Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Chocolate Peppermint Mini Cupcakes

So…a Whole Foods just opened up close to my house. OK, not “close,” per se, but closer than the other one is to us.

I’m sort of unbelievably excited. I have a TON of “clean” and “gluten-free” and “vegan” cupcakes pinned on my Cupcake Blog To-Do board on Pinterest, but until now I have had limited access to the crazy ingredients needed for said recipes. I could drive all over town for these ingredients, but A) I’m not getting paid to do this blog, so I’m not really crazy about spending all that much time in my non-A/C-working-car, B) I’m not really sure how many people are even reading this blog!, and C) I HAVE A CHILD WHO NEEDS MY ATTENTION AND LOVE.

(That last part was not meant to be read in a yelling voice. Just trying to get a point across. I know it’s hard to tell tone of voice through a blog, so just trust me.)

*sigh* Point is, I’m happy to have access to things like coconut flour and xanthan and weird stuff like that. I want to expand my knowledge…or talents…or something.

So I’m starting easy. These cupcakes are super simple and quick to make- and you don’t even really have to have a stand mixer. And they’re also very yummy. You’d hardly know they’re GFDF, and, vegan friends, you could probably easily make this vegan (I don’t know a lot about egg substitutes because I’m not vegan, so if any vegans want to comment to tell me good egg substitutes in baking, that’d be great. I know about applesauce, but applesauce doesn’t work in every recipe).

I gave these to my boss who is gluten-and dairy-free and she raved about them. She’s also easy to please, since she doesn’t get to eat many sweets anymore, but we don’t need to take that into account. These are good, trust me.

If you’re not a big peppermint fan, you can easily take it out and use another flavoring instead. Or, leave it out altogether. Coconut extract might be good, or maybe almond. Y’all know how I feel about almond.

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Chocolate Peppermint Mini Cupcakes
adapted from the recipe by sweet+natural
Makes about 20 mini cupcakes (not sure how well this recipe doubles)

Cupcake Ingredients:
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3 eggs
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup agave nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Frosting Ingredients:
1/2 cup vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
2 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk (or soy or rice, etc)
1/4 cup cocoa powder
dash of salt

Directions:
To make the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Spray a mini cupcake tin with cooking spray and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together the coconut flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, oil, agave, and vanilla.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well, until smooth.
Pour the batter into the tin and bake for about 10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Let cool for several minutes in the pan, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

To make the frosting: Beat the butter on medium speed for about 1 minute, until fluffy. With the mixer on low, add in all the other ingredients and beat until well blended and smooth. When the cupcakes cool, pipe or spread on top.

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