Try a delicious vegan cupcake on Cupcake Day
Today is the Alzheimer's Society's annual Cupcake Day, so why not celebrate by baking some vegan cupcakes? There are plenty of egg replacements out there; you can easily swap butter for vegan spreads or oils, and use one of the many plant-based milks instead of cow’s milk.
When it comes to alternatives to egg and dairy for baking projects, different recipes require different approaches – not all substitutes work interchangeably. Some replacements work well for cookies and bars, others are good for the lighter batters of cakes and quick breads, and others can also lend themselves to savoury baking.
Here are some egg replacers to try:
- Apple cider vinegar: 1 teaspoon soda mixed with 1 tablespoon of vinegar is equivalent to 1 egg. Use apple cider or white vinegar for best results. Works well for cupcakes and sponges.
- Flaxseed and chia seed: Mix 1 tablespoon of finely ground brown flax or white chia seed powder with 3 tablespoons of water. Whisk thoroughly and let sit for 5 minutes or so. Keep in mind that flax and chia are highly perishable once the seeds are ground. Good in savoury dishes such as pastries, and sweet or savoury muffins.
- Aquafaba: This is the liquid from a can of chickpeas. The protein from the beans leaches out into the water and makes that water very similar to egg whites in how it behaves. It’s excellent stuff! Especially good for meringues; I’d say it’s even better than egg white. 3 tablespoons of aquafaba is equivalent to about 1 whole egg, while 2 tablespoons of aquafaba is equivalent to about one egg white. A 400g can of chickpeas yields about ½ to ¾ cup of this liquid, so about 8 to 12 tablespoons.
Why not try this healthy(ish) cupcake recipe, using apple cider vinegar and baking powder as the raising agents?
Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes
Total time: 30 minutes
Makes: 9–10 cupcakes
- ¾ cup water
- ¼ cup vegan yogurt or mashed banana with ¼ cup water
- ¼ cup vegetable or melted coconut oil
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar (essential)
- 1 cup flour, spelt, or gluten free flour
- ¾ cup sugar, unrefined if desired
- ½ cup mini dark chocolate chips, (optional)
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- Preheat the oven to 175°C/350°F/gas mark 4. Line a cupcake tin with cases.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together the first 5 ingredients listed above. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes. Sift all remaining ingredients into a separate bowl while waiting.
- Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture. Stir until evenly mixed, and pour into the cupcake cases. Only fill two-thirds of the way because they rise a lot!
- Bake for 20 minutes in the centre of the oven. Leave to cool. If you want to ice them, use an icing of your choice or, again for a slightly healthier choice, try the recipe below.
Total time: 15 minutes
- 1 cup raw hazelnuts (120g)
- 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
- ⅛ cup cocoa powder
- ⅛ cup pure maple syrup or unrefined sugar
- 1 tbsp additional sugar
- 2 tsp vegetable oil for extra smoothness (optional)
- ½ cup milk of choice
- Roast hazelnuts for 6–8 minutes at 175°C/350°F/gas mark 4.
- Rub them together in a paper towel to remove the skins.
- In a food processor, blend the nuts until they start to turn to butter, then add all the other ingredients and blend until it’s smooth and thick.
- Place in the fridge for at least 15 minutes to thicken more, before using in your piping bag or dolloping on top of your cupcakes.
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