What’s your favorite flavor of ice cream? Is it vanilla? Or chocolate? Or strawberry? Personally, I’ve always been a mint chocolate chip type of gal. Sure, the classics are great, but nothing will ever beat the cool, refreshing taste of peppermint in my mind. Shamrock shakes, candy canes, peppermint patties… I love it all! In fact, I love mint chocolate chip ice cream so much that as a kid, it was pretty much the only flavor I ever ate. The only exception was the occasional Butterfinger ice cream I would get at Stricklands, my local ice cream place.
At birthday parties, I always chose chocolate cake (not vanilla), and mint chocolate chip ice cream, if it was available. Sometimes I’d even skip the cake and just get a double scoop of the ice cream. After all, I was pretty much just using the cake to scoop the ice cream into my mouth! To this day, the taste of chocolate cake topped with mint chocolate chip ice cream brings back childhood memories. Unfortunately, most parties I go to now don’t have vegan cake or ice cream, so I no longer get to enjoy cake and ice cream with everyone else. I’m not the only one with this problem, as I know there are plenty of kids with allergies nowadays. It was actually the issue of allergies, combined with my love for mint chocolate chip ice cream, which inspired me to make this cupcake recipe!
Whether your kid is allergic to gluten, dairy, eggs, or nuts, this cupcake recipe is safe for them to enjoy. The chocolate cake base is light and fluffy, and not at all dense like some gluten-free cakes can be. The frosting, which is mint flavored and has chocolate chips folded in, is just like mint chocolate chip ice cream, except it doesn’t melt. If you’re throwing a birthday party where there are kids with dietary restrictions, this cupcake recipe is perfect for you!
Chocolate Cupcakes With Mint Chocolate Chip Buttercream (Vegan/Gluten-Free)
Enjoy all the flavor of mint chocolate chip ice cream, but packed into a cupcake! This vegan and gluten-free treat is great for birthday parties, especially if there are kiddos with allergies or dietary restrictions.
For the Cupcakes
- 1 1/4 cups 1:1 gluten free flour blend with xantham gum
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 cup sweetened coconut milk not canned
- 1 tbsp distilled white vinegar
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar packed
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
For the Frosting
- 1/2 cup vegan butter softened
- 1/4 cup butter flavored vegetable shortening
- 3 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
- 2-4 tbsp sweetened coconut milk not canned
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp pure peppermint extract
- 4-5 drops green food coloring optional
- 1/3 cup dairy-free mini chocolate chips
For the Cupcakes
Preheat oven to 350°F and line a cupcake pan with paper liners.
In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour blend, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In a larger bowl, stir together the coconut milk and vinegar.
Add sugars, oil, and vanilla to wet ingredients and stir to combine.
Slowly whisk the flour mixture into the wet mixture, beating until smooth.
Pour batter into prepared cupcake pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean (about 17-18 minutes).
Place cupcakes on a wire rack to cool while preparing the mint chocolate chip buttercream.
For the Frosting
Beat together the softened vegan butter and shortening for 1 minute. Slowly mix in the powdered sugar and coconut milk, then beat for an additional 2 minutes. Add vanilla and peppermint extracts, green food coloring, and an additional 1-2 tbsp coconut milk, if necessary. Beat until smooth and fluffy. Slowly mix in the chopped chocolate chips.
Place buttercream in a piping bag and frost onto cooled cupcakes.
- The cupcakes will be quite delicate, especially while hot. Be sure to allow them to cool completely before frosting, and handle them with care.
- You can also make these as mini cupcakes, which is what I chose to do. The recipe yields about 45 mini cupcakes (116.2 kcal each). Just bake them for a bit less time, around 12-15 minutes.