Double Chocolate Cupcakes (Vegan & Gluten-Free)

Double Chocolate Cupcakes

After the holidays are over and the healthy eating regiments begin again, it can get a little depressing in the food department. Gone are the holiday months where baking is a weekly activity and holiday cookies are inescapable. But after discovering one ingredient sweet potato caramel, I needed to bake something chocolate to pair it with. It was the perfect excuse to bake again. Of course, I wanted it to be healthy (preferably vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free, yadda yadda), but still taste rich and chocolatey.


These double chocolate cupcakes are just what I had in mind: moist, full of chocolate flavor, and healthy enough to have for dinner… two nights in a row (hey, Josh suggested it, I just played along).


Double Chocolate CupcakesWHY THEY’RE HEALTHY// These double chocolate cupcakes get their sweetness from dates, which are rich in dietary fiber and easily digested. They also contain potassium, a mineral important for energy metabolism, as well as magnesium, the “anti-stress” mineral. Dates are also a significant source of antioxidant compounds. Unsweetened baking chocolate gives you all of the benefits of cocoa powder without any extra sugar. Dark chocolate may reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease and it contains many important minerals, such as iron manganese, magnesium and zinc. Dark chocolate also contains flavonoids, which function as antioxidants in the body and help prevent inflammation. These double chocolate cupcakes get their moistness from applesauce, which is relatively high in fiber, rather than extra oil. //


I used oat flour in these, which makes them a bit dense and more fudgey than some may prefer. If you’re looking for a lighter cupcake, experiment with other types of gluten-free flour. All-purpose gluten-free flour would probably yield the fluffiest version.


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Double Chocolate Cupcakes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A rich, fudgy, vegan and gluten-free chocolate cupcake topped with creamy chocolate icing. Adapted from Whole Foods Market
Recipe type: Desserts
Serves: 10
  • 3 ounces unsweetened baking chocolate, chopped
  • 1¼ cup non-dairy milk (I used easy semi-homemade coconut milk)
  • ¾ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ⅔ cup pitted dates (soaked at least 4 hours)
  • 2 teaspoons ground coffee
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1½ cup gluten-free flour (I used oat flour, which I made my grinding oats in my Vitamix)
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ cup cocoa power
  • ¼ cup coconut oil (room temperature)
  • 3 tablespoons liquid sweetener (I used maple syrup)
  • 2 tablespoons non-dairy milk (I used easy semi-homemade coconut milk)
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons dried coconut (I used unsweetened)
  • 4 tablespoons sweet potato caramel
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a high speed blender (I used my Vitamix), combine non-dairy milk, applesauce, dates, coffee grinds and vanilla and blend until very smooth.
  3. In a bowl, mix together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  4. Melt the unsweetened baking chocolate in a double broiler or in the microwave.
  5. Pour the date mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.
  6. Stir in melted chocolate, being careful not to over mix.
  7. Pour mixture evenly into cupcake pan (I made 10 instead of 12).
  8. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 20-30 minutes.
  9. Allow to cool before frosting.
  11. Mix all ingredients in a bowl until smooth.



  1. Heather says

    These are amazing!! VERY dense, moist, and super rich!! Delish! The sweet coconut is a great idea because they are slightly bitter, but again very rich. Thank you for showing great desserts can be made with such great stuff!

  2. says

    Your photos are a dream–so light, bright and airy! I love the toppings on these cupcakes. Lately I’ve been reverting back into full-sugar, full-fat baking creations but this is making me want to jump back on the healthy baking bandwagon–these sound delicious!

  3. Jessica says

    These look amazing! Have you ever tried making it into a cake? Just wondering, it probably makes one 8″ cake you think?

    • says

      Hi Jessica – I’ve never tried making it into a cake, but the recipe I adapted it from calls for a 9″ cake pan. I’m sure 8″ would work as well, just may have to bake a little longer! Hope you enjoy!

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