I’ve seen this recipe floating around for a few months, and kept it in mind more as a pareve option for dessert after a meat meal, rather than for a vegan crowd. I was also just curious about whether all the rave reviews were comparing the quality of this recipe to other eggless, dairy-free desserts or to a traditional cupcake, heavy on eggs and maybe milk or butter.
I was pleasantly surprised to find these dark little gems are delicious. And now I’m going to echo almost every other review I’ve read: if you don’t tell people they’re vegan, they will never suspect it. It’s just a very good moist, dense, not-too-sweet cupcake. They also bake up with a slightly crunchy top, almost as though the sugar has caramelized outside of the muffin liner. Yum.
You know by now that I am not a fussy cook — I like things basic and straight-forward. I did have to sift my cocoa powder today, though, which I simply did by placing it in a chinois (a fine sieve) and tapping it through. Otherwise I don’t think I could have made a lump-free batter.
This is a small recipe, too — it only makes 12 cupcakes — so it’s convenient when you’re just baking for the family and not a big party crowd. Reviews on Allrecipes.com, where I found the original recipe, noted that adding nuts, chocolate chips, and even fruit jams to the batter all turned out well. I just made these straight, plain chocolate. And heard no complaints!
Updated to add: J. thought they were not quite sweet enough to be called a cupcake, and the texture is more like a dark chocolate muffin. I think he’s right. Either way, he agreed they’re really good. The white dots in the photo above are made from a little tube of gel icing.
Vegan Dark Chocolate Cupcakes
Adapted from Vegan Chocolate Cake
Makes 1 dozen cupcakes
1½ c. all-purpose flour
1 c. white sugar
½ c. dark cocoa powder, sifted if needed (I use Hershey’s Special Dark)
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. distilled white vinegar
1 c. room-temperature water
Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease a 12-muffin tin or line with baking cups (I like the foil kind).
Add all ingredients to a large bowl and beat until well-combined. Batter will be thick, not runny.
Spoon into muffin liners and bake for 20-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.