These Vanilla Almond Flour Cupcakes are gluten-free and oil-free with a tender and fluffy texture. They have a subtle, sweet vanilla flavour and require just 6 ingredients! If you’ve tried this almond flour lemon cake, you’ll love these almond flour vanilla cupcakes!
Clearly, I’m on a bit of a cupcake kick lately! Since I shared these chocolate zucchini cupcakes, I’ve been craving vanilla cupcakes. (Call it balance!) So, I decided to try my hand at making a simple, gluten-free vanilla cupcake.
As many of you probably know, almond flour can be a bit finicky to bake with. Sometimes almond flour cakes and cupcakes can be a bit heavy and dense, especially when they include oil as an ingredient.
So, I went through multiple rounds of testing with this cupcake recipe to ensure you’re equipped with all the tips and tricks to make the perfect almond flour cupcake!
These cupcakes don’t have any oil, and thanks to a simple trick of beating the eggs and sugar together until foamy, these cupcakes are light and fluffy!
While I topped these vanilla cupcakes with a simple cream cheese frosting, I highly recommend trying them with this dairy-free chocolate avocado frosting!
Why you’ll love these almond flour cupcakes
- These cupcakes are light and fluffy.
- You only need 6 ingredients.
- They’re not sickly sweet. They have just enough sugar and vanilla to add a hint of sweetness.
- They’re oil-free and gluten-free. They can also be dairy-free depending on the frosting you use.
- The unfrosted cupcakes freeze well, so you can make them in advance for parties and celebrations!
Details on the ingredients
Almond flour – You’ll need 2 1/4 cups or 234 grams of almond flour for these cupcakes. (I recommend weighing the flour for this recipe). Make sure you use fine blanched almond flour instead of almond meal or ground almonds.
Sugar – These cupcakes are made with cane sugar as it is less processed than granulated sugar. They both act similarly in recipes, but cane sugar has a slightly coarser texture and golden colour. You can usually find it in the organic section of most grocery stores.
Vanilla – To add the essential vanilla flavour to these vanilla cupcakes, you’ll need 2 teaspoons of vanilla. Be sure to use real vanilla extract for the best flavour and not artificial vanilla.
Eggs – You’ll need 4 large eggs at room temperature. The eggs are a key ingredient for rise, moisture and a fluffy texture. They need to be at room temperature so they beat together with the sugar properly.
Baking powder – For leavening, you’ll need one teaspoon of baking powder. Make sure your baking powder is fresh!
Salt – Just 1/4 teaspoon is added to enhance the flavour of the other ingredients. The subtle hint of salt just pairs so well with the sweet vanilla. I used fine sea salt, but you can also use kosher salt or even table salt.
What is the difference between almond flour and almond meal?
Both are made from raw ground almonds but almond flour is made with blanched almonds (with skins removed) and is more finely ground. Almond meal is coarser as it is made from almonds with the skins on.
How to make vanilla cupcakes with almond flour
Preheat your oven to 350F and line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with cupcake liners.
In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the almond flour, baking powder and salt.
Add the eggs and sugar to a large mixing bowl. On medium-high speed (not high), use an electric mixer to beat together the eggs and sugar for one minute.
Add the vanilla and beat for another minute. At this point, the mixture should be foamy and just starting to thicken.
Using a low speed on your mixer, gradually add the almond flour mixture to the egg mixture until fully combined. Don’t over mix.
Portion the mixture out into the muffin pan, filling each cup 3/4 full.
Gently tap the bottom of the pan off a hard surface to help remove any air bubbles.
Bake for 17-19 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of a cupcake comes out clean.
Let cool for 5 minutes before removing the cupcakes from the pan and placing on a wire rack to cool completely.
Once cooled, frost with your favourite frosting.
Best frosting for almond flour vanilla cupcakes
The great thing about vanilla cupcakes is that they work with almost any type of frosting. Here are some options:
- The cupcakes pictured in this post are topped with cream cheese frosting. Find the recipe in this carrot cake recipe.
- Buttercream frosting would also work perfectly. One of our favourites is a vegan buttercream included in this apple spice cake recipe.
- If you’d like to keep these cupcakes dairy-free, you can use the same coconut milk frosting used in this recipe for pineapple coconut cupcakes.
- This chocolate avocado frosting is another delicious dairy-free option.
Why did my cupcakes sink in the middle?
While these almond flour cupcakes will not have a domed shape, they should not sink in the middle. Sunken cupcakes could happen for a number of reasons:
- The baking powder was out of date. If the leavening agent doesn’t work, the cupcakes will not rise properly.
- The oven was too hot. This may cause the cupcakes to rise too much initially and then deflate.
- The cupcake pan was too full. If the cupcakes don’t have room to expand as they bake, they may deflate when you take them out of the oven.
- The batter was over mixed. This may incorporate too much air into the batter and cause a sunken appearance. It also creates a denser cupcake.
- The eggs and sugar were beaten together too long. While beating the eggs and sugar until foamy helps the eggs to aerate and create a fluffy cupcake, if you beat them for too long they will increase in size. This will add too much liquid to the batter causing it to be too runny, which can also result in sunken cupcakes as the batter is too heavy to rise properly.
- The almond flour wasn’t measured properly. While you can use the spoon and level measuring technique, for this recipe, I much prefer to weigh the almond flour. If you don’t use enough almond flour, the batter will be too runny and will not rise properly.
Frequently asked questions
This recipe has been specifically tested with almond flour. As almond flour is gluten-free with a high fat and moisture content, a 1:1 substitution with other flours will not work.
Unfortunately, these cupcakes will not work with an egg replacement. The eggs are essential in this recipe for texture and structure.
I haven’t tried using this cupcake recipe to make a cake, but if you’re looking for an almond flour cake recipe, I have many on my website including almond flour orange cake, lemon almond flour cake, almond flour chocolate cake, almond flour strawberry cake and almond flour banana cake.
While I included cup measurements in the recipe card, I also included the weight of the almond flour in grams. Precisely measuring your flour for this cupcake recipe will help you get the best results. It’s easy to use too much or not enough almond flour when using a measuring cup. If you use too much, the cupcakes will be dry. If you use too little, the cupcakes will be too moist (and possibly have a sunken middle).
You can store unfrosted cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for 2-3 days. Just make sure they’re stored in a single layer as the tops of the cupcakes will start to get a bit tacky and will stick together.
Frosted almond flour cupcakes should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge and will last 3-4 days.
You can store these cupcakes (frosted or unfrosted) in the freezer for up to 3 months. Just make sure your frosting can withstand freezing and store the cupcakes in a single layer.
I usually freeze the cupcakes unfrosted, then let them thaw at room temperature before frosting and serving.
Key recipe tips
- Measuring flour – While I usually just use the spoon and level method for measuring flour, I highly recommend weighing it for this recipe. Precision is best to ensure these cupcakes rise properly and have the best texture.
- Almond meal – Please don’t use almond meal for this recipe as it’s too coarse. Fine almond flour will produce the best results.
- Mixer – You’ll need an electric mixer to beat the ingredients together. While you can use a stand mixer, I find a handheld mixer works best (especially for beating together the eggs and sugar).
- Eggs – Ensure the eggs are at room temperature as they will incorporate with the sugar easily and start to foam and thicken quicker.
- Wet mixture – Don’t beat the eggs, sugar and vanilla for any longer than 2 minutes as the mixture will increase in size and add too much liquid to the batter.
- Don’t overfill – Make sure you don’t overfill the muffin pan with batter. The cupcakes will rise over the top and bake up unevenly.
- Sunken cupcakes – These cupcakes will not dome like traditional cupcakes. They will have a flat top. If they look sunken, review the section above regarding cupcakes sinking in the middle and ways to prevent this.
- Best cupcake liners – I’ve used many different types of cupcake liners and find the parchment paper liners work best for releasing cupcakes. Other liners tend to stick to cupcakes.
- Cool cupcakes – Before frosting the cupcakes, let them cool completely. If they’re still warm, the frosting may melt.
More almond flour recipes
- Almond Flour Peanut Butter Cookies with mini chocolate chips
- Almond Flour Blondies with chocolate chips
- Christmas Blondies with holiday sprinkles
- Cherry Crisp with strawberries and blueberries
- Almond Flour Carrot Cake with dairy-free cream cheese frosting
If you make this recipe, I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below!Print
These Vanilla Almond Flour Cupcakes are gluten-free, dairy-free and oil-free with a tender and fluffy texture and require just 6 ingredients!
- 2 1/4 cups fine almond flour, spooned and levelled (or 234 grams)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/2 cup cane sugar (or 120 grams)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350F and line a standard 12-cup muffin pan with cupcake liners.
- In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the almond flour, baking powder and salt.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the eggs and sugar. Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed (not high), beat together for one minute.
- Add the vanilla and beat for another minute. At this point, the mixture should be foamy and just starting to thicken.
- With the mixer on low speed, gradually add the almond flour mixture to the egg mixture until fully combined. Don’t over mix.
- Portion the mixture out into the muffin pan, filling each cup 3/4 full. Gently tap the bottom of the pan on a hard surface to help release any air bubbles.
- Bake for 17-19 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cupcakes comes out clean.
- Let cool in pan for 5 minutes before removing the cupcakes and transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Frost with your favourite frosting.
- If you can, weigh the flour for this recipe. Precise measurements will ensure these cupcakes rise properly and have the best texture.
- Don’t use almond meal for this recipe as it’s too coarse. Fine almond flour will produce the best results.
- Ensure the eggs are at room temperature as they will incorporate with the sugar easily and start to foam and thicken quicker.
- Don’t beat the eggs, sugar and vanilla together any longer than 2 minutes as the mixture will increase in size and add too much liquid to the batter.
- Make sure you don’t overfill the cupcake pan with batter. The cupcakes will rise over the top and bake up unevenly.
- These cupcakes will not dome like traditional cupcakes. They will have a flat top. If they look sunken, review the section above regarding cupcakes sinking in the middle.
- I find the parchment paper cupcake liners work best for releasing cupcakes. Other liners tend to stick to cupcakes.
- Be sure to check out the other sections above the recipe card for more detailed advice and suggestions for making this recipe.
Keywords: almond flour cupcakes, vanilla cupcakes, gluten-free cupcakes