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Skinny Vanilla Cupcakes

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Here is the healthy cupcake recipe that won’t let you down.

















Cupcakes so soft and fluffy…

No one will ever guess that they’re low-fat!

I went through five or six attempts before finally achieving the results I wanted: a “no-fail” healthy vanilla cupcake recipe that both health-food eaters and junk-food eaters will love.

healthy cupcakes

Above, a skinny vanilla cupcake with Healthy Glaze Icing.

You can have fun with this recipe: keep it simple, or add just a few ingredients to make blueberry cupcakes, red velvet cupcakes, or even chocolate-chip cupcakes. Everyone should keep a good basic cupcake recipe in his or her arsenal.

low fat cupcakes

Can be sugar-free, too!

Skinny Vanilla Cupcakes

(makes 9-10 cupcakes)

Or click if you’d prefer: Healthy Chocolate Cupcakes.

  • 1 cup spelt flour, or white flour, or Arrowhead Mills gf mix (140g)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp ener g powder, or 1 tbs ground flaxmeal
  • 4 tbsp xylitol or sugar (54g)
  • 2 Nunatural stevia packets (or 2 extra tbsp sugar)
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plain or vanilla yogurt of choice (Silk or SoDelicious both work) (230g)
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice (60g)
  • 3 tbsp coconut or veg oil (can omit, but the cupcakes will be a bit gummy) (36g)
  • add 1/2 tsp xanthan gum if using the gf mix

Preheat oven to 350 F, and grease muffin tins. Combine all wet ingredients with the energ or flax, and stir vigorously. In a separate bowl, combine all remaining dry ingredients, and mix very well.  Pour wet into dry, and mix until just combined (don’t overmix). Cook 18-20 minutes, then let sit at least 10 before removing from muffin tins.

View Nutritional Info

low fat vanilla cupcakes

Link of the Day:

cupcake for one

…..Single-Serving Cupcake Recipes

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. Moni Meals says:

    These look just perfect, Katie. I have all the ingredients too! I can already imagine them to melt in my mouth first bite! I think you have a really great recipe here :-) hope to make them soon and with your glaze too.

  2. Hallie says:

    I would love to see your take on red velvet cake!

    1. Tina says:

      Me too!!! I ♥ red velvet!!

  3. Mmmm chocolate cupcakes would be amazing and I’m sure relatively easy to alter from this recipe. Or funfetti! :)

  4. Arielle says:

    Hmm… Snickerdoodle cupcakes? Chocolate chip cookie dough cupcakes? Those are just the first two flavors that popped into my head 😀

  5. Suzie says:

    I am always on the lookout for a new healthy take on cupcakes– love the endless possibilities with this vanilla batter! Some ideas I am craving are a strawberry shortcake version, or lemon blueberry, or candy bar surprise! :) Yum, thanks for the recipe!

  6. Keri says:

    These look awesome! I have 2 questions: I am vegan except for eggs (we raise chickens in our backyard! :) ) – does the egg replacement in this recipe equal 1 egg? Also, I have the stevia extract in a bottle, rather than packets. Do you know the approximate ratio of liquid stevia drops to a stevia packet? Thanks, Katie! :)

    1. Anonymous says:

      Hi Keri, the recipe looks to me to call for 1 egg (since the substitutions are for either 1 flax or 1 chia egg). I also don’t use stevia in packets, I use the liquid stuff. I just add a few drops at a time and taste as I go to get to the sweetness I like. :)

      1. On the box, it actually says 1 tsp ener g is for 1 egg… so this would be for 2 eggs. But, being vegan, I haven’t tried this recipe with real eggs and can’t vouch for the results being the same. To be honest, 2 eggs sounds like a lot of extra liquid to me… 😕

        1. Keri says:

          Thanks! :) I have no problem just using flax, but I was curious!

          1. Anonymous says:

            Thanks for that Katie. I assumed it was for one egg as it called for 1 flax or chia egg, but the liquid in that version would get pretty high if I used two! :)

          2. Ooh that’s true. Maybe just one egg would be ok then. LOL see how little I know about baking with eggs? I haven’t actually cooked with eggs since I was 13.

      1. Anonymous says:

        Awesome! Thank you!! :)

  7. Verena says:

    Looks awesome! What do you do with the “failed” attempt-muffins ?

    1. Well, the first two batches were so bad, I threw them at my friends ;).
      No, really… we had fun playing catch with the pasty, gummy things. I actually also used a failed attempt for the photoshoot. Since photoshoots often require a lot of handling the food or having it sit outside, you can’t always eat it afterwards. But I really hate wasting food, so using a failed attempt for the “art” is a win-win ;).

      1. brianne says:

        I think it is really unfair that you use failed attempts for the photoshoot. You can tell alot about a piece of cake buy the picture. I have never made the other vanilla cupcake recipe posted since I prefer a lighter crumb (which you can tell by photos).

        1. Oh no, I guess my previous comment was confusing. When I say “failed attempts” I’m referring to attempts that might look the same but just weren’t perfect yet. That often happens: I’ll be *close* to the result I want, but it just won’t be quite sweet enough or will need a little extra salt or something to that effect. But I’d never use a failed attempt that didn’t LOOK the same as the one I ended up using :).

    2. Casey says:

      Similar question: Would you ever consider posting your “failed” recipes. Perhaps not the full recipe, but like as a warning: don’t try this with whole wheat flour, it tasted horrible. Or avoid brown sugar because…. I know many of us like to “play” with your recipes. If you have already tried a certain substitution and know it didn’t turn out so well, it would be helpful to know so we don’t try it! I like how you mention about the oil, how it can be left out, but you prefer it in and you gave a reason for why. I will make it with the oil myself. I love all those tips! Thanks so much Katie! I am learning so much from this site and really enjoy playing in the kitchen :)

      1. I can definitely try to include more of this in the future. But just as a general rule, I wouldn’t use regular whole-wheat flour in cupcakes. It’ll make them dense.

  8. GINGER says:

    What is a Chia egg or flax egg? “Ene r g powder” ?? (Where to find?)
    Is there a way to make these VEGAN? Or are they already?
    I don’t know much about it but would like to learn more.
    I think vegan is no milk or egg products either, right?
    I have a vegan friend and would like to make these for her.

    1. Ginger- These are vegan cupcakes (if you use non-dairy yogurt).

      Chia or Flax “eggs” are just 1 T. ground chia seed or flaxseed mixed with 3 T. water, and let it sit to congeal into a “jelly” viscosity, much like an egg.

      Ene r g powder is an egg replacement powder that will act similar to the chia or flax “egg” replacer, without any flavor. You can find it in organic or natural food stores, in the baking section.

      1. GINGER says:

        Thank you for the info! I am excited to make these now! I have chia seeds. I just need to find the non dairy yogurt. I am not vegan, so I haven’t looked before. I think it will be fun to make these for my friend. :)

    2. Anonymous says:

      Ene R G powder is an egg replacer (I’ve never used it, I always do the flax or chia ‘egg”), you can make chia or flax eggs by simply using 1 Tbsp chia or ground flax and approx 2 Tbsp of warm water (that ratio is equal to 1 egg). Let it sit to gel a bit before using. Works great :). All of Katie’s recipes are vegan :) Hope this helps :)

      1. Anonymous says:

        Whoops! Sorry for commenting too. The comment wasn’t there when I replied O.o

    3. Ginger- These are vegan cupcakes! (No milk or egg.) Just make sure to use non-dairy yogurt.

      Chia or Flax “egg” are made with 1 T. ground chia or flax seed + 3 T. water… mix and let sit to congeal to a viscosity similar to an egg.

      Ener g powder is also an egg-replacer, which can be found in the organic or natural food stores, in the baking section.

  9. Ooooo looks delicious! I think you should make a fruity cupcake, a spin-off your BIG FAT COCONUT BREAKFAST CAKE– incorporate crushed pineapple, and then do a coconut-milk glaze or frosting (even pineapple “frosting shot” frosting??? That’d be amazing!). It would be fun, summery, and tropical!

  10. Tanja says:

    Katie, I love that you are adding gram measurements now!
    Also… would it matter if I only use stevia / xylitol?

    1. Tanja says:

      Oh… and could I use whole wheat instead?

      1. Emma says:

        It specifically says you can use xylitol ;).

  11. Jess says:

    This looks wonderful! Could you do a chocolate no-sugar added cupcake with dates? I attempted to make a gluten free one, but I can’t get the proportions right! I

    1. I can put it on my list of things to try :). Maybe experiment with the chocolate cupcake recipe I already posted (linked in this post as well). Maybe replace the sugar with ground dates?

  12. Julie says:

    This just put me in my Happy Place!! I would like to try and do something with a Chocolate Cupcake and Cherries, something like a BlackForest Cupcake…Super Yummies!!!
    Thank you Katie.

    1. Anonymous says:

      MMMM, I second that one :)

      1. Me, too! That sounds delish! I might need to go pick up some cherries today…

  13. These look great! Healthy Vanilla Cupcakes are HARD to make…believe me, I’ve tried. I’m going to try your version but perhaps try with egg, and maybe oat flour. So if I do, I’ll report back

  14. Kat says:

    Peanut Butter cupcakes

  15. Grace says:

    Omg, this is amazing! And as for possible cupcake flavors, there are sooo many!! You could do cookies and cream, chocolate pb, nutella flavored, or a raspberry-lemonade cupcake for a girly twist. maybe even strawberry cupcakes with a chocolate ganache-type filling?

    1. Emma says:

      YES! Please do cookies n cream! That would be awesome!

      1. Samantha says:

        I agree too! I think it must be because people keep talking cookies n cream.

        These vanilla ones look so cute.

        1. tiffany says:

          I saw a cupcake that had an oreo crumble on was a white cupcake and the crumble was oreo cookie crumbs with some kinda margarine or butter. I’m sure those would be awesome with this as a cupcake base instead of the super sugary one I saw.

  16. Susie says:

    I am so excited to try this recipe! I think I’m going to add some lemon and poppy seeds, throw on some of your healthy icing, and call it a “muffin” so I can eat them for breakfast.

  17. BakingSuit says:

    Thank you! I’ve been looking for a go to vanilla cupcake. I’ll be trying this out soon.

  18. Barb says:

    I’m totally making blueberry lemon cupcakes with this recipe!!

    1. Sarah says:

      I think blueberry lemon cupcakes would be perfect for a bachelorette party! They are fun yet somewhat classy!

  19. Teresa says:

    I’m a huge fan of spice cupcakes. I’d probably try these with nutmeg. Yum! Bet they would also be great with some lemon and poppy seeds. Or maybe I’ll feel adventurous and try making them with brown sugar and substituting one tablespoon of scotch for a bit of the milk for a butterscotch flavor. There are so many wonderful things to do with a great basic cupcake recipe.

  20. Wow these look fantastic! Thanks for the recipe!
    Hmm… I’d try OATMEAL RAISIN… I love that combo!

  21. That totally does seem like a wonderful go-to recipe to have! …. I love ALL of your single serving cupcakes!!!! :)

  22. You’ve done it again! These look fantastic.

    Wanna come make cupcakes for MY bachelorette party? 😉

  23. Thank you for going through so many attempts to get us such a great recipe!! Do you hand out your failures as tasters?! :)

    1. Depends on how bad they are… some are inedible!

  24. I’m a big strawberry fan, so I would definitely consider doing that. You could also do mocha or coffee flavored, which would be fun, haha or even margherita or grenadine flavored!

  25. These look delightful! Love this idea!

  26. Lauren says:

    I’d love to see oatmeal in a cupcake….oatmeal cookie maybe?

  27. Peanut Butter Bunny says:

    Hi! Okay, I’ve been neglecting to comment out of shyness for too long. First I want to congratulate you on your cookbook, Katie! You know when you release your cookbook, there’ll be a mile long – no, 10 mile long line the day before it comes out, with people camping outside the bookstore! Among those people will be all of us, I may safely say. ^^ I’m very excited for it. I know I speak for many when I say you touch others with your kindness – and chipperness! It’s so true for me. Thanks for taking a chance and casting some of your life through this blog. =] And I made these!! As soon as I saw them I knew what my snack was going to be. XD They turned out FANTASTIC, so much better than my last batch of cupcakes! I was worried they were going to turn out too gummy like my last batch, but they didn’t at all. Though maybe that’s because I actually used xylitol instead of trying to replace the dry sweetener with liquid. ^^’ Nonetheless, they turned out wonderful. I’ve been so desperately wanting a healthy PLAIN vanilla cupcake! Like Kristine said, they’re hard to make. As for my cupcake-spin off ideas…I like lemon blueberry too…and that fruity cupcake idea sounds delicious!! Fruitcake-cupcake, anyone?! The blackforest sounds good too. And so does all Grace’s ideas. 😀 Hmm…Mounds bar cupcake?! I so miss my kit-kat bars too. D: And I’m just WAITING for that vegan toaster strudel recipe! Don’t tease us, woman!

    1. Wow, thank you! It made my day to get such a sweet comment.
      Plus, I’m excited you already tried the cupcakes… I think you’re the first person to make them :).

  28. They’re so adorable! I need to get me some xylitol as it’s the one natural sweetener I haven’t played around with much. Love these!

  29. I just made these strawberry shortcake cupcakes for a baby shower:

    you would just add coconut whipped cream and strawberries so they would stay pretty healthy.

  30. I really reallllyyy love jelly-filled cupcakes. You just put preserves in the middle before baking!

  31. Krystle says:

    I’m going to be honest with you here. Whenever you have a new blog post, I get so happy because I absolutely love your creative, innovative, and somewhat healthy recipes. If possible, could you please include how much liquid stevia drops we would use if we don’t have sugar or stevia packets. Thank you, Katie!

    1. Sorry, I haven’t tried it with liquid stevia so I don’t know how it would taste or how much to use. I’m always hesitant to give recommendations for something if I haven’t already tried it… because you never know how it’ll turn out and I don’t want anyone to end up with an awful outcome on my account.

  32. Wow, AWESOME ingredient list! So excited for this recipe. And I love your ideas for adding some additional ingredients to make different flavors. Bookmarking this one for sure :) Thanks for your many attempts to perfect this recipe!

  33. Funfetti!! I love anything with sprinkles! 😉

  34. Hmmm I think I would make these into strawberry rhubarb cupcakes. Great use of foods that are in their prime right now at the Farmer’s Market. Yummy!!

  35. Annie says:

    What about Neopolitan cupcakes? There could be a layer of strawberry, one of chocolate and one of vanilla. I think they would turn out pretty too!

  36. Heather says:

    Margarita cupcakes!! It is a bachelorette party after all 😉

    1. Cat says:

      I was thinking the same thing! And I dont drink lol

  37. Oh Katie, you have had me baking up a storm these past few days. Every time I want to bake something it’s straight to I was going to take a break tonight but I don’t think I can resist waiting to try these out! YUM!! 😛

  38. I would leave them just the way they are…with a *GIANT* dollop of coconut cool whip!!!!

  39. Amanda says:

    Yum! I am not sure if this would work with your receipe, but I would try a lemon cupcake. With raspberry frosting.

  40. Yum! I’m not a hudg fan of cupcakes, but after watching an episode of cupcake wars at 3 AM I’ve been kind of struck with a craving for them all day.
    I would make Boston cream cupcakes! Pipe some soy pudding on the inside then top with a dark chocolate glaze type icing…yum.

  41. I would do a pumpkin spice cupcake! I’m a little early, but they would be great fall treats :)

  42. claire says:

    hey katie! i’m an amateur baker, and this might be a stupid question, but, say i halved (or quartered) your non-single serving recipes, would that work??? thanks!
    p.s. would be great if you could come up with more single serving desserts :p

    1. Depends on the recipe. You can halve this recipe! Just halve all the ingredients and cook for only like 14-15 minutes.

    2. Alanna says:

      She has lots of single serving recipes! 😀 All tagged with single serving here:
      Or just single lady cupcakes here:
      A bunch of the cookie recipes make just a few as well. Happy baking!

  43. Sarah the official CCK drooler says:

    Dulce de leche! Strawberry, banana, peanut butter, coconut… oreo in the middle?!?!
    Yes, please!

  44. These look great as always Katie! Love my plain cupcakes! And since they’re healthy, I can make a homemade fattening icing as a treat!

  45. Megan says:

    How about a pumpkin coconut cupcake? I made you’re “4 ingredient ice cream” with Blue Diamond almond/coconut milk blend, canned pumpkin, vanilla, and cinnamon and it was AMAZING. So..maybe it’d be good in cupcake form. Worth a try :)

    1. Megan says:

      ugh YOUR not YOU’RE….I’m so mad I actually did that lol. (grammar perfectionist over here 😉 )

  46. lizzie says:

    those adorable pink cupcake liners make me want to make these cupcakes with a huge heaping of strawberry frosting on top!

  47. Yum! I could really go for a cupcake right now, but there’s no occasion, a healthy one would probably be better!

  48. Callie says:

    Hi Katie, I’m trying to make a vegan alternative to a cookie recipe that calls for cream cheese. Any suggestions? Thanks!

    1. tiffany says:

      There is a vegan cream cheese…you could try to find it at a whole foods store.

  49. Rachel says:

    This is perfect timing! My daughter’s birthday is coming up soon and I was thinking about making cupcakes but thought I would have to choose between healthy and vegan (which I would like) and delicious. But I think these will be the perfect combo of healthy, vegan and scrumptious!!
    Thanks Katie!!

  50. Nmmumaw says:

    These looks divine! I’d have to find an substitute for the vegan yogurt though =/ In my two years here, I’ve seen like…. ONE kind of soy yogurt, which quickly vanished.

    Flavors? Hmmm…

    Bananas Foster
    Peanut Butter
    White Chocolate and Pretzel
    Almond and Apricot
    Kinako (toasted soy flour) and Brown Sugar
    Purple Sweet Potato
    “Oreo” (alternating chocolate-vanilla-chocolate cake)
    Rum Raisin
    Dark chocolate and lemon
    Also coconut

    I love flavor combining! X3

    1. I think silken tofu could work.
      Or pureed pumpkin or maybe applesauce.
      Or banana, but maybe add less sweetener?

      1. Sarah the official CCK drooler says:

        A vote for the Dark chocolate and lemon!!!
        Genius burns :)

  51. Nmmumaw says:

    OH and chestnut!!! Or if you’re in Japan, “Mont Blanc”

  52. Janae says:

    Thank you Katie for the lovely recipe & thanks for remembering us gf folks. I appreciate the gesture :)!

  53. Ohhh they sound delicious! Maybe try it with honey flavored yogurt in place of the vanilla with a drizzle of honey on the top!

  54. These look divine!!! I think this recipe could easily be altered in a couple different ways to make some yummy summer flavors. You could add some lemon extract or lemon zest for a vanilla lemon combo or even add some pureed strawberries to the mix for a strawberry cupcake. Oh my goodness, it could even be topped with strawberries mixed with a bit of truvia. I need dessert now!!!

  55. Penny says:

    Hi Katie,
    I really love your site and have been doing most of my dessert recipes from you. They are awesome. I really like the Choc Chip Banana Bread. I especially feel good about serving your desserts to my little granddaughter.

    I used to make Monster cookies with peanut butter, oats, M&Ms and choc chips. Would you consider coming up with a recipe for those?


    1. I can try!
      I need to figure out what to do for the m&ms, though…

  56. Luu says:

    I love Cranberries in blondies or cupcakes. Coconut cream is nice, too. But I’ve some friends who don’t like coconut, I love it. So this would be an option when you know all the people :)
    Chocolate chips are always great and I think everyone likes chocolate! 😀

  57. THank you for always including gluten-free options. It’s nice of you to go the extra mile :)

    1. I actually have an awesome friend who likes to test all my recipes with Arrowhead Mills gf flour, which is why I can list it as a substitute in a lot of recipes and know it works. But I’m trying to experiment more with gf flours… like coconut flour. Hopefully there’ll be more gf recipes in the future (and in the cookbook) that don’t rely on a packaged mix. :)

      1. Åsa says:

        I really recommend buckwheat flour for gluten free baking. It’s very light, so it’s great for cakes and muffins (and pancakes!). When I make bread with it I add some psyllium husks and flaxseed to bulk it up a bit and add some fibre.

  58. Casey says:

    For the flax is that just regular flaxseed?

    1. Ground flax. Google “how to make a flax egg” :)

  59. brooke says:

    Hey katie,
    I was wondering what you’d say your staples are to have in the kitchen for baking? I always want to make your recipes but I never seen to have the right ingredients around

    1. Hi Brooke!

      I have a list on my faq page, under the recipe section:

      Hope that helps!!

  60. Anonymous says:

    Katie, If you ever find yourself in Lancaster County Pennsylvania, I know just the place for you! Cafe Chocolate is an adorable, cozy and delicious cafe located in the quaint downtown Litiz. The food, coffee and teas are all amazing but what is best is the chocolate! They pride themselves in fair trade everything and most of the cuisine and desserts are VEGAN! The owner is sooo nice and has her doctorate in business. She has lived all over the world and understands different cultures. Her menu is inspired from all the places she’s been. When I’m in college and go there with friends, she treats us like family; so genuine and sincere. There is even a fountain gushing the tastiest VEGAN CHOCOLATE you can dip goodies into! I really think you would enjoy this place :) I know I do!

    1. Wow, I just looked it up. That is awesome! I used to live so close, too :(… I’ve even been to Lancaster before. But that was a long time ago. I think I ate fried chicken and shoo fly pie!

      1. Anonymous says:

        That is so cool you’ve been to Lancaster!! Wow small world!! You’ll have to come back sometime and try it out :)

  61. This recipe sounds delicious, Katie! I love vanilla cupcakes as is, but add blueberries to any muffin/cake recipe and I am SO in!

  62. Kit-Kat says:

    Oh Katie, these look so good! I’m going to make them after dinner, and serve them to my family! <3 You're the best ever!!!!

  63. Lia says:

    This is awesome! I always end up with kind of gummy cupcakes. Thanks for this!

  64. Kathy says:

    I totally need a skinny vanilla cupcake recipe! My friend has been pestering me lately that I promised to make her cupcakes a long time ago (which I don’t remember, at all) and I totally needed a recipe! Thank you so much, Katie ^^

  65. babs says:

    pistachio! i just made a watergate cake for my mom’s birthday the other night. everyone loved it, even my picky little brother

  66. Brin says:

    Hi katie! These look awesome! The only problem is my mom likes the chocholate mousse you made but I do not like chocholate. But I want to make these how much coco would you put in half the batch or would you even recommend it?

    1. Make 1/2 this recipe, and maybe try making 1/2 the linked recipe for chocolate ones. It’s a different recipe but many of the ingredients are the same.

  67. oh that looks so delicious and cute! i love the healthy ingredient list! thanks for sharing!

  68. Lana says:

    Ooh, I think a lemon one would be quite nice, or a peanut/other nut butter filled one, or green tea, or other tea flavored if you used tea instead of water? Likewise with coffee… Hm!

  69. Diane says:

    Those look delicious! But why are you trying to make low-fat recipes? Healthy fats should not be avoided. I haven’t followed your blog long enough to know if you always do, but please don’t help to perpetuate the idea that low-fat is the best way to eat–that’s one of the factors responsible for the US obesity epidemic in the last 20-30 years.

    1. Megan says:

      Don’t worry, I’ve been following Katie’s blog for a while, and I can assure you that she does NOT shy away from healthy fats, and actually encourages the use of them! But it is nice every once in a while to post a low-fat recipe for people who get enough healthy fats in other meals but want a little extra dessert 😉 You should check out some of her older posts and you’ll see what I mean.

      1. Diane says:

        Thanks, Megan–that makes me feel better! I just get so tired of hearing the low-fat mantra repeated ad nauseum, and people are getting sicker and sicker because of it. When will the madness end!!?? =)

        1. lol yup, I pretty much am always telling people to eat more fat. I took a nutrition class in college, and I was marked down because the amount of fat I ate was more than the RDA. But it bugged me that I was marked down, since I’m healthy and believe I don’t eat too much fat… I actually went in and debated it with the teacher. And she changed my grade! :)

          P.S. ironically enough, my next recipe is very high in fat. I like to change it up ;).

          1. Diane says:

            I think I’ll have to call you Enlightened Katie. :) Keep preaching it!

            When I enter my food into a site called, the pie wedge marked “Fat” is very large! But it’s all good fat and I believe in a low-carb lifestyle…and I can’t imagine how anyone keeps within the RDA. I mean, all I normally have is butter or coconut oil on my one piece of toast, a bit of half & half in my decaf coffee, dressing on my salad, and full-fat dairy for the occasional cheese or yogurt I eat. The other fat mainly comes from food (eggs, meat, whatever–oh, and chocolate of course). It’s not like I go out of my way to find fat–and I don’t eat ice cream or French fries or doughnuts, or any trans fats or soybean oil if I can help it!

            I’ve got you on my Pinterest feed and look forward to seeing more here.

          2. Oh don’t get me started on the RDA! I get so mad that they try to fit people into a black-and-white box! We’re all different, and so it’s only natural we have different needs. I trust my own body, and how a certain eating style makes me feel, not some sheet of paper that says the exact same thing for me and the person sitting next to me who has different genetics. 😕

            Sorry, didn’t mean to ramble. I know the guidelines are only there to help… but really, I think it should be stressed more that we listen to our own bodies and see what works for each individual.

  70. Crystal says:

    These are amazing. I got a ton of cherries in our CSA box this week, so I threw in 1/2 cup halved, pitted cherries, and added a little cherry juice to the glaze. Aaaaaaaand I ate 3.

    1. That sounds so good! I was actually thinking of making a cherry version… with chocolate chips, of course ;). Now I want to try your glaze idea!

  71. Tiffany says:

    Hey Katie,

    I am so excited! I want to make these over the weekend. 1T of vanilla extract sound like a lot…is that correct?

    Thanks :)

    1. It actually is! In the first batch, I only added 2 tsp… but I wanted more of a vanilla flavor. The alcohol evaporates during cooking, so you’re not left with a weird overwhelming aftertaste like you’d get if you used that much in a non-baked recipe.

  72. Fernanda says:

    Oooh, I have flavor suggestions! They’re a little out there, but if you’re feeling adventurous:

    Basil and Raspberry (one of the best desserts I’ve had in my life was a basil ice cream with raspberry sauce and a cage of caramelized sugar over it, so I think this flavor combo should be pretty good…in fact, I make strawberry, basil, balsamic vinegar, and black pepper sorbet and it is delicious!)

    Lemon, cucumber, ginger, and mint- I love this flavor combo!

    Pears and red wine – another favorite dessert of mine; which pairs very well with vanilla: pears cooked in red wine, cloves, cinnamon, and sugar (or sweetener); until they’re soft…you could then puree them and use it for the sugar part of the recipe?

    1. Ok, I’m intrigued… I love basil, and I love raspberries so I might have to try your suggestion!

  73. I’m trying to think of a way to make these Pumpkin Spice cupcakes….

    Either way I’m sure your recipe will be 10x’s better than my last attempt at ‘healthy’ baking (black bean brownie fail!)

  74. Anna W. says:

    A mint chocolate chip cupcake!!

    Thanks for this recipe! Can’t wait to try it!

  75. Laura says:

    I agree with the coconut suggestions. I’d use coconut extract instead of the vanilla and add shredded coconut.

  76. Yah! Finally a healthy cupcake! I love it!!!

  77. Jennifer G. says:

    Mmmm.. Delish! Have you ever tried Sweet Rice Flour? You can get it at most asian markets, whole foods, chamberlains (FL only) or online. Might be able to cut back on the sugars a bit? I used it in your chocolate chip cookie recipe (Half oat flour, half Sweet Rice flour) the other day, omitting the white sugar, and they came out perfect!
    But fave cupcake or cupcake flavor? Strawberry with a cream cheese or vanilla frosting.. YUM!

    1. I haven’t. I’ll have to look for it!

  78. Elizabeth says:

    SUCH ahmayzing recipes!!

  79. I am SO going to make these for my birthday! 😀

  80. Fish says:

    It’s nice to see a healthy cupcake that looks glossy,fluffy and delicious..vs. dry,flat,and non to appetizing (even though they’re still usually just as delicious!).
    Thank you so much for this recipe & continuing to create good-for you desserts! Me & my younger (cupcake obsessed) sister are both vegan and we love desserts,I often tell her that you have to be happy & healthy at the same time which is hard because you can’t be healthy without cake!
    With your blog we can be both:D

    By the way I think a chocolate version would be perfect for a bachelorette party.Chocolate is a womans best friend,one should always indulge at such a party (you could even put a little alcohol in it if you wish:/ ).Decorations is the only thing you need to spice it up!
    Whatever you choose will be delicious for sure:)

  81. Tammy says:

    I made these yesterday and they were super yummy! I guess I read the ingredients wrong and didn’t even add an egg or the substitutes. I used spelt flour and xylitol also. They turned out perfect! I was just wondering if you can use this batter to make a cake? My husbands birthday is coming up and want to make a yummy cake. I love all the variety ideas and can’t wait to experiment!

    1. Yes, you definitely can! Maybe just cook a little longer.

  82. Lisa says:

    I tried to make these twice and I don’t know what happened, but shortly after they came out of the oven they sank a bunch in the middle and they seemed dense and gooey (which I tend to like, but many people don’t). Did I do something wrong? I did use a flax egg, but I reduced the milk as you said. I also used palm suger instead of xylitol or regular sugar. I even used the oil. I tried to follow the recipe exactly (and I sub palm sugar for regular sugar without trouble in many other recipes). They just didn’t look anything like yours. The taste is good, but again, a but too dense and gooey for a traditional cupcake (maybe more like a muffin). Any advice? Thanks!

    1. Oh no, I am so sorry :(. I’m really not sure what could’ve gone wrong…
      What flour did you use? And how many cupcakes did your recipe yield? They should be fluffy and light! To be honest, I didn’t personally try the flax egg; I had a tester (a friend) try that variation to make sure it worked. I didn’t see her cupcakes, but she said they turned out perfectly with the flax egg. I’m going to ask her for more feedback regarding just how gooey her cupcakes turned out. Hopefully I can figure out what could be the problem.
      Oh, one more thing: just in case, make sure your baking powder is still good. Sometimes baking powder can lose its power over time.

      1. Lisa says:

        I used spelt flour, but I did grind it myself. So, I tried to kind of pack it in (I think sometimes the freshly ground is fluffier, so I was trying to make sure I had enough flour, but maybe it still wasn’t enough??). I think my baking powder is pretty fresh and the batter was bubbling up. Oh, and they yielded about 11 cupcakes I think? Thanks for trying to help. Maybe I will try again (I would sure love a healthy cupcake recipe, I make cakes a lot for people). I’m sure it is user error :) Oh, I did use cow’s milk yogurt (I couldn’t find any plain coconut milk yogurt at my store and I try to avoid soy)-would that have mattered? Thanks again, and for all your recipes because I have made and love many of them. I especially love your banana polka dot bread (which I often make into muffins), both of your magic shell recipes, the chocolate bars, I could go on….;)

        1. Lisa says:

          Or maybe I had too much flour? I should try it using my scale and the grams (I think my battery is dead and I don’t have another). Maybe that would help??

          1. Hmmm… yeah, if they yielded 11 cupcakes it does sound like too much flour. Unless you have tiny muffin tins!

  83. Lisa says:

    Oh, I will also add that the first batch I may have undercooked (and didn’t know if opening the oven too early messed them up), but the second batch I cooked the full 20 min. I was afraid if I cooked them longer they may be too dry (even though I know ovens are all different).

  84. Christina M. says:

    Hey Katie! I’m definitetly going to try this recipe! After I make this vanilla one I think I’m going to experiment and attempt a moche (maybe with chocolate chips?!) flavored kind or a mint chocolate chip one:) I obviously like chocolate chips haha Thanks for the frequent and awesome tasting recipes!

  85. Sandra says:

    Katie! :) I made those yesterday (even before getting the email followup :) ) and they are SOOOOO good! Everyone liked them – they were so damn fluffy! Delicious! Even thogh I made them with whole (wheat) spelt flour (how do you say that in english?^^)!

    And thank you so much for the “gram- details”, I don`t know if it would have worked for me without them (I once asked you about cups and so on^^).
    This is the best blog I´ve ever seen! :) Thank you Katie! You`re doing such a great job!!

    1. Aw Sandra, it’s only 7am and you already made my day. Thank you!! :)
      To be honest, I like the grams better and usually cook using them. More reliable, and easier to clean up! I wish everyone had a food scale so we could stop this crazy business of measuring in cups!

      1. Oh, and the words don’t actually need to be translated. You already have it correct for English: whole-wheat spelt flour :).

  86. Sandra says:

    Oh and I forgot: I also thought about adding some cherries- maye I´ll try this version…today! :)

  87. Janice Hernandez says:

    I have these in the oven right now! I couldn’t help but steal a few tastes in between and scrapping the bowl with my spoon and eating the little bit of batter left after pouring them in the pan! These will go great with chai tea +milk…

  88. Janice Hernandez says:

    Wow, i only had them in the oven for like 5 minutes and they’re already huge!

  89. Joy says:

    Do you think you could use almond flour, coconut flour, brown rice flour or garbanzo flour?

  90. Deborah Baker says:

    Hi, Katie! I will add some toasted coconut and lime zest to the batter, and lime juice for the glaze. Thank you!

  91. Yum! I actually prefer vanilla over chocolate when it comes to cupcakes. As a college kid though, all treats are welcome. I don’t discriminate :)

  92. Rachel Owens says:

    Any chance applesauce would work in place of yogurt? Being dairy free/soy free there isn’t a yogurt I can do so usually use applesauce….any thoughts on that substitution? Look forward to hopefully trying these some day!

  93. Katie, these cupcakes look and sound so yummy! I’m always on the hunt for a good recipe for moist vanilla cupcakes. I will have to give them a try and make them with my gluten free flour blend. I actually just started a blog about a month ago and I love what you said about the success of a blog is based on “is it what you love to do?” I LOVE to bake gluten free treats for my friends and family and deciding to do this blog has been so rewarding already!

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful and healthy desserts with all of us! You can check out my blog if you would like…

    Have a wonderful day!

    1. Thanks, Sarah! I’ll be sure to check it out! :)

  94. Chris says:

    A bit old fashioned here…as I’m thinking a traditional spice cupcake with maple icing! Kinda like Grandma made, I guess. Also liking the idea of the lemon cupcake with a citrus glaze. Yep, a cupcake for all seasons! GOOD JOB!!!

  95. Amber says:

    can you substitute regular eggs for the chia egg? I am not vegan, just wanted to try some healthier options. :o) You have lots of cool ideas!

    1. Sorry, I haven’t actually baked with an egg since I was 13 so I have no idea how to tell you to proceed. 😕

    2. Lana says:

      Hey, there. They worked for me with one egg instead of the chia/flax egg or egg replacer. :)

  96. Liz says:

    These are delicious!!! We loved em!

  97. Laura says:

    Could you use whole wheat pastry flour?

  98. Kate says:

    It would be awesome if you could make a healthier version of these.
    Apple cupcakes with caramel buttercream. There are quite a few yummy looking cupcakes on this site. Maybe you will get some ideas for that bachelorette party!

  99. Casey says:

    Does Whole Wheat Spelt flour work the same or just as good as regular spelt flour?

    1. Yes! That’s actually what I use when I call for spelt flour :)

  100. Janine says:

    Hi Chocolate-covered Kaite;

    I made a double recipe last night, and mine didn’t rise much and have a convex appearance. In your experience, could this be from overmixing the batter?

    I used a flax egg, as per your instructions, and oat flour. OH also I added chocolate chips.

    They still taste good though, but dense… like a pancake.

    Thank you!

    1. I think it was probably due to your substitution of using oat flour 😕

  101. Miranda Wheeler says:

    I made these tonight! I used egg beaters instead of the Ener-g since I couldn’t find it. I topped it with the Reese’s pieces frosting. I think my hubby would have liked it more if had used milk chocolate chips in my frosting, but I thought they were fabulous!! I will try more recipes now.

  102. Claire says:

    Katie – I was gonna use Arrowhead Mills gluten-free all-purpose baking mix but when I checked the ingredients list I noticed that it already contains baking powder:

    I don’t know how much baking baking powder is in the flour mix though. Do you know when your friend tried our your recipe using AM GF flour how much baking powder she used? Do I just omit all the leavening agent (including baking soda) from your recipe?

    Thank you for your tip!

    1. She said she just uses the flour in replacement of the flour I call for in a recipe. She never adds anything like xantham gum or takes a recipe ingredient away. Hope that helps!

      1. Anonymous says:

        Thanks. After you mix all the ingredients together, is your batter quite thick? I tried this recipe twice. The first time It was so thick (almost like bread dough) so I added 5 Tbsp almond milk to thin it out. That was a mistake as the inside never baked enough and the top rose and then fell so I tossed them away. The second time I followed everything based on your weight measurements for ingredients. But I only have gluten-free flour so I used my own GF flour mix. Also I added regular Greek yogurt (dairy) to my almond dairy-free yogurt to reach a total of 230 grams for the yogurt as I did not have enough non-dairy yogurt. Other than that I sub real cow milk but with the same weight. The result was a very very thick bread dough like batter. I baked it anyway and it turned out more like muffins than cupcakes. The inside was tender with good flavor though. It did not rise as much as those in your photos though. So I am thinking it’s probably better to follow everything exactly as in your recipe in order to get the same result. Since I only bake gluten-free, I guess I would have to go get a pack of the same brand in order to yield the same result? Thanks.

  103. Rachel says:

    Hi Katie! I made these cupcakes yesterday with the intent of bringing them to a party. However, they turned out very gummy and also didn’t rise very much. I used white flour, Stonyfield Organic plain yogurt, a regular egg (subtracting 3 tbsp of Skim Plus milk), Splenda for the extra 2 tbsp of sweetener (I used granulated sugar for the first 4 tbsp), and canola oil. Aside from the gummy consistency and lack of a rise, the oil was very much present in the taste of the cupcake. Could this be because of the ingredients I used? I am going to try making these again because they were very easy to make and they are much healthier than other cupcake recipes, but maybe next time I will omit the oil or otherwise use very little. On another note, thank you so much for putting so much effort into all of your recipes! I am always excited to receive an email notification from your blog 😀

    1. Unfortunately, I have never tried the recipe with a real egg so I really don’t know how it would turn out :-(

  104. Rachel says:

    Looks great! Would almond or coconut flour work as well?

  105. Jen says:

    Is the flax necessary for the recipe to be successful? I’m not a flax fan & I’m NOT vegan…lol. Should I use an egg???

    1. Sorry, I really don’t know because I’ve never tried.

    2. Christina R says:

      You can use a chia egg. Just use 1 tbsp chia instead of 1 tbsp flax. I did that, and the cupcakes turned out nicely. 😉

      1. Christina R says:

        Sorry, just noticed this comment was from over a year ago. Whoops…

  106. Carolyn says:

    I made these using 1 1/4 cup soy milk instead of 1 cup of yogurt and 1/4 cup of milk. I didn’t have yogurt and I needed to quickly make some cupcakes for a birthday party my girls were attending (they’re allergic so I provide allergen-free cupcakes for them). They turned out perfectly! Yum!

  107. Lena says:

    Hello Katie! I made them three times (a little bit adapted from your recipe) now, a simple vanilla version, coloured and glazed sylvester muffins and today, ultra lemon muffins! I swear, they were so good I already ate three of them. Now there’s only five left, and I bet it’ll be three when my father comes home…

    I used low-fat margarine in place of the oil and they didn’t come out gummy. I also glazed them with powdered sugar and lemon icing.

  108. Sara says:

    I just made these- only I didn’t have any yogurt, so I substituted with applesauce. It came out like an apple-vanilla-muffin type thing. haha. Still good, though.

  109. Cindy says:

    I just made these Wednesday. I did them in mini-cupcake papers, for my daughter’s preschool Valentine’s party. Mine fell pretty badly, so am not sure if I didn’t bake them long enough, or what happened. Two things I did differently (other than size) is that I added the ground flaxseed directly to my mixer bowl, rather than using 2-3 different bowls, AND I used homemade yogurt (which isn’t quite as thick as store-bought).

    Do you think one or both of those things might have caused mine to fall? I did bake them approx 15 min.

  110. Kayla says:

    Around how many calories are these?

  111. zuleyka says:

    im so in love with your recipes and such a fan
    i honestly wish you had an iphone app id carry you everywhere;
    love it (:

    also let me just say these cups are amazinng; and because im pregnant im baking every 2 days!

  112. Cali says:

    Hey! I was planning to make some of these for tommorrow and was wondering if it would still turn out O.K. if i didn’t use yougurt. :)

  113. ellena says:

    could i use greek yoghurt? It’s all i have!

  114. S says:

    Tried this recipe yesterday and loved it!

  115. Jessica Jensen says:

    I am going to try this recipe for some Easter cupcakes but I am confused. There is no water listed in the recipe but in the nutritional info it has instructions to use water/ flax instead of an egg…. Do I need to mix 3 tbsof water with ten flax or not? Thanks.

  116. Anonymous says:

    How do you store your cupcakes? These and the chocalate version? I am making for my sons fifth birthday party this weekend. Thanks!! Cant wait!!

    1. Chocolate Covered Katie says:

      Fridge after a day. They can also be frozen! :)

  117. Kendra says:

    Didn’t work very well =( I tried making them and followed the recipe but added an egg… And they sunk in the middle.

    Too bad!! I was really excited to try and make a nice healthy vanilla cupcake =(

    1. Chocolate Covered Katie says:

      If you added an egg, you didn’t follow the recipe :(.

      1. Kendra says:

        But didn’t other people say they used an egg?

  118. Bronte says:

    What would you recommend to substitute for yogurt/soy yogurt? I need to make these for a party and don’t have either. Thanks

  119. Ciera says:

    Lemon cake!!!!

  120. Safiyya says:

    Hey Katie!! Will try this recipe now!!

    I was wondering how you get that glazy / glossy look on the cupcakes… Mine never come out glossy… Do you add a separate glaze to the top or what xD

  121. precious says:

    this is amazing , my teacher said I need to work out how many g are in a cupcake and this helped me.
    THANK YOU !!!!

  122. Aileen says:

    my cupcakes cake out SUPER GOOEY. I did a few changes. please help me adjust the I am trying to fix it :/ I have a super thick fudge like consistency batter.
    Heres what I did:
    I used plain greek yogurt instead of yogurt
    half apple sauce and half coconut oil. My cupcakes are gooey but fine all around on the outside

  123. Michelle says:

    Is there a substitute for the yogurt?

  124. Rose says:

    I’m actually making them right now, and i’ve mixed in the flour and yogurt mix, and it still looks kind of yogurt-y…. i’m scared they won’t turn out perfect for tonight’s dinner :/

  125. healthy homemaker says:

    Is it just me or does the ingredient list simply say 1 Tbsp ground flax, and nowhere am I reading that it calls for “an egg/chia egg/flax egg”, nor is this step listed in the instructions.
    what am I missing?

  126. Katy says:

    Hello! What is a subsitute for the ground flaxmeal?

    1. Ground chia would work, or energ egg replacer powder will also work.

  127. Val says:

    Can I just use 1 egg instead of the ener g powder or ground flaxmeal? Thank you!

    1. Mackenzie says:

      You can sub the oil with applesauce! Works perfectly in all white/yellow cake and muffin recipes I’ve used. No gummy texture :)

    2. Jennie says:

      Those vanilla cupcakes look awesome. I have a question, what is ener g powder? Would that be an egg replacer?

      1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:


  128. Hi Kate! I just ADORE your blog. I was inspired by your recipe to create a banana version for my son’s birthday party. They were a hit! I would have preferred to use a sugar substitute, but I didn’t want to freak my guests out! Do you know if using raw honey in this recipe makes it sweet “enough?” Thanks for being you :)

  129. Bianca says:

    It’s decided: I am going to make these tomorrow with a vanilla bean. It’s going to be my first time using the actual bean ($$$ much?) and not just vanilla extract, which got me super excited to see those little black specks in the cupcakes. My family will think I’m nuts if I tell them how much I’m longing/dreaming to make these.

    Anyway, this seems like a stupid question, but do you mix the flax with 3T water and leave it in the fridge for a while, like in the nutritional info? Or do you add the flax to the wet ingredients directly without any added water, as stated in the recipe?This has been troubling me for quite a while. Thanks for taking the time to read my absurdly long comment! (I could have gone on and on… As my English teacher once put it, I have “a tendency to over-elaborate.” I call it my “creative outlet”. 😀

    1. Add directly to the liquid ingedients.

  130. Marfigs says:

    Hallo! Just to let you know I tried these and they were so easy and delightful! Thanks so much for all these low-sugar, high-cheer recipes 😀 My diabetic FIL especially enjoyed these as a special treat :)

  131. Skylar Moore says:

    Hey Katie!

    When I made these, they still turned out very dense and flat- I used 3 gbps coconut oil, and I just can’t figure out why they turned out this way…any ideas? I used spelt flour, 1 gbps flax meal…i used just regular plain greek yogurt instead- could that be why? thanks so much:)

    1. Mackenzie says:

      Just me, but it sounds like it needs an egg to make it fluffy! or check the baking soda/powder amount and play around with that.

  132. Pernille says:

    These taste really good, though the vanilla taste is a little weak, but that could be my vanilla-extract, it’s not pure.
    But even though if it tasted more of vanilla, I think it would be nice with some more taste, maybe a little orange or lemon in it.
    I topped the Cupcakes with your chocolate-fondue thingy, really added some good things to it!

  133. Thalita says:

    Hello Katie, how are you?
    I made this recipe, and it was very delicious, but I had a problem: the dough stuck to the muffin tins. Here in Brazil the muffin tins are paper, and do not know if that was the reason. I tried to do it again with 1 more tablespoon of oil, but the muffin tins was greasy on the outside, and the dough stuck in the same way …

    Do you have any suggestions to help me solve this?

    Thank you,

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Use an aluminum muffin tin, and grease the tins instead of using liners. Will work great!

  134. Kelly says:


    I see you using stevia a lot. Can I use Truvia instead?
    Or Is stevia more natural?
    And Can I use something else to replace xylol?
    Maybe agave?

  135. Judith says:

    The skinny vainilla and the chocolate cupcakes are great! My family love them…. 😉

  136. Emma says:

    Hey Katie!
    I have a question that has SERIOUSLY been bothering me – and i have no idea why but you’re the only one who can answer this! When you say, regarding your recipes, “if you omit the oil, baked good will be gummy” – what does that mean???
    How gummy? I’ve just had so many failure recipes im not sure if its because of lack of oil or too much flour or what! ahhh….helpppppp!

  137. Margareth says:

    Hey Katie, I can see that you use spelt flour, or gf flour, but can I replace them for almond meal, or oats?

  138. Diana says:

    I like the texture, but I think the cupcakes just weren’t sweet enough. If I make these again, I will probably add more sweetener. They were a bit sweeter by day two, but not quite as flavorful as I would’ve liked.