I feel like I am constantly reiterating how aloof I am about most sweets, but here I am again. I honestly just don’t have much of a sweet tooth, never have. Yet, as of late, I feel like I am constantly creating and sharing sweets and baked good recipes. I was thinking about why that might be – as someone who is much more into savory cooking. I started to realize that it was a subconscious decision I was making because of how much happiness sweets bring people and how intimidating baking and desserts can be with a restricted diet.
More specifically when I say “people” – besides all of my lovely readers, I really mean my husband, Mark. He is a self-professed sweets junkie. He loves any and all sweets and has been known to eat a slice of cake for breakfast, on occasion. So, whenever I can create a healthier sweet that not only works for my dietary restrictions, but also makes him very happy, it is a HUGE win, in my book. I have been on a roll lately, so I am just going with it.
I had been dreaming of a subtly sweet vanilla bean infused grain-free cupcake of some sort for a while now and I realized that one of my favorite spices, cardamom would be the perfect pairing. These cupcakes have a taste similar to carrot cake – subtle, comforting, spicy and not overly sweet. The creamy coconut cream frosting has complimentary flavors with a bit more of the spicy ground cardamom and two whole vanilla beans, plus a bright pop of citrusy flavor from the orange zest.
I hope you enjoy these as much as we do!
This recipe was originally shared on the Free People Blog BLDG 25
[print_this]Grain-free Cardamom Vanilla Bean Cupcakes – Gluten-free and Dairy-free
makes 12 cupcakes
• 3 cups blanched almond flour (I prefer this brand: http://amzn.to/1j0fGQ4)
• 1/4 cup coconut flour
• 2 teaspoons baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
• 1/2 cup coconut sugar
• 1 tablespoon ground cardamom
• 4 large eggs, room temperature
• 1/4 cup honey (I used raw)
• 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
• 1/2 cup coconut milk
• 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
• seeds scraped from 2 vanilla beans
Orange Cardamom Vanilla Bean Frosting (Vegan)
• 1 1/2 cups chilled full fat coconut cream (either from a can of coconut cream or separated from 2+ cans of coconut milk, that has been chilled)
• seeds scraped from 1 or 2 vanilla beans
• 2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
• 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
• 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
• zest from one orange, leaving a little aside for garnish
Preheat the oven to 350º F. Position your rack in the middle of the oven. Line a muffin tin with paper cupcake liners.
In a large mixing bowl add the almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda, salt, coconut sugar and ground cardamom and whisk together until well incorporated. In a medium sized bowl add the eggs, honey, coconut oil, coconut milk, vanilla extract and seeds from the vanilla beans. Whisk until well combined.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry. Using a large spatula, gently mix to combine all of the ingredients together. Fold until well incorporated. Using a large scoop (about 3 tablespoons), distribute the batter between 18 muffin wells, filling each nearly all the way full.
Bake 25-30 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool 30 minutes in the pan on a cooling rack. Then remove the cupcakes from the pan and allow them to finish cooling on the cooling rack.
While cooling, make your frosting. Add the chilled coconut cream and seeds from the vanilla bean(s) to a bowl and using handheld mixer, beat until smooth, creamy, fluffy and whipped. Add in the sweetener, vanilla extract, ground cardamom and orange zest. Whip another 30 seconds to a minute to incorporate and add to your piping bag. I keep this in the freezer for about 15 or 30 minutes while I am waiting for the cupcakes to cool, it allows the frosting to really set up and get thick.
Frost the cupcakes and serve immediately or place in the fridge until you are reader to serve. I find storing these cupcakes covered and in the fridge to be best – especially once frosted. [/print_this]