Double Chocolate Vegan Cupcakes

I have always loved to bake, ever since I was a young girl. But back then everything was made with white flour, and lots of sugar. I don't eat gluten anymore, and I don't eat anything with lots of sugar either - so when I bake now, I like to upgrade the recipe - without compromising on taste. This cupcake recipe does not disappoint!! I've even snuck in some heart healthy ingredients to boost the nutrition even more - like avocados, raw cacao, and beet powder (learn about the heart health benefits of beets and avocados). You won't know they are in there. The avocados add a creaminess to the cupcakes and the frosting, and the cacao and beets boost circulation and lower blood pressure!

Now, to set expectations a bit - this is not going to be as sweet as a store bought cupcake - to me, those are sickly sweet. In America - I believe manufacturers sweeten things too much. It's a smart marketing ploy - because the sweeter a food is, the more your taste buds get adjusted to and crave super sweet foods. Sugar is addictive, and so super sweet foods create repeat customers. But poorly controlled blood sugar is the #1 reason for weight gain and metabolic dysfunction. In this recipe, I cut down on the sugar by using monk fruit - a natural sugar alternative, which allows you to keep the sweetness, without the calories, and without using chemicals (like artificial sweeteners - those work against the metabolism). Monk fruit has zero calories and no sugar. But I still do not make these as sweet as the average American cupcake - because I don't like that!

I don't replace all of the sugar with monk fruit however - because I prefer to use monk fruit to cut the sugar down, not replace it. So I do use a little bit of two different natural sugars - maple syrup, and coconut sugar. You could try replacing all of it with monk fruit if you prefer (LMK if it works).

An interesting thing happened on a trip to Tahiti recently that confirmed my suspicion that we are conditioned to eat foods way too sweet in the U.S. At our hotel, they would put a basket of pastries on our breakfast table every morning - after ignoring them for days, one day I noticed a donut, and was curious if it would be like an American one. I pulled a small piece off the donut, and I was surprised to find it was just barely sweet, not at all like a donut you would get here in the U.S. I was pleasantly surprised!

Once you allow your tastebuds to adjust a little bit - slightly sweet is much more enjoyable that the kind of sweet that hits you over the head. If you are struggling with sugar addiction - you are not alone - I've been there, and I have a solution - My Break Up with Sugar Program.

These cupcakes are super moist and delicious, and I hope you enjoy them!

Cupcake ingredients:

  • 1 small avocado (ripe, discard pit and peel)

  • 1.5 cups almond flour (blanched)

  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder

  • 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 3 Tablespoons of maple syrup

  • 1 Tablespoon organic Beet powder (you will not taste it at all, beets just boost circulation and lower blood pressure, it can be omitted)

  • 8 Teaspoons of monk fruit powder (I use Lakinto organic)

  • 1/3 cup dairy free milk (such as Ripple milk, almond, oat, or coconut milk)

  • 1 teaspoon raw apple cider vinegar (helps with leavening)

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder (aluminum free)

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (I like Real Salt brand)

  • 1/3 cup coconut oil (melted, if solid)

Frosting Ingredients:

  • 1 small avocado (ripe, discard pit and peel)

  • 2 Tablespoons raw cacao powder (use 3 T. if you want it really dark)

  • 1 Tablespoon maple syrup

  • 2 Tablespoons dairy free milk (I use Ripple unsweetened)

  • 1 Tablespoons dairy free yogurt (I use