Killer Cupcakes (That Just Happen To Be Vegan)

27 Nov

How does a vegan cupcake sound to you?

If you are making a face right now at the mere thought of vegan cupcakes, stop! I promise you these cupcakes are delish. Just look at that photo! Honestly, you wouldn’t even know they’re vegan.

You might have noticed Cheekie tends to feature vegetarian-friendly foods and products. About two weeks ago I decided to give vegetarianism another go. But as I mentioned in my first post, I’ve considered myself a part-time vegetarian for quite a while. Even though one cannot technically be a part-time vegetarian, I use this term because I love vegetarian restaurants, vegetarian/vegan products, and the health benefits of eliminating (or cutting back) meat from my diet.

So Cheekie would be committed to sharing awesome veggie-friendly stuff regardless of my vegetarian status. It’s frustrating to hear omnivores declare that vegetarian food is “gross” or tasteless. You don’t have to be vegan to enjoy vegan food.

Which brings me back to the topic of this post… Vegan Cupcakes!!

I brought Apple Cider cupcakes with Vegan Fluffy Buttercream Frosting to Thanksgiving dinner. They were gobbled up by a vegan, a vegetarian, and two omnivores. Moist and tasty, the cupcakes were a hit!

The recipe came from a great little book: Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World: 75 Dairy-Free Recipes for Cupcakes that Rule. Just a few of the amazing cupcake flavors in this cookbook: Chocolate Mint, Banana Split, Lemon Macadamia, Chai Latte, Tiramisu, and Cashew Butter Cardamom. Next time I make them, I’m going to try the Pumpkin Chocolate Chip cupcakes with Cinnamon Icing. YUM.

Here’s the recipe for the ‘cakes I made on Thanksgiving:

Apple Cider Cupcakes


2 cups apple cider

1 tablespoon agar flakes or 1 teaspoon agar powder (I couldn’t find this, so I left it out)

2 cinnamon sticks

1/2 teaspoon whole cloves

1/2 teaspoon whole allspice

1/2 cup apple butter

1/4 cup maple syrup

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup vegetable oil

2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin tray with cupcake liners.

2. Place apple cider, agar agar, cinnamon sticks, cloves and allspice in a small saucepan. If using agar flakes, let mixture soak for 10 minutes; if using powder, proceed to the next step.

3. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

4. In a separate bowl, mix together the apple butter, maple syrup, sugar, vegetable oil, apple cider vinegar and vanilla.

5. Bring the apple cider mixture to a boil, then lower heat to bring it to a low rolling boil, careful not to let it boil over. Boil fro about 15 minutes, until the cider is reduced to 1 1/4 cups and the agar agar is disolved. (If the cider hasn’t reduced enough, boil longer. If it has reduced too much, add extra apple cider to make up for the difference.) Stir frequently because the agar agar tends to stick to the sides of the pan.

6. Strain the apple cider and discard the spices. Let cool to lukewarm, then add the apple cider to the apple butter mixture and mix well. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients in roughly three batches, mixing well after each addition.

7. Spray the cupcake liners with non-stick cooking spray. (I found this to be completely unnecessary, but I used non-stick liners.) Fill each liner three-quarters full. Bake for 22 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.

8. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely before frosting.


1. Pipe the buttercream onto the cupcakes and sprinkle some cinnamon or cinnamon sugar on top of it. It would be cute to stick a cinnamon stick into the frosting if you are feeling fancy-pants.

Vegan Fluffy Buttercream Frosting


1/2 cup nonhydrogenated shortening

1/2 cup nonhydrogenated margarin (like Earth Balance)

3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted if clumpy

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 cup plain soy milk or soy creamer


1. Beat the shortening and margarine together until well combined and fluffy. Add the sugar and beat for about 3 more minutes. Add the vanilla and soy milk, beat for another 5 to 7 minutes until fluffy.


One Response to “Killer Cupcakes (That Just Happen To Be Vegan)”

  1. Mom November 28, 2010 at 8:23 pm #

    I hope Miles managed to get one – Yum!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: