from Bob's Red Mill in Oregon. Or you may substitute an equal amount of unbleached all-purpose flour, if you're not sensitive to wheat and gluten. You can probably use any type of jam in the frosting, but that wonderful homemade jam (I'm going to add a link to my recipe) is so good!

~ Chef Louise said...

velvety vanilla, i like the way that sounds...
Happy Halloween,

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Louise! I love a velvety textured cake.

Peter Bryenton said...

Inclusive. That's very good.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks for stopping by, Peter! Yes, I like to entertain and try to have something for everyone. People with allergies, or "differences" of any kind, too often can feel a bit left out.

Rebecca Mecomber said...

WoooooooooooooooooooooW! Those look so good.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Rebecca! Come back on Friday for my coconut cupcakes.

Richard Sheppard said...

Yummy delish! I'm going to have to make these. They look so moist and tasty!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Richard! They really are amazing. I hope you'll try them soon.

Stacy S. Jensen said...

I found you. Thanks for finding me (reaching out and telling me about your site). Much appreciated.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Stacy, I hope you like the cupcakes as much as we do!

Lara said...

Ok... so I was looking for a review from someone who actually baked these...not just someone who loved the picture. So, from someone who baked these and is of the gluten eating population, let me say.... these are AMAZING!!!!!!

I am hosting my son's birthday party today and one of his little friends has a gluten allergy and I did not want to have his mom send his treat in. I happened to have all the ingredients on hand so I thought.... what do I have to lose???? NOTHING!!!!

Thanks so much for this amazing recipe!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Lara, thanks so much or letting me know! I'm so glad they turned out well for you, and I hope you'll try some more of my recipes. You're a very kind mom to take the time to make a special treat for one little gluten-free friend!

Anonymous said...

We LOVE this recipe, even the non-celiac members of our family.

I have one question though, I'm using this recipe to bake and decorate a birthday cake for a child's birthday. How long does it stay fresh with out drying out? The party is on Saturday so I'm worried if I bake it on a Wednesday it won't be as lovely. Should I freeze it until the day before to decorate it?

Usually the cupcakes don't last long..... some how they completely disappear the day I make them. :-)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you! I'm so glad you all like it! Wednesday to Saturday? I don't know. If I were baking the batter in two 8-inch layers (350 for maybe 30 to 35 minutes), I think I'd freeze the cooled cakes until the day before, just to be on the safe side.