The Healthiest Chocolate Cupcakes - a delicious & easy recipe for you and the kids

Most people who know me know that I’m slightly addicted to dark chocolate.

And once in a while I will indulge in something a bit richer, like a nice dark chocolate cake. However, to avoid the tummy ache or headache (or just guilt!) that can come with the excess sugar in most traditional deserts, I like to look for recipes that I can make at home. I look for recipes a bit lighter on the sugar, and ideally gluten and dairy free.

This year for my birthday, I decided to make my first Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes. I’ll admit that my first try, which was based on a recipe using buckwheat flour, wasn’t that great, but then I adjusted to my liking, and my second try was just perfect. I shared my cupcakes with a few friends who confirmed they loved them, and even their kids devoured them.

So for all of you interested in making a healthy yet delicious sweet treat for you and your kids that 1) isn’t filled with sugar and 2) actually contains healthy ingredients that support your ( and your kids') overall health, I wanted to share this awesome recipe:

Chocolate Beet Cupcakes (Vegan & Gluten-Free with Chocolate Avocado Frosting.

 image credit: fitbit

image credit: fitbit

This recipe uses coconut sugar and pure maple syrup, absolutely no refined sugars. And its vegan, dairy-free and gluten-free. But on top of that, my cupcake recipe is filled with nutrition!

The beets give them a moist and fudgy texture – as well as a TON of nutrition. BEETS are filled with vitamins A, B and C, they’re also high in fiber, manganese, folate and phytonutrients with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification qualities. And amazingly, you can’t even taste them in these cupcakes! (Just note, beets can be a bit messy and may turn your hands pink when roasting/peeling!)

Then the avocado frosting is so delicious, slightly fudgy but with a silky texture, and has the perfect amount of chocolaty sweetness. AVOCADOS are one of my favorite foods, that I recommend to most clients who need to increase their intake of HEALTHY FATS. Avocados are cholesterol-free, packed with fiber (keeps you full and supports digestion), and contributes nearly 20 vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. Also, with less than one gram of sugar per ounce, avocados have the least amount of sugar per serving of any fruit. Plus they help your body to absorb fat-soluble nutrients.

And for me, these super healthy and delicious beet-avocado cupcakes are a great way to satisfy my sweet tooth; perfect for a special occasion.

Chocolate Beet Cupcakes – with Chocolate Avocado Frosting

Gluten free, Dairy free, Vegan, Antioxidant-packed, no processed sugar

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 - 1 cup roasted beets* (about 2 small or 1 large, cooked, peeled and chopped; see step 1)
  • 1 cup gluten-free all-purpose baking flour (can also use coconut flour or oat flour)
  • 1/2 cup almond meal (I use leftovers from making almond milk)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Pinch of sea salt (about 1/8 teaspoon)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup organic coconut sugar
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

For the Frosting

  • 2 small ripe avocados (ex. Hass) or 1 large avocado (ex. medium/large Nica avocado)
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • pinch salt
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil

Instructions:

  1. Peel beets and roughly chop. Then place in a steamer basket over 2 inches boiling water, cover, and steam until soft when pierced with a fork, about 10 minutes. Notes: Option to do this step before. Also option to bake beets instead, for about 30 mins or until soft.
  2. Heat the oven to 350°F then grease a muffin pan for 12 cupcakes. (Option to put cupcake liners in, but I chose to place them in the liners after to keep them neater).
  3. In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients (gluten-free flour to baking powder), making sure to work out any large lumps, then set aside.
  4. Stir together the almond milk and the apple cider vinegar in a cup and allow to sit for a few minutes to curdle. Add it to a food processor (or high speed blender) along with the roasted beet, coconut sugar, pure maple syrup and vanilla extract. Process/blend on high until a smooth liquid forms.
  5. Add the dry ingredients in with the wet mixture (in the blender/processor)and pulse to combine. Lastly add the coconut oil and process/blend until you have a smooth mixture.
  6. Fill the muffin tray (about ¾ full to make aprox. 12 cupcakes). Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until you can stick a knife in the center and have it come out clean. When ready, remove from oven and allow to cool.
  7. Meanwhile, prepare the frosting by combining all the ingredients in a food processor and blending until smooth. Taste and adjust if needed (ex. adding more maple syrup to make it sweeter and/or more cacao to make it richer).
  8. Lastly, generously cover each cupcake (fully cooled) with the frosting. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
 image: makingthymeforhealth

image: makingthymeforhealth