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gluten free white cupcake recipe

A very happy birthday treat

gluten free white cupcake recipe

Let’s celebrate.

There are always excuses not to. Maybe there is no money. Maybe you are sad. Maybe you are sick. Maybe you are just grumpy & miserly and don’t ever want to have fun (it’s ok, sometimes even I feel that way).

I have as many reasons as the next guy to not want to celebrate. I can’t find the strength to get to the gym. Real pants make me want to cry. An ill-timed night out with friends can ruin my life for a month. But those are the absolute wrong things to focus on. They can give you grey hair before your time. And we all know that would just lead to more fretting.

And you know, girls just wanna have fun.

So really, let’s celebrate.

Have a party. I mean, heck, it was a birthday after all.

We can throw a little party with a few dozen cupcakes.

Cupcakes with chocolate frosting.

And maybe a few sprinkles thrown in the batter for good measure.

And maybe some balloons. Balloons are good for a birthday.

Happy 32nd birthday Kurt!
Balloons are always appropriate

It is good to celebrate.

And don’t forget to smile, it’ll do you good. And maybe eat a cupcake. Because cupcakes are theraputic.


Gluten Free White Cupcakes

Recipe Type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Mary Fran Wiley
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 50 mins
Total time: 1 hour 10 mins
Serves: 48
My favorite white cake recipe made into cupcakes with a simple chocolate frosting. Add GF sprinkles to the batter for a “funfetti” feel. This is adapted from the Cake Bible’s White Velvet Cake recipe. This recipe makes 48 cupcakes, a 4-layer 8″ cake or a 3 layer 9″ cake.
  • 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) milk at room temperature
  • 7 large (210 grams) egg whites (pasteurized are fine), at room temperature
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 460 grams ( 3 1/4 cups) gluten free all purpose flour*
  • 2 teaspoons xantham gum**
  • 450 grams (2 1/4 cups) granulated sugar
  • 7 grams (1 teaspoon) salt
  • 1 1/2 sticks (170 grams) butter, at room temperature and cut into cubes
  • 85 grams (6 tablespoons) vegetable shortening
  • 1 cup gluten-free sprinkles (optional)
  • 1 Recipe Easy Chocolate Frosting (below)
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 cupcake tins with papers (if you have 4, by all means line them all), grease the tops of the pans and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together 1/2 cup of the mil, the egg whites, egg and vanilla extract.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fit with the paddle attachment, combine the dry ingredients including the sugar on low speed for 30 seconds.
  4. Add butter & shortening and mix on low speed for 30 seconds. Add the remaining milk and stir untill just moistened. Increase the speed to medium and mix for a minute and a half.
  5. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the egg/milk/extract mixture in 3 groups, scraping down the sides before each addition.
  6. Using a large ice cream scoop, divide the batter evenly among the cupcake papers, making sure that none of them are more than 2/3 full (or you could have a little bit of a mess).
  7. Bake 2 trays at a time for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

*I use Cup4Cup gluten free flour in my kitchen, and it is my favorite, but I have also had good experiences with the following: Jules Nearly Normal Flour, Better Batter All-Purpose flour or King Arthur Flour’s Gluten Free All Purpose Blend.

**If your blend has xantham gum or expandex in it, you can omit this.

Easy Chocolate Frosting

Recipe Type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Mary Fran Wiley
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 10 mins
Total time: 30 mins
An easy chocolate frosting that you can adapt to be as firm or as soft as you like.
  • 340 grams (1 1/2 cups) powdered sugar
  • 150 grams (1 3/4 cups) cocoa (I used Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa, the dark helps cut the sweetness a little bit)
  • 1 cup milk or cream
  • 225 grams (1 cup or 2 sticks) butter
  • 565 grams (2 1/2 cups) powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the first amount of powdered sugar and the cocoa.
  2. Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan. Stirring constantly so the milk does not scald. Whisk this into the powdered sugar mixture. Let cool to room temperature, about 20 mins.
  3. Beat soft butter, vanilla extract and salt until creamy. Add the 2½ cups of powdered sugar and mix slowly until incorporated. With mixer on low, add the chocolate mixture a spoonful at a time.
  4. If the frosting is too loose, add up to an additional half cup of powdered sugar.
  5. This makes enough to frost a layer cake or put a good amount on 48 cupcakes (see photo for how much I used per cupcake)

Ratio Rally: Angel Food Cake

This post is part of the Gluten-Free Ratio Rally, a group of gluten-free bloggers inspired and empowered by Ruhlman‘s Ratio and started by Shauna at Gluten-Free Girl. We get together each month and post many different takes on the same theme. This month that theme is Gluten-Free Angel Food Cake and the rally is being hosted by Caleigh from Gluten Free[k].

Today is about finding and celebrating joy.

Because it is here. In every day. Even when it hurts to put on real pants. And some days, I need to remind myself of it.

Joy is seeing art exhibits and taking tours in French of the Art Institute with my aunt.

finding joy in the little things

Joy is my cat telling me it is time to go to bed by sitting on my chest so I can no longer see the computer screen. And then refusing to move until i go to sleep.

Joy is how I feel when I step of the train in the Loop and the promise of a good day is hanging in the air.

Joy is a hug sent via email from a friend on the opposite side of the world. And a phone call from that same friend at exactly the wrong time because someone can’t do math.

This is what I am focusing on today.

And sometimes, all you need is a little cake to bring it to you.

The ratio

3 parts egg whites: 3 parts sugar: 1 part flour (the lighter the better).

Not going to lie, I love angel food cake. And there is a recipe that we have used often in our house – one that is gluten free just because it is. The one from the back of the Swan’s Down Potato Starch. It is quite lovely, and it means, dear readers, that this is a fairly flexible cake. Add cocoa or ground chocolate in place of some of the flour for a chocolate cake. Use potato starch or arrowroot because that is what you happen to have. You will still end up with a magical, light cake.

Well, as long as you resist the urge to brush the warm cake with the earl grey syrup. Because I did not. And I melted my cake. And I know better. At least it still tastes good.

The flavors

Rainier cherries pan roasted with cointreau. Earl grey syrup. Orange extract in the cake. I would say, dear friends, that this is one sophisticated cake. The cointreau and the orange extract in the cake help pull the bergamot flavors to the forefront in the tea syrup. The tea itself gives a complex background for the oh-so-sweet cherries.

I whole heartedly suggest that you try the cake with all of these components. Sure, the cake on its own with fresh berries and home made whipped cream would be a perfectly simple dessert. But this my friends, is a rockstar dessert.

This is not your mom’s tired angel food cake.

This is not the Styrofoam textured cake that you can buy at the grocery store (yes, the filled with gluten kind).

This is a melt-in-your-mouth cake. A curl your toes with delight cake. This is the cake you want to make when you are trying to impress someone with your mad skills but can’t pipe frosting for the life of you. Or if you think you aren’t an accomplished baker.

[toggle title_open=”The others!” title_closed=”See the other posts from this month’s rally” hide=”yes” border=”yes” style=”default” excerpt_length=”0″ read_more_text=”Read More” read_less_text=”Read Less” include_excerpt_html=”no”]The others

Adina | Gluten Free Travelette made Cacao Spice Angel Food Cake
Angela | Angela’s Kitchen made Grilled Lemon Angel Food Cake with Lemon Curd and Berries
Aunt Mae | Honey From Flinty Rocks made  Angel Food Cake with Lemon Glaze
Caleigh | Gluten Free[k] made Almond Angel Food Stars
Caneel | Mama Me Gluten Free made Angel Food Cake “Pudding” with Fresh Cherry Sauce
Charissa | Zest Bakery Saffron Angel Food Cake (and didn’t post a link!)
gretchen | kumquat made caramel macchiato angel food cake
Heather | Discovering the Extraordinary Coconut Lime Angel Food Cake Roll
Jonathan | The Canary Files made Lavender Angel Food Cupcakes
Pete & Kelli | No Gluten, No Problem made Caramel Peach Angel Food Cake
TR | No One Likes Crumbley Cookies made Peach Angel Food Cake

Gluten Free Angel Food Cake with Early Grey & Cherries
#ratingval# from #reviews# reviews
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Mary Fran Wiley
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 50 mins
Total time: 1 hour 10 mins
Serves: 12
Make just the cake, or make it with all the components. Either way you will have an excellent cake.
  • Syrup
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 3 earl grey tea bags
  • 200 grams (1 cup) sugar
  • Cake
  • 350 grams (1 3/4 cup) granulated sugar, divided
  • 175 grams (1 1/4 cup) gluten-free all purpose flour*
  • 350 grams (12) egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • Cherry topping
  • 450 grams (1 pound) Rainier or other sweet red cherry, pitted and halved
  • 1/4 cup cointreau
  • 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar (or regular sugar if that is all you have)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
Make the tea
  1. Steep the tea in the boiling water and let sit while you make the batter.
Make the batter
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. Whisk together the flour and half the sugar, set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whip the egg whites until foamy, about a minute.
  3. Add the the remaining sugar, cream of tartar, lemon juice, salt, vanilla and orange extract to the egg whites.
  4. Increase the speed to medium-high, and beat until soft peaks form.
  5. Now is the time that requires a little patience, fold in the flour/sugar combo 1/3 at a time. You want to make sure that you do not deflate the mixture too much.
  6. Pour batter into a 9 or 10″ tube pan and bake for 30-50 mins. You want a tester inserted into the middle of the cake to come out clean.
Make the syrup
  1. Remove the teabags from the tea. In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring the strong tea and sugar to a boil. Let boil for 5 minutes (you want to end up with about a cup of syrup.
Make the cherries
  1. While the cake is baking, and the syrup is cooking (you do not need to stir it), combine cherries, half the cointreau, the sugar and the salt in a large skillet.
  2. Cook over medium heat until the cherries start to soften. Pour in the remaining cointreau to deglaze the pan and keep cooking until the sauce thickens back up. Stop cooking before the cherries turn to mush.
  1. Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for an hour and a half. Resist the urge to brush it with the syrup until it is cool.
  2. When cool, poke some holes in the bottom of the cake and brush with the syrup.
  3. Remove cake from pan, poke the top with holes and brush with syrup again.
  4. Top with cherries and serve. Amaze your friends.

*If you want to use potato starch or arrowroot, please go by weight and not by volume. You will end up with a little more volume wise.
**If you just want a plain cake, skip the orange extract and replace it with vanilla.



GF Ratio Rally: Confetti Cake

gluten free confetti cake with blue frostingI can’t believe that it has been a month since I posted about making gluten-free pasta from scratch. Or, that just 2 months ago, I was making cream puffs and apricot dumplings.

gluten free ratio rally logo

This month’s challenge: white or yellow cake. It is the host’s daughter’s birthday, and we are all bringing cake to the party.

When I was a younger, my mom brought me up with a general disdain for baking from boxes. And I loved funfetti cupcakes when they were brought in as treats to school. Especially when they were baked in sugar cones.

As a kid, I had a cake that was decorated like a hamburger and one that was ballet shoes. I had the kind of cakes that you normally don’t get when your mom bakes your cake. Really cool cakes that taste good. But I remember being envious of those kids and their funfetti cupcakes.

I was envious of the sprinkles inside the cupcakes. Not the actual taste.

gluten free confetti cake cross sectionWhen I heard it was Kate’s daughter’s first birthday this month, I couldn’t wait to put sprinkles inside my cake. Because, really, they are better when they are inside.

I used a modified version of Ruhlman’s ratio. I couldn’t remember baking a cake without liquid. And his ratio somehow forgot that. I found an article on fine cooking about cake ratios. It was a bit less straightforward than a 1:1:1:1 ratio, but that’s ok. I did all the math for you. You can thank me later. When you squeal with delight because there are sprinkles inside your cake (or cupcakes), and you didn’t use a box mix.

My ratio ended up being 2:2:1:1:.75… flour:sugar:eggs:butter:liquid

Now, let me explain the wonky ratio. Yes, I said wonky.

Complex ratio math:

  • flour = sugar
  • eggs ≥ fat
  • eggs + liquid = sugar
  • add chemical leveners, flavorings and gums as needed.
Oi, that’s complex. What does it mean? It means that it is a good thing I paid attention in math. If you have 300 grams of flour, you have 300 grams of sugar plus some eggs and liquid that weigh as much as the sugar. Got it? Me either. I kind of winged it. Meh, it happens.
This month’s rally was hosted by Kate at Gluten-Free Gobsmacked. See all the other fabulous cakes:

Britt  @ GF in the City made Boston Cream Pie
brooke @ B & the boy! made White Cake with Apricots & Blueberries
Caleigh @ Gluten Freek[k] made White Chocolate Cupcakes
Caneel @ Mama Me Gluten Free made Fresh-Squeezed Lemon Cake
Caroline @ The G-Spot made Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cupcakes
Charissa @ Zest Bakery made White Russian Cake
Claire @ Gluten Freedom made Banana Rum Cupcakes with Rum Glaze (alcohol-free!)
Dr. Jean Layton @ GFDoctorRecipes made Mocha Buttercream Yellow Birthday Cake-Gluten-Free
Erin @  The Sensitive Epicure made Chocolate Hostess CupCakes Dupes
gretchen @  kumquat made coconut boston cream pie cupcakes
Karen @ Cooking Gluten-Free! made Traditional Birthday Cake
Kate Chan @ Gluten Free Gobsmacked made GF Basic White Birthday Cake
Kate @ KateAliceCookbook made Lemon tea cake
Lisa @ Gluten Free Canteen made Frangelico Cupcakes with Nutella
Marla @ Family Fresh Cooking made Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins
Shauna @ Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef
The Healthy Apple made Gluten-Free Chocolate Pistachio Pound Cake
TR Crumbley@ No One Likes Crumbley Cookies made Gluten Free Tiramisu Cake
Winnie @ Healthy Green Kitchen made Gluten Free Vanilla Cupcakes
Rachel @ The Crispy Cook made Czech Cherry Bublanina 

Gluten Free Confetti Cake
#ratingval# from #reviews# reviews
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Mary Fran Wiley
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 40 mins
Total time: 1 hour
Serves: 10
Even better than my classic yellow birthday cake is a cake with sprinkles baked inside. This cake is easily made vegan with a couple of simple swaps.
  • 100 grams (1/2 cup) sweet white rice flour
  • 50 grams (scant 1/2 cup)tapioca starch
  • 50 grams (1/3 cup) brown rice flour
  • 50 grams (1/3 cup) sorghum flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon xantham gum
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 300 grams (1 1/2 cups)sugar
  • 150 grams (6 T) butter, softened, or earth balance
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 (150 grams) egg whites, or 4 flax eggs
  • 1 cup cold milk (I don’t drink milk, so I only use So Delicious when I bake)
  • 1/4 cup non-pareils
  • 225 grams (2 sticks) butter, very, very soft (again, sub Earth Balance for vegan)
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup powdered, dry milk, or powdered dry soymilk (Whole Foods carries this)
  • food coloring
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees & prepare pans by greasing them and lining with parchment paper.
  2. Sift together dry ingredients.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter, sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy.
  4. Add egg whites and beat for a minute or two on medium.
  5. Add the flours and mix a bit more, scraping down the sides. The batter should look a little thick.
  6. Add in the milk and mix until combined.
  7. Add in the nonpareils and give it a quick mix. Over stirring here will cause the color to spread throughout the batter and not be in concentrated little flecks.
  8. Pour into the prepared pans and bake for 35-45 minutes.
  9. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  10. For the frosting: whip together the powdered sugar, soft butter and powdered milk. Add food coloring as necessary and add additional powdered sugar to get the desired consistency.
  11. When the cake is cool, spread a filling (I used lemon curd) on one of the layers and stack the cakes. Frost and top with more sprinkles!

Vegan swaps: use 4 flax eggs (1 tablespoon ground flax dissolved in 3 tablespoons water). Use Earth Balance Buttery Spread in place of butter and powdered, dried soymilk in place f the powdered dry milk.

To use a gluten free flour blend (or if you can bake with gluten flour), you need 1 1/2 cups of flour. (For a non-gf cake or if you use Jules Nearly Normal Flour, you can omit the xantham gum).

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Gluten Free French Lemon Cake

GF French Lemon Cake

Gluten Free French Lemon Cake with lemon rum syrupWe had a cooking unit in my high school french class and everyone was given a more or less traditional French food to cook. I had to make this lemon cake.

A year later, in college, I had my dad find the recipe, type it up and email it to me so that I could impress the other girls in the dorm. In European fashion, it was by weight and I definitely made it by eyeballing it.

Lemon cake for Bastille day Two years ago, I went back to the yahoo email address I used back then to find it, but I didn’t make it – this whole gluten-free baking thing was a bit too scary for me.

I dug it out yesterday because today is Bastille day and a French treat was in order.

It is a bright, lemony cake with a delicate crumb. There is absolutely no need for any gums or even flax in this cake – you want it to disintegrate into lemony goodness  in your mouth.


GF French Lemon Cake with Lemon Rum Glaze
#ratingval# from #reviews# reviews
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Mary Fran Wiley
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 20 mins
Total time: 30 mins
Serves: 8
The original recipe was given to me as a handout in my high school French class by Mme. Czarnecki. I have made it gluten-free and changed a few things to make it even better than the original.
  • 150 grams (3/4 cup) sugar, divided (75 grams for the cake, 75 for the syrup)
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons (60 grams/ 1/2 stick) VERY soft butter
  • 5 grams (1 teaspoon) baking powder
  • 30 grams (1/4 cup) sweet white sorghum flour
  • 30 grams (1/3 cup) brown rice flour
  • 30 grams (1/3 cup) sweet white rice flour
  • 30 grams (1/4 cup) tapioca starch
  • 5 grams (1 Tablespoon) ground flax
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 lemons (3 zests for cake, 2 zests and juice from 3 lemons in syrup)
  • 3/8 cup (6 Tablespoons) dark rum
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place eggs & half the sugar (75 grams or 3/8 cup) sugar in the bowl of a mixer and beat for about 30 seconds.
  3. Add the butter, flours, baking powder, salt and zest from 3 of the lemons.
  4. Mix well. The batter should be thick and look creamy.
  5. Pour into a greased 8 or 9 inch round pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes.
  6. While cake is baking, combine remaining sugar (75 grams or 3/8 cup), the juice of 3 lemons and the rum in a sauce pan. Bring to a simmer and stir regularly while the cake is baking.
  7. Remove cake from oven and let cool for 5 minutes.
  8. Invert over a cake plate and pour syrup over cake while still warm.
  9. If you can wait, the lemon flavor will intensify over night, but the cake can be enjoyed immediately.

You can replace all flours with 1 cup GF all-purpose flour, such as Jules’ Nearly Normal Flour.

You cannot make this cake without the rum. In high school we used rum extract because of laws and such, but with real rum it is 1,000 times better.

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gluten free birthday cake

Classic Birthday Cake

gluten free birthday cakeI spent the afternoon baking today. I made 2 loaves of bread and a birthday cake for my little sister. I made yellow cake from a closely guarded secret family recipe (it is at the end of this post). I have made this cake before with lots of success. It is everything a yellow cake should be – rich and moist with a delicate crumb.

I tried it with a new AP flour blend that my parents had at their house, where I was this weekend for a wedding, my sister’s birthday and a trip to the annual Wilton tent sale. This blend is not one I will buy or use again, because it does not actually work cup for cup. And I know that for most people, a cup for cup blend is the least scary approach to baking. So, here is a recipe that my family has been making for quite a while, copied from the sheet where my mom has it written down.

At least now that it is frosted it looks good. And, the frosting makes it super delicious. (Ok, so I eat cake for the frosting).

Yellow Birthday Cake with Chocolate Frosting
#ratingval# from #reviews# reviews
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Mary Fran Wiley
Prep time: 30 mins
Cook time: 25 mins
Total time: 55 mins
Serves: 12
A classic yellow cake with delicious chocolate frosting.
  • 3 cups Gluten-Free Multi-Purpose Flour or 13 1/2 ounces of your own blend
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if using Jules’ Nearly Normal Flour)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup room-temperature milk
  • 1 3/4 cups unsweetened natural cocoa
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, very soft
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (or use chocolate extract if you have it)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease 2 8″ round cake pans.
  2. Whisk together the flour or flour blend and xanthan gum.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer beat together the sugar, soft butter, salt, baking powder, and vanilla until smooth. Add 2 eggs, and beat for about a minute at a high speed, until fluffy.
  4. Scrape the bowl and beat in the other 2 eggs.
  5. Beat in the milk and flour alternately (adding about a third of each at a time).
  6. Separate the batter evenly between the pans. Bake for about 25 minutes. A cake tester inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  7. Remove from the oven, and cool for 5 to 10 minutes before turning out of the pan to cool on a rack.
  8. Once the cake is cool, you can make the frosting.
  9. Sift together the 1 1/2 cups of confectioners sugar with the cocoa.
  10. Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan. Stirring constantly so the milk does not scald. Whisk this into the powdered sugar mixture. Let cool to room temperature, about 20 mins.
  11. Beat soft butter, vanilla extract and salt until creamy. Add the 2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar and mix slowly until incorporated. With mixer on low, add the chocolate mixture a spoonful at a time.
  12. If the frosting is too loose, add up to an additional half cup of powdered sugar.
  13. Frost the cake and enjoy.
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