Vegan vanilla cupcakes with dark chocolate buttercream frosting

I'm not a big fan of Valentine's Day but it's a great excuse to indulge your sweet tooth and cook something nice and delicious for someone you love. No matter if you're single or taken, to me cooking is an act of love, and you can surprise your mom, sister or best friend with these vegan cupcakes and bring a smile to their faces.

Even though we are having cloudy days in Barcelona I was lucky enough to find a moment when the sun came back and took these pictures. I'm pretty happy with the result, looks like it was a bright spring day but truth is I was wearing a big hoodie and my feet were freezing (as they are right now).

These vanilla cupcakes are absolutely delicious, a super tender and moist crumb topped with my favorite dairy-free dark chocolate buttercream frosting (silken tofu is the key ingredient!). I love to use this frosting for my cakes, cupcakes and also to serve as a chocolate mousse making a few variations; like adding a couple drops of orange essential oil and candied orange peel to decorate.

Happy Valentine's Day...however you celebrate it! ;-)

Receta en español en la web de Ecocesta

Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes with Dark Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

(12 cupcakes)


- For the cakes:

1 cup spelt flour.

1/4 cup ground flax seeds.

3/4 teaspoon baking powder.

1/2 teaspoon baking soda.

1/4 teaspoon pink Himalayan salt.

1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla bean powder.

2/3 cup unsweetened almond milk.

1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar.

1/2 cup pure maple syrup.

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil (mild taste).

- For the dark chocolate buttercream frosting:

350 g silken tofu.

1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk.

300 g dark chocolate, 70% cacao.

1 tablespoon coconut syrup.

- To decorate:

Puffed quinoa.


In a medium bowl beat the almond milk with apple cider vinegar until foamy, let it rest so a "buttermilk" forms.

Preheat oven to 170 ºC and line a cupcake baking pan with 12 paper cups.

Place flour, ground flax seeds, baking power, baking soda, salt and vanilla in a large mixing bowl, and mix with a hand whisk to aerate the mixture and until all ingredients are combined.

Pour in the maple syrup and olive oil over the milk-vinegar mixture and whisk until completely combined. Add this wet mixture to the dry ingredients, mix until a soft batter forms and there are no lumps. Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full and bake for 20 minutes (or until a small toothpick inserted into the center of one of the cupcakes comes out clean).

Let them cool in the pan, on a cooling rack, for 5 minutes and then umold and let cool completely.

- To make the chocolate buttercream frosting:

Drain the tofu very well and set aside. Melt the chocolate using a double boiler or bain marie and let it cool a little bit.

Place tofu (cut into chunks) in the bowl of your food processor and almond milk, pulse until a soft mixture forms. Pour in melted chocolate and coconut syrup, keep processing until a soft, mousse-like mixture forms. Transfer to an airtight container and let the frosting rest in the fridge up to 2 hours so it becomes more pipeable.

- To decorate:

Simply using a pastry fitted with your favorite decorating tip (I recommend to use a big one) decorate each cupcake with your chocolate frosting, creating the form you desire. Finally top with some puffed quinoa as a healthier alternative to sprinkles.

I recommend storing cupcakes in an airtight container, refrigerated. Let them thaw at room temperature 5-10 minutes before serving.