So…these are from heaven.
This was the winning recipe from the sixth episode of Cupcake Wars Season 2. Chloe Coscarelli was the first vegan contestant on the show and she succeeded in totally blowing away the judges (and the competition) with her fantastic culinary creations. I decided to (finally) give these a go for Easter this year and they were a smash hit!
If you’ve never had a vegan cupcake, this is the one to try. Actually, on second thought, maybe you should aim lower for your first experience. These will spoil you!
Chocolate Strawberry Shortcake Cupcakes
Recipe Courtesy of ChefChloe.com
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tbs apple cider vinegar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp instant espresso powder*
1 1/2 cups hulled and sliced fresh strawberries
Powdered sugar, for garnish
*I was concerned that this would add a strong coffee flavor, but you could actually only taste it if you knew it was there. I think it’s meant to enhance the richness of the chocolate – which it does well.
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup non-hydrogenated shortening (refined coconut oil at room temp. OR vegan margarine will also work)
1 tbs vanilla extract
1/4 cup water
- Preheat oven to 350°F and line a 12-cup cupcake pan with paper liner
- Sift or whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and salt into a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the coconut milk, oil, vinegar, vanilla and espresso powder until smooth
- Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and mix with a fork or small whisk
- Divide the batter evenly among the prepared cupcake liners until each cup is 2/3 full. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean
- Once the cupcakes are completely cooled, slice off the top 1/3 of each and slather with frosting and sliced strawberries*. Place the top of the cupcake back on top and add an additional bit of frosting and sliced strawberries. Dust with powdered sugar
*For whatever reason, my cupcakes didn’t really rise too far above the top of the liners so I had to peel each liner off and then cut off the tops. Obviously, this meant they weren’t as pretty as I’d have liked, but they still looked yummy. I didn’t take them completely out of the liners, so I just sat each one back into my cupcake carrier in its liner. Hopefully the next time I make these, they’ll rise high enough so that isn’t necessary, but who knows. It was good enough.
- Combine the powdered sugar, coconut oil and vanilla extract in the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl
- Beat on medium-high speed until combined. With the mixer running, add 1 tbs of water at a time, until the desired buttercream consistency.
Note: You probably won’t use all the water.
Yield: Serves 12