Ruby Cacao Cupcakes start with a grain free cake and are topped with an easy ruby cacao buttercream icing. These cakes are gluten free and naturally sweetened, with a hint of coconut and berry flavors.
This post is sponsored by Chocolove; as always, all opinions are my own. Thank you so much for reading and supporting the brands I know and love!
Stop whatever you’re doing right now, head into the kitchen, and get ready to bake up some gorgeous, delicious, grain free Ruby Cacao Cupcakes!! Seriously, this is serious.
They’re so delicious that I’m just not sure where to start!
As a child, I was totally a frosting kid. Frosting over cake any day of the week. I think my tastebuds are changing a little because now I appreciate a really moist, tender cake with buttercream that’s sweet but not too sweet.
Last month, Chocolove released their newest bar: a beautifully pink ruby cacao. Ruby cacao is the newest chocolate in over 80 years, and it’s a pleasant surprise. Made from the ruby cocoa bean, ruby chocolate contains no artificial colors or dyes – it’s naturally a gorgeous pink color! The flavor is reminiscent of light berries with an almost sour note at the end. It reminds me of a berry twist on white chocolate, except there isn’t any added flavoring. How sweet is that (ugh, lame pun)?!
The only word that comes to mind is dreamy.
If you like white chocolate and fresh berries, I guarantee this bar will be your new favorite!
The cake itself is grain free, gluten free, refined sugar free, and yes, even Paleo. The ruby cacao technically isn’t Paleo, as it does contain sugar, but if you’re totally okay with a little bit of that, all you need to tweak is the buttercream frosting. For an easy 2-ingredient Paleo frosting, I got whatcha need right here!
I love the challenge of grain free baking, so let’s chat quick about ingredients before you pick up your whisk!
How to make grain free cupcakes:
To make the ruby cacao cupcakes grain-free, we’ll use a blend of three grain free flours. Don’t panic! If you’ve made any of the other Paleo or Whole30 recipes on this site, then you’ve probably got them on hand already! Grain free baking isn’t as simple as swapping almond flour for all-purpose; the textures and density vary tremendously.
Almond Flour: this is the base for our ruby cacao cupcakes. Almond flour provides a nice cakey texture and crumb. I highly recommend either Trader Joe’s almond flour or Honeyville if you can find it! You want to make sure your almond flour is very finely ground. I use almond flour all the time in my baked goods – especially brownies and cookies!
Tapioca Flour: this flour is made from the root of the cassava plant. It shouldn’t be confused with arrowroot, though depending on the recipe, sometimes they’re interchangeable. But not always! Every recipe is different. Tapioca flour provides some structure to the cupcakes, binding the ingredients together; it also helps the browning process.
Coconut Flour: this grain free flour absorbs a ton of moisture. A general rule of thumb is that 1/4 c. coconut flour is relatively equal to 1 c. all-purpose, though you’ll definitely need an extra egg and more liquid. Coconut flour helps achieve a more cake-like texture.
Eggs: these ruby cacao cupcakes call for 4 whole eggs. I wouldn’t recommend trying to substitute anything else. Eggs provide structure and give rise to the cupcakes. The fat in egg yolks keeps the cupcakes moist, while the whites bind things together.
Now let’s talk about this frosting! Gorgeous, right?!
No added food coloring, no dyes, no artificial flavoring. Just pure ruby cacao, powdered sugar, butter, and a little coconut milk!
I opted for a classic buttercream frosting for these cupcakes mainly because it’s delicious and reminds me of baking with my mom. I haven’t tried the Paleo version (see this recipe) but definitely am going to give it a shot soon! Especially since I have an entire case of ruby cacao bars on hand…
These cupcakes are a dream, and totally appropriate for spring! That subtle berry flavor paired with just a teensy hint of coconut reminds me of warmer weather that I know is on the way!
And how cute would these be at your Easter table?!
Okay, show of hands: who else eats their cupcakes with a spoon? Just me? I love frosting, but not all over my face… plus I’d never want to risk dropping a bite on the floor. Precious cake like that can’t be wasted!
I seriously can’t wait for you to give these cupcakes a try! (And then come tell me on IG how it goes!)
Pin these Grain Free Ruby Cacao Cupcakes!
These soft, sweet cupcakes are made completely Paleo and grain-free! Topped with a sweet buttercream made with new ruby cacao, these cupcakes are a heavenly treat you won't want to miss!
- 1 c. fine blanched almond flour, lightly packed
- 1/2 c. tapioca flour
- 1/3 c. coconut flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 c. coconut sugar
- 1/2 c. grass-fed butter, softened
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3.2 oz. (1 bar) Chocolove Ruby Cacao, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 c. grass-fed butter, softened
- 2 c. powdered sugar (coconut sugar for Paleo)
- 2-4 Tbsp. full fat coconut milk, as needed to thin
Preheat the oven to 350 F and line a 12-cup muffin pan with cupcake liners. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk or sift together the almond flour, tapioca flour, coconut flour, baking soda, and salt. Be sure to whisk well.
In a separate larger bowl, add the coconut sugar and softened butter. Using a hand mixer, cream the sugar and butter until fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each egg. Beat in the cider vinegar and vanilla extract.
Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and fold gently using a spatula. Do not over-mix. Using a cookie scoop, spoon the batter into the prepared cupcake liners, filling about 3/4 of the way full. You should have about 12-15 cupcakes.
Bake the cupcakes at 350 F for 16-18 minutes or until the cupcakes spring back when gently pressed. Cool 5 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.
Add the chopped ruby cacao to a small bowl. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring between each, until melted and smooth.
In a medium bowl, add the butter, powdered sugar, and 2 Tbsp. coconut milk. Using a hand mixer, cream together until smooth. Stir or beat in the melted ruby chocolate, adding more coconut milk if necessary to thin just a little.
Spoon the frosting into a piping bag fitted with a Wilton 1M or 1A tip. Pipe frosting onto the cupcakes. If you need more frosting, simply halve the frosting recipe and repeat directions.
Nutrition information per cupcake (with frosting):
Calories: 420 Protein: 5g Carbs: 47g Fat: 25g