Vegan. Low-fat. Cupcake. I know. It’s like a dream. This variation of the classic Southern recipe gets its beautiful color from beets rather than red food coloring-though they are mostly purple, not really red, and would make a stunning hair color…which has me thinking of a new shade. Anyway, you are here for cupcakes…
For the beets. I roast a ton of veggies on Sundays for the week so these were leftover and had to be used from that roasting process. I roasted them at 400 in tin foil balls for about 45-60 minutes, let cool a little de-skinned, left in a baggie in the fridge for a few days, then for this recipe I pureed them in my food processor and it was just over the two cups needed for this recipe. The original author of one of the recipes I picked over to make this one boiled then grated, then processed in a blender. To each her own.
FOR THE CAKE:
- 2 C unsweetened almond or soy milk
- 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 2½ C all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 C sugar
- ¼ C natural cocoa powder
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ C vegetable oil
- 2 T pure vanilla extract
- 2 T unsweetened applesauce
- 2 large red beets, about 12 ounces, pureed (you should have about 2 cups of beet puree)
FOR THE ICING:
- 1 C vegan margarine (a nonhydrogenated brand is best), at room temperature
- 1 C vegan cream cheese, at room temperature
- 2 T pure vanilla extract
- 8 C powdered sugar
This chocolate ganache - which is what I used instead
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with paper cupcake liners. Mine made exactly 2 and a half dozen.
MIX THE BATTER
Combine the milk and the vinegar in a large mixing bowl, and set aside to curdle. In a separate bowl, sift the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. After the milk mixture has curdled, add the vegetable oil, vanilla, and applesauce to it, and stir. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and mix with a hand mixer until no lumps remain. Fold the pureed beets into the batter by hand with a rubber spatula until just combined.
BAKE THE CUPCAKES
Fill the lined muffin pans until each cup is three-fourths full of batter. This recipe should make 2 to 2½ dozen cupcakes. Bake cupcakes for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Set aside to cool. Once cool enough to handle, transfer the cupcakes to a rack, line six compartments of one of the pans with paper liners, fill, and bake the remaining batter.
MAKE THE ICING
Combine the vegan margarine and vegan cream cheese and beat until thoroughly mixed and creamy. Add vanilla and beat until combined. Add the powdered sugar, 2 cups at a time, and incorporate into the creamed mixture. Once all the sugar has been added, scrape down the bowl and beat for 2 minutes at medium speed.
ICE THE CUPCAKES
Place the cooled cupcakes on a serving tray.
Using a spatula or a butter knife, spread 2 rounded tablespoons of icing onto the top of each cooled cupcake, swirling to cover the surface of the cupcake.
Place an icing tip inside a pastry bag. Fill the pastry bag half full of icing. Squeezing from the top of the bag, force the icing through the tip onto the top of the cupcakes, swirling the icing around the top of each cupcake.
Serve at room temperature, and refrigerate any leftovers. Will keep for up to four days, refrigerated.
Thanks to many beet cupcake recipe makers before me…I was able to make a great recipe from many other great recipes.