Maple Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream Frosting

  • Yield: 1 dozen


1/2cup (120 ml) plain or vanilla soymilk or almond milk
1/2teaspoon (2.5 ml) apple cider vinegar
1tablespoon (15 ml) finely ground flax seeds
1/2cup (120 ml) pure maple syrup (preferably grade B)
1/3cup (80 ml) sunflower or other light-tasting oil
1teaspoon (5 ml) pure vanilla extract
1 1/3cups (185 g) light spelt flour
1teaspoon (5 ml) baking powder
1/2teaspoon (2.5 ml) baking soda
1/4teaspoon (1 ml) fine sea salt
Buttercream Frosting:
2/3cup (160 ml) organic refined (ie, unflavored) coconut oil, soft at room temperature (see note)
2/3cup (160 ml) pure maple syrup (preferably grade B)
1teaspoon (5 ml) pure vanilla extract
-- Pinch of fine sea salt
1/3cup (80 ml) soymilk powder
1teaspoon (5 ml) finely ground chia seeds, optional (see instructions)


For the cupcakes:
  1. Preheat oven to 350F (180C).  Line 10 muffin cups (for large cupcakes) or 12 muffins cups (for small cupcakes) with paper liners, or spray with nonstick spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, vinegar, flax seeds, maple syrup, oil and vanilla until well combined.  Set aside while you measure the dry ingredients, or at least 2 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and whisk just until combined (do not overmix). 
  4. Using a large ice cream scoop or 1/3 cup (80 ml) measuring cup, scoop the batter into the prepared muffin cups.  Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, until a tester inserted in one of the center cupcakes comes out clean.  Cool completely before frosting.  May be frozen.

For the buttercream frosting:

  1. In a deep bowl with electric beaters, beat the coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla and sea salt until combined. 
  2. Slowly sift in the soymilk powder and blend on low speed to incorporate.  Then blend on high speed until the mixture becomes lighter–both in color and texture–and fluffy.  If it seems too soft to hold a peak, add the chia and beat to incorporate; let stand 2-5 minutes, then beat again before using.  Makes enough to frost 10-12 cupcakes. May be frozen; defrost in a covered container in the refrigerator overnight before using.

Note: You can certainly use unrefined oil for this frosting, but it will have a distinct coconut flavor.


This recipe comes from Ricki Heller, author of the blog Diet, Dessert and Dogs.