Gluten free chocolate chip cupcakes

Here’s a great recipe if you, or someone you know, cannot eat gluten. My youngest nephew has coeliac disease and I always try to make sure he doesn’t miss out on sweet treats. I made a batch of these buns last weekend when both my nephew’s came for a sleepover with our daughter. All three of them chose to eat the GF (gluten free) cupcakes instead of the standard ones and they loved them.

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A note of caution when baking GF food – always make sure that your equipment is thoroughly clean before you start (it should be anyway!) and keep your GF food separately to avoid cross-contamination. You also need to carefully check the ingredients list on items such as sprinkles which may well contain gluten. The Coeliac society website has lots of useful information on catering for a gluten free diet.

Makes 16 cupcakes

Cupcake ingredients:

  • 6oz soft margarine or butter
  • 6oz caster sugar
  • 5oz gluten free self raising flour. I use Dove’s farm flour which is available in the supermarket, just look in the ‘free from’ aisle, rather than the regular baking section.
  • 2oz cocoa powder
  • 1.5 teaspoons gluten free baking powder. Again, Dove’s farm baking powder is good.
  • 5 tablespoons of milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 2oz mixed chocolate chips tossed in a tablespoon of GF flour

Equipment:

  • 2 cupcake trays or 2 standard baking trays.
  • 16 cupcake cases. I like the baking cups from Iced Jems.
  • Electric hand mixer or stand mixer.
  • Sieve.

Method:

1) Pre-heat your oven to 160 degree centigrade. Place the cupcake cases into the tins or onto a baking tray.

2) Place all your ingredients, apart from the chocolate chips, into a mixing bowl or the bowl from your stand mixer. Starting on a low speed, blend the cupcake ingredients together. Gradually increase to a medium high speed and mix for a couple of minutes until you have a smooth, fluffy batter.

3) Fold in the chocolate chips, making sure they are well distributed in the mixture.

4) Divide the mixture between the cupcake cases.

Divide the mixture between the cupcake cases.

Divide the mixture between the cupcake cases.

5) Bake in the oven for approximately 15 – 20 minutes. You can check whether they’re ready by lightly pressing them with your finger. If they spring back, the sponge is cooked. You can also insert a skewer or cocktail stick which will come out clean when the cakes are ready.

Cupcakes fresh from the oven.

Cupcakes fresh from the oven.

6) Leave in the tins for a few minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Leave the cupcakes to cool completely on a wire rack.

Leave the cupcakes to cool completely on a wire rack.

These cupcakes freeze really well and are very useful to have on hand incase you need to cater for anyone with an allergy to gluten. Place the un-iced cupcakes into a sealable food bag or tupperware box then put them in your freezer. Remove the cupcakes from the freezer about 30 minutes before you need them then decorate them as described below.

Note – to make vanilla cupcakes, use 6oz self raising GF flour and do not add any cocoa powder. You will still need to use the milk as GF flour is drier than standard flour.

Decorating your cupcakes with two-tone buttercream:

1) Make up a batch of my buttercream recipe using 9oz soft butter/margarine and 1lb 2oz sieved icing sugar.

2) Divide the mixture equally between two bowls. Into one bowl, add 2 large desert spoonfuls of sieved cocoa powder then beat well until thoroughly mixed.

3) Snip the end off a disposable piping bag and insert a star nozzle. Spoon the vanilla buttercream down one side of the bag and the chocolate buttercream down the other side.

4) Pipe swirls of the buttercream ontop of the cooled cupcakes. I sprinkled some chopped up flake bars over the cakes just for another hit of chocolate! You can add the sprinkles of your choice, just make sure they are gluten free.

Gluten free cupcakes with chocolate and vanilla buttercream swirls.

Gluten free cupcakes with chocolate and vanilla buttercream swirls.

If you don’t want to use two-tone buttercream, you can just use one colour instead. Or change the colours to suit you by adding small amounts of gel food colouring. To make life even easier, you could use ready-made icing which is available in the home baking section of supermarkets, just make sure you check the ingredients are gluten free.

Hope you enjoy baking these special cupcakes!

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