Recipe: Allergy-friendly Birthday Cupcakes

Sharing a birthday treat at kindy or school is becoming a bit of a tricky issue. Most schools and kindergartens have a nutrition policy and ask for no chocolate and sugary treats. Then there are the children with food sensitivities, allergies and other special diets who always miss out on special treats at birthday celebrations. Being one of those people myself I always feel sad to see those children resigned to the fact that they’ll be missing out on the fun food 😦

Here is a recipe that should meet almost all the needs of your child’s friends at a birthday celebration! It has no eggs, dairy, refined sugar, nuts or gluten. It isn’t grain-free but grain-free usually means using nuts instead and nuts are often excluded from schools as part of an allergy management policy. The frosting I have used is made of fruit, dates, maple syrup and coconut oil, so no naughty ingredients there either, although if nuts are not an issue then adding some soaked cashews to the blender will thicken the frosting up and make it creamier too. The only naughty bit was the silver cashous on top 🙂

These cupcakes turned out quite moist and fluffy inside – for gluten-free cooking (or more specifically MY gluten-free cooking!) that’s a plus because I find gluten-free baked goods are often quite dry. The flax seeds are mixed throughout but don’t change the texture of the cupcake at all.

ALLERGY-FRIENDLY BIRTHDAY CUPCAKES

CUPCAKE INGREDIENTS

1 cup coconut milk

1/4 cup maple syurp

1/3 cup coconut oil

2 tbs ground flax seeds

2 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp apple cider vinegar (I used home-made fruit scrap vinegar)

2 cups your favourite gluten-free SR flour (I use one without any soy or dairy)

FRUIT FROSTING INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup dried dates, soaked in hot water 10 minutes

1/2 cup coconut oil

1 cup frozen fruit defrosted to room temperature (I used cherries to make a dark purple icing)

METHOD

Mix all the wet ingredients plus the flax seeds. Allow the flax seeds to soak for 10 minutes or so. The flax seeds are acting as a binder and are replacing the egg in the recipe. You may need to add a little extra liquid after this stage, depending on the thickness of your mixture after the flaxseeds have gelled up.

Add the flour and mix well.

Spoon level to the top in muffin tins greased lightly with coconut oil and cook for 10 minutes in an oven preheated to 180C. They don’t go very brown on top/ When the skewer comes out clean they are cooked.  If the skewer still has mixture stuck to it, cook for another minute at a time until they are done. If overcooked they tend to dry out.

Allow to cool in the trays before turning out. This stops them from drying out.

While cupcakes are cooling, blend the frosting ingredients together and pipe on top of the completely cooled cupcakes. All ingredients should be at room temperature for the frosting otherwise the coconut oil will cool and clump instead of blending smooth. If it is a cool day and the coconut oil is solid to begin with, then cook all ingredients together for a little bit before you blend them. Decorate as you like then a bit of chilling in the fridge will set the icing. I’ve used dried rose petals and silver cashous.

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