| | |

Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes (Dairy-Free)

Rich, moist, and full of deep chocolate flavor, these easy gluten-free chocolate cupcakes are decadently delicious. Topped with whipped vegan chocolate buttercream frosting, I bet you won’t be able to eat just one.

Note: This post contains affiliate links to which I earn a small commission, but don’t worry there is no extra cost to you! Thank you for supporting CAKED by Katie.

Rich dark chocolate cupcakes topped with a chocolate broen frosting swirls and a rectangle piece of dark chocolate on top.
Rich dark chocolate cupcakes topped with a chocolate broen frosting swirls and a rectangle piece of dark chocolate on top.

Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Chocolate Cupcakes

A rich chocolate cupcake baked to moist but fluffy perfection. Topped with a light but oh-so-yummy dairy-free whipped chocolate buttercream frosting, these celiac and vegan-friendly cupcakes are the perfect handheld celebration sweet treat for any and every occasion.

Why This Chocolate Gluten-Free Cupcake Recipe Is The Best

One-Bowl: Yep, you read that right. Only one bowl and a whisk is required for this easy cupcake batter.

Simple Ingredients: No fancy or special ingredients here. You probably already have everything you need in the pantry.

Easy To Double: Twelve cupcakes not enough? No problem! This recipe can double, even triple, without a problem.

So Much Chocolate: Intense, rich, deep chocolate delight in every bite.

Rich dark chocolate cupcakes topped with a chocolate broen frosting swirls and a rectangle piece of dark chocolate on top.

Easy Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcake Ingredients

As always this recipe is gluten-free and vegan. With that said, I test each recipe with “regular” ingredients and make notes of alternatives or swaps so everyone can enjoy it. 

**Make sure you go to the bottom recipe card for the entire list of ingredients needed.

Flour: I made these cupcakes with XO Baking gluten-free all-purpose flour blend. If you are not gluten-free, swap the flour with regular all-purpose flour. Note that gluten-free flour blends can vary in weight so I recommend measuring by the cup.

Cocoa Powder: Love to bake with Pascha natural unsweetened cocoa powder but any regular cocoa powder will work. Choose what fits your dietary/medical/lifestyle needs.

Milk: I always bake with unsweetened almond milk but this recipe will work with any type of dairy-free or dairy milk. The higher the fat content the better.

Oil: Use canola or vegetable oil for best results. Any neutral-tasting oil will work. You could even sub in yogurt, sour cream, or applesauce but note that this will change the texture and moisture level of the cupcakes.

Butter: Becel plant-based bricks are my personal favorite for baking but any brick-style dairy-free, vegan, lactose-free, or regular butter will work. 

Rich dark chocolate cupcakes topped with a chocolate broen frosting swirls and a rectangle piece of dark chocolate on top.

How To Make Gluten-Free Chocolate Birthday Cupcakes

As shocking as it may seem, gluten-free and dairy-free cupcakes are just as easy to make as their “regular” counterparts. The batter only requires a large mixing bowl and a whisk. Here’s how:

1: Preheat the oven to 350ºF and line a cupcake tray with cupcake liners.

2: Combine all the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl and whisk together. 

3: Add in the wet ingredients and again, whisk together until combined.

4: Divide the batter evenly between the cupcake liners and bake. Allow the cupcakes to fully cool while you prepare the frosting.

5: Cream the butter with an electric or stand mixer until light and fluffy.

6: Add the icing sugar, cocoa powder, and salt to the creamed butter and mix until combined, fluffy, and delicious.

7: Decorate the thoroughly cooled cupcakes. 

8: The best part: devour them!

Rich dark chocolate cupcakes topped with a chocolate broen frosting swirls and a rectangle piece of dark chocolate on top.

Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcake Options & Variations

A classic chocolate cupcake, in my opinion, is hard to beat. If, however, you are looking for a fun flavorful twist on this cupcake staple here are a few different ideas:

Add A Filling: Jam, jelly, pudding, and/or ganache are all delicious options. I highly suggest this homemade strawberry filling. So yummy!

Frosting Flavors: Try topping the cupcakes with a unique frosting flavor. Perhaps Oreo, strawberry, vanilla, cream cheese, or lemon, for instance. My favorite is a chocolate cupcake topped with salted caramel peanut butter frosting.

Sprinkles: Nothing says party like sprinkles. Add a dash of sprinkles to the frosting or simply on top of the finished cupcakes.

Rich dark chocolate cupcakes topped with a chocolate broen frosting swirls and a rectangle piece of dark chocolate on top.

Chocolate Vegan Cupcake Tips & Tricks

Portion The Batter: I use a 3-tablespoon cookie scoop to measure the batter into each cupcake liner. This helps keep them uniform and prevents me from overfilling. You want each liner approximately ⅔ to ¾ full.

Let Them Cool: Always make sure the cupcakes are fully cooled before frosting and decorating. Even if just a tad bit warm, the frosting will fall right off. Whomp whomp. 

Hot Milk: Most recipes will call for room-temperature ingredients, not this one. The milk should be hot when used in the chocolate cupcake batter. This is key to “blooming” the cocoa powder which increases and intensifies the deep rich chocolate flavor.

Rich dark chocolate cupcakes topped with a chocolate broen frosting swirls and a rectangle piece of dark chocolate on top.

Common Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcake FAQs

How Do I Store Gluten-Free Cupcakes

These cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature or in the fridge for up to 5 days. Note that as each day passes, the cupcakes will further dry out.

If stored in the fridge, allow the cupcakes 20-30 minutes to sit at room temperature for the frosting to soften back up a bit before serving.

Can I Freeze Them?

Yes, you can bake and freeze the undecorated or decorated cupcakes in advance. Remove them from the freezer the night before and allow the cupcakes to thaw overnight in the fridge slowly.

And like above, I recommend letting the cupcakes sit at room temperature for 20-30 before serving.

Will The Recipe Double?

Double it, triple it, whatever. You’ll find this recipe translates beautifully into larger quantities. However, I advise baking cupcake trays one at a time in the oven to ensure even baking.

If you want to bake a double batch, which will give you 2 dozen chocolate cupcakes, I highly recommend using this large cupcake pan.

What’s The Secret To Moist Gluten-Free Cupcakes?

To bake a moist gluten-free cupcake, fat is key. This recipe calls for oil which is the main fat source and milk, the secondary fat source. Both are key to creating incredibly moist cupcakes that are gluten-free.

Is There A Difference Between Cupcakes And Muffins?

Yes, there is a difference between chocolate cupcakes and chocolate muffins. Muffins tend to be denser and more hearty in texture while cupcakes are fluffier. Cupcakes also tend to be sweeter.

Rich dark chocolate cupcakes topped with a chocolate broen frosting swirls and a rectangle piece of dark chocolate on top.

The Best Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes (Dairy-Free)

Bring on all the decadent chocolate yum! These easy and delicious gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, egg-free, nut-free, and lactose-free chocolate cupcakes will have you and every guest, regardless of their allergy/medical/lifestyle needs, enjoying a deeply rich and delicious chocolate cupcake. 

I’d love to hear if you make these birthday party chocolate cupcakes. If you do, tag me on social media @cakedbykatie and leave the recipe a rating and review below.

More Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Baking Recipes

Need an allergy-friendly dessert to bring or share at the next festive occasion? I’ve got you covered:

Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Rich dark chocolate cupcakes topped with a chocolate broen frosting swirls and a rectangle piece of dark chocolate on top.

Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes (Dairy-Free)


5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

No reviews

  • Author: Katie Stymiest
  • Total Time: 65 Minutes
  • Yield: 1 Dozen Cupcakes 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

Rich, moist, and full of deep chocolate flavor, these easy gluten-free chocolate cupcakes are decadently delicious. Topped with whipped chocolate buttercream frosting, I bet you won’t be able to eat just one.


Ingredients

Units Scale

Chocolate Cupcakes

  • 1 cup (250ml) dairy-free milk, hot
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) canola or vegetable oil
  • 1 cup (160g) gluten-free flour 1:1 baking blend
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (40g) cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Chocolate Buttercream

  • 1 cup (227g) salted dairy-free butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/4 cups (270g) powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup (20g) cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • optional: dairy-free chocolate squares for decor

Instructions

Chocolate Cupcakes

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF and line a cupcake tray with 12 cupcake liners. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl measure in the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt and whisk together until fully combined without any lumps.
  3. Pour in the hot milk and oil and whisk together until smooth.
  4. Divide the batter evenly between the cupcake liners and bake for approximately 17-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow the cupcakes to cool in the tray for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool fully.

Chocolate Buttercream

  1. In a stand mixer or large mixing bowl with electric beaters, cream the butter on high speed until light and fluffy. This will take approximately 5-10 minutes.
  2. Add in the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and salt and mix on low until combined.
  3. Turn the mixer up to high and allow to beat for 5 minutes until light and fluffy.
  4. Frost and decorate the fully cooled cupcakes as you desire. Enjoy!
  5. Leftover cupcakes should be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 6 months.

*I used a Wilton 1M piping tip and piped a drop star in the center of the cupcake. Using the same tip, I piped around the star in a circular motion and then moved up for a second layer. Topped the tail end of the frosting swirl with a piece of vegan dark chocolate and a light dusting of cocoa powder.

  • Prep Time: 45 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 Minutes
  • Category: Cupcakes
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Similar Posts

2 Comments

  1. What brand of gluten-free flour do you recommend? I used to use Cup 4 Cup but not sure if they changed the recipe as it doesn’t bake like it used to, thanks!

    1. Hi Najia, I’m not crazy about Cup 4 Cup to be completly honest and I’ve heard a lot of people with the same complaint lately. I made these with XO Baking and adore their gf flour blend.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star