Gluten-free cupcake ideas

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Some time ago, I determined that I would expand my gluten-free baking repertoire. I never get very far because I am wrapped up in the regular baking and am paranoid about ensuring that the gluten stuff does not touch gluten-free stuff. I know there are a lot of people who eat gluten-free by preference, so gluten is not going to hurt them. But there are a few with tremendous sensitivity and for their sake, I try to be as careful as I can be in a kitchen in which both gluten and gluten-free baking takes place.

In any case, my bakes, as anyone who knows me knows, are industrial in their size and breadth… meaning that once the regular stuff is done, I don’t have a lot of energy left for expansive gluten-free experiments. Now I always make gluten-free/paleo coconut flour brownies because they are easy and I know they work… and often make stuff like coconut macaroons (also easy and foolproof). But cupcakes are a new area. I’ve been told that these were delicious.

Vanilla gluten-free cupcakes (makes 12)
1/2 cup (125 grams) butter
2/3 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup (115 grams) gluten-free all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 cup coconut milk

Preheat oven to 175C. Bake 12-15 minutes.

Line cupcake pan with paper liners.

Cream butter and sugar, add eggs – sift dry ingredients together and mix into wet ingredients alternately with coconut milk.

Fill cupcake papers just over halfway. Bake. Remove from oven after 12-15 minutes, when toothpick inserted in center of center-placed cupcake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for five minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

Next up to try in my adventures in gluten-free baking:

Chocolate gluten-free cupcakes (makes 12)
210 grams gluten-free all-purpose flour
70 grams cocoa
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
1 cup sour cream
3 to 6 tablespoons coffee

Preheat oven to 175C. Bake 15-20 minutes.

Line cupcake pan with paper liners.

Cream eggs and sugar, add coconut oil – sift dry ingredients together and mix into wet ingredients in three rounds, alternately with the sour cream. Add in the coffee last of all, using as much as you need to make the right consistency batter and flavor you like.

Fill cupcake papers just over halfway. Bake. Remove from oven after 15-20 minutes, when toothpick inserted in center of center-placed cupcake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for five minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

(I used chocolate Swiss meringue buttercream and gluten-free sprinkles.)

Cuckoo for coconut: Naturally gluten-free baking choices

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I had an ambitious baking plan recently (don’t I always?), and – for once – I was ready, armed with plenty of time and all the needed ingredients. Then southern Sweden was hit by an unusually powerful windstorm, which knocked my power out two days in a row. While the outage only lasted a few hours, it robbed me of my motivation… ambition out the window.

I still managed to bake quite a lot, but not everything that was on my list – and the gluten-free baking options suffered most. I had very much hoped I could make my standard gluten-free paleo brownies (which I did) but also venture into the world of more adventurous gluten-free cookie options. At least in my first round of baking, I did not succeed, and the brownies were the only thing that got made.

On the second round, I still had some lingering hope for gluten-free experimentation, but the only thing I managed to do was make some very basic, simple coconut macaroons. It was a new recipe for me, which I grabbed from Food.com – apparently Ina Garten’s recipe. The final product turned out well, but I actually had to add a lot more coconut than the recipe asks for. I’d suggest adding the amount listed in the recipe and see if you get the right consistency for a “dough” that can hold its form and bake into a cookie but that is not too “wet” from the condensed milk.

Give it a shot.

Coconut macaroons
14 ounces of coconut (4.27 cups or 397 grams)
14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 extra large egg whites
¼ teaspoon salt

Combine coconut, condensed milk and vanilla in one bowl and set aside.

Whip egg whites and salt on high until medium-firm peaks form.

Carefully fold eggs into the coconut mixture.

Drop tablespoons of the mixture onto baking sheets covered in baking paper.

Bake 25 to 30 minutes until golden.

Gluten-free pumpkin cream cheese muffins

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Made some pumpkin muffins using coconut flour – turned out well. 🙂 Gluten-free, paleo, and yummy.

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How?
3/4 cups coconut flour
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
3/4 cups maple syrup
6 eggs
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 175C. Line a cupcake pan with liners.

Mix all ingredients together. Put the mixture into the liners (2/3 full).

Cream cheese filling
About 1/3 cup cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons sugar

Mix cream cheese and sugar together.

Make small indentations in the pumpkin mixture and add dollops of cream cheese filling – you can swirl it in slightly if you want a bigger mixture.

Put the muffins in the oven. Bake 25-30 minutes. Cool 10 minutes in the pan, remove from pan and cool completely before serving.

June – near Midsummer break – bake

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The latest bake … did not grab pictures of everything but most of the recipes are linked below.

M&M cookies and white chocolate macadamia cookies

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Gluten-free/”paleo” brownies

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Cranberry-pistachio biscotti

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Ginger cookies with pumpkin spice kiss candies

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Cherry oat bars

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Faux thin mint cookies

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Vanilla cupcakes stuffed with Raffaello candy, vanilla frosting

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Cookies and cream cupcakes

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Banana-oat cupcakes stuffed with Smil, frosted with caramel Swiss meringue buttercream

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Brown sugar cupcakes injected with maple syrup, maple Swiss buttercream and candied bacon

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Nanaimo bars

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Lemon raspberry bars

Crack pie with M&Ms

Anzac biscuits

Chocolate truffles

Gluten-free banana cream cheesecake

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gluten-free banana cheesecake

gluten-free banana cheesecake

I’ve said it before and will say it again: gluten-free baking is best when you are making recipes that were created gluten-free from the outset. In this case, cheesecake filling is gluten-free on its own. And crust choice is really flexible enough to choose what you want.

Recently I decided to make some banana cream cheesecake and made an almond-flour and cocoa-based crust. (I had a lot of leftover filling and made a separate cheesecake using a graham cracker and cinnamon crust.)

Knowing that this was highly appreciated, I will – as usual – share my recipe:

gluten-free banana cheesecake

gluten-free banana cheesecake

Gluten-free almond meal and cocoa crust
1 ¼ cups almond meal or finely ground almonds
3 tablespoons sugar
¼ cup cocoa
¼ cup melted butter

Mix all ingredients together and press into a springform pan (a 10-inch pan would be suitable; I used two miniature springforms). Wrap the springform in foil to prevent leakage.

Refrigerate while preparing the filling.

Cream cheese and banana filling
680 grams softened cream cheese
2/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
3 eggs
¾ cup mashed banana (3 to 4 well-ripened or overripe bananas)
½ cup whipping cream
2 teaspoons vanilla

Beat cream cheese for a few minutes until creamy. Beat in sugar and cornstarch. Add in eggs, one at a time. Beat in the mashed bananas, whipping cream and vanilla.

Pour filling mixture into the prepared crust. Put the pan on a cookie/baking sheet and bake in a 350F/175C oven for 15 minutes.

Reduce oven temperature to 200F/93C and bake for 75 minutes, until center is almost set.

Allow the cake to cool completely in its pan before removing the springform rim. Before removing the pan, run hot water over a knife and slide the hot knife around the edge of the cake to separate the cake from the pan cleanly.

Refrigerate the cake, uncovered, for at least 7 hours, although overnight is most effective.

gluten-free banana cheesecake

gluten-free banana cheesecake

Getting on the gluten-free merry-go-round: Gluten-free brownies and coconut chocolate bites

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We never really think about our blind spots until we are confronted by them. We believe we are thinking holistically but are blinded by our own limitations and experiences.

I think I know a lot about music but then there are blind spots – whole genres I don’t care about. Or just periods in time when I did not pay attention. S. mentioned a one-hit wonder “Would I Lie to You?” by Charles & Eddie. I had never heard of it, but it was apparently a big hit at the time.

My blind spot in that time period was my relentless race through university and almost academic focus on listening to Russian and Eastern European folk music, meaning that while I did listen to other things, I was not listening to the radio, was not listening to new things unless introduced to me by friends.

Not a big deal but these small details are a bit like doors opening onto whole blind spot areas. And one such blind spot is gluten-free fun.

I have never thought a lot about baking gluten-free goods, but then a gluten-free person became a part of my team at work. It created a whole new set of considerations. I have been experimenting ever since. So far I only have about two recipes that are foolproof.

One is coconut macaroon and dark chocolate bites, which is naturally gluten-free. Clearly there are better results when something that was always gluten-free without adaptations is made. It is not just for gluten-free lifestyles/diets but is just made this way. No flours of any time. Just coconut, egg, chocolate and cream.

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coconut macaroon chocolate ganache tarts

coconut macaroon chocolate ganache tarts

The gluten-free brownies (and also paleo) are getting better each time I make them – or at least their consistency is. The latest was a little bit more moist than previous attempts. It uses coconut flour and maple syrup and a lot of eggs so should be similar to a normal brownie. It’s not quite the same but at least gluten-free folks can get some kind of sweet chocolaty treat to gobble up like everyone else can.

I have a gluten-free Kahlua cheesecake bite recipe I want to try – so next time around that will be on the menu.

Baked goods 23 September 2014

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I did a lot of baking and think there was a little something for everyone.

The whole bake

The whole bake

Tricky transport of baked goods

Tricky transport of baked goods

Recipes in the links.

Cookies & cream cupcakes

cookies and cream cupcakes

cookies and cream cupcakes

Matcha green tea cupcakes with raspberry frosting

Matcha green tea cupcakes with raspberry frosting

Matcha green tea cupcakes with raspberry frosting

Raffaello-filled vanilla cupcakes with vanilla-coconut frosting

Raffaello cupcakes

Raffaello cupcakes

Carrot pineapple spice cupcakes with vanilla + Heath bar frosting
Guinness cupcakes with Bailey’s frosting

Guinness cupcakes with Bailey's frosting

Guinness cupcakes with Bailey’s frosting

Maltesers chocolate malt cupcakes with chocolate frosting

Maltesers cupcakes

Maltesers cupcakes

Brown sugar maple cupcakes with maple frosting and candied bacon

Brown sugar cupcakes with maple frosting and candied bacon

Brown sugar cupcakes with maple frosting and candied bacon

Shortbread with chocolate sprinkles

intact rounds of shortbread with chocolate sprinkles

intact rounds of shortbread with chocolate sprinkles

shortbread with chocolate sprinkles - inside-out

shortbread with chocolate sprinkles – inside-out

White chocolate macadamia nut cookies

white chocolate macadamia and M&M cookies

white chocolate macadamia and M&M cookies

Crack pie – recipe coming soon

How much crack is in that crack pie?

How much crack is in that crack pie?

Gooey insides of crack pie

Gooey insides of crack pie

ANZAC biscuits

A pile of ANZAC biscuits. Eat your heart out, Aussies and Kiwis!

A pile of ANZAC biscuits. Eat your heart out, Aussies and Kiwis!

M&M cookies

M&M cookies - always a favorite

M&M cookies – always a favorite

Coconut caramel macchiato bars

Gone in a flash! Coconut caramel macchiato bars

Gone in a flash! Coconut caramel macchiato bars

Chocolate cookies filled with Smil (Rolo) candy
Chocolate mint cookies

chocolate cookies with mint chips; chocolate cookies filled with Smil candy

chocolate cookies with mint chips; chocolate cookies filled with Smil candy

Gluten-free paleo brownies

Gluten-free, paleo brownies

Gluten-free, paleo brownies

Gluten-free coconut chocolate bites

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Peanut butter bars – recipe coming soon

Peanut butter bars with peanut butter and chocolate chips

Peanut butter bars with peanut butter and chocolate chips

Experimental gluten-free brownies

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My gluten-free baking efforts are a bit hit or miss, but it does not stop me from trying. Up today – gluten-free brownies made with coconut flour. I am skeptical but I guess on Tuesday when I feed these to people, I will find out for sure.

Gluten-free, paleo brownies

Gluten-free, paleo brownies

Here’s what to do for your own gluten-free coconut flour brownies:
1/2 cup minus 1 tablespoon coconut flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons melted butter
3 eggs
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla

  1. Preheat oven to 300F/150C; grease a small square glass baking dish.
  2. Mix together all ingredients. I beat the eggs a bit first, added the butter and vanilla and then added the other ingredients and ended up with a thick, paste-like batter
  3. Pour into the baking dish and bake for 30-35 minutes.
  4. Cool for 30 minutes before cutting or removing from the pan. Cut, serve (or store for up to a few days in an airtight container).

Baked goods & recipes – May 27

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When I finally came out of hibernation and baked, I ended up making nine different things to take to my office. I had a list of more things than that but was so slow in the baking process that I was not even sure I would manage to make the nine things I did. But here is the recount and all the recipes, for those who care:

M&M cookies

MMM MMMMMM ... M&M cookies

MMM MMMMMM … M&M cookies

White chocolate macadamia nut cookies

Ever-popular favorite: White chocolate macadamia cookies

Ever-popular favorite: White chocolate macadamia cookies

ANZAC biscuits

Deceiving you into thinking they're healthy: ANZAC biscuits

Deceiving you into thinking they’re healthy: ANZAC biscuits

Nanaimo bars

Nanaimo bars for all those times you don't count calories and/or want to pretend you're Canadian

Nanaimo bars for all those times you don’t count calories and/or want to pretend you’re Canadian

Coconut macaroon shells filled with dark chocolate ganache

Gluten-free doesn't mean it's not amazing: Dark chocolate ganache filling in coconut macaroon tart shells

Gluten-free doesn’t mean it’s not amazing: Dark chocolate ganache filling in coconut macaroon tart shells

Chocolate chip cookies stuffed with Reese’s peanut butter cups

Heart attack in cookie form: Reese's peanut butter cup stuffed in giant chocolate chip cookie

Heart attack in cookie form: Reese’s peanut butter cup stuffed in giant chocolate chip cookie

Chocolate cookies with Andes mint chips

Using the rare Andes mints for chocolate mint cookies

Using the rare Andes mints for chocolate mint cookies

Chocolate cookies with Reese’s peanut butter chips

Using up peanut butter chips brought by "chip mule" from the States - chocolate cookies with peanut butter chips

Using up peanut butter chips brought by “chip mule” from the States – chocolate cookies with peanut butter chips

Shortbread with chocolate sprinkles

Perennial favorite - buttery shortbread with chocolate sprinkles

Perennial favorite – buttery shortbread with chocolate sprinkles

Coconut macaroon shells with dark chocolate ganache filling

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coconut macaroon chocolate ganache tarts

coconut macaroon chocolate ganache tarts

Yes, a whole new experiment. Gluten-free and probably delicious if you like coconut and/or dark chocolate. I tried to make some gluten-free carrot cookies the other night – no dice. Horrible disaster.

But these – they look and seem (although I don’t know about taste) lovely.

You can make them yourself – not difficult!

Coconut macaroon shell recipe
1 1/2 cup coconut
2 large egg whites
1/4 cup sugar

Combine ingredients. Mix and press into mini muffin pans that have been sprayed with non-stick spray. Bake at 175C for 18 minutes until the edges of the shells are golden brown (but the inside is not!). Let the shells sit for five minutes when removed from the oven. Remove from the pan while still warm. Let them cool completely.

gluten-free coconut macaroon shells

gluten-free coconut macaroon shells

Dark chocolate ganache filling
8 ounces dark chocolate
1 cup heavy cream

Heat cream to a simmer. Pour over chopped chocolate. Let it sit for a minute to soften. Whisk until completely smooth and thick. Fill cooled coconut cups with the ganache and refrigerate.

coconut macaroon chocolate ganache tarts

coconut macaroon chocolate ganache tarts