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Since starting Paleo, I have yet to find a truly good cupcake or cake recipe. It is rather difficult (and I understand since starting to develop my own recipes) to make a truly delicious cake with great texture and adequate sweetness to really be deemed worthy of the name “cake.” The reason I love muffins so much is the understated sweetness and the dense texture, but every now and then, one needs her cake and to eat it too…..and for it to actually feel and taste like cake.
These are somewhere on a middle ground and I’ll tell you, I’ve made them 3 ways and this is by far the best. The first was a blueberry muffin batch that I added cocoa to and replaced the blueberries with chips. They were puffy and beautiful, but too dry to consider cake material with a muffiny not-so-sweet flavor. I enjoyed them immensely……as muffins, but c’mon, we want cake people!!! The second batch was delicious, but too dense to consider cake still. Grrr! But at last, I tried some tips that I remembered from being a baker in the former baking with gluten flour world.
You see, egg whites are dryers, but yolks are conditioners. I used oil instead of butter because I wanted something that would stay moist once the cupcakes cool instead of seizing up again. Cocoa powder is better in moist cakes than melting chocolate for the same reason as oil, it does not seize. Cornstarch is a flour lightener used in cake flours and of course we wouldn’t use that in a Paleo recipe, but a great big copy cat of corn starch is arrowroot powder! So we get to fake it til we make it with a lighter cakier batter! So these above tips helped to create 2 truly unique and wonderful textures.
If you want the muffins, add the chocolate chips and simply reduce the amount of sweeteners you use and you come out with a moist muffin that can stand on it’s own. If you want a cupcake, you would leave out the chocolate chips and add more honey which lends a moister lift to the batter. Either way we are going to use the “fold in” or “muffin method” to barely mix in the dry just until wet to get the puffiest, lightest possible results.
Tonight when trying the muffin form, my husband asked “what flour did you use for these?” a little taken aback when I reassured him that they were indeed completely Paleo. Score!
1 cup almond flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup arrowroot powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea or kosher salt (as long as they’re finely ground)
1 cup Lilly’s Stevia Sweetened Chocolate chips or chips of choice (Omit if making cupcakes, or do whatever you want, it’s your life)
1 egg +2 egg yolks
1 cup almond butter (mine was soupy and oily, if yours is ridicuthick, add at least another 3 tablespoons of avocado oil and squish out the lumps before adding to the dry ingredients)
1/2 cup avocado or coconut oil (I used avocado)
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup honey
1 tbsp liquid Stevia (omit if making muffins, you can also up the honey to 3/4 cup if you’d rather for the cupcakes, it is up to preference. I like to save the sugar here)
1/2 cup water or almond milk
Line a cupcake tin with liners or grease. Preheat over to 350º. Mix dry ingredients in one bowl, then mix the wet in another. Pour wet into dry being sure to use a spatula to scoop the dry mix to the top, treating it like you are just “wetting” the flour mixture. Once you are sure all the flour is just incorporated, stop mixing. Scoop by 1/4 cup scoops into muffin liners and bake for 15-20 minutes. Mine were just perfect at 16, I let them cool completely because when I tried to remove them too soon they fell apart. Optional Glaze Below!!!