Makes: 9

Dairy free / Gluten free / Refined sugar free / Vegan / Paleo

Sometimes life just calls for cupcakes . Whether it be your child's birthday party, that time of the month, or you're feeling like a chocolate indulgence while procrastinating about all the work you have to do, then these are for you!

They are totally plant-based of course and free from gluten, grains, dairy, refined sugar, soy & egg. Nothing I make ever has any of those things in, (unless I'm making my kids playdough...), other than the occasional organic, pasture fed egg. Why? Because we just don't need them!

I don't label myself as anything, I'm not totally vegan, (although I was for many years) and I don't like labels! They are too restricting, and being flexible with food (within reason) is a really good thing. Sometimes when you're out with friends, it's easier and more enjoyable if you don't have any terrible allergies of course, to just go with the flow and have a smidgen of gluten with your meal for example. It might not be so good for your bod, but the hassle-free experience is good for your soul!

So, when life calls for cupcakes, try this recipe over one with all the not-so-good ingredients in, you will not be disappointed! What's more, you can actually enjoy them guilt-free, and feed them to your children knowing that they are nourishing and not laden with sugar.

black dorris plum CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES


For the cupcakes

1 1/4 cup almond flour, (or almond meal)
1/4 tsp pink salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup cocoa powder
3 flax eggs - whisk together 3tbsp ground flax meal with 9 tbsp water - or if you eat eggs, replace the flax eggs with 3 large organic eggs.
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
2 tablespoons raw local honey (you could also use maple syrup or coconut nectar here to make vegan, but I love bee products)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the icing

3/4 cup pitted Medjool dates
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup coconut butter
1/3 – 1/2 cup water if using baking dates (you may need less or a tad bit more depending on how soft your dates are, be careful not too add too much though)


For the cupcakes

  1. Preheat oven to 180c. Grease your muffin tin with coconut oil.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together all of the dry ingredients. Transfer to blender
  3. In the same bowl, whisk together all of the wet ingredients. Add to the blender.
  4. Blend the batter until is very smooth. Pour into muffin tin greased with coconut oil, filling them about 2/3 of the way.
  5. Bake for 12 minutes. DO NOT OVERBAKE or they will be dry.
  6. Remove the cupcakes from the oven, allow to cool in the pan for 3 minutes, then pop them out and allow them to cool the rest of the way on a rack. Make your icing while waiting for cupcakes to cool.

For the icing

  1. Add all of the ingredients to a high-speed blender, start with just 1/3 cup of water, you can always add more. Let everything sit for a few minutes, especially if your dates are very firm.
  2. Blend everything together at a high speed. It may take a little bit to get the it started, so you can start at a slower speed and increase the speed a little at a time.
  3. Continue blending long enough to get a smooth, velvety consistency, this may take 5 minutes or more. If the frosting seems like it isn’t moving around in the blender because it is too thick, before you add more water, use a spatula to unstick the mixture from the blades and make some room in there. Put the lid back on and keep blending. When there are relatively no bits of dates and you have a rich, smooth chocolatey mixture, your icing is ready.

These are great as a treat for the little ones, or if you are feeling like a little guilt-free chocolatey goodness!


Hayley Richards

Hello! I'm Hayley - a certified nutritionist and holistic health coach by trade, a living & whole-foods chef and wellness enthusiast by passion. I'm amazingly blessed to live in sunny Nelson NZ with my gorgeous partner and three delicious daughters.