My sister and a few friends avoid gluten for various reasons and I strive to make most baked goods vegan. The result is a lot of overly complicated recipes that never seem to have the right texture. Using vinegar seems a little scary– strong smell, strong flavor– but neither carry through to the final product and I prefer using a product most people have in their kitchen. The result is a cupcake that is delightfully low in calories and fat, but more importantly light, fluffy, and delicious.
Most low fat vegan baked goods take advantage of the versatility of applesauce to replace oil, but I’ve gotten pretty sick of everything tasting like apples. This recipe uses a jar of baby food (any flavor you like, my favorite is bananas and strawberries) and some jelly (I like to use the “Simply Fruit” variety in a flavor that complements the baby food). I’ve tested the recipe with non-fruit varieties and they work just as well, especially the custard! I imagine you could always revert to applesauce if you like the apple-y flavor.
I whipped up a raspberry cream cheese frosting to top my cupcakes with. I highly recommend a fruity topping to go with the slightly fruity flavor in the cake.
4 oz jar of baby food, can substitute ½ c unsweetened applesauce
2 tbsp jelly or jam
2 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp white vinegar
¼ – ½ c chocolate chips (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350°. Prepare a cupcake tin with liners; I like to spray the liners when baking without fat to prevent sticking.
Whisk together the flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, and salt.
Mix together the milk, baby food, jelly, vanilla, and vinegar. Depending on the consistency of the jell you use, the mixture may not be fully homogenous– this is okay!
Combine wet and dry ingredients, mixing until just combined. Add optional chocolate chips, if using.
Scoop the batter into the cupcake tin.
Bake 10-15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a center cupcake comes out clean.
I would recommend not using sugar substitutes in this recipe as I have not had tasty results. Don’t have oat flour? Make your own by pulsing rolled or instant oats in a food processor until powdery. Make sure to not leave any large pieces as this will change the texture. I have not had luck pulsing steel cut oats into flour.