These are simply the best gluten free chocolate cupcakes! I like to top these ultra moist cupcakes with a classic chocolate buttercream frosting, but the possibilities are endless.
I feel like a good, classic chocolate cupcake recipe is essential in every baker's recipe collection. Something reliable, easy, adaptable, and delicious. I played around and tested a few different variations of this recipe but finally settled on the perfect one.
These gluten free chocolate cupcakes are extra moist and oh-so-rich and decadent. They're the perfect base for whatever type of frosting or decorations you want to top them off with!
The milk and oil both make these chocolate cupcakes super soft and fluffy. There are endless possibilities when it comes to decorating these little guys, but in this case I chose to go with chocolate buttercream.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- This recipe is straightforward and easy, something you can quickly whip up before a birthday party.
- The chocolate buttercream frosting that I decided to add to these cupcakes is so creamy and insanely delicious.
- I just think cupcakes in general are so much fun to make, and they always look great. They're the perfect serving size, too, because they are quite decadent (especially frosted).
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Gluten free flour blend: My favorite gluten free flour is Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 and, unless otherwise noted, this is the flour I use to develop all of my recipes. If you use a different blend, you must ensure that it contains xanthan gum.
- Cocoa powder: Make sure you are using unsweetened natural cocoa powder.
- Baking powder and baking soda: It's always important to ensure that your leavening agents are fresh, otherwise your cupcakes won't rise. Here's an easy test to check the freshness.
- Oil: I always use canola oil in this recipe, but vegetable oil will work too.
- Egg replacer: My favorite powdered egg replacer is by Bob's Red Mill. If you are not looking to make these cupcakes eggless, go ahead and use 2 eggs instead.
- Milk: I tend to use whole milk for these cupcakes, but low fat should work if that's all you have.
- Heavy cream: If you do not have heavy cream on hand, you can also use milk in the frosting.
STEP ONE: Start by combining your dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Give it a good whisk.
STEP TWO: Using an electric mixer, cream the butter, oil, and sugar until smooth.
STEP THREE: Add the egg replacer and vanilla extract and beat to combine.
STEP FOUR: Add the dry ingredients in thirds, alternating with the milk and starting and ending with the dry mix. Beat until combined.
STEP FIVE: Fill up your cupcake liners ⅔ of the way full. Bake for 18-20 minutes. Allow the cupcakes to cool completely before frosting.
Once fully cooled, you can choose to top these chocolate cupcakes off with any frosting you like, whether that's store-bought or homemade, although I highly recommend this chocolate buttercream frosting.
To make the frosting, simply beat the butter for a good 5 minutes until it's nice and creamy and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and salt and continue beating. Finally, add the heavy cream, one tablespoon at a time, until you have the right consistency.
- As with all of my recipes, I recommend using a kitchen scale to weigh the flour and cocoa powder. This is the only way to ensure accuracy, and you really want to avoid accidentally adding too much flour or cocoa powder to your cupcakes, otherwise they will be quite dry. You will need 148 grams of flour for this recipe and 42 grams of unsweetened cocoa powder.
- I typically fill my cupcake liners about ⅔ of the way up. I like to use a large ice cream scoop (which is about 3 tablespoons) to ensure all cupcakes are the same size.
- You really want to make sure your cupcakes are completely cool before frosting.
- Take your time beating the butter for the buttercream frosting. This will help you get that smooth and creamy consistency.
- Once you add the powdered sugar and cocoa powder into your buttercream frosting, it may take a while to fully incorporate. This is totally normal!
Frequently Asked Questions
To make these chocolate cupcakes vegan, you would need to use non-dairy milk and butter in both the cupcakes and the chocolate buttercream. I have not tested this myself.
You can store the cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-4 days. After that, it's best to store in the refrigerator.
I recommend either using a cake box or transferring the cupcakes into a deep roasting pan and covering with foil.
Did you try my gluten free chocolate cupcakes? Leave me a comment below or tag me on Instagram @justastastyblog and #justastastyblog! And don't forget to subscribe to get new recipes directly in your inbox.
Best Ever Gluten Free Chocolate Cupcakes
- 1 cup (148g) gluten free flour blend
- ½ cup (42g) unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ⅔ cup (134g) granulated sugar
- 4 tablespoons (57g) unsalted butter room temperature
- ¼ cup (60ml) canola or vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons Bob's Red Mil Egg Replacer mixed with 4 tbsp water
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup (120ml) whole milk room temperature
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
- 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter room temperature
- 3 cups (340g) powdered sugar
- ¾ cup (64g) unsweetened cocoa powder
- ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 4 tablespoons heavy cream
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Set aside.1 cup (148g) gluten free flour blend, ½ cup (42g) unsweetened cocoa powder, ½ teaspoon baking powder, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the sugar, butter, and oil until smooth. Add the prepared egg replacer and vanilla extract and beat to combine.⅔ cup (134g) granulated sugar, 4 tablespoons (57g) unsalted butter, ¼ cup (60ml) canola or vegetable oil, 2 tablespoons Bob's Red Mil Egg Replacer, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Add the dry ingredients in thirds, alternating with the milk and making sure to start and end with dry ingredients. Beat briefly between each addition to incorporate.½ cup (120ml) whole milk
- Spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, a little over halfway full. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter until light and creamy, about 5 minutes. Add powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and salt and continue to beat until combined.1 cup (226g) unsalted butter, 3 cups (340g) powdered sugar, ¾ cup (64g) unsweetened cocoa powder, ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
- Add heavy cream one tablespoon at a time while continuing to beat until the buttercream is the desired consistency. Spread or pipe onto cooled cupcakes.4 tablespoons heavy cream
Be sure to follow the instructions on the package of Bob's Red Mill Egg Replacer. Once mixed with water, the egg replacer must sit for just a few minutes to thicken.
If you are not looking to replace eggs, you should be able to use 2 eggs instead of the egg replacer.
- Whole milk may be substituted for the heavy cream in the buttercream frosting.
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Note: this recipe was updated in August 2022. The original recipe contained sour cream and instant coffee, and was made with oil only (no butter).