Chai Spiced Cupcakes + Maple Whipped Coconut Cream Frosting {vegan}

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Little spiced cakes, made with spelt flour and coconut sugar rather than their more processed counterparts. Fluffy, light and breathing Autumn with their chai infused almond milk, snowy maple-licked cloud of whipped coconut cream and scattering of cinnamon.

I’m going back to my roots. Pre-vegan, I relied mainly upon spelt, rye, barley and gluten-free flours rather than wheat for baking. I used coconut sugar, maple, dates and fruit to sweeten. When I went vegan though, it was already incredibly difficult for me to get my head around all of the substitutes for vegan baking, to understand the chemistry of it, the basics. Let alone also working out how to do this in combination with less refined flours and sugars.

So I used the easier, refined flours and sugars to help me find my bearings. They were my control. Flax, chickpea flour, vinegar and baking powder, coconut and almond milk, olive and coconut oil. All of these things, along with others, were my experiments. But now, now I feel confident enough in the vegan baking world to branch back into the less refined flours and sugars.

5 from 1 vote

Chai Spiced Cupcakes + Maple Whipped Coconut Cream Frosting {vegan}

vegan, egg‐free, dairy‐free, nut free option, soy‐free
Little spiced cakes, made with spelt flour and coconut sugar rather than their more processed counterparts. Fluffy, light and autumnal with their chai infused almond milk, snowy maple‐licked cloud of whipped coconut cream and scattering of cinnamon.
Servings 12

Ingredients

wet

  • 1 1/4 cup almond milk*
  • 2 tsp loose leaf black tea leaves
  • 2 green cardamom pods crushed
  • 3 black peppercorns
  • small pinch of fennel seeds
  • 1 stick ceylon cinnamon
  • 1 clove
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

dry

  • 1 1/2 cup white spelt flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground cardamom or the seeds of 1 cardamom pod ground to a powder in a mortar & pestle
  • little grating of fresh nutmeg
  • pinch ground ginger

frosting

  • 2 cans coconut milk or cream refrigerated for at least 1–2 days
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch fine sea salt
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • A little ground cinnamon for sprinkling

Instructions

cupcakes

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C / 350°F and line a standard 12 cup cupcake tray with liners.
  • Place the almond milk, black tea and spices in a small saucepan, heat over low‐medium heat until very hot and steamy (don't allow the mix to boil). Remove the pan from the heat and allow to steep for 10 minutes, then strain the milk through a fine mesh sieve into a jug. Discard the spices.
  • Give the saucepan you used to infuse the milk a rinse, then add the coconut oil and melt over low heat. Remove from the heat and whisk in the coconut sugar and vanilla extract until smooth. Now whisk in the apple cider vinegar and chai‐almond milk. Whisk the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Pour the wet mix over the dry mix and fold or gently whisk to combine. Only mix until the dry ingredients are just incorporated and there are no large lumps, be gentle.
  • Divide the batter between the cupcake liners, filling them until about 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 13–15 minutes on the middle shelf of the oven, until risen, lightly golden brown and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove the tray from the oven and allow the cakes to cool in the tin for 5 minutes. Remove the cupcakes carefully to a wire rack to cool completely.

frosting

  • Scoop the thick creamy bit off the top of the chilled coconut milk cans and place in a large mixing bowl (save the coconut water left in the tin for smoothies etc.). Add the vanilla, salt and maple and whisk with a hand‐held whisk until thick and fluffy. If it is not firm enough to frost with, just place in a sealed container in the fridge to chill and firm up.
  • Frost the cupcakes generously (you may have some frosting left over) and sprinkle the tops with a little ground cinnamon. Serve! Best eaten on the day of making.*

Vegan Chai Spiced Cupcakes + Maple Whipped Coconut Cream Frosting | The Floured Kitchen

Sometimes these wheat flour and cane sugary things are well worth it. The rest of the time though, it’s the unrefined that I crave. It’s not even about being ‘good’, or ‘healthy’… things made with less refined ingredients just taste amazing, and leave me feeling wonderful and content rather than sick afterwards. A white flour and sugar filled treat is something I long for occasionally. A flavour-filled, hearty, just sweet enough, yet still-boasting-health-benefits baked good or dessert is something I want every other day.

A hearty muffin or stack of pancakes with fruit to start the day off right. A whole-grain packed piece of sourdough to eat with my lunchtime soup. A bubbling fruit pie with a coconut oil crust made of rye and spelt and sweetened with coconut sugar, perhaps scattered with a little demerera for a weekend dessert. And cupcakes to share with friends, light and fluffy, yet filling and comforting. And, most importantly, packed full to the brim with flavour.

Vegan Chai Spiced Cupcakes + Maple Whipped Coconut Cream Frosting | The Floured Kitchen

Vegan Chai Spiced Cupcakes + Maple Whipped Coconut Cream Frosting | The Floured Kitchen

These little cupcakes are fluffy and light, yet still pleasingly filling. What I mean to say is – they have substance. I’ve used a stoneground white spelt here, not wholemeal spelt, as wholemeal would result in too dense of a cupcake, and they are still cupcakes after all! Cupcakes require a certain lightness, or else they may as well be called muffins.

The cupcake batter gets its spice hit from two places – an array of whole spices and black tea are steeped in the almond milk, and a few key chai spices are added to the cupcake batter in their powdered form. An extra sprinkling of cinnamon on the top rounds them off nicely. And looks pretty! The cloud of whipped coconut cream frosting is sweetened lightly with a dark maple syrup and is a beautifully light accompaniment to the cakes.

These are a joy to make and eat! If it’s warm where you are, or if your frosting is not staying thick at room temperature (mine holds up extremely well, but different brands of coconut milk may vary in their stability), just keep the frosting in the fridge and the cakes at room temperature, then frost when you are ready to eat (the cakes will dry out in the fridge).

If you make these take a photo and tag me on insta @theflouredkitchen #theflouredkitchen so I can see! And leave a comment 🙂 It would make my day!

p.s.  a few lists…

Previous spiced things for cosy Autumn days: 

Swedish Cardamom + Cinnamon Buns

Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls with Blueberries + Orange Glaze 

Hazelnut Butter Crêpes + Maple Cinnamon Roasted Apples

Salted Chocolate Pecan + Pumpkin Babkallah

Things to make: 

Gluten Free, Vegan Apple Tart with a Lemon, Gin & Thyme Glaze, Mademoiselle Poirot

Vegan Broccoli and Cheese Soup, Oh She Glows

Vegan Skillet Lasagne with Homemade Almond Ricotta, The First Mess

Roasted Poblano & Jackfruit Tacos with Adobo Cream Sauce, Hot For Food

Latest cookbook obsessions: 

Kale & Caramel: Recipes for Body, Heart, and Table, by Lily Diamond of Kale & Caramel

Green Kitchen at Home: Quick and Healthy Vegetarian Food for Every Day, by David and Luise of Green Kitchen Stories

Beautifully Real Food: Guilt-Free, Meat-Free Recipes to Indulge in, by Sam Murphy of So Beautifully Real 

Naturally Nourished: Healthy, Delicious Meals Made with Everyday Ingredients, by Sarah Britton of My New Roots

Acquacotta: Recipes and Stories from Tuscany’s Secret Silver Coast, by Emiko Davies 

On my bookshelf, all the old school crime fiction!:

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, Agatha Christie

And Then There Were None, Agatha Christie

The Big Sleep, Raymond Chandler

The Mistletoe Murder: And Other Stories, P.D. James

Vegan Chai Spiced Cupcakes + Maple Whipped Coconut Cream Frosting | The Floured Kitchen

Join the Conversation

  1. 5 stars
    I love the photo of your cupcakes, it makes me curious to try to bake it 🙂

    1. Thank you Gula! If you end up trying them out let me know how they go 🙂

  2. Wow, these look absolutely incredible! I’m loving the idea of coconut whipped cream, especially with the maple syrup in it. Loving your creativity, and looking forward to seeing the gradual changes in your blog!

    1. Thank you so much Alexa! The coconut cream frosting is definitely a favourite of mine. Always look forward to your lovely comments 🙂 x

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