Gluten-free and dairy-free Vanilla Cupcakes that are very moist, fluffy but thick, and filled with a light vanilla flavor. Topped with vanilla buttercream frosting, these cupcakes are an easy and classic dessert for birthday parties or other fun gatherings.
What’s your favorite cupcake flavor?
Mine is either Funfetti or Chocolate. I really don’t know if I could decide.
But, I recognize that for some of you Vanilla may be your favorite! So instead of posting more chocolate-flavor-based cupcakes, I decided to finally share a gluten-free and dairy-free Vanilla Cupcake recipe.
And these cupcakes are GOOD. They are NOT your super light, fluffy and dry cupcakes that you buy from the store.
These Vanilla Cupcakes are very moist, a little thick and dense but still fluffy, and I don’t think you would even know they’re gluten-free and dairy-free.
Even though I’m a total chocoholic, these Vanilla Cupcakes are seriously good and I’m a huge fan. If you’ve got a friend or family member who loves vanilla, these are the perfect birthday party treat. Or, they’re a great fun and simple Holiday dessert too.
Let’s talk ingredients and tips.
First, to keep this recipe gluten-free AND dairy-free I recommend using almond milk and either coconut oil or a dairy-free butter alternative for the cupcakes themselves. For the frosting, be sure to also use almond milk and a dairy-free butter alternative too.
If you do not need these cupcakes to be dairy-free, then go ahead and use whatever milk you prefer, and butter. If you have it, you can also use buttermilk instead.
This recipe uses vinegar and lemon juice to curdle the milk to create “buttermilk.” If you don’t have vinegar or lemon juice, don’t worry, you can still make these cupcakes with regular milk too. I just think the “buttermilk” gives these cupcakes a little extra moisture and great flavor.
Other than butter and milk, the rest of the ingredients for these cupcakes are very simple:
- Gluten-free all purpose flour (or regular flour)
- Baking powder
- Vinegar or lemon juice
Even the Vanilla Frosting is made with simple ingredients – with some of the same ingredients too, but with the addition of powdered sugar. These Cupcakes are great if you need a last minute dessert but don’t want to run to the store for more ingredients!
For the flour, I would recommend that you use a high quality gluten-free all purpose flour (with xantham gum) for these cupcakes. My favorites are King Arthur Measure for Measure and Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1. I would not recommend using any other types of gluten-free flour (no coconut flour, almond flour, etc) as they all behave differently.
If you don’t need these cupcakes to be gluten-free, you can go ahead and use regular all purpose flour too!
Or, if you’re like me and live in a household of mixed diets, you can go ahead and make one batch gluten-free and dairy-free, and one batch not! I love how flexible an easy this recipe is for different diets.
If you would like to try and make these a touch healthier you could use coconut sugar instead of white sugar. You could also half the frosting recipe and spread a much smaller amount of frosting on top of each cupcake.
Speaking of frosting, this frosting recipe is really easy to make and delicious, BUT if you like frosting from a tub more (I know some do!) feel free to use whatever type and flavor you’d like! These would also be delicious with chocolate frosting, strawberry frosting, etc.
Basically, if you love vanilla, cupcakes, easy desserts, and baking homemade treats, then these are the cupcakes for you!
Easily gluten-free, dairy-free, filled with vanilla flavor, moist, fluffy but thick, these cupcakes are a must-make. And THAT comes from a chocoholic! 😉
And if you love LOVE cupcakes, here’s a few more flavor ideas for you to try: my gluten-free Snickerdoodle Cupcakes, Pina Colada Cupcakes, Chocolate Red Wine Cupcakes and Lemon Cupcakes.
- 1/2 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 1 1/2 tsp vinegar or lemon juice
- 1 1/3 cup gluten-free all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted (or dairy-free butter alternative or butter)
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup butter or dairy-free butter alternative
- 2-3 tbsp almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 cups powdered sugar
To begin, preheat your oven to 350 and line a muffin tin with cupcake liners.
In a small bowl, add your almond milk and vinegar and stir them together. Let it sit for a few minutes, till it curdles to become "buttermilk."
In a small mixing bowl, combine your dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, salt) and stir them together.
In a large mixing bowl, using a hand mixer, cream your coconut oil and sugar together. Add your eggs and blend together again briefly. Add your vanilla and almond milk "buttermilk" and blend everything together.
Pour your dry ingredients into your wet ingredients and stir them together till all is well combined. Fill each cupcake liner about 2/3 way full with the cupcake batter.
Bake in the oven for 19-22 minutes, or till the top is springy to touch and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
Let your cupcakes cool entirely before frosting.
In a large mixing bowl, add your butter, milk and vanilla and, with a hand mixer, cream them together till smooth. Add one cup of powdered sugar and mix together till smooth. Add your second cup of powdered sugar and mix together again till smooth.
Pipe or spread your frosting on top of your cooled cupcakes.
Stored in an airtight container in the fridge, these cupcakes last about a week. Alternatively, you can store them for 1-2 days on the counter.
If a recipe of yours doesn’t specify high altitude adjustments, do I need to make the proper changes or is the recipe written for high altitude? Thanks!
Chelsea Green says
Hi Stella. If there are no high altitude adjustments listed, they should work just fine at roughly 5000 ft. Though, if you are at an even higher altitude (7000 ft or so) you may have issues with them.
Eva Dankers says
I loved using your Pina Colada cupcake recipe, but I can no longer find it on your blog. Is it available?
Chelsea Green says
Hi Eva. I’m sorry to say, several months ago I removed some recipes from my blog that weren’t bringing me any traffic. I thought I had the pina colada cupcake recipe somewhere, but I can’t find it right now! I will share with you what I remember though off the top of my head. It’s based on my Vanilla Cupcake recipe (https://www.milehighmitts.com/vanilla-cupcakes-gluten-free-dairy-free-option/), but to the cupcake batter add 1/2 tsp coconut extract, 1/2 tsp rum extract, about 1/2 cup crushed/finely diced pineapple (drained), and use coconut milk (instead of almond milk and vinegar/lemon juice). For the frosting, add about 1/2 tsp of coconut extract. Top with extra coconut and pineapple. Be sure to spray the cupcake liners plenty, so they don’t stick. Please let me know if you have any other questions!