The Best Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes

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The Best Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcake resting on a cupcake wrapper

Can we just take a moment and revel in the deliciousness that is this chocolate cupcake?

*reflective silence*

OK, let’s proceed.

Batch of our delicious 1-Bowl Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes

These cupcakes are my golden unicorn.

I have been trying to make a vegan gluten free cupcake for quite some time now but couldn’t quite get it right. Finally, I prevailed.

Maybe the vegan gluten-free baking heavens parted and granted me favor.
Maybe it was the dancing I did while they were in the oven.
Or maybe I finally crafted the perfect mix of carefully measured ingredients.
(Likely the latter.)

Either way, I finally cracked the code and I couldn’t be more thrilled to share this recipe with you guys!

Ingredients for making our delicious Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes recipe
Bowl and spoon coated in DIY Beet Puree

The recipe may include more than my usual 10 ingredients by just a handful, but it only requires one bowl!

And in case you haven’t noticed, no fancy equipment is required as I do all my baking with basic equipment, including a hand held mixer! We keep things old school around here. Plus, have you seen the counter space I’m working with? Where would I put a stand mixer?! Oy.

Bowl of Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcake batter made with beets

I think the magic is in the beet puree and blend of gluten-free flours.

Beet puree not only adds an amazing magenta color to the batter (that disappears while baking), but extra moist texture and a ton of amazing nutrition benefits like vitamins A, B, C, magnesium, fiber and folate, just to name a few.

As for the gluten free flours, I’ve found that gluten-free baking requires a mix of dry ingredients. In this recipe, that included a blend of cocoa powder, almond meal, gluten-free oat flour, and a gluten-free flour blend. I tested the recipe with two blends, so see the notes for details! In my experience, the blend makes all the difference.

Muffin tin filled with Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes

I was so pleased when I pulled these out of the oven and saw how fluffy and perfect they were, just like regular cupcakes. The only thing left to do was frost them with a thick, fudgy, chocolate ganache frosting! Whoa mama.

Freshly whipped homemade Vegan Chocolate Ganache Frosting

This frosting (made in the same bowl!) requires just 4 ingredients and 30 minutes, and it’s insanely delicious. Super thick, fudgy, and fluffy atop these insanely moist, delicious cupcakes. I plan on frosting everything with this ganache from here on out.

Plate of our fudgy vegan chocolate cupcakes with chocolate ganache frosting
Plate filled with our moist Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes recipe
Close up shot of a chocolate cupcake topped with Vegan Chocolate Ganache Frosting

Let’s talk cupcakes. These gems are:

Fluffy
Moist
Cakey
Super chocolaty
Perfectly sweet
Undetectably vegan and gluten-free
& Simply AMAZING

After sampling these myself I couldn’t believe my taste buds! I’d struck gold. So I tested them on some friends who all agreed they were incredible.

I had a hard time naming them so I’ve decided to call them what they are: The Best Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes! But seriously, more like the best cupcake I’ve ever had. Yep, I said it.

Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes with yellow, pink, and turquoise wrappers
Partially eaten Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcake

If you try this recipe, you must let us know what you think! Leave a comment, rate it, share it on social media, or take a picture and tag it #minimalistbaker on Instagram! We LOVE seeing what you guys bake up. Cheers and happy cupcake eating!

The Best Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes

Amazing 1-bowl chocolate cupcakes that are undetectably vegan and gluten-free. Fudgy, moist, insanely chocolaty, and topped with sinful chocolate ganache frosting.
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Partially eaten Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcake on a pink wrapper
4.77 from 143 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 11 (cupcakes)
Course Dessert
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 2-3 Weeks (unfrosted)
Does it keep? 3-4 Days

Ingredients

CUPCAKES

  • 1/2 scant cup Almond Breeze Unsweetened Original Almond Milk
  • 3/4 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp flaxseed meal (to make flax eggs)
  • 5 Tbsp water (to make flax eggs)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/3 cup cane or granulated sugar
  • 1/3 scant cup maple syrup or agave nectar (sub honey if not vegan)
  • 1 cup beet puree (or sub butternut squash, applesauce, or another hearty fruit puree with varied results)
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil or vegan butter (such as Earth Balance)
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (if clumpy, sift)
  • 1/2 cup almond meal (finely ground)
  • 1/4 cup gluten-free oat flour
  • 3/4 cup gluten-free flour blend*

FROSTING:

Instructions

  • FOR BEETS: To roast beets, preheat oven to 400 degrees F (204 C), drizzle 2 large beets (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) with oil of choice, and wrap in foil. Bake for 50 minutes – 1 hour or until a knife slides through easily. Peel away skins by rubbing foil around and it should shed off easily. Add beets to a food processor or blender and add 1/4 cup liquid of choice (I like a mix of water and orange juice // amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). Blend until creamy, smooth and pourable, scraping down sides as needed. Otherwise, sub another fruit puree, such as applesauce, with varied results.
  • FOR CUPCAKES: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 C) and line 11 muffins (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) with paper liners, or lightly grease. Also measure out almond milk and add vinegar. Stir and let curdle while moving onto the next step.
  • Prepare flax eggs in a large mixing bowl by mixing flaxseed meal and water and let rest for 5 minutes.
  • Add baking soda to the almond milk vinegar mixture and stir. It should fizz.
  • Add the sugar, maple syrup, and almond milk mixture to the flax egg and beat to combine. Then add beet puree, melted coconut oil, and salt and mix.
  • Add cocoa powder, almond meal, oat flour, and gluten-free flour blend and beat to combine. If the batter appears too thick, add a touch more almond milk, but it should be perfect. If too thin, add a little more gluten-free flour blend + cocoa powder. It should resemble a thin batter that’s pourable.
  • Divide batter evenly between muffin tins, filling 3/4 full.
  • Bake for 29-34 minutes or until puffy and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Let rest in the tin for 10-15 minutes. Then remove and let cool COMPLETELY on a cooling rack. Don’t try to sample early because they need to fully cool or they tend to stick to the wrappers.
  • FOR FROSTING: Add almond milk to your rinsed out mixing bowl from earlier and microwave for 1 minute. (Alternatively, heat in a saucepan until just simmering and then transfer back to mixing bowl.)
  • Immediately add chocolate to warm milk but don’t touch for 2 minutes so it can melt.
  • Stir with a wooden spoon to incorporate, then add softened butter and cover. Let rest untouched for another 10 minutes to meddle.
  • Use your mixer to beat the mixture together. Then add 1 cup powdered sugar (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size), mix again, and place in fridge to set for 20-30 minutes. You’ll know it’s ready when you tip it and it’s slow to move.
  • Remove from fridge and beat again. If it’s still too thin, add another 1/4 – 1/2 cup powdered sugar (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) and beat until light and fluffy. I found that chilling for a total of 20 minutes and adding 1 3/4 cups total powdered sugar was perfect (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size).
  • Frost cupcakes generously. You’ll likely have leftover frosting (unless you’re like me). Sprinkles, mint leaves, or fresh raspberries would make the perfect garnish.
  • Will keep well-covered at room temperature for several days, though best when fresh.

Notes

*I tried this recipe with both the Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free 1:1 Baking Blend and my go-to gluten-free blend and while both worked well, the Bob’s 1:1 blend yielded a narrowly superior cupcake.
*Adapted from / inspired by my Vegan Double Chocolate Beet Muffins.
*Frosting inspiration from Eats Well with Others
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with a generous amount of frosting per cupcake.

Nutrition (1 of 11 servings)

Serving: 1 cupcakes Calories: 412 Carbohydrates: 54.7 g Protein: 4.1 g Fat: 22.8 g Saturated Fat: 11.5 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 159 mg Fiber: 5 g Sugar: 38.7 g
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  1. Lisa says

    I Thank you so much for this wondrous delicious creation. I was the best cake I have ever tried and full of love. I could taste the healthiness and love in the cake. Very fulfilling and satisfying. xoxo hugs n butterfly kisses xoxo Lisa

  2. Elyse s. says

    I have a question on the measurements: when I measured the half cup almond meal and cocoa, my half cup was filled at 45g, not 59 or 60. Any one have this issue? I kind of split the difference and it turned out really good and moist so I guess it doesn’t really matter but I’d like to do it “right” for the next time. Because there will be a next time.

  3. Megan says

    Just made these because there is a birthday at my work and one of our employees has a serious gluten and lactose allergy. The batter tasted amazing — still in the cool down stage — needing to frost and eat still. The only thing I’ve noticed so far is that they were nice and round at the top when I took them out but they sank a bit in the middle. I used unsweetened apple sauce instead of the puree but everything else I did to a T. Did you also have this result? I’m figuring it doesn’t matter cause I’ll fill it right up with frosting ;)

  4. Rhoda says

    Hi Dana, I know someone has asked something similar already, but I’m making these for a friend who has an almond allergy, so could i use coconut milk instead and hazelnut flour for these instead of the almond? Would the hazelnut flour work just as well as the almond meal?

    • Rhoda says

      Sorry, also a substitute for Oat Flour, as she is also allergic to that. could i use a mixture of Rice or Coconut Flour instead?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yes, I think that should work! Or sub almond milk for rice milk. Let me know how it goes!

  5. Iris K. says

    What about coconut flour? I saw some yesterday & wondered if I can use this in place of the almond meal?
    No allergies…I just like to have options!

  6. Mei says

    Help me!
    I just made a batch of these. I followed the recipe, only subbed the beet purée for applesauce and for the oat flour I used brown rice flour, once they went into the oven they just spread out and flattened out the party pans.

    Would this be because I didn’t use a cupcake pan to put my patty pans in? They just went straight onto a flat tray and in the oven.

    They taste delicious but look really ridiculous and I was meant to be making them for a birthday tomorrow… :(

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      So weird! The brown rice flour might’ve had an effect. I’m not sure..I haven’t heard of anyone having this issue. I don’t know what a patty pan is…perhaps that was the issue!

  7. Jade mama says

    These were amazing! I am on a dairy, soy, egg, and gluten free diet due to allergies in my breastfed daughter, so I was looking forward to trying this recipe. I’ll admit to being sceptical about how good these would be, but they really are great. And not just “this is good for a vegan/GF cupcake.” These actually might be the best chocolate cupcakes I have ever made. I didn’t have beets, so I used a mix of carrots and sweet potato instead, and I used a little extra almond meal and GF flour in place of the oat flour. Thanks for the recipe!

  8. Anonymous says

    I am a high school student and an avid baker. mini-cupcakes being my favorite to make because I can get more from one batch so I can share more with my friends at school. I also go to an art school and so we definitely have quite a few people who’s diets fall under vegan, gluten free, or both (I don’t know why, but I’d never met a vegan at my old school). The texture of these cupcakes are fantastic, the flavor, not so much. I’d advise adding 1-1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla extract to the batter, it helps a lot, still not perfect, but better.

  9. emily says

    I am thrilled to find this recipe!! My daughter is GF, dairy free, and nut free! I would love to stick a batch in the freezer so I can pull one out for birthday parties, etc. Have you tried freezing the cupcakes? Just wondering how they will be! Thanks! I usually freeze without frosting.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      I haven’t! But I think it would be fine for up to 2 or 3 weeks. And yes, I’d freeze without frosting.

  10. Jodi says

    Oh wow! These were absolutely the best cupcakes I have ever eaten. Even better than the ridiculously expensive ones I have bought at posh NY bakeries. I made these for my daughter’s birthday and impressed the hats off even my non GF vegan guests. Thank you so much for this perfection of confection. Making more today for Mother’s day.

  11. Trang says

    Hi Dana! I wanted to make this recipe for a coworker that is only vegan. Would you be able to recommend a sub for all 3 flours to save on cost?

    1/2 cup (59 grams) almond meal (finely ground)
    1/4 cup (25 grams) gluten free oat flour
    3/4 cup (100 grams) gluten free flour blend (*see notes)

  12. Rinske Wagenaar says

    Hi, I was wondering if you would let me share your cupcake recipe with folks that I am selling cupcake liners to. I would like the recipe with the beet mash on a format that I can print on a letter sized sheet and include it with the order – it can include your web address.

    Let me know if this works for you.

    Thanks for considering.

    Rinske

  13. Brooke says

    Oh my goodness, thank you SO MUCH. I have been gluten free for years but became vegan pretty recently, and I was so nervous going into it. A lot of people called me crazy (“What are you going to eat?”), and I felt like a kind of loner- I had no idea where to go for new recipes for my old favorites. I didn’t even bother with the internet as a resource because I somehow convinced myself that no crazy person would want to go gf/vegan. So this post helped me so much, not only for the recipe (though those cupcakes look AMAZING), but to find a similar community. Thank you so, so much! And good luck with future recipes- I’m cheering you on!

  14. Elizabeth says

    Has anyone tried this recipe with an addition of some vanilla extract? Or do you think it would be less yummy? I can’t wait to try these for a bake sale!!

  15. Nancy Nurse says

    Sorry to be a bother, but can we sub the sugar with dates? I don’t have a problem with gluten, so can we use regular flour instead? Can we sub the oil and vegan butter with something else?
    Thanks, Dana.

  16. Kristin says

    These are fantastic!!!! I’ve had to go gluten and dairy free in the last 6 months and have been CRAVING chocolate cupcakes since (there have been actual tears in the grocery store involved!). No more tears!!!!! These are just what I’ve been dreaming about. I used applesauce instead of beets and half almond half gf flour instead of oat flour because of availability and they were just fabulous. Thanks so much for your awesomeness!

  17. Shanna says

    I made these last night and the cupcakes were moist and chewy–but I could sure taste the beet! We also had to add some extra sugar otherwise the contrast in sweetness between the cake and the icing was pretty extreme. It was a fun test though–thanks for the recipe.

  18. Ana says

    These look great! I am wondering if coconut sugar may work instead? Also, on the recipe it just says 3/4 for GF flour. I assume that is 3/4 cup..?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yes! that’s what I meant. 3/4 cup. Also, on the coconut sugar I’m not sure because I didn’t try it and it can react weird in baking. But check the comments as I believe some other people may have tried it with success! In any case, check back to let me know if it works out!

      • Johanna says

        This is mega late, but I always use coconut palm sugar, or dates/date sugar, or figs in place of cane sugar. For some reason cane sugar makes me ill. Coconut flour can act like a sponge if you’re not careful, but coconut palm sugar has never given me an issue. I used it this morning for the cupcakes, and the results were great (thanks Dana!!)! My boyfriend, who claims to not eat cupcakes, kept begging for more.
        If you’re iffy on the whole coconut versus cane, here’s a good rule of thumb: recipes that are on the dryer side to begin with shouldn’t be used for coconut subbing. Otherwise, go for it and see what happens.
        In this case, these cupcakes were built to be moist. Happy binging!

  19. Suzan says

    Thanks for this recipe! The first gluten-free vegan cupcake recipe I’ve ever tried, and they were delicious!

    I substituted chia seeds for the flax seeds because my son is allergic and they still turned out beautifully. I only needed 1 cup of powdered sugar for the frosting.

    One question: 1 tbsp of chia seeds weighed 9 g at my house. I went ahead and used 2 tbsp chia and 5 tbsp water total anyway. The cupcakes turned out, but just for clarification, are chia seeds heavier than flax seeds or is that a misprint?
    Thanks again!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for sharing Suzan! So glad you enjoyed them. Chia seeds may be heavier than flax seed. I would almost guess since they’re a bit more dense. In any case, thanks for sharing your results!

  20. Danielle says

    cupcake look good could I use something else for oatmeal because my mom is allergic to oat. I bake stuff for family holidays

  21. daniela says

    Hi Dana, this recipe looks great! Do you think it would turn out as well using store bought already steamed beets (the ones that are vacuum packed) to save time, or do you feel strongly about using roasted beets rather than steamed? Thanks for the help, can’t wait to try these!
    -Daniela

  22. Anna says

    I can’t wait to try them, but I was wondering if I can substitute the glutenfree flour for normal all propuse flour?

  23. Kelly says

    These look amazing, though I have one question–would it be detrimental to the cupcakes if I were to use regular all purpose flour rather than a gluten free flour blend? I don’t have any gluten free flower on hand, but would love to make these bad boys!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      That should work! Let me know how it goes, Kelly :D Just be sure not to overmix because all purpose is more sensitive (with the gluten) than GF blends.

  24. Catherine says

    The only reason that I tried these cupcakes was that I needed a vegan and gluten free recipe for a bake sale. I had zero expectations that they would be good. I followed the recipe exactly as written (except for the frosting) and the cupcakes were surprisingly good. The texture was great, very moist and tender. I had leftover beets and a craving for these vegan gluten free cupcakes today. I made this recipe again, adding melted chocolate to the cupcake mixture and I’m in love. They were perfect! Will be making this again. Never thought that I would like much less love a vegan gluten free recipe considering how much I LOVE butter.

    • Andra says

      How much melted chocolate did you add? Did you change anything else? I’m curious to try these for my dad’s birthday for non vegan non gluten free eaters…and need some advice, thank you.

  25. EC Myers says

    My boyfriend’s birthday is coming up and he recently had to go gluten free … I’d make him the happiest man alive if I could make these Peanut Butter and Chocolate Gluten Free Cupcakes … In your quick opinion, how could I do?!?!?!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Sorry for the delayed response! I’d suggest adding peanut butter to the batter (maybe 1/3 cup and cutting back on the beets by 1/3). Also, drizzle some peanut butter on top of the ganache and top it with a dairy-free PB cup!!

  26. Willow says

    I am usually lazy in the dessert department – give a dark chocolate bar and I am a happy camper. However, now that I have found this recipe, I think I will have to buy a muffin tin. Love the idea of adding beets.

  27. Eve-Marie says

    Made these today as mini cupcakes (baked 17 minutes, and a half recipe yielded 24 minis). I used all purpose flour instead of the gluten free mix. These were amazing, and you can’t taste beets at all. Best frosting ever, and super moist cupcakes – thank you!

  28. Monique @ Ambitious Kitchen says

    Scrumptious! Love the addition of beets. I’ve never really baked with them before but need to give them a try!

  29. Anna says

    Hi,

    I love your site. I cook/bake many things from it. My daughters birthday is this weekend and I’d like to make these. We’re not gluten sensitive so what would the ratios be if I wanted to use the almond meal, oat flour and regular flour. Should I then use white or whole wheat?

    Thanks,
    Anna

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Anna! If possible, just swap the GF flour for all purpose and still use oat flour and almond meal. Otherwise, I’d recommend subbing all the flours for all purpose. I haven’t tried the recipe this way, so proceed with caution! Let me know if you give it a try!

  30. Darenda says

    IF I didn’t care about these being vegan, could I use real eggs in the cake mixture and butter in the frosting and they’d still work just as good? These look amazing and I’m making them this weekend. Thanks so much!

  31. Sharon says

    I made these today, and they are wonderful! Just as you described….very moist! My husband and I were very happy. I will be sharing on facebook! Thank you for the great, healthy recipe!

  32. Amber says

    I made a double batch of these last night (but with a choc/ avocado ganache instead of the frosting because of the powdered sugar) and I just needed to let you know that never in the entire year of my plant-based, gluten and refined sugar free diet have I tasted anything so heavenly, so devine. I didn’t think I would ever be able to enjoy a ‘real’ cupcake again but you’ve made that possible. You are a baking genius- thank you!

  33. Hey Rita says

    Oh my days, these look delicious!!! I was vegan for 2.5 years but I still eat mostly plant-based, so these will be a great addition to my usual recipes.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Rita

  34. Halie says

    My husband loves beets. I made these tonight as a post V-day dessert and they totally ROCKED!! Rarely does he ever like cake (it’s too dry for him) but these. were. FANTASTIC!!! I’ve been looking for a great vegan frosting as well~ ingenious to use the warm milk to melt the chocolate. I used Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa and they really were divine. Having success in the (vegan) kitchen is one of the best feelings! Thanks for the inspiration, Dana! ^_^

  35. Caterina says

    Sorry, tried to comment from my phone, and it went nuts. Well I’m nuts, NUTS ABOUT THESE CUPCAKES! Just made them this morning as a Valentine’s treat for my boyfriend. He’s gluten and lactose intolerant, and allergic to red meat. So your blog has literally been a life saver!

    I will say I cheated on this recipe and used 2 real eggs because we’re not vegan. But they turned out delicious!!!!

    I will post pictures to my instagram and be sure to tag Minimalist Baker! Thank you thank you thank you!!!!!

  36. Morgan says

    Has anyone tried this recipe with all-purpose flour? I have everything to make these bad boys except the gf flours…

  37. Mayada says

    Thank you, looks amazing. Was wondering if there is anyway to cut on the powder sugar in the frosting may be add some dates since you use dates a lot but not avocado ( am allergic ).
    Thank you

  38. siricat says

    ookay I just finished baking them (and eating one!)… and… oh my.. it’s perfection.
    As a chocolate homemade cakes lover, and newly vegan, I just found out another reason to stop using animal product, so THANK YOU SO MUCH, it’s AWESOME!
    (sorry for my english, I’m French) :)

  39. Delia Varma says

    The BEST BEST cupcakes I’ve ever had (not even mentioning the Vegan/GF). I used 100% sugar/soy free chocolate for the ganache and it was delicious. I also replaced the sugar in the cupcake with monk fruit sugar and substituted icing sugar with Swerve zero cal sweetener. The results were incredible. I highly recommend this recipe… But be prepared to eat like 3 of them …at least!!!

  40. Hannah Marie Burke says

    These cupcakes are pretty good. :) I’m not really usually a cupcake kinda person, but I thought these were actually really nice. I subbed the beets with applesauce, and there were some sugar clumps in my frosting(My sister actually loved them though. XD), I also cooked the cupcakes for a little too long. But despite all my flaws and rushing, They turned out great! I want to make chocolate decorations to go on top. :D I especially want to try these butterflies I found! http://everything-old-crafts.blogspot.com/2011/02/how-to-make-chocolate-butterfly-cake.html?m=1

  41. Emily says

    I was curious if I could add peanut butter into the frosting somehow? The person I am making these for loves PB & that would just top it all off :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yeah! I’d say either just drizzle peanut butter on top of the frosting OR add in 1/4 cup peanut butter to the frosting!

  42. Lauren says

    I’m swooning over here. Yay for gluten free cupcakes! And vegan too! I can share these at work and everyone can eat them, super cool.

  43. Kaytee says

    These cupcakes look amazing! We eat gf at my house because my husband has celiac but we aren’t vegan. Can I use regular dairy milk, eggs and butter to make the cupcakes and frosting or will it turn out differently?

  44. Ali says

    Hi Dana! These look amazing, that frosting looks sumptuous! I hate to be the bearer of bad news but Almond Breeze contains carrageenan, and while this is extracted from seaweed, many doctors believe it’s indigestible and even a carcinogen. I encourage you to read up on the ingredient to decide if it’s something you want to avoid, but I know there are plenty of almond milks that don’t contain this as an emulsifier.
    Happy baking, and thanks for all the amazing recipes!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Ali, I really appreciate your insight here! There’s definitely ingredients in almost all processed products that we should be aware of. If you’re personally weary of carrageenan, I’d suggest making your own almond milk or looking for brands that omit it. I personally love the convenience of store bought almond milk and adore the taste and consistency of Almond Breeze, but also make my own! I really appreciate you bringing this to my attention, as it’s something I was already aware of but am always curious what other people think!

  45. Natalie says

    I don’t eat oil, so I replaced the oil/Earth Balance with applesauce and these turned out delicious! I was wondering if you could post some oil-free recipes? Thanks for reading! :)

  46. Lynn | The Road to Honey says

    These look so chocolatey and moist. I am convinced it was the dancing that got them to their point of ear perfection. . .just saying.

  47. Kristan@the-broken-bread says

    Dana! I saw these on instagram and literally that night I had a dream about them! This might be subtle sign that I need to make this puppies asap. Hope Oregon is treating you two well!

  48. Kathleen @ Yummy Crumble says

    Yep, these look pretty incredible. The frosting looks awesome. Oh, and you had me at one bowl.

  49. Katrina says

    I’ve been looking for a good vegan chocolate beet cake. Thanks for posting this. I put it onto pinterest to try later.

  50. Abby says

    These cupcakes, Dana! They’re perfection!! Your photos are gorgeous as usual, and I cannot. wait. to give these a try <3

  51. Taylor says

    These look incredible. One of my favorite recipes of yours is the beet lava cakes that also use this beet puree–so I KNOW these will be killer. One question…I really don’t care about GF and I don’t usually have GF flours on me (besides oat and almond that I can make myself). What do you think about subbing the GF blend with regular AP flour or WW pastry flour? Thanks!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for the sweet words, Taylor! I’d recommend using all purpose! whole wheat pastry is fine in a pinch but in this recipe all purpose would be preferable :D Good luck!

  52. Bell Santiago says

    These sound SO GOOD!!!! newbie vegan here and struggling with the chocolate part – so this is literally a life saver! Thank you xx

  53. Maggie @ Veg Fiend says

    Yummy! I love that you use beets in the recipe. I’ve been going beet crazy, too! Everything I’ve been making is bright pink. I’ve heard beets rock with chocolate, but I’ve never tried the quintessential beet-chocolate cake. Now, I think I’ll have to after seeing this post.

  54. Carly says

    Dana thank you for all your hard work. I absolutely love everything in your blog, being a expat in remote asia means I often struggle to find vegan/gluten free specifics or brands but I really appreciate the viable alternatives your always include.

    One thing though is i have insulin resistance and so must omit any cane sugar though I have a terrible sweet tooth what would your suggestions be for alternatives in your desserts? Thanks again!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Try upping the amount of liquid sweetener (maple syrup or agave) and compensating the added liquid with a little extra cocoa powder and mix of the gluten free flours! Hope that helps!!

  55. Lizzy says

    These look so damn good! (especially as i’m a coeliac and vegetarian that doesn’t really drink cow’s milk). Yummm.

    Lizzy

  56. Joanne says

    So I’ve perfected vegan cupcakes and I’ve found a pretty awesome recipe for a GF chocolate cake, however I have not perfected GF VEGAN cupcakes. So this is it. Yes, I agree it takes forever to perfect a recipe like this but is completely worth it. Good job!

  57. Camilla says

    I JUST finished making these bad boys. So delicious.
    Maybe it’s just me, but the beets took 2 hours to cook.
    Also in the directions it says baking powder, I assumed you meant soda!
    Yummmmm.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yes! Soda, fixed.

      Not sure why the beets took so long! Were they wrapped in foil, set directly on the oven rack in a 400 degree oven? Should’ve only taken 45 minutes – 1 hour.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yes, beet root. Hmm, good question. I think roasting it yield the most moist texture but it may work raw. If you try it, let me know how it goes!

  58. claudine McGonigle says

    Can you substitute the nut ingredients with anything else, for those of with nut allergies? It’s so hard when the majority of vegan food contains some type of nuts

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      I would recommend flax or coconut milk for the almond milk + a mix of oat flour, oats and gluten free flour blend for the almond meal. Good luck!

    • Amber says

      I used baking soda. I didn’t have beets so I used what I had that is closest in texture… Cooked carrots! I boiled them until fork tender and then puréed them with water. Recipe was amazing!! So wonderful and moist and that frosting, wow. Hello, sugar high. I wound up having to use 2 full cups of powdered sugar to thicken so next time I’ll use a little less almond milk in the frosting. So it works like magic with carrot purée, in case anyone is wanting to try that.

  59. lisa says

    i actually already have a vegan/gf cupcake i love HOWEVER i can not seem to manage to make a vanilla one! you should try to give that a try ;)

  60. claire says

    What would you compare the coarseness of your almond flour to? A normal flour, or more like a cornmeal? I find whenever I bake with mine, it’s pretty crunchy – perhaps I should whirl it in the blender before I use it (it’s Sunblest brand).

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Not necessary if you don’t mind a few “pebbles” of almond :D Mind was ground from raw almonds in my Vitamix and there were definitely a few larger pieces left. Good luck!

  61. Beth says

    Have you tried making this into a cake?! I’d love to try it as 2 round 8″ cakes, do you think it would still be as fluffy? Thanks!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Great question! No I haven’t but I don’t think it would affect the texture. I would suggest buttering and flouring 2 round 8″ cake pans. Bake at same temp for about the same time. Check around the 30-35 minute mark for doneness and go from there. Check back if you try it!

      • Beth says

        I made the recipe in 8″ rounds. They came out wonderfully! I buttered and “floured” the pans with cocoa powder and lined the bottoms with parchment. My family loved it! The cake was split 12 ways and we were all wishing for a little more so I would probably 1-1/2 the recipe and do it in 9″ pans. Baking time was around 35 min. Thanks for the advice and awesome recipe. Definitely my go to GF cake recipe!

  62. Susan says

    These look yummy, I need a sub for the oat flour, any ideas? I wonder if subbing with almond flour, half and half almond and GF blend, or buckwheat flour would work.

  63. Abbie @ Needs Salt says

    HOLYYY. Dana. These are now going to drive me crazy. And that chocolate ganache, ohhh my. CAN I LICK THE BEATERS? And can I stare at that picture forever. By that way, I love that bowl! It’s so bright and makes me think of summer. <3 Where did you get it?

  64. Katie says

    These look so yummy! I’ve been waiting for this recipe since I saw your pictures on Instagram…

    Just wondering, is it baking soda or baking powder? And I’m not able to have oat flour, do you have any suggestions for substitutions?

    Thanks! I love, love, love your website!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Fixed! It’s baking soda.

      And as far as the oat flour, I would recommend subbing a mix of additional almond meal + gluten free flour blend to compensate. Good luck!!

      • Maraika says

        Hi. Is it Baking Soda as in Bi-Carb Soda or is it Baking Soda as in the Australian Baking Powder? I think I did one of them ( if only I could remember which one:( but the cakes stayed dense and not quite cooked. Thanks.

      • Linda says

        Y.U.M.

        My kids have a nut allergy so I appreciate the sub comments above.

        Also, I am not sure I would need the option of keeping them moist for “days”, because…well, you know.

      • Leah says

        Do you think I could use carrot puree or would that just be weird, lol. I’d love to keep it a veggie and I don’t wanna go to the store for beets. Ha! Also what’s the secret for subbing in a gluten-free flour mix? How much do I use and what do I take out?

  65. Katie @ Veggie and the Beast says

    Holy hannah these are so gorgeous! I love that thick mound of frosting – the ONLY way to frost a cupcake in my book.

  66. Jenny L says

    These look super awesome, and perfect for a party I have coming up at which I will need to accommodate all the dietary restrictions (including my own).
    Quick question: Did you put the optional xanthan gum in your go-to blend for this one?

  67. Madeleine says

    These look so delicious! Is there anything that could sub the almond milk and almond meal well? I have a nut allergy but would love to give these a go! x

    • Justine says

      You could probably use flax meal and a soy, flax or coconut milk! That’s what I would try! I actually have omitted the almond meal when recipes call for it an things seemed okay.

      • Ainsley says

        I have used ground pumpkin seeds instead of nuts and recipes turn out really nicely. Use any milk beverages instead of almond milk. Rice or Coconut would work.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Madeleine, I would recommend subbing any other non-dairy milk (flax or soy being the best), and then using a mix of oat flour, rolled oats and gluten free flour blend to compensate for the almond meal!

    • Edit says

      I’ll try this one and schools are but free zone so I’m going to use pumpkin seed meal, I usually ground them up in coffee grinder, and any plant milk sould be fine :) I’d say even ricemilk!

    • Libby Williams says

      Dana, I love your recipes! I have never been disappointed! thank you seems trite! You are AWESOME! I have been gf for a long time and disappointed in so many recipes…..but yours NEVER! I will sing your praises to all people gluten free!