OK, I have written, deleted, and re-written this post three too many times. Apparently I’m having a difficult time expressing my appreciation for the overwhelming love and support I’ve received since my last post. See, I’m still in the sophomore stage of “letting people in” and am working out the kinks of “communicating my feelings”. Please, consider me a work-in-progress, and just trust that your support right now means the world to me.
Years ago, before I had enrolled in the ‘school of vulnerability’, the company Brett worked for happened to hold their yearly “no spouse” (dumb rule, btw) Christmas party on my birthday. Edie was about 18 months old at the time and I was very pregnant with Alice so I told him to go ahead and I opted for a quiet night in with a box of shortbread cookies and an Orson Welles marathon on AMC. My friend, Thea, unexpectedly showed up at my door around 8pm with a basket of these vegan chocolate cupcakes in hand. She had baked me a batch of amazing cupcakes and rode her bike all the way across the city just because she thought it was important to spend time with me on my birthday. I didn’t even think my birthday mattered, but she did. I learned a few valuable lessons that night: 1) Thea is a great friend 2) It’s not easy to open yourself up to others and the effort isn’t always convenient, but they pay off is well worth it. 3) These vegan cupcakes rule.
The point I am trying to make is: life is too hard to do it alone. Days like these are so much richer when you have a partner to hold your hand, kids to make you laugh, friends to distract you, and the world’s greatest blog community to support you. Thank you. I am so grateful to have all of you in my life.
Alright, enough with the sentimental stuff, let’s get to the chocolate! I may not practice a vegan lifestyle, but I do practice a chocolate-rich, moist cupcake in my mouth lifestyle and this dairy-free, egg-free recipe just happens to be one of the best.
Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes (a.k.a. Thea Cakes):
Makes about 12 standard-size cupcakes
- 1 can of good quality coconut milk (shake it up before opening)
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 1 1/2 t. cider vinegar
- 1 t. vanilla extract
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 3/4 t. baking soda
- 1/2 t. baking powder
- 1/4 t. salt
1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners and set aside.
2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, sugar, canola oil, vinegar, and vanilla. In another bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt until combined.
3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing until just combined. Pour the batter into the prepared cups, filling each about 2/3 full.
4. Bake for 17-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake emerges clean. Let cool completely on a wire cooling rack before frosting.
Dairy-Free Chocolate Frosting:
Makes about 2 cups
- 2 cups icing sugar
- ¼ cup soy margarine, softened (I’m a big fan of Earth Balance whipped margarine)
- ¾ cup unsweetened good quality pure cocoa powder
- ½ tsp. vanilla
1. Using your stand mixer with the whip attachment, or an electric hand mixer, cream the powdered sugar with the margarine until mixture is thick but well combined. Add the cocoa powder and vanilla, and continue to mix until smooth.
Note: for a silkier frosting, add a tablespoon of unsweetened almond milk or soy milk. If you’d like to thicken the frosting, add more icing sugar, a 1/4 cup at a time.
Bake a batch of these cupcakes this weekend, and be sure to share them with those you care about. Enjoy! xo One more reminder from the genius that is my 4 year-old:
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