Vegan Pumpkin Cupcakes
Vegan Pumpkin Cupcakes- moist and fluffy pumpkin cupcakes topped with a vegan cream cheese frosting. Perfect for fall baking! (refined sugar-free + gluten-free option)
I can’t get enough pumpkin this time of year and these vegan pumpkin cupcakes are the perfect fall treat. Not only are they easy to make but they fill your house with the most delicious scent as they’re baking. Everyone will come running to the kitchen!
Here’s why you’ll love this recipe:
- Perfectly Moist and Fluffy Texture- Using all-purpose flour and apple cider vinegar makes them exit soft and fluffy.
- Simple Ingredients- No complicated ingredients here. You should have most everything already stocked in your pantry.
- Easy To Make- You won’t need a blender, a beater or anything fancy to make them. Just a couple of bowls and a muffin tin.
- Refined Sugar-free- The cupcakes themselves are lightly sweetened with pure maple syrup and coconut sugar so you won’t be bouncing off the walls after you eat one.
- Gluten-free Option- Simply swap equal amounts gluten-free all purpose flour to make them gluten-free.
Vegan Pumpkin Cupcake Ingredients
- All Purpose Flour- Using AP flour keeps the texture of the cupcakes soft and fluffy. Feel free to sub GF all-purpose to make them gluten-free.
- Pumpkin Pie Spice- To minimize ingredients, I like to use a pumpkin pie spice blend to give the cupcakes their pumpkin spice flavor.
- Baking Powder, Baking Soda and Salt- Baking powder and soda are both ideal for rise and fluffiness. Salt helps balance out the sugar in the recipe.
- Pumpkin Puree- Canned pumpkin puree gives the cupcakes their moist, rich texture. You are welcome to make your own and use it here but canned pumpkin saves time and helps them come together much faster.
- Coconut Sugar- I like to use coconut sugar for it’s lightly sweet and caramel-like flavor. That said, brown sugar or cane sugar can be used as well.
- Pure Maple Syrup- Maple syrup imparts maple flavor and provides moisture. If you want to use coconut sugar in place of the syrup you will have to add liquid to the recipe.
- Coconut Oil- Melted coconut oil makes for extra moist cupcakes. Just be sure to use refined coconut oil for a more neutral flavor. You can also substitute a different neutral flavored oil if desired.
- Apple Cider Vinegar- Vinegar reacts with the baking soda to create air bubbles in the batter which makes for a nice fluffy texture. If you are ok with a more dense cupcake and want to leave it out then I recommend leaving out the baking soda as well.
- Vanilla Extract- Just a hint of vanilla to round out the flavor. Not totally necessary but always welcomed.
- Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting– I prefer to use a cream cheese frosting for the cupcakes but any kind you like will work. See the notes at the bottom of the recipe for the frosting recipe in the photos.
How to Make Vegan Pumpkin Cupcakes
- Whisk together pumpkin puree, maple syrup, coconut sugar, vanilla, vinegar and melted coconut oil in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk to combine.
- Add dry ingredients to the bowl with the wet and stir until a smooth batter forms.
- Transfer batter to muffin tin and bake.
- Frost and enjoy!
Still craving pumpkin? Check these out!
- The Best Vegan Pumpkin Bread
- Pumpkin Chia Pudding Parfaits
- The Best Vegan Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese
- Healthy Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal
- Vegan Pumpkin Blender Muffins
- Gluten-free Pumpkin Cake
- How to Make Pumpkin Butter
- Whole Grain Pumpkin Spice Waffles
- Pumpkin Spice Steel Cut Oatmeal
Vegan Pumpkin Cupcake Recipe
- 2 cups all purpose flour, or gluten-free all purpose
- 2½ teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1½ cups canned pumpkin puree, about 15-ounces (not pumpkin pie mix!)
- ½ cup pure maple syrup
- ¼ cup coconut sugar, or cane/brown sugar
- ¼ cup melted coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- vegan cream cheese frosting for topping, optional; see notes
- Preheat oven to 350°F then grease or line a muffin tin for 12 cupcakes.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- In a separate large bowl, combine pumpkin puree, maple syrup, coconut sugar, coconut oil, apple cider vinegar and vanilla extract. Stir until well combined.
- Add the dry ingredients to the bowl with the wet and stir until a smooth batter forms. Using an ice cream scooper (or a dry measuring cup), fill each muffin tin ¾ of the way full.
- Bake in the oven for about 22 minutes, or until a toothpick or fork comes clean when poked into the center. Allow to cool completely before frosting. Frost, then serve and enjoy!
- 4 ounces dairy-free cream cheese
- 1 tablespoon vegan butter
- 1/2-3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract