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You're going to love these gluten free Almond Flour Cupcakes! This recipe offers both a chocolate and vanilla option, with each one including a delicious buttercream icing, so there's truly something for everyone.
Oh how I adore these almond flour cupcakes! They're soft, fluffy, moist, and honestly just perfect.
I was being indecisive per usual, so I decided to include both almond flour chocolate cupcakes and vanilla cupcakes, so you can choose whichever recipe you like.
Why you'll love these almond flour cupcakes:
- Includes both a chocolate and vanilla version of the recipe, so you can make either one (or both!)
- Soft, moist, fluffy -- everything you want in a gluten free cupcake recipe
- Topped with the most delicious buttercream icing
Almond flour: This is the main ingredient, so I'm not including any substitutions; whatever you do, just make sure to use almond flour, not almond meal (see "FAQ" section below for more info on this).
Sugar: I used cane sugar, but if you want to lighten these up a bit, you could try using coconut sugar instead.
Eggs: No substitute; since these are gluten free and made with almond flour (a much more delicate flour than all purpose flour), you need the eggs to bind everything together.
Applesauce: Applesauce helps keep the cupcakes moist and delicious! Need a substitution? Try canned pumpkin in a 1:1 ratio.
Maple syrup: I love including maple syrup in my baked goods; sometimes you can substitute honey, but in this case, I wouldn't recommend it. Maple syrup has a richer flavor, and therefore works better in cakes/cupcakes than honey.
Step 1: Line your muffin tin. Start by lining your muffin/cupcake tin with liners, or grease it really well with nonstick spray or coconut oil. At this point, you should also preheat the oven to 325°.
Step 2: Whisk wet ingredients. Next, whisk the eggs, applesauce, syrup, and vanilla together in a large bowl. Then, in a separate bowl, stir the flour, sugar, cocoa powder (if using), baking soda, and salt together.
Step 3: Fold in the dry ingredients. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, then use a rubber spatula to gently fold them together, being careful not to over-mix.
Step 4: Bake the cupcakes. Distribute the batter evenly (you may have a little leftover), then bake the cupcakes for 20-23 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Wait 5 minutes, then remove the cupcakes from the tin and cool them on a cooling rack.
Step 5: Add the icing. Last, cream the butter, milk, and powdered sugar (and cocoa powder if you're making the chocolate cupcakes) together in a large bowl until the icing is soft. Top each cupcake with a dollop of icing and enjoy!
Tips and tricks
-You can use paper cupcake liners, or if you're out (I swear I'm almost always out), simply grease your muffin tin with nonstick spray or coconut oil and that should work too.
-Wait until the cupcakes have completely cooled to room temperature before adding the icing; otherwise, the icing will soften/melt.
What's the difference between almond flour and almond meal?
Almond flour is made with blanched almonds, whereas many times almond meal is not. Almond meal tends to be made with almonds and the skins. Blanched almonds (i.e. almond flour) tend to create a smoother batter, which is why it is typically preferred in baked goods.
The Kitchn has a great article explaining the difference between almond flour and almond meal, and common uses for either one.
Can I use flax eggs instead?
I haven't tested these almond flour cupcakes using flax eggs, so I personally wouldn't recommend it, but you're more than welcome to try!
- Room temperature: Store cupcakes in a sealed container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
- Freezer: Wait until cupcakes are completely cooled to room temperature, then wrap them individually in plastic wrap or foil and store them in a container in the freezer for up to 3 months.
If you're planning on freezing them, do NOT ice them until you're ready to eat/serve them, as the icing won't hold up in the freezer.
More gluten free dessert recipes
If you made this recipe, be sure to leave a comment and star rating below. Thanks!
Almond Flour Cupcakes
for the vanilla cupcakes:
for the chocolate cupcakes:
- Preheat oven to 325°. Line your cupcake tin with paper liners, or grease with nonstick spray/coconut oil.
- Whisk the eggs, applesauce, syrup, and vanilla together in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl, stir the almond flour, sugar, cocoa powder (if using), baking soda, and salt together.
- Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, then use a rubber spatula to gently fold them together, being careful not to over-mix. Then, distribute the batter into the muffin tin.
- Bake cupcakes for 20-23 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove them from the oven, then wait 5 minutes before carefully removing them and placing them on a cooling rack. Wait until the cupcakes have completely cooled before icing them.
for the buttercream:
- Use an electric mixer to whisk the butter, milk and powdered sugar (and the cocoa powder, if using) together until the icing is smooth.
- Add a dollop of buttercream to each cupcake, and add a pinch of sprinkles (optional); enjoy!
UPDATE NOTE: This post was originally published in February 2019. It was updated with new text and photos in April 2021.