Nine Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes on a red wood background
4.31 from 13 votes

Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes (Vegan + GF)

Naturally-sweetened, 1-Bowl Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes that are vegan and gluten-free and topped with mint-infused coconut whipped cream! The perfect dessert for the holidays and chocolate-peppermint lovers!
Author: Minimalist Baker
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 33 minutes
Total Time 58 minutes
Servings: 11 (cupcakes)
Category: Dessert
Cuisine: Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 2-3 Days



  • 1/2 scant cup unsweetened plain almond milk
  • 3/4 tsp apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • 2 batches flax eggs (2 Tbsp (14 g) flaxseed meal + 5 Tbsp (75 ml) water as original recipe is written)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup or agave nectar
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil or vegan butter (such as Earth Balance)
  • 1 cup applesauce (or sub roasted beet puree)
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 -1/2 tsp peppermint extract (I like this brand)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (if clumpy, sift)
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup gluten-free oat flour
  • 3/4 cup gluten-free flour blend (or Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free Baking Blend)

TOPPINGS optional

  • 2 batches coconut whipped cream*
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp peppermint extract
  • Crushed candy canes or sprinkles (ensure vegan-friendliness)
  • Fresh mint


  1. FOR CUPCAKES: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and line a muffin tin with 11 paper liners (I like this brand // amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size), or lightly grease.
  2. Measure out almond milk and add vinegar or lemon juice. Stir and let curdle while moving onto the next step.
  3. Prepare flax eggs in a large mixing bowl and let rest for 5 minutes.
  4. Add baking soda to the almond milk vinegar mixture and stir.
  5. Add the sugar, maple syrup and almond milk mixture to the flax egg and beat to combine. Then add melted coconut oil, applesauce, salt, and peppermint extract, and mix.
  6. 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. Taste and adjust amount of peppermint extract as needed.
  7. Divide batter evenly between lined muffin tins (should be enough for 11 as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size), filling generously 3/4 full.

  8. Bake for 29-34 minutes or until puffy and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  9. 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.
  10. FOR COCONUT WHIP: Rinse out mixing bowl and add two cans hardened, chilled coconut cream. Beat until light and fluffy, then add peppermint extract and organic powdered sugar to taste. Taste and adjust flavors as needed. Then scoop into a large freezer bag and set in refrigerator to chill.
  11. Once cupcakes are completely cooled and you're ready to serve, cut a corner of the coconut whipped cream bag off and pipe a generous amount onto each cupcake. You’ll likely have leftovers.
  12. Lastly, add desired toppings, such as crushed peppermint candy and fresh mint leaves.
  13. Will keep well-covered in the refrigerator for 2-3 days, though best when fresh. If possible, don't frost until serving for best results!


*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with a generous amount of coconut whipped cream frosting.

Nutrition Per Serving (1 of 11 cupcakes)