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My “go-to” chocolate cupcake recipe

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This is a chocolate-covered blog

Yet, up until a few weeks ago, it included neither a recipe for chocolate brownies nor one for chocolate cupcakes. Some chocolate blog!

Last month, I took on the brownies: Ultimate Fudge Brownies.

(Side note: I wish I’d created those brownies a long time ago! They’re so fudgey and chocolatey that they have quickly turned into one of my absolute favorite desserts.) Today it’s time to tackle the cupcakes.

healthy chocolate cupcakes

These cupcakes are so soft and fluffy! No one will ever guess they’re healthy.

They’d also be really good with some Cashew Butter Frosting.

Chocoholic Cupcakes

  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup flour (I used white-whole-wheat. You can use white or spelt.)
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup sugar or evaporated cane juice (see note below, for sugar-free version)
  • 1 and 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt of choice (such as SoDelicious)
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 3 tbsp coconut or canola/veg oil (See note below, for a fat-free option)
  • optional: add a few handfuls chocolate chips to the batter!
  • 1/2 cup milk of choice

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix dry ingredients, then add wet. Don’t overmix. Pour into cupcake tins, and bake for 15-20 minutes.

I put in 3/4 cup sugar, because these cupcakes were being served to people who are used to standard cupcakes. However, if you prefer a less-sweet baked good, or if you want more of a chocolate muffin, feel free to cut back on the amount of sugar. If you like the taste of stevia-sweetened baked goods, you can use 5 Nunatural stevia packs, or a combination of sugar and stevia. These cupcakes might work with liquid sweetener: just cut back on the other liquid a little bit.

Notes about the oil:

You can leave out the oil completely if you want to make these cupcakes even lower in fat and calories. Add extra applesauce in the amount of the oil. However, do know that the cupcakes will taste much less light and fluffy. I opted to use some oil for a few reasons: First, I believe healthy fats are extremely important to our bodies. Also, my recipes are healthier versions of traditional recipes, not necessarily low-calorie versions. And finally… taste! Fat-free baked goods can sometimes be gummy. So to those of you who are watching your fat intakes: Leaving the oil in only adds about 3 grams of fat (healthy fat) to each cupcake.

vegan chocolate cupcakes

Have you ever made cupcakes?
And do you like to decorate cupcakes?

I’ve made everything from penguins to Mermaid Cupcakes.

Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 
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  1. I love your chocolate cupcakes! Look absolutely divine! Thanks again! 😀

  2. The cupcakes I’ve made have always been a box mix — and that was a long long time ago. Now I just stick with cookies because they are easier (for me) to make!

  3. Yumm chocolate cupcakes are one of my favorites!
    I make them all the time for my friends, and they can’t tell that they are eating vegan cupcakes! :)

  4. Love chocolate cupcakes and muffins. I’ve tried to decorate them before with icing – didn’t work too well! 😛

  5. I love making cupcakes but I never have the patience for them to cool before I frost haha. Decorating cupcakes can be so fun!!
    Oh, PS… I’m going to be making my sisters wedding cake in May… any decorating tips for me :)

    1. Oh wow, that’s a huge task! I’d be nervous that I’d mess it up lol.
      Decorating tips… hmm, just have fun! I’m sure it’s going to look awesome!!

  6. Lenna says:

    I have actually never made cupcakes! But my mom has baked them twice and I decorated them both times. I love decorating things and food is no exception :)

  7. Allie says:

    Yum! Those cupcakes look so clear and sharp. How do you get your photos so sharp?

    1. I take all my photos in manual or aperture priotity mode. But I also sharpen them, post-processing!

  8. I DO like to make and decorate cupcakes! ….I think that cute little liners are SO fun and then throwing some sprinkles on top makes the world a better place! :)
    This recipe looks awesome, thanks for sharing!

    1. Sarah C says:

      The fun liners are my favorite things! I love how they make polka dot ones and hot pink ones and even snowman ones now!

  9. Jen says:

    I love making cupcakes, but I don’t really like eating them. They’re not my favorite dessert. So whenever I make them, I make sure there are people I can give them to! I usually make a homemade frosting to frost them with, but I’ve never made mermaid cupcakes before!

  10. Sarahishealthy says:

    Shut the door!!! I have been looking for a healthy chocolate cupcake recipe! You READ my mind, CCK!!!! Thank you!

  11. tea-bag says:

    i’ve made more cupcakes than i care to remember! i like doing the frosting thing, but sometimes all they need is a dusting of powdered sugar! still, sometimes it’s nice to do something different – marshmallow s’more frosting, or white frosting w/ oreo dusting!

  12. Sam says:

    Oooh yes of course i’ve made cupcakes (was that even a question?! :P)
    These ones look awesome!
    I healthify them, so i can justify eating them any time of day, e.g. carrot cake cupcakes, PB banana cupcakes..) And b/c I live by myself I love making single serve ones & microwaving them cos who turns on an oven for one cupcake! (well, um, i have done that actually.. :P). So i love your Single Lady recipes!
    The other day I saw Cookie Monster Cookies on someone’s bog (i can show you the link if you want) and I was thinking they would be awesome to make into healthified cupcakes! somehow..i gotta work on it lol.. 😉
    I usually don’t bother decorating unless they’re for a special occasion, usually just smear with some kind of nut buttahhh haha :)
    Love your blog, thanks! :)) Glad to see someone shares my lack of intense sweet tooth haha 😉

    1. Oh I’ve seen those cookie monster cookies! And cupcakes and even cake pops! SOOO cute! I love cookie monster :).

      Chocolate hugs to you!!

      1. Sam says:

        totally just thought of the coolest idea!
        make a batch of cupcakes, then decorate each one as a different sesame street character! ernie, bert, cookie monster, elmo, big bird…oh that would be so cool hehe 😉

        chocolate hugs indeed 😀

        1. And coconut hugs as well!

  13. I get soo soo excited when you post amazing recipes…which is like every day!! thanks :) these look of course amazing!!

    1. Awwww thank you so much, Lauren! :)

  14. Ragnhild says:

    These are so beautiful 😀
    I have to admit, Im much more of a cupcake-maker, than an eater. They are fun to bake, and so pretty. But to cakey for me! I would rather bit into a plain dark chocolate bar 😉

    1. Yeah, me too! I actually don’t like chocolate cake! I want my chocolate to taste dark and rich and creamy, not cake-y. But it’s good to have a go-to cupcake recipe anyway :).

  15. Jenny says:

    I’ve made and decorated plenty of cupcakes in the past, when I was in high school… none of them were ever healthy, since I was always serving a crowd of people that loved just about everything that was super unhealthy!

    I wonder if incorporating black beans into these cupcakes somehow would make them fudgey like the brownies?! Or I guess I could just make the brownies in a muffin tin, d’oh…

    Decorating is super fun, but I actually hate eating frosting [which is usually involved, but not always, of course]… I’m not much of a cupcake fan, either – like Ragnhild said as well! I guess the number one way I enjoy chocolate is the same as my favourite way to enjoy blueberries: straight-up, plain. :)

    1. Hmmm… that sounds like a fun experiment! Maybe pureed black beans in place of some of the yogurt or applesauce?

  16. Lisa C. says:

    Please can you write a cookbook? Please please please????????

  17. We are all addicted to your Single Lady Cupcakes in this house and usually make them at least once a week. We even have the Single Lady Cupcake Ramekins devoted strictly to baking these particular cupcakes. I like to put chocolate chips and cinnamon in mine, my 5 year old likes hers with strawberry preserves and vanilla, and my husband usually wants peanut butter and white chocolate chips in his. We don’t usually decorate them because we can’t wait long enough for them to cool before we eat them!

    1. Sarah C says:

      Oh yes, agreed! Eating is more fun than decorating. I love getting cute liners and maybe fun colored frosting. But I’m never patient enough to actually decorate them!

    2. LOL single lady ramekins! Too cute!

  18. Emily says:

    I love decorating cupcakes! But mine are never works of art like yours. I would love to try fondant someday, but I still haven’t yet.
    Those seaside cupcakes are adorable!

  19. Amber K says:

    I actually don’t think I have ever made cupcakes. Muffins yes, banana bread, but never a good cupcake. Hmm…I wonder if it is even possible to make a gluten-free, xanthan gum-free cupcake? Sounds like a possibly tasty experiment!

    1. Maybe with Bob’s gluten-free mix? I’ve never used it, but I’ve heard it works really well for gluten-free items… but I’ve never looked at the ingredients, so maybe xantham gum is in there!

      1. Amber K says:

        Their all-purpose flour doesn’t have xanthan gum in it, although I haven’t been too successful in baking with it. Although I do feel lucky that my husband and I don’t mind the taste! A lot of people can’t stand the bean flour taste.

        1. I just use rice flour instead for GF baking… you don’t need xanthan gum, especially for little cakes, and they taste great!

          1. Amber K says:

            I’ll have to try that. Thank you! :)

  20. Sarah C says:

    I’m bookmarking this, Katie. It sounds like the perfect healthy recipe that doesn’t call for all sorts of weird ingredients. That’s what I love most about your recipes :).

  21. I LOVE making cupcakes. And decorating them is fun… except for the fact that I have no artistic ability and am absolutley horrible at decorating cupcakes!

    But honestly, cake is so good by itself, I prefer eating it alone :)

  22. Lisa says:

    these look good- wtith vanilla frosting, mmm!!!
    can I replace anything with cornstarch? maybe xanthan gum or something? and I still totally have to get that stevia! I tried a different brand and did not like the results :( haha

  23. Yum these look great Katie! I have a very similar recipe – in mine chocolate chips are never optional :)

    I love making cupcakes! I make lemon ones most often as they’re my boyfriend’s favourite and frequently requested 😉

  24. Lauren says:

    I LOVE decorating cupcakes! Sprinkles are the best! This recipe looks great. A keeper for sure :).

  25. Liz says:

    Saw this on twitter and had to click. I am a sucker for cupcakes, especially chocolate ones. I don’t really take the time to decorate them, because I don’t really like frosting. It is too sweet for me. But I love your single lady cupcakes because you can make just one. Just wondering, have you done a chocolate single lady cupcake yet?

  26. Could cupcakes get any more perfect!?!?! I think NO. They look amazing Katie!!!

  27. Leslie says:

    Mmm I want to sink my teeth into that first photo. I love how your recipes are always so simple, without crazy ingredients like xantham gum or obscure flours. It makes it much easier to actually make the recipe as soon as I see it, without having to go out to the store first and buy things I’m only going to use for one recipe.

    In other words, I’ll be making these today! Or, well, maybe as soon as I have an occasion for which to make cupcakes. I don’t think I need eight cupcakes hanging around my house! 😉

  28. Abby says:

    They look so fluffy and soft, just like you said! I also am interested, like another commenter, in how you get your photos so crisp and real looking, like I could take the item off the screen. Of course, that is also wishful thinking. I WISH I could take them off the screen, especially in the case of these cupcakes! :) :)

    1. A lot of it is the editing process. But it also helps to not shoot with flash and to shoot in manual mode.

  29. Cait says:

    The mermaid cupcake is cute, but I REALLY love the frog!!!! My birthday is in December. Can you make me frog cupcakes pretty please????
    I love your blog!

  30. Mary says:

    These look so cute. I wish I had a party to try them out on!
    I’m still waiting for a party to take your deep dish cookie pie to as well!

  31. Tara says:

    I haven’t made cupcakes in ages!! Chocolate cupcakes with vanilla frosting is my favorite classic combination, but the flavors coming from the “cupcake craze” are awesome! I had a brown sugar praline cupcake from sprinkles and it was to die for!!

    Totally random side note, but I was thinking about this while working out — how cool would it be if they made m&m’s with a fudge baby filling? They would taste so good!

  32. Chocolate cupcakes are the BEST!! I love you so much for posting this and making me happy (and hungry!) :)

  33. VEGirl says:

    They look so fluffy and fudgy… or fludfy! (NEW WORD!). YUM 😀

  34. I’ve never made cupcakes! I don’t like them, so I’ve never really had any interest in making them. I think they are adorable, though and I love all the neat ways people decorate them!

    1. Cait says:

      Ooh another Cait! Great name :) :).

  35. A. says:

    You had me at chocolate.

    Just sayin.

  36. Oc Ziegler says:

    I love to make and decorate cupcackes!! Whenever we have Student Government parties at school, I bring them and they are always the first thing to disappear :)

  37. These cupcakes are calling my name!! Now all I need is an excuse to make them. Though I think the fact that they’re chocolate is a good enough excuse by itself 😉

    Quicky question: I’m dying to make your fudge brownies, but I have no silken tofu. Any suggestions of what I could use instead of the tofu? I was thinking pumpkin, but I really have no idea! Thanks! 😀

    I hope you have the most wonderful day, Katie!

    <3 <3

    1. I’ve not personally done this (so I can’t say for sure that it works) but two other commenters have subbed banana, and one said pumpkin worked. If you experiment, let me know how your experiment works out!

      1. Omg I completely see why you are obsessed with those brownies!! They are AMAZING!! I used the pumpkin and decided to sub it for both the tofu and applesauce. I doubled the recipe (since it was one of your recipes I KNEW I would love it!) and used a total of 3/4 cup pumpkin. I used about two and a half tbsp of coconut oil (I was going to 2 tbsp per recipe, but I forgot I was doubling it when it came to adding it) and ended up having to use 1/2 cup of almond milk. For sweetener, I used 1/4 cup maple syrup and 10 drops of stevia. It was the PERFECT sweetness for me! :) The brownies were a little thin because the batter was really good, if you catch my drift 😉 I wasn’t able to control myself when they came out, so I had one hot from the pan! Oh so fudgy and chocolatey!!! I wanted another and another and another!! I’m thinking they would make a great breakfast, don’t you? 😉 And maybe even a great dinner…. So anyway, the pumpkin worked great, and obviously, I LOVED them!! Thank you so much for the fabulous recipe! I loved you before, but I love you even more know! 😀

        <3 <3

        1. Oh gosh darn it, now I’ma gonna hafta try pumpkin, myself. I can’t just take your word for it. Ugh, you’re forcing me to eat more chocolate. How could you do that??? 😉

  38. Mellie says:

    I’ve only made scratch cupcakes once. I tried to decorate them, but they fell apart, and the icing was all messy, and it was a disaster. My mom is good at decorating cakes though, our birthday cakes are all so much fun!

  39. Ann Claire says:

    Yes, I love making cupcakes!! My friends at school request that I bring them all the time :)
    I also really like decorating, but I usually just try to pipe the icing prettily and then do a fun chocolate drizzle or dust coco powder on top. I have yet to venture into the world of fondant.

  40. Elise says:

    I’m somewhat addicted to cupcakes!! It helps having a boyfriend who is addicted to the rosewater & pistachio cupcakes from VCTOTW. I use the brooklyn brownie cupcake recipe as my go-to chocolate cupcake. Though I should probably find a healthier version considering how often I bake!!

    1. I ADORE that cupcake book! Best cookbook ever! :)

  41. I ususally prefer a piece of a big cake, or decorating a big cake, to cupcakes…. that said though, these look great – I might make an exception!

  42. I have never actually made cupcakes from scratch, but this recipe makes me want to! I love all of the extra tips you added for making them more healthy and have less sugar. Thanks!

  43. Michelle Carson says:

    This recipe was posted just in time for my church Bible Study group tonight! I whipped up a batch this afternoon, and in a few minutes I’ll be taking them off to my group leader’s house. If they like the cupcakes even half as much as I did, they’ll be a big hit! The one I ate this afternoon was fabulous! I dusted them with powdered sugar for a light yet decadent treat. Thanks Katie!

  44. Lauren says:

    There is nothing as fun as a naked chocolate cupcake! You can dress it up in any flavor you wish. My personal favorite is peanut butter frosting ;).

  45. Erin says:

    Hi Katie,
    I love how you always have just the focal point in focus in your photos. Do you do this with your camera? What setting do you use for this? I just got a dslr and have no clue how to use it!

    1. Aperature priority on my Nikon. Set the f stop to the LOWEST you can (3.5 on my camera).

  46. Lauren says:

    Ohh those look delicious!

    I love making cupcakes! This Thursday I’m making my friends some butterbeer cupcakes to enjoy before the midnight premiere of the final Harry Potter movie! (I have no shame in being a HP nerd!)

    1. You won’t get any judgment from me! I actually was thinking of making butterbeer cupcakes! But sadly I’ll be on vacation. I’ve definitely made a HP-themed cake before… oh, and t shirts. So um nerdy? If that’s not nerdy, I dunno what is ;).

  47. VanessaG says:

    Katie! How do you do it?! I will so have to make these on our family beach trip next week. My mom and older bro are chocoholics!!! To answer your question, I LOVE decorating cupcakes. My dream is to own my own cupcake store. For Bible School I made and decorated like 64 cupcakes. I loved it!! I even have one of those huge cupcake pans that you make 1 huge cake shaped like a cupcake. We used it for my neices 1st bday! I Keep the recipes coming girl! I do have a question though. How do you afford to make all those yummy recipes? Do you already have most of the ing. and just restock hen needed? Maybe you could do a post on the necessities. Also, do your parents help eat them?

    1. I usually use simple ingredients in my recipes– regular cocoa powder, quaker oats, etc. And I take advantage of sales for things I eat a lot of, like coconut butter. It can be as expensive as $15, but I never buy it for more than $9.

      My friends are the lucky recipients of a lot of the experiments! My tummy is the other ;).

  48. Albizia says:

    I love cupcakes but I haven’t made any recently due to the lack of an oven. It sucks. Actually, the last cupcakes I made were your single lady cupcakes :) .

    Usually I don’t bother to decorate them. If I do, I put some light whipped cream or just cover them with some muesli before baking and then enjoy the soft + crunchy combo.

  49. katie says:

    I love cupcakes! The more frosting on them too, the better!!!

    love ya girl! I hope your weekend was great!!!!! xoxo

  50. I think decorating cupcakes is even MORE fun than making them — and that’s coming from someone who LOVES to bake! Girl, you have the BEST CHOCOLATE Recipes EVER!!!!

  51. Katie these look STELLAR!

    I admit I do more cakes or brownies or raw desserts or dessert bites/balls than cupcakes. Not sure why, just works out that way. Probably b/c it’s easier to just put everything into a big pan than portion out cupcakes into liners and tins but that may have to change b/c your recipe looks…wonderful.

    Lovely photography :)

  52. Aja says:

    Oh my gosh, yum! I wish I had a muffin pan, but I also wish I was home so I could make them. I’m so limited right now! Living with a family of non-vegans and non-vegetarians for a week. Eep!

  53. These look yummy – everything you make looks yummy. Although I wouldn’t ever pass on the chance to eat one of these bad boys, I’m much more of a yellow cake and chocolate frosting. And if I could only pick ONE dessert, it’d have to be a brownie. Fudgeyness prevails over cakeyness in my book. Mmmm I want one now….

    1. Heck yes! I think that’s probably why I went so long without a cupcake recipe on my blog… I just love fudgey, rich, or creamy desserts more than cake-y ones. But it’s always good to have a go-to cupcake recipe because they’re so versatile for parties and events.

  54. BroccoliHut says:

    I love making cupcakes! There are so many opportunities for decorating creativity:)

  55. These look great! I tend to buy boxed mixes of cupcakes and then decorate them with fun home made frostings and such. I think I may give this recipe a whirl though, I just have a slight baking phobia. I usually go no-bake when I make things from scratch! haha!

  56. Lyza says:

    I guess my dad only gets one homemade lavender dark chocolate heart today, because I am eating the other one, even though I was saving it for him 😛 LOL your blog always makes me want dessert!! :)

  57. Grace says:

    These look delicious!! Is it alright if I use yogurt and milk and isn’t non-dairy? I only have regular milk/plain yogurt as of right now. Will it make a significant difference in the cupcakes if I don’t use non-dairy products?

    1. Hi Grace,
      I’m sure it’ll work with any milk/yogurt!

  58. marina says:

    katie, your recipes (and you) are SO beautiful, but it really bothers me how you always label food “evil”, “naughty” etc. I know it wouldn’t bother 95% of people, but that sort of language just automatically associates food with guilt and it’s just a little…I dunno, triggering. Just thought someone should tell you. But these look great :)

    1. Hey Marina!

      I really need to do a post about what I mean when I say things like “healthy tastes naughty.” I’m not saying that not-so-healthy treats are evil… really, I mean “naughty” more like “sexy” or “risque.” But lol I think writing “Making healthy taste sexy” on my blog header might be a little too… naughty? 😉
      My meaning is more like: you’ll FEEL devilish when you eat delicious food, but really you are NOT.

      I strive, through ALL my posts, to show people that they can and SHOULD eat the foods they really crave. Every single day. I hope I’m explaining this well… I do not mean to say that you would be naughty if you ate UNhealthy food; all I’m saying is that you’ll THINK you’re being naughty when you eat the recipes on my blog when really you’re not!

      Sorry to ramble! As I said, I should probably write a post to explain my true meaning. It’s sometimes hard to get one’s ideas across with words.

  59. monica says:

    I just stumbled on your website and I am dying to make some of these recipes. Girl, you are amazingly talented! Thank you for sharing!

    1. Aw Monica, thank YOU for taking the time to leave such a sweet comment!

  60. Andrea says:

    I made these cupcakes yesterday, and made some frosting to decorate them today! For Halloween! They turned out AMAZING!!! It only made ten cupcakes, but I actually liked that. Otherwise, with a ton of cupcakes, I can sometimes feel like I HAVE to eat them all quickly before they go bad. So this recipe is definately a keeper! Boyfriend and step-dad approved as well 😉

    1. Andrea says:

      Oh, and I meant to ask… what purpose does the cornstarch serve in this recipe?

      1. Awww yay!! :)

        I think the cornstarch is a binder… honestly, I am still learning when it comes to the science of cooking, so I’m not 100% sure it even needs to be in there. As I wrote in the post, the recipe is very-loosely based off the sexy vanilla cupcake from the cookbook “Vegan Cupcakes take over the World.” Their recipe calls for 2 T cornstarch, so I just left some in mine. But if you ever make it without the cornstarch, I would be VERY interested to know if they still work well. In fact, I might just have to try it too… :)

        1. Ashley says:

          I made these cupcakes last night without the cornstarch. I simply added more flour and I think they worked out great!

          Katie, I’m wondering if you’ve ever tried coconut milk? I think the creamy texture might work out nicely. I definitely will be making these cupcakes again so will try that out next!

          1. I haven’t tried this particular recipe with coconut milk… But I do have some extra cans sitting in my pantry that might be up for some experimenting! :)

  61. Anonymous says:

    can you use normal milk?
    or did you just say non-dairy as a vegan recipe?

    1. You can use any milk. I used almond milk.

  62. Jeanne says:

    Have you tried using coconut oil instead of canola oil in this cupcake recipe?

      1. Lara says:

        In a liquid or solid form?

  63. Heidi says:

    How many does this recipe make?????
    Sorry, I’m trying to figure it out… I know some of your recipes only make one or two this loks like at least six, but is it six, or 12 or, well how many? Trying to figure out if I need to heat up the big oven or just the toaster oven.

  64. Heidi says:

    I used 1/2 c coconut sugar and they were great. Mine weren’t as pretty as yours, I never can get a rounded top, I guess I don’t measure well enough, or maybe it’s my altitude.
    These were just what we wanted tonight.

  65. Bette Jane says:

    Katie! I have a question for you- I’ve recently decided to become vegan after 3 years of vegetarianism, and my fellow blogger/dear friend, Krisla, is a far cry from understanding (she just can’t eat enough meat, eggs, dairy, etc.). While there are countless recipes on your site I want to wow her with, I have this urge to make attractive vegan cupcakes, from frosting to last crumb! Would this recipe make the cut, since you served them to non-vegan-eaters? Or do you suggest something else entirely in order to amaze a stubborn omnivore? And if these cupcakes do fit the bill, is the soy yogurt replaceable?

    Sorry for the long post, I hope it’s not too much to ask!

    P.S. I love how successful and passionate you are when it comes to veganism. It’s really helped solidify my choice to become one!

    1. These are definitely just as good as non-vegan chocolate cupcakes. But honestly, I don’t think anyone will ever be “wowed” by a plain-jane chocolate cupcake. With cupcakes, it’s all about the frosting ;).

      Other good recipes I turn to when I want to “wow” people:

      Just don’t tell the person what the ingredients are until AFTER he/she tries it… that way no one is biased against the dessert before trying :).

      Oh, and yes you can sub whatever type of yogurt you wish for the cupcakes. A vanilla-flavored yogurt is recommended.

  66. Meg says:

    Hi- I found you on pinterest a couple of weeks ago and am now absolutely obsessed with your recipes! I’ve made this chocolate cupcake recipe two weekends in a row now- most recently as an emergency chocolate cake replacement when the person bringing dessert dropped the trifle in the driveway! Everyone has LOVED it! And is shocked to hear it’s a healthier, vegan version! I can’t wait to try more!
    – Meg

  67. Healthy cupcakes? (or healthIER) wow that is just amazing. I am so glad I found your blog!

  68. celina georgia says:

    I was wondering how many calories about are in each cupcake?!? they look and sound yummy!

  69. Alison says:

    Hey Katie,

    I love your go-to recipe for chocolate cupcakes! I was wondering if I could take about my experience making them on my blog! Let me know your thoughts. Please send me an e-mail at


    1. Hi Alison!

      I would be honored if you wrote about them!! I’d love to see :).
      I do ask that people link to the actual recipe instead of writing it out on their site, but please feel free to use any photos if you wish.

  70. April says:

    Hi, I just wanted to share a really amazing recipe with you! I posted on your wall a couple days ago about a dessert idea for my health food hating peanut butter chocolate loving friend. Well, I finally settled on chocolate cupcakes with your reese’s pieces frosting. I came across this recipe and it’s incredible. The cupcakes are moist and delicious- and there are absolutely NO eggs or butter! The recipe depends on the baking soda and vinegar to rise (and they rise a LOT). I made substitutions to make it healthy :)

    1 1/2 cups spelt flour
    1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    1 cup xylitol
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 cup brewed coffee (I used water)
    1 Tbsp white vinegar
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    6 Tbsp (1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp) olive oil

    You basically preheat the oven to 350, mix together the dry ingredients, mix together the wet ingredients, mix it all together and bake it for 18-20 minutes. It’s the quickest recipe I’ve ever used and the results are delicious!

    1. That sounds really good! Is it a recipe from a blog?

  71. April says:

    Oh sorry I forgot to include that! The blog was
    I just took the cupcake recipe and made some quick replacements to make it healthier. I’ve been browsing the blog since I found it a few days ago and I’m really impressed with it! There are a lot of recipes!

  72. Natalia says:

    I have loved exploring your website! And I have shared it with others who are looking to continue to eat chocolate but still be healthy! I am baking these for a baby shower I am hosting and can’t wait to share with all of the women that they are actually healthy!! I also used this base recipe for rainbow cupcakes I made for my daughter’s 3rd birthday. I omitted the cocoa and added food color. They were yummy without the cocoa 😉

    1. Aw I hope they turn out well for the shower! And I’m really glad to hear it’s possible to make them into a rainbow version. A few weeks ago, someone asked about how to make funfetti cupcakes, and I was sad to tell her I only had a recipe for the single-serving one.

      1. Natalia says:

        they were a hit! Not a single one was left over :) The rainbow version wasn’t as fluffy as the choc. ones but I think that’s because I over-mixed. No one complained, though.

  73. marie-neige says:

    hi i would like to know au much
    carbs in it
    fibre in it
    fat in it
    and proteine in it

    and sorry for my bad english

    i love your page

  74. Michaeleen says:

    Love your recipe ideas and the fact that you promote the use of “healthy fats” – however Canola oil would NOT fall under that category for those of us who are trying to avoid genetic modifciations to our food. I mean why? When butter from grass-fed cows, olive oil or tropical oils are the Gold Standard in terms of research and health benefits.

  75. Kim says:

    Should I use regular yogurt or non fat ?? I can’t wait to make these!! I love cupcakes!! I just cannot decorate! my sister makes super cute cupcakes but I try not to eat them cause they are full fat varieties!

  76. Johnyne says:

    Will you give us the proportions for this in a “single lady” size?? I know, I know…. some people always want the big batch proportions and others want the single serving size. Forgive us dear lady! ;o)

    1. Sorry, I haven’t made this into a single-lady cupcake. But… these freeze well at least ;).

  77. Cierra says:

    You know so much more about baking than I do, so I’ll just ask you instead of experimenting: do you think that I could replace SOME of the flour with coconut flour? Like maybe 1/2 cup coconut flour and 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour? Would this work, or would it make it too dry? I have no idea…
    Thanks for your help :) I’m using this as a German Chocolate Cupcake base!

    1. Vicky says:

      Hi Cierra, you cannot substitute coconut flour on a 1:1 ratio with any grain flour, and in non-vegan recipes, the number of eggs is drastically increased. I have used coconut flour in various baked recipes, and I would be hesitant to try it in cupcakes like these, as I do not think the final result would have the texture we like in cupcakes. It’s better-suited to things like coffee cakes.

      Here is an informative website that I went to when I started to try to incorporate more coconut flour into my recipes. Hope Katie doesn’t mind my adding a site, but she can remove my comment if it goes against rules!

  78. Mary says:

    I just made a non-vegan version yesterday and it was AMAZING! So moist and so healthy, still!
    I didn’t have cornstarch, so I substituted that for white whole wheat flour. I used fat free dairy yogurt, and skim milk. I also reduced the sugar to 1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp.
    It was realllly good!!

  79. Jessica says:

    Can you tell me how to add agave or honey instead of sugar? What amount of liquid would I replace and how much agave would I use? I’ve tried several recipes for healthy chocolate cupcakes and they all suck! Help!!! I want to make them for my little girls 2nd birthday and I don’t give her sugar. I guess I could try stevia, but not a fan.

    1. Sorry, I haven’t tried liquid sweetener. But why not try evaporated cane juice or coconut sugar? They’re no less healthy than agave. :)

      1. Betsy says:

        Actually, raw agave has a lower glycemic index than cane juice. not sure about coconut sugar

  80. Jessica says:

    Thanks for the reply. I will try coconut sugar but FYI evaporated cane juice has the same non health benefits of white refined sugar just not as processed.

  81. Steffi says:

    I just made these cupcakes and they are GORGEOUS!!! I used organic NON GMO canola oil, vanilla coconut milk yogurt and almond milk. My 4 year old who is intolerant to dairy is going to freak when she tries these tomorrow!!!! she is the chocoholic in the family 😉 thanks for a really great recipe. I am keen to find out if anyone tried making these with agave yet…

  82. Laila says:

    I am in the kitchen as i type because i just took out these cupcakes from the oven
    This is the first recipe i’ve ever made from a blog and i have to admit i was a little scared
    These are AMAZING
    Thank you so much
    I have been looking for such a long time for a cupcake recipe that doesnt include 50 million tons of butter but this is soooooooooo much better
    Thanks Again!

    1. Anonymous says:

      Also, could I make this into one big cake?

  83. Kelly Dickinson says:

    Hi Katie!
    I just made these with my husband, they were so good! I used Plain Greek yogurt and added extra vanilla. Also, I didn’t use applesauce, just added a tablespoon of coconut oil to the original amount. They were so moist, fluffy and rich tasting!
    I love your recipes and I’m not a vegan, but I am a low sugar eater 😀
    Thank you for your recipes, I absolutely love your site!

  84. Betsy says:

    Thanks for this recipe! But I’m not much of a baker normally, so can you tell me how many this serves?? I have to make them tonight! Thanks:)

    1. Betsy says:

      never mind… I just saw it in the comments. 12! I guess I overlooked it the first time. Sorry 😛

  85. Heather tang says:

    Do you have a nutrition chart? I want to make these for a gym cuz i work there and so customers always ask for a nutrition chart. If you have one, it’ll be a great help :) .

  86. Anonymous says:

    does all purpose flour work i attempted this last night :/ and they came out flat :,(
    i dont see where i went wrong other than using all purpose flour?

  87. Susy says:

    Do you have a gluten free version?
    and what can I use to substitute the yogurt (I am vegan and in South America there is no such thing as “vegan” yogurt)
    thank you!

  88. Vicky says:

    Hi Katie! I (luckily) rarely crave sweets, but for whatever reason, I ran across this recipe and the craving hit – LOL. These are delicious, and I can’t believe the texture is so light, given that there are no eggs! I followed the recipe as written, used unbleached all-purpose flour, organic palm sugar (yummy with chocoloate), and almond milk. I do agree with you – baked goods need “some” oil or why bother. So I did use the coconut oil. I did not frost them, as they are just perfect for me as-is!

    Thank you again for another fabulous recipe!!

  89. Emily Pulitano says:

    I just made these cupcakes (but I used whole grain oat flour, coconut oil and xylitol) for a co workers birthday. Oh my goodness these are awesome! They taste so fudgy and moist. For icing I used your recipe for healthy homemade Nutella and the combo is seriously delicious! Thank you for all your awesome healthy dessert recipes! Emily
    P.S. how do you create baked good recipes and know how much leavening agents/corn starch and egg replacements etc. to use and when???? Very curious!

  90. nina says:

    I’m addicted to the Chocolate Mayonnaise cupcakes and wonder how these compare. I don’t have all the ingredients to make these and what if they don’t taste as good, then I’ll be stuck eating 12 when I could be having my favorite instead. On the other hand, if they’re better then it’ll be worth it. Has anyone tried both?

  91. Anonymous says:

    how many do these make?

  92. R. Vickers says:

    Just curious…why the cornstarch?

  93. April says:

    These are amazing…..although due to a lack of supplies I had to get a little creative. They still turned out amazing! Thanks for sharing!

  94. Sue Miceli says:

    Hi, I love this! Along with being GF, we have a sensitivity to apples, can you suggest a sub for applesauce?

  95. Anna says:

    The batter was kind of dry with only 1/2 cup milk so I just added some more until it looked okay. When they were done, these were the most delicious and moist cupcakes I’ve ever tasted!

  96. Stephanie says:

    I was so happy to come across your cupcake and frosting recipes, that I made them yesterday. Now the frosting turned out perfectly and it was lovely. For the cupcakes, I followed the recipe to a tee and used coconut milk (not the thick one) for the milk part, but they turned out really dense and dry. Any ideas? I would love to try again!

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      You may want to click on Katie’s “Recipe FAQ” link, then scroll to the “Troubleshoot” section.

  97. nardsy says:

    I made these cupcakes with my son this morning and they were divine. We were really impressed with how moist they turned out and not too sweet. We used a mixture of stevia granules, stevia drops and rapadura for the sugar content and they were superb! Thanks Katie!!!!!

  98. Rae says:

    Nutritional info?

    1. Sorry, this is an old post and I hadn’t started including nutrition info until around 2012 I think.

  99. AnonymousGirl22 says:

    Hi Katie! I just want to say that I love your blog! You see, I love desserts, I love healthy, and I love chocolate! So when I found your blog a couple weeks ago, I was like “OMG, this is the best blog ever!” :) And I already have a list of, like, 20 recipes of yours that I really want to try! The only thing is… I’ve never baked before (I’m only 12). But you really inspired me to start. My mom and I just recently bought a cupcake pan and this is the recipe I decided to start with. I just have two questions:

    1. Is there something I could use to sub the applesauce? Or can I omit it completely?
    2. What is the cornstarch for?

    Thanks in advance! :)

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Why not try this recipe? There is no applesauce.

      1. AnonymousGirl22 says:

        Thank you! I will sure check it out. :)

  100. Valerie says:

    Thank you for posting this recipe. I just made the cupcakes and had a taste. Yummy! I used almond extract because I was out of vanilla. It works well. My 4 year old daughter helped out and we had so much fun mixing the ingredients. Also I love that there are no eggs or butter in the recipe. Thanks again.

  101. Kristina says:

    Is evaporated cane juice different from regular white sugar? better? same? different? Love your recipes. I bake the healthy choco chip cookies all the time for my boyfriend – he loves them. Plus the choco chip bars (with beans!) and the fudge balls. All great! Thank you.

  102. Lily says:

    Mine are in the oven! SO EXCITED!

  103. Verity says:

    Thank you for this recipe Katie, my daughter recently turned four and I needed a recipe that “normal” kids would not turn their nose up at. My daughter loved baking her chocolate (cacao) and beet root birthday cake but we knew her pals don’t have the same sophisticated tastes!! However we all thought this was the perfect compromise and I should have baked twice the amount!
    Thank you again!

  104. Verity says:

    Thank you for this recipe Katie, my daughter recently turned four and I needed a recipe that “normal” kids would not turn their nose up at. My daughter loved baking her chocolate (cacao) and beet root birthday cake but we knew her pals don’t have the same sophisticated tastes!! However we all thought this was the perfect compromise and I should have baked twice the amount!
    Thank you again Katie

  105. Lauren says:

    Just made these cupcakes for a healthier snack for my youth group. Of course had to test it out first. Very delicious! My husband even liked them after I added frosting and he definitely does not care about healthier snack options. Thank you!

  106. KT says:

    My husband hates (hates hates hates) when I try to make baked goods/sweets healthier. I made these for my 4 year old’s birthday party, and had my husband taste them the night before. He thought they were really good. I knew if they won him over, they would be good for the masses. I used 1/2 cup unbleached white flour and a 1/2 cup whole wheat pasty flour, and unrefined/raw extra virgin coconut oil. the chocolate and the light coconut flavor will worked well together.

  107. Christina says:

    Hi, I just found your blog, it’s great! I’m always looking for healthier baking recipes! I’m making these tomorrow for a girls night in!

  108. Alicia E. says:

    How many cupcakes does this make?

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:


  109. Liza Hill says:

    Can I make vanilla cupcakes with your chocolate cupcake recipe by just omitting the coco powder?

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Just use her skinny vanilla cupcakes recipe instead.

  110. Gloria says:

    These cupcakes look delicious. I would love to make it but I don’t have cornstarch. Could I completely omit it? Or are there any subsitutions?

    Thank you

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      You can buy cornstarch at any regular grocery store, so it’s best to just buy some.

  111. Lara says:

    How many cupcakes does this recipe make?

  112. Sandy says:

    My son is 2.5 yrs old and he and I bake all the time. I try to stick to vegan baking so he can sample the end result before it’s actually baked. This is an amazing cupcake. We do them without frosting and they are still amazing! LOVE it

  113. Lee says:

    You should also advertise this recipe as egg free. The other egg free recipes out there aren’t as good as this one.

  114. Angie Dye says:

    My 9-year-old daughter found this recipe and made these all by herself. She used whole wheat white flour, coconut oil, coconut milk and coconut yogurt. You were called a “genius” not once, but twice (my daughter and my husband)! So delicious and clearly, easy enough for a child to make. Thank you!

  115. Eva says:

    Hi! Does anybody else have this problem? My cupcakes, actually, not just these ones, but all from CCK are always ‘liquid’ inside of them even when they’re done baking! It’s also the same with banana bread :(. But boatmeal and brownie recipes work perfectly. Is my oven bad or am I doing something wrong??
    Thank you!

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Have you looked at Katie’s recipe FAQ page? It sounds like something is wrong with your oven.

  116. erica says:

    how many does this recipe make?

    1. sandra says:

      I managed to get 18 even with almost filling the tins to the top. Might have over-measured on the flour just a tad though.

  117. sandra says:

    I tried this recipe, and received rave review from it. The touch of chocolate baking chips make the cupcake pop. I used the coconut oil with 2% non-homogenized milk. They were really moist, and oh so chocolaty good. I will make this my go-to chocolate cupcake recipe. Thanks!!!

  118. Sarah says:

    My cupcakes tasted great but sunk in the middle. Anyone know why?

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Hi Sarah,
      Did you read Katie’s troubleshooting FAQ page at the top of the blog?

    2. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Sounds like a baking soda problem. Did you not put the cupcakes in the oven immediately after adding the liquid to the dry? If added too early before baking, the bubbles will get so big that they burst, which causes sinking.

  119. Tony says:

    How many calories are in each?:)

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Katie had not yet started listing calories on her site. But you might want to check out these cupcakes that do offer nutrition facts:

  120. angel says:

    i made these but replaced the vanilla yogurt with a coffee flavored. they were amazing everyone loved them!!!!

  121. Heather says:

    How many cupcakes does this recipe make?

  122. Heather says:

    I made these Gluten free successfully. I used 3/4 cup Bob’s Red Mill GF All Purpose flour and 1/4 cup sorghum flour. I am sure you could use all Bob’s Red Mill, but I prefer the texture with the sorghum. Also, I subbed vegan sour cream for the yogurt so I wouldn’t have to run to the store and the results were great. Thanks for the recipe!!

  123. vanessa says:

    I love your recipes! What are your thoughts on maple syrup as the sweetener?

  124. Laura says:

    How many cupcakes does this make?

  125. Ingrid says:

    These look amazing! I only have whole wheat pastry flour at home, would that work as a decent substitute? Or would the texture be off?

  126. Elaine says:

    what does the yogurt do in this recipe? I cannot find unsweetened yogurt so prefer to avoid it

  127. Heidi says:

    I can’t find anywhere how many cupcakes this makes. Please help.

  128. Lisa says:

    I always struggle to be able to print the recipes on this site. It’s easy to pull the recipe up, but strangely lacking in the ability to print. Help!

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      All recipes published on the site after 2014 have a print option :-)

  129. Judith says:

    Hi, these look delicious and I’m going to bring them to a Halloween party on Saturday -and not tell anyone that they’re healthy.. (sneaky, I know) I was wondering if it was possible to add cherries to them and make them cherry-and-chocolate-flavoured? Is it better to use the recipe if I want to add fruit?