About Jesicakes

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A BFA Painting and Drawing graduate gone cookie designer and decorator.  I bring my knowledge of art, composition, and color to pastries to create the perfect cookies and cakes for your events or occasions.
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Sunday, August 14, 2011

Gluten Free Apple Pie Cupcakes

One of the first things I've ever made gluten free were vanilla cupcake bases.  We were celebrating Easter at my house and I wanted to do a blind taste test with a cute cupcake idea I came across that seemed like a perfect Easter dessert.  I wanted to make "Apple Pie" Cupcakes and not tell anyone they were gluten free to see what the response was (or if anyone could even tell!  Especially my brother who my mom has tried to "trick" with organic versions of food and he instantly can tell they're organic and therefore "gross."  The ones in the middle of that picture are plain Vanilla with Vanilla Buttercream cupcakes for him because he wouldn't touch one with apples).  Now I know, you're not supposed to just switch up ingredients because it can affect the outcome of recipes, but I've often decided to throw that rule out the window.  I simply switched the cake flour for brown rice flour.  Since then, I've further delved into an exploration of flour combinations.  My first time making chocolate chip cookies using only brown rice flour they had a bit of a rustic, coarse texture, but since then with my mix they're nice and crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.  I can't wait for another opportunity to make cupcakes so I can try it with my gluten free flour mixture I've come up with, but til then the just brown rice version were slightly crumbly, but still delicious!

Gluten Free Apple Pie Cupcakes
Recipe adapted from Annie Eats, whose recipe was adapted from Fatty Fat Fats
Made Gluten Free by Jesicakes
Makes 24 cupcakes
- 3 cups brown rice flour*
- 1 tbsp gluten free baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp gluten free vanilla
- 1 cup almond milk (can use dairy milk, I love the flavor this adds though)

Click "Read more" for the procedure

- Preheat your oven to 350˚F and fill cupcake pan with liners.
- Sift together brown rice flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Cream butter and sugar in an electric mixer til light and fluffy.  I normally start on medium low to get it going, then scrape down the bowl and turn the mixer to medium high.  It'll take a few minutes if your butter was room temperature.  If you butter is colder, it will just take longer.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time, incorporating fully before adding each one.
- Add the vanilla and keep mixing until it is combined.
- Turn the mixer's speed to low, and begin to add the sifted flour mixture.  Alternatively add the almond milk, ending on the flour mixture.  Make sure to scrape down the bowl, then give it a quick final mix to make sure everything is combined.
- Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake liners, about 2/3 to 3/4 full. Bake them until they're golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  If your oven cooks unevenly, make sure to gently rotate them halfway through.  It will take around 18-22 minutes total.
- When done remove from oven and allow to cool 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely before adding the apples or icing.
 From my overall experience with cooking gluten free, the desserts don't get as "golden" as with regular flour, so make sure you're testing the center with a toothpick to see when they're really done.  When it comes out clean, even if they're not golden, they're done.

*My mixture, which I want to try would be 1 cup oat flour, 2/3 cups brown rice flour, 2/3 cups tapioca flour, 2/3 cups sweet rice flour and 1 tsp xanthan gum...hopefully I will try this soon and let you know the outcome!

"Apple Pie" Apples
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 tsp of cinnamon (I do cinnamon to taste usually)
- 2-3 tbsp of brown sugar (to taste)
- 3 large Fuji apples, cored, peeled, and diced (any hard, non mealy apples will do...Granny Smith are typically used but I'm not a fan of them.  Fuji apples are my favorite)

- Melt butter in a pot over medium heat.  Add cinnamon and sugar and cook for a minute or two until sugar is dissolved.  Add the apples and toss to coat in the butter and sugar.  Cook, stirring, about 10 minutes or until apples are tender.  Add more sugar or cinnamon as needed.  Let the mixture cool completely til adding it to the cupcakes.

Vanilla Buttercream
Now, in general, I do buttercream to taste.  And I always wind up making more than I need which and freezing the extra in a airtight container.  It freezers wonderfully and them you have buttercream for any last minute cupcake emergency!  This is generally the recipe I follow:
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) of unsalted butter
- 2 cups of confectioner sugar, sifted
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tbsp almond milk or whole milk/heavy crea
- A pinch of salt

Cream the butter in an electric mixer until it's light and fluffy.  Begin gradually adding the confectioners sugar on low.  If it begins to get too dry add some of the milk.  Make sure to scrape down the bowl.  Add the rest of the milk, vanilla, and salt and beat at medium-high speed to combine.  Keep beating until the mixture is light and fluffy yet holds a shape, about 5 minutes.

To Construct
- Take the completely cooled cupcakes and cut a cone shaped piece out of the top (like in the picture).  Add the cooled apple mixture so it fills the hole, and goes slightly over the height of the cupcake.  Using a pastry bag and any star type tip, pipe a dollop of buttercream on top (mine is blue because it was leftover from a cake I decorated, but obviously plain is perfectly fine).  There you go! Simple and easy but they look really impressive.  Everyone loved them and no one knew they were gluten free!  Not even my brother!


  1. I can't wait to try your recipes someday! :)

  2. thats cupcakes looks amazing, I really wanna try to eat it! looks so pretty too!

    1. Thanks so much! To this day these are still one of my favourite desserts I've made.