Divine Vanilla Cupcakes with Fluffy Nondairy Buttercream

Jun 6, 2019

Let’s make one thing clear—dairy-free baked goods are no different than “traditional” baked goods in terms of taste and quality. In fact, we could argue that these divine vanilla cupcakes are superior to many of the overly sweet and/or dry dairy-based cupcakes we’ve had in the past. They require simple ingredients and can be whipped up in under an hour—you probably have most if not all of the ingredients in your pantry. Don the apron and let’s get to baking! Note: we’ve included a gluten-free cake recipe so everyone can enjoy these treats! 


For the Cupcakes
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsweetened original almond milk
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup canola oil (organic, if possible, to avoid GMO’s)

For Gluten-Free Cupcakes
1 3/4 cup Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour
1 cup (210 grams) granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup almond milk
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon alcohol-free vanilla extract
1/4 cup canola oil (organic, if possible, to avoid GMO’s)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Fluffy Vanilla Buttercream
2/3 cup Non-Hydrogenated Vegetable Shortening (preferably rainforest alliance certified)
2 cups Powdered Sugar
2 Tb. Unsweetened Original Almond Milk
1/8 tsp. Salt


1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-tray cupcake tin with paper liners. 

2. In a small bowl, combine the wet ingredients: almond milk, apple cider vinegar, vanilla extract, and oil. Set aside. You may notice the milk will start to curdle, but don’t worry! It’s supposed to.

3. In a separate medium-sized bowl, combine the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Stir well.

4. Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients while stirring. Make sure all the flour is scraped from the sides and bottom of the bowl. Be mindful to not over mix. 

5. Spoon the batter into the cupcake liners just until they are about 3/4 full (use an ice cream scoop for perfect portions).

6. Bake on the top rack of your preheated oven for 19-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of each cupcake comes out clean with no batter. Allow the cupcakes to sit in the tin for 5 minutes before carefully transferring them to a cooling rack.

7.  Cool completely before frosting, about 1 1/2 – 2 hours. 

8. While the cupcakes cool, make your frosting. Using an electric stand or hand mixer, cream the shortening on medium speed for about 30 seconds. Add half of the powdered sugar and half of the almond milk and mix on high for about 30 seconds.

9. Add the salt, remaining sugar, and almond milk. Mix on high again for another 30 seconds, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula if needed. If you feel the frosting should be slightly thicker, add a spoonful or so more of powdered sugar. For a slightly thinner frosting, add a splash or two of almond milk—but be careful—a little goes a long way!

12. Frost the cupcakes with a butter knife or offset spatula, or get fancy and pipe the frosting on using a pastry bag (or a ziplock bag with a small cut in one bottom corner. 


Recipe reposted with permission of Audrey Dunham, a Switch4Good team member and founder of Peanut’s Bake Shop. If you’re a recipe developer, athlete, or just proud to be dairy-free, sign up to be a part of our growing team of go-getter individuals! 

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