Birthday (cup)cakes

Gluten-free cupcakes, made by the boys

My small boys decided that cupcakes were the order of the day on my birthday. Our first batch were made with normal flour, frosted, decorated and taken to the neighbours. Our second batch were actually chocolate chip muffins, also not gluten-free. But here’s the third batch – gluten-free cupcakes, frosted and perfect for a kids’ party.  The cupcakes came out pretty well – a little drier than the standard flour, but with the frosting – yum, yum, yum.  I really like this recipe for making with the kids, as it’s very quick, cooks quickly and is easy for them to see the results. You might want to make the frosting the night before so you can produce it quickly and keep that interest level up! Otherwise produce the cupcakes and frosting and sprinkles etc at a party as entertainment!


  • 1 cup gluten-free flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup castor sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 125g butter, slightly softened and chopped into cubes
  • 2tsp vanilla


  • Sift flour and baking powder together. I’m not normally an advocate of sifting but these cupcakes do really need the extra airiness that sifting gives.
  • Add remaining ingredients and using an electric mixer (either a Kenwood type or just a handheld beater) beat until combined and creamy in texture. The mixture should drop off a spoon easily.
  • Spoon into paper cases and bakes for 15-20 minutes at 190 degrees C.
  • Cool on a wire rack. Ice with frosting and decorate once completely cool.
  • Makes about 1 dozen cupcakes

I used brown rice flour when I made this recipe the other day and it worked well, but you could also use a baking mix or a flour which includes some tapioca flour or cornflour (not cornmeal).

Chocolate frosting


  • 250g butter, slightly softened
  • 2 cups icing sugar
  • 1/2 cup cocoa
  • 3tsp vanilla essence
  • 2tbsp milk


  • Beat the butter with an electric mixer (I use a handheld electric beater, but I think a Kenwood type would do the job better!) for about 6-8 minutes until it is very light in colour.
  • Add the remaining ingredients and beat for a further 6-8 minutes until the texture is light and aerated.
  • Use to ice cupcakes, great for sticking extra decorations onto.
  • This mix keeps in the fridge for a couple of days, so you can use it for multiple things.

Gluten-free cupcakes decorated by yours truly!

Warning: this tastes incredibly good, so be careful if you taste test as you may want more! It’s like eating creamed butter and sugar when you were a kid, only better!

I’m doing a cupcake decorating class with my daughter in January, and as this picture shows, I am in sore need of the assistance!



2 thoughts on “Birthday (cup)cakes

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