Cupcakes - makes 12


  • 85g gluten free plain flour
  • 45g maize flour or cornflour
  • 45g ground almonds
  • 1 tsp gluten free baking powder
  • 175g unrefined caster sugar
  • 175g butter, at room temperature
  • 3 large eggs
  • 100g fondant icing sugar

How to make this recipe dairy free?

Need some advice on ingredients see -
The wheat, gluten and lactose free store cupboard


I always use muffin cases but if you want to use cupcake cases then divide this mixture by half.

Fill a muffin tray with 12 muffin cases.

Preheat oven to 190°c / 375°f / gas mark 5.

Combine the gluten free flour, maize flour, ground almonds and gluten free baking powder. Sieve together four times to combine.

Cream together the caster sugar and butter until light and fluffy. It is best to do this using a food mixer with a beater attachment or use a hand held electric mixer.

Crack the eggs into a bowl and beat lightly with a fork.

Beat the egg into the creamed mixture a bit at a time making sure to beat in each addition properly before adding the next. If the mixture starts to split, mix in a spoonful of the flour.

Add the vanilla.

Fold in the flour.

Divide the mixture equally between the 12 cases and bake for 15 to 20 minutes until firm to touch and a knife inserted comes out clean.

The cakes should rise just below the top of the cake cases.

If you want the sponges to rise higher than the case use the amounts used in the butterfly cake recipe.

Mix the fondant icing sugar with water adding a drop at a time until coating consistency. You can add liquid food colouring to the icing.

Spoon over the cupcakes.

how to make this recipe dairy free...

Use dairy free margarine in place of butter.

Gem's hints and tips

In all recipes requiring self-raising gluten free flour, I advise sieving the flours together with the gluten free baking powder four times to make sure all the ingredients are evenly distributed.

If you have made a cake that is really heavy with a solid lump of eggy mixture at the bottom one reason could be because the baking powder wasn’t mixed into the flour properly.

If you can’t find maize flour then cornflour is easily available and makes a good substitute.  There isn’t much difference but I do prefer maize flour.  See resources.

Gluten free cakes are best eaten fresh, they will keep well for a week. They can be frozen but the texture goes a bit grainy when defrosted.

Gluten free cakes are crumblier than other cakes but taste just as good. To cut neat slices, dip a sharp knife in hot water and wipe clean between slices.

Why not try…

For lemon cupcakes, add the zest of one lemon.

For chocolate cupcakes, substitute 25g cornflour with cocoa powder.

For coffee cupcakes dissolve a heaped dessertspoon of coffee in 1 tsp hot water and stir into the sponge mixture.

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