Joy the Baker

Gluten-Free Strawberry Cupcakes and a giveaway!

April 29, 2011

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Baby steps.

I need to take baby steps when it comes to gluten-free baking.

Maybe the flours confuse me.  Maybe I have no idea what guar gum is.  Maybe arrowroot is intimidating.

… It’s just that I know exactly what all-purpose flour is going to do when I combined it with baking soda and buttermilk… it’s going to make me delicious, fluffy pancakes.  I like knowing that.

But I’m being a brat.  A total brat.  I like the sound of coconut flour.  I learned that arrowroot is just a thickening starch that comes from a plant.  I can still use eggs in gluten-free baking, and I’m totally on-board with agave nectar.

I made gluten-free cupcakes.  I was a brat for thinking that it would be torture.  Considering how delicious these are… I’m totally done being a brat, probably until the next time something challenges my sensibilities.

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There’s a new book in my collection. Gluten-free cupcakes I can get down with.  All of the recipes are made with either coconut or almond flour.  They all have agave nectar, sometimes coconut oil (yum!), and arrowroot.  I was amazed at how sweet coconut flour is. Seriously… amazing.  And boy is that stuff absorbent!  Crazy.  Yes.  You’re watching me learn new things.  Bare with me.

I’m stoked on this book, Gluten-Free Cupcakes.  Elana has made gluten-free baking feel not so daunting… not to mention that these cupcakes are totally delicious.  Her recipes have as little as three ingredients, usually six or so.  Totally do-able.    I want one of you to have a copy of this book.  I also want one of you to have a bag of coconut flour and a bag of arrowroot powder.  I’ll send those along too.  Get started!  There’s nothing that should stop you from gluten-free goodness.

Leave a comment with this post.  Tell me what you’re doing this weekend that might me just slightly outside of your comfort zone.  A winner will be chosen on Sunday night and announced on Monday.  Get on it!

UPDATE: Winner!  Kerry Edwards!  You randomly won the Gluten-Free Cupcake Book!  I’m stoked!  I hope you are too!!

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It’s strawberry time.

I’m totally ready to perfect my strawberry dice.

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Listen… sometimes pictures of batter aren’t as glamorous as you want them to be.  Well… most time they aren’t.

But there is some coconut flour and arrowroot magic going on here.

This recipe called for 4 large eggs and half a cup of coconut flour.  I said… no way.  And yet… way!  These cupcakes turned out tender, moist, cakey, and delicious.  Fan.

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I topped these little cakes with agave sweetened Cream Cheese frosting.  I am absolutely amazed at how simply delicious these are.  I think I just got 46 times more popular with my gluten-free friends.  I’m just sayin’.

Gluten-Free Strawberry Cupcakes

makes 8 (or 9) cupcakes

recipe from Gluten Free Cupcakes

Print this Recipe!

1/2 cup coconut flour

1 tablespoon arrowroot powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

4 large eggs

1/2 cup agave nectar

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup finely chopped fresh strawberries (plus more for topping the frosting)

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F.  Line a cupcake pan with 8 or 9 foil or paper liners.  Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together coconut flour, arrowroot powder, salt, and baking soda.  If the coconut flour has a few stubborn lumps in it, make sure to whisk them out.

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, agave, and vanilla extract.  Add the wet ingredients, all at once, to the dry ingredients and whisk together.  You can do this by hand or with a handheld mixture.  Whisk until all ingredients are well combined.  You’ll feel the mixture begin to thicken as you stir.

Fold in the strawberries.

Scoop batter into lined cupcake pan.  Fill papers to two-thirds full.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a wooden skewer inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out with just a few moist crumbs.  Remove from oven.  Allow cupcakes to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing from the pan to cool completely on a wire rack.  Once completely cool, frost with cream cheese frosting.

Cupcakes will keep, in an airtight container in the fridge for up 2 or 3 days.

Cream Cheese Frosting

makes:  enough to smear 8 or 9 cupcakes.  If you’d like to pipe this frosting, I suggest doubling the recipe.

1/3 cup heavy cream, whipped to stiff peaks

4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

2 tablespoons agave nectar

dash of pure vanilla extract

In a large bowl, whip heavy cream into stiff peaks using a whisk or a handheld mixer.  In a separate large bowl, whip the cream cheese, agave, and vanilla together until smooth and pliable.  Using a rubber spatula, fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture.  Fold until evenly combined.

Spread onto cooled cupcakes or place in a piping bag to pipe over cupcakes.  Sprinkle with small diced strawberries.

Frosting will keep, in an airtight container in the fridge for 2 or 3 days.


1,004 Comments Add A Comment

  • You’ve inspired me to try these gluten free cupcakes this weekend….out of my comfort zone since gluten free baking has intimidated me. Love your blog!

  • I’ll be going on the longest bike ride to date- My husband and I are just starting out with long distance cycling with hopes to go biking through Italy for our 20th anniversary (in 15 years) so we’re going to bike our county this weekend, roughly 40 miles!

  • I agree with you – gf baking is very intimidating at first. i cook gf occasionally b/c a couple of my friends have celiac disease, and for me the cross-contamination issue is the hardest to overcome. i LOVE the different flours though, just an excuse to play with new stuff!

  • My friend recently found out she needs to be gluten free. Which is a total bummer since I discover my love of your grapefruit yogurt scones and I can’t share them with her. I would love to show her this cookbook and bake some cupcakes for her!

  • I love gluten-free baking! Although, I find it to be quite inconsistent. Quite possibly a personal problem. Sometimes its fabulous, other times it’s a kitchen disaster! …a chance I am always willing to take. :) As for this weekend, I am cleaning the garage. I don’t know if it is outside the comfort zone, but it sure is down and dirty!

  • Yes, Elena has great recipes! I love coconut flour too, be careful at first…it is very dense and very absorbant even when ingested….drink extra water….I’m just trying to help everyone out here…!
    I use stevia in place of agave sometimes, for the bulk replace a little applesauce for the half of the sugar. So 1 cup sugar I would use 1/2 cup applesauce and 1 tsp stevia. Depending on the recipe but that is what I would do in this. I am starch free right now, but already have this on my list to bake when I can add in small amounts of starches (arrowroot). Try Elena’s Mexican Rice thingy- it is amazing, out of this world, I make it every week :)

  • This weekend I’ll be experimenting with some vegan snacks. I want to start inviting my boyfriend’s vegan friends over more often, but considering my overwhelming love of cheese and eggs the whole vegan thing makes very little sense to me…!

  • JOY!!!!!!!!!! This week I was informed that I would be doomed to life of gluten-free eating. I’ve been moping around, thinking about all the ways my life is now over (a bit dramatic, but that’s how I was feeling). One of my thoughts was of how I wouldn’t be able to bake the yummy things you post about anymore. I didn’t even want to check your site to see what I was missing. Then something got into me this afternoon, and I decided to check your site for the heck of it. I could have cried tears of joy when I saw “GLUTEN-FREE” on the top of your page. Thank you so much. Before I was gluten-free (which was 4 days ago… haha), I didn’t have much interest in gluten-free baking since I didn’t have to. Thank you for thinking of us. Not everyone does. :)

    What will I be doing this weekend that’s outside of my comfort zone??? I’ll probably be doing the same thing as you– diving head first into a couple gluten-free recipes.

    • This is my favorite gluten-free blog: http://glutenfreegirl.com/

      She has written several books and cookbooks, has beautiful recipes, and is a pleasure to read. She bakes in weights, but don’t be scared. I know how challenging it can be to make huge dietary (and really lifestyle) shifts, but making delicious food that is good for your body is soooo worth it.

      You’re not alone! You can do it!

  • I have a few coworkers who are on gluten-free diets and I love bringing in treats that I bake to work, but always feel like I’m excluding them. I would love to have a gluten-free recipe book to try some of these cupcake recipes out!

    This weekend, I’m going to Canada, where I just got accepted into grad school (I’m from the US). Studying in another country is definitely outside my comfort zone, but there are so many rewards that I have absolutely no regrets and many, many things to look forward to.

  • yum! I love your blog and your creativity! This weekend my friends and I are having a belated Easter Beer Hunt, which is not outside my comfort zone but is purely exciting. I am, though, anxiously finishing up the first step of the application process for medical school today, which is challenging me in every way possible. I’d say nearly every bit falls outside my comfort zone…

  • Those look absolutely delicious!!!!!!!!!!! Strawberries are my favorite and I’ve been dying to try gluten-free recipes. Sign me up! <3

  • I may have to go gluten free for health reasons… that will be a scary adventure in itself. At least I know you’re helping pave the way for me in small steps. Thanks.

  • Tonight I’m making tortillas! I know that is very much within the realm of Comfort Zone for most cooks out there, but for some reason the simplicity of the recipe and process scares the bejeepers out of me. (It doesn’t help that I’m just coming off a failed attempt at Hawaiian Bread.)

    I’m hoping the Tortilla Fairy is smiling down on me this evening as I roll them out and try to bake them into perfect rounds of deliciousness.

  • Love the cupcakes; big fan of strawberries and very interested in using coconut powder. I was out of my comfort zone this evening when I tried to swirl pizza dough around like they do on tv then realised it wasn’t working so went for plan B and pulled it around on my chopping board until it got bigger. Do pizza tossing chefs train for years like sushi chefs or is it high level chumpery on my part?

  • OMG YES! I just bought some beautiful organic strawberries on sale, and agave nectar! The giveaway would be the perfect topping, indeed. And as for something out of my comfort zone this weekend, I am going to a wedding shower. Not a fan. But I was asked by a nice church lady to brings some cookies, so there you have it.

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