Vanilla Cupcakes (Grain-free, Nut-free)

These cupcakes are surprisingly moist and delicious, with a secret hidden ingredient.

vanilla cupcake with frosting on top

I love “sneaking” an extra serving of vegetables into decadent-tasting treats, and these cupcakes are no exception–> they get their extra moisture from the addition of zucchini, instead of oil or butter! Don’t worry, no one will be able to tell. The resulting cupcakes are moist and fluffy, with no trace of vegetables!

I hope you’ll love working with coconut flour as much as I do. It’s more allergy-friendly than it’s almond flour counterpart, and you only need a very small amount in each recipe. One bag of coconut flour can last quite a long time in your pantry, making it a more economical grain-free choice.

Naturally sweetened with pure maple syrup and loaded with protein, these cupcakes will make the perfect sweet treat at your next special event!

Vanilla Cupcakes (Grain-free, Nut-free)
makes about 9 cupcakes

Ingredients:

1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup zucchini, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350F and line a standard muffin tin with parchment liners.

To easily whip up the cupcake batter, I like to throw everything into a blender and blend until completely smooth. If you don’t have a blender, you’ll need to puree the zucchini in a mini food chopper, then whisk the ingredients together until well combined.

making vanilla cupcakes

Transfer the batter to the paper liners in the muffin tin, filling each one half-way.

Bake at 350F for 20 minutes, turning the pan half-way through the baking time for even results.

baked vanilla cupcakes in a cupcake tin

Allow to cool completely before frosting and serving.

I frosted mine with some Coconut Whipped Cream, but they’d be delicious with any frosting you like!

vanilla cupcake with coconut whipped cream on top

4.79 from 14 votes
Print
Vanilla Cupcakes (Grain-free, Nut-free)
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
 

A light and fluffy grain-free cupcake, with a "sneaky" serving of zucchini!

Course: Dessert
Servings: 9
Calories: 109 kcal
Author: Detoxinsta.com
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350F and line a standard muffin tin with parchment liners.
  2. To easily whip up the cupcake batter, I like to throw everything into a blender and blend until completely smooth. If you don't have a blender, you'll need to puree the zucchini in a mini food chopper, then whisk the ingredients together until well combined.
  3. Transfer the batter to the paper liners in the muffin tin, filling each one half-way.
  4. Bake at 350F for 20 minutes, turning the pan half-way through the baking time for even results.
  5. Allow to cool completely before frosting and serving. I frosted mine with some Coconut Whipped Cream, but they'd be delicious with any frosting you like!

Substitution Notes:

  • In recipes calling for this many eggs, it is not recommended that you try substituting flax or chia eggs, as the texture will not be the same, and they will most likely be difficult to get a fully-baked result. (Unless you like gooey, under-baked middles.)
  • If you don’t care for maple syrup, feel free to try using honey or coconut nectar instead. (Honey is slightly sweeter in flavor, so I’d use less than the 1/2 cup.) If you want a sugar-free option, you’ll have to really experiment with stevia or xylitol, as it will definitely change the results.
  • Please do NOT substitute any other type of flour for coconut flour. It will not work, and you will waste your ingredients in the process.

Reader Feedback: What’s your favorite flavor of cake or cupcake? Mine is carrot cake, so that’s next on my list!

 

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Comments

Kelly

I love your blog and make many of your recipes on a regular basis. These turned out too “eggy” though, IMO. I haven’t noticed this in your other grain-free recipes, though.

Lori

I baked these this morning. I have fresh strawberries cut up with a little bit of sugar. This will be my strawberry shortcake desert for tonight.

Jean

Just made these yesterday. They are fantastic! Can you recommend the best way to store them? Fridge or counter? Thanks so much for your delicious recipes! You make grain free living so much more enjoyable!

Candace

These look great! Too funny I use zucchini to replace sugar bulk in recipes I make with stevia! Even I thought I was crazy but it works so well! I can’t wait to make these I have some coconut flour burning a hole in my cupboard!

Lee

Thank you for this recipe. My daughter has very limited diet options, with this recipe she was able to have a cupcake at her birthday party.

vanessa

hello Megan I tried these cupcakes and they looked and smelled so good in the oven but they became deflated as soon as I pulled them out of the oven.
Any idea why?

vanessa

they were also totally empty inside. 🙁

serena

I would love to try this.. I never used coconut flour before, which brand is best and where can I purchased it? Storing? which is better frig or counter in a sealed container? Thank You

    Monika

    I go to sprouts and by their brand. 16oz will run you about $3.85-$4. The best price I’ve seen and the flour is great! Have made a ton of Meagan’s recipes!

Shannon

Thank you for this recipe! A friend shared it with me and I will forever be grateful! Amazing, moist cake and I topped it with your peanut butter fudge frosting. This is my new late night indulgence!

Daniela

Love your site! <3
Could I use store bought shredded coconut instead of the coconut flour?
Thanks!
xo Daniela

Tulia

have you ever tried this recipe for a full-sized cake?
do you think it would hold up?

Daniel

Thanks for the recipe these came out delicious, i topped half with some chocolate cashew icing and the rest with lemon curd . i was a bit worried when i blended all the ingredients as it looked a bit dry(my measurements might have been a bit off), so i added a little bit of almond milk and they came out perfect. Thanks

Katrina

Just made these and they turned out perfect!!! Moist and cakey! I doubles the recipe and used 1/2 cup raw honey and 1/4 cup brown sugar becuz that’s all I had. I also added about 1/2 cup almon milk becuz the batter was too thick and filled the muffin tins 3/4 the way. Fantastic! After frosting them I put slices strawbery hearts for Vday, thanks so much for the incredible recipe!!! Also you cannot taste zucchini AT ALL!

J

Loved these! Such a great vanilla taste and I don’t feel guilty eating one…..ok, more than one

Rachelle

Do you have any suggestions on a good flavor to substitute the vanilla extract for? I am unfortunately, allergic to vanilla. I will usually just leave it out, but I would love to hear any flavor ideas!

    Megan

    My other favorite flavoring is almond extract, so I’d try that!

Shelby

Hello! I love all your recipes, I am very nervous about using coconut flour so I thought I’d ask for your advice!
I am going back and forth from this recipe, and your glazed chocolate donut recipe. I want to make chocolate cupcakes for my birthday tomorrow, but I do not have zucchini on hand to add to the batter (nor a good blender!)
So my question, if I want to make 1 dozen chocolate cupcakes, should I follow the donut recipe and double it, and then bake them for 20 minutes?

Thank you so much!!

    Megan

    I haven’t tried the donuts as cupcakes, so I can’t say for sure that they will work perfectly, but it’s worth a shot! Hope you have a happy birthday! 🙂

Elaina Malcolm

Has anyone added cocoa powder and made chocolate zucchini cupcakes?

Paloma

Hi Megan! Thanks for the great recipe. I adapted it and made it to celebrate my one year mark on youtube 🙂 Delicious 🙂

María

HI Megan,

First of all: congratulations for another great recipe. I have a questions about the substitution with sweeteners to make the recipe sugar free. See, I read that coconut flour needs extra moisture, and I guess that is why your recipes usually have the same amount (or similar, but high anyway) of syrup of honey. Am I correct? So the question is, if we want to make the muffins sugar free with Stevia or xylitol or something like that (not liquid), should we also add some water or milk or something? Wouldn’t they get too dry otherwise? I have already tried your paleo pumpkin muffins (amazing!). I made them twice, using chicory syrup, which is sugar free and low GI and it worked great the first time (the same amount as maple syrup). I was afraid though, it was putting too much (indications in the bottle said no more than 5% of the total dough weight), so the second time I reduced the dose to almost half, and although the taste was still great, the muffins were much more thicker, too much, not so spongy and light anymore. Hard to swallow. So I am afraid if I add Stevia or xylitol in powder, and nothing else, it will be even worse. What do you think? Thank you in advance and keep making so many wonderful and healthy recipes! 🙂

Evelyn

Okay, I’m a little late to the party, but I just made these tonight and they are SO GREAT!!!!! I doubled the recipe, and added 1/4 tsp of almond extract as well, and WOW. What a GREAT coconut flour recipe! I’ve been experimenting with this particular flour lately, and this is my fave recipe so far!! (And trust me, I’ve made some duds!)

Terri A.

I just made your vanilla and chocolate cupcakes and marbled them for my son’s 8th Birthday party. I of course snuck one…and Wow! I am not a big fan of coconut flour, but these were soooo good! I mode both frostings in your cookbook as well and my husband and I were totally impressed! The chocolate one was my favorite, but the maple cream frosting was a close second! Thank you!

Marissa

Has anyone tried replacing the zucchini with another fruit or vegetable of similar texture? I’ve made this once already with the zucchini and they were great, but I was wondering if I could maybe use some sort of berry or maybe a banana in place of the zucchini for other flavors? What do you think, Megan? Thanks a bunch for this lovely recipe!

    Marissa

    Update: I just subbed the zucchini with blueberries and used medium eggs instead of large. Of course the color turned out a little funky but it tasted almost the same, with the exception of a slight blueberry flavor. Overall, still super yummy with a great texture! Can’t wait to try with other berries now!

Sharon Majetich

I must take a moment to tell you what a blessing your dessert recipes have been to me! This vanilla cake recipe is so versatile. I recently prepared the basic recipe and used it to make a pineapple upside down cake. I melted 1 stick of butter in a 9 inch pie dish, sprinkled coconut sugar over the butter and layered fresh pineapple then poured the batter on top and baked. It was super yummy and decadent!
Thank you for providing such user friendly recipes!!

Blessings,

Sharon Majetich
Dalton GA

cstrick99

This are the best and easiest little cupcakes ever!! So versatile too! They are great plain or you can mix up a filling or frosting and make them fancy! Thanks! So much. I made these and your peanut butter cup pie (I used almond butter) both yesterday for my husband’s birthday. Everyone loved them both. I have made your PBCpie so many times I can’t count!

audra

COULD I make this into a cake? My daughter is turning two and I’d love to make this for her. How long would I bake? Thank you!

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