These Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes are a chocolate lover’s delight. Quickly and easily made from store cupboard ingredients, they are delicious, rich and fudgy. They’re also gluten-free!
Why we love this recipe:
You most likely have the ingredients in your pantry. If not, they are all readily available from the supermarket.
The Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes are great when entertaining. If you’re preparing food for people with specific dietary requirements, they are ideal as they are gluten-free, dairy-free and egg-free.
You don’t need any special equipment to make the cakes, just two bowls, a whisk and a muffin tin.
These delicious cupcakes are an adaptation of our recipe for Vegan Chocolate Cake.
Ingredients in this recipe:
Please see the recipe card further along in the post for exact quantities of ingredients and the full method.
For the cupcakes:
All-purpose gluten-free flour – I have used a commercial gluten-free blend. However, you can substitute regular all-purpose flour if you don’t need the cupcakes to be gluten-free. Our gluten-free flour blends contain either xanthan or guar gum to stabilise and provide structure to our recipes. If your flour blend already contains either of these gums, there is no need to add more.
Caster/superfine sugar – you can use granulated sugar if you prefer.
Dutch processed cocoa – I use unsweetened cocoa powder. Sometimes cocoa powder can form clumps, so sift it thoroughly.
Sea salt – a small amount of salt is a flavour booster in baked goods.
Baking soda – when combined with the acidity of vinegar it helps the cakes to rise.
Vanilla extract – for the best flavour, be sure to use naturally extracted vanilla, not artificially flavoured.
Cinnamon – a little ground cinnamon works so well with the chocolate flavour.
Vinegar – white wine or apple cider vinegar is suitable.
Neutral flavoured oil – I used Grapeseed but you can use another neutral flavoured oil of your choice.
Water – ideally, I like to use filtered water.
And for the frosting:
Vegan margarine – I use Nuttelex, a 100% plant-based spread.
Dutch processed cocoa – use unsweetened cocoa.
Icing/confectioners’ sugar – sometimes known as powdered sugar.
Step by Step Instructions:
You will need to start by pre-heating your oven to 180 Degrees C (350 F). Prepare a muffin tin by lining 10 muffin cups with paper liners.
- Add flour, sugar, cocoa, salt and baking soda to a large bowl.
In a separate bowl, combine vanilla, vinegar, oil and water.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and, using a whisk, mix them together until completely combined.
- Distribute the batter evenly in the prepared muffin cups.
- Bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove the tray from the oven and set aside to cool for a few minutes before removing the cupcakes and transferring to a wire rack to cool. If they stay in the muffin tin too long they will cook a little further.
The cakes may be frosted or dusted with icing/confectioners’ sugar.
For the frosting:
Combine cocoa and icing sugar. Add the margarine and vanilla. Pour boiling water onto the margarine and mix well. You may not need all the water so start slowly, and add more if you need to, to get a smooth consistency. Spread or pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes.
Tips for Success and FAQs:
As chocolate is the star of the show in these Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes, use good quality cocoa powder for the best flavour. Be sure to sift the cocoa as it sometimes forms clumps.
Whisk the ingredients until they are just combined; do not over whisk.
Make sure that your cupcakes are completely cool before frosting them otherwise it will melt.
We use an ice cream scoop so all of the cupcakes are the same size. We fill them about ⅔ full.
More delicious recipes for you to try:
These tasty dessert recipes are also vegan and gluten-free:
- Chocolate Coated Strawberries
- Salted Caramel Bliss Balls
- Chocolate Cake
- Brandied Oranges
- Chocolate and Peanut Butter Banana Bites
- Peanut Butter Freezer Fudge
- Chocolate Mousse
I hope you will love these delicious Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes. I would love to know your thoughts in the comments below!
Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes
For the cupcakes:
- 1 ½ cups (225 g) all-purpose gluten-free flour
- 1 cup (220 g) caster sugar
- ¼ cup (30 g) unsweetened Dutch-processed cocoa See Note 2 and 3
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar See Note 4
- ⅓ cup (75 ml) grapeseed oil See Note 5
- 1 cup (250 ml) water
For the frosting:
- 1 ½ tablespoon vegan margarine (I used Nuttelex) See Note 1
- ¼ cup (30 g) unsweetened Dutch processed cocoa See Note 2 and 3
- 2 ¼ cup (270 g) icing/confectioners' sugar
- 2-3 tablespoon boiling water See Note 1
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For accuracy, we recommend weighing your ingredients. This will produce the best results.
For the Cupcakes:
- Preheat your oven to 180 Degrees C (350 F).
- Line a muffin tin with 10 paper liners.
- Combine flour, sugar, cocoa, salt, cinnamon and baking soda in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl, combine vanilla, vinegar, oil and water.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and, using a whisk, mix together until completely combined.Pour the batter into the prepared baking muffin tin.
- Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre of the cupcake comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven, and allow the cupcakes to sit in the tin for 5 minutes.
- After this time, place on a cooling rack. Allow the cakes to cool completely before frosting.
For the Frosting:
- Combine cocoa and icing sugar. Add the margarine and vanilla. Pour 1 tablespoon of boiling water onto the margarine and mix well. You may not need all the water so add one tablespoon at a time, until you get a smooth spreading consistency.
- Spread or pipe the frosting on top of the cooled cupcakes.
- The Australian tablespoon is 20 ml or 4 teaspoons. In many other countries, the tablespoon is 15 ml or 3 teaspoons so you may have to adjust your measurements accordingly.
- I use Plaistowe Dutch Processes Cocoa, available in supermarkets. It gives a lovely rich, chocolatey colour and deep flavour.
- It is best to sift your cocoa as it may have formed clumps.
- If you do not require this recipe to be gluten-free, you can use regular flour.
- I have used white wine vinegar in this recipe, but you could also use apple cider vinegar.
- Use a neutral oil, such as grapeseed oil.
- Please note, the nutritional information is based on this recipe making 10 cupcakes, and one being enjoyed as a serving.
The nutritional information is an estimate only, and is derived from online calculators. For accurate results, we recommend calculating the nutritional information based on the ingredients and brands you use.
This is a chocolate lovers dream!! It came out perfect. It was moist, rich, and decadent.I followed the recipe exactly as written and it couldn’t have been any better! I definitely recommend trying this, especially with the frosting. Absolutely delicious!!
Hi Tiffany, I am so pleased that you enjoyed our Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes along with the equally delicious Vegan Chocolate Frosting. Thank you for letting me know. 🙂
These are so rich and fudgy – delicious recipe!!!
Thank you, Amanda! I am so pleased you enjoyed them!
Amazing! These were easy to make and loved by all. They will be a regular in our house from now on – thank you!
Thank you so much, Rebecca – so pleased to hear you enjoyed these!
This cupcakes are so chocolatey and delicious!!
Thank you, Maria!
Heidi | The Frugal Girls
I love your homemade frosting… it turned out so perfect. And those little candied flowers on top are so adorable! 💕💕
Hello Heidi, I am thrilled to hear that you enjoyed the Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes. They are so easy to make but so delicious. 🙂
I made straight away and they were all finished in 2 hours! My boys loved them – they didn’t even realise they were vegan! Thank you for this recipe!
Hi Jasmine! That is great to hear – thank you so much!
Kind regards, Alex
These were lush! Easy to make, and so popular with my book group.
Jacq, I am so pleased to hear that you and your book group enjoyed the Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes. Thank you for letting me know. 🙂
These are amazing. The frosting is seriously epic!
Hello Dannii, I am so pleased that you enjoyed the Vegan Cupcakes and frosting; thank you for letting me know. 🙂
What cute little chocolate cupcakes! I love that they are vegan also. Perfect for a sweet treat when the craving calls for it. Cheers
Thanks, Adrianne! I am so glad you enjoy these 🙂
What a delicious chocolate cupcakes! And plus it’s all gluten-free and vegan, love that you wrote this recipe for everybody to enjoy! I am saving this one 🙂
Thank you, Julia – I am so glad you like them!