The Best Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes

So here it is. This is my recipe for the most perfect, bestest in the westest, (and eastest) vegan cupcake… Strike that. This is my idea of the most perfect cupcake. Period. Vegan or not, this is a damn good cupcake. When I served these to a group of strangers, one girl declared that it was the best cupcake she had ever eaten… and then I told her it was vegan. Surprised? Grin.


I came up with this recipe after doing a Vegan Vanilla Cupcake Off where I compared the 3 top vegan cupcake recipes to each other to determine which one was the winner.  The results were that there were no clear winners, so I had to do the only logical thing I could think of.  Make batch after batch of cupcakes, until I made my own winner. This recipe is everything I look for in a cupcake, light fluffy, sweet-vanilla deliciousness, simple to make, and even simpler to eat.

I guarantee… ooo risky, but I’m gonna do it, I GUARANTEE that if you make these cupcakes, that they not only will be devoured, but not a single soul will know they are vegan without being told so.


Preheat your oven for 350 F (180C). Line a cupcake pan with 12 paper liners, or lightly grease the pan.

In a big bowl, whisk the dry ingredients together.


In another bowl, mix the wet ingredients together.


Then pour the wet ingredients into the dry and whisk that up. Whisk until the batter just comes together, don’t over mix it or your cupcakes will be sad cakes.


Evenly divide batter among the  liners. Bake 18-20 minutes until the tops are slightly golden.


Like this. Omnomnom.


To make the frosting, mix all the ingredients together with a hand mixer. Wait until the cupcakes are cooled completely before frosting. Use a piping bag, a butter knife or just a plastic bag with a small hole cut in the corner to frost your cakes.


4.7 from 27 reviews
The Best Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 Cupcakes
Dry Ingredients:
  • 1¼ Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • ½ Cup plus ⅓ Cup White Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
Wet Ingredients:
  • ⅔ Cup Unsweetened Almond Milk (or other Non-Dairy Milk)
  • ⅓ Cup Canola Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  • ¼ Cup Non-Hydrogenated Shortening (I used Earth Balance Shortening)
  • ¼ Cup Vegan Margarine (I used Earth Balance)
  • 1½ Cups Powdered Sugar
  • ½ teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  • 2 Tablespoons Unsweetened Almond Milk (or other Non-Dairy Milk)
  • Sprinkles for decoration (optional)
*Makes enough frosting for 12 cupcakes… Unless you are one of those people who like more frosting than cake. (Hey, I don’t judge!). In which case you might want to double the recipe. If you have leftovers you can always freeze it in an airtight container. Thaw in the fridge overnight, or on the counter for a couple of hours before you want to use it.
  1. Preheat your oven for 350 F (180C). Line a cupcake pan with 12 paper liners, or lightly grease the pan.
  2. In a big bowl, whisk the dry ingredients together.
  3. In another bowl, mix the wet ingredients together.
  4. Then pour the wet ingredients into the dry and whisk that up. Whisk until the batter just comes together, don’t over mix it or your cupcakes will be sad cakes.
  5. Evenly divide batter among the liners.
  6. Bake 18-20 minutes until the tops are slightly golden.
  7. To make the frosting, mix all the ingredients together with a hand mixer. Wait until the cupcakes are cooled completely before frosting.
  8. Use a piping bag, a butter knife or just a plastic bag with a small hole cut in the corner to frost your cakes.

Bon Appetgan



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Thank you for the wonderful recipe! Made today 3 batches for daughter’s birthday. For the first one I followed the recipe bit the end result wasn’t perfect. I used sunflower oil and it didn’t taste well and baking soda could be felt in the cupcakes. Then I switched the oil for coconut oil and added lemon juice instead of ACV and the final result was awesome. Had this wonderful vanilla coconut flavour and aroma! They were light and soft! Will try this as a cake on Saturday. Hope all goes well!
So I would say it does matter a lot what kinda ingredients you use, results will vary greatly from it. Especially in vegan baking.

WOWzers, these are THE best!! YUM YUM.

If I double the recipe, how long do I bake for? Twice the amount of time? (new “baker”)

These did not work out for me but I did change the milk to water so maybe that’s the issue. They turned out greasy and wouldn’t rise and the inside stayed raw looking/feeling. I was careful only to mix until lumps were gone, and both dry/wet ingredients were thoroughly mixed prior to being added together.

They tasted very strongly of vinegar so perhaps raw apple cider vinegar is not a good thing to use? It said apple cider or white vinegar, so I assumed that meant apple cider vinegar or white vinegar and not actual apple cider.

Had to toss the entire bunch of greasy vinegar vanilla bites.

Could using water instead of milk have made that big of a difference or was it the raw apple cider vinegar? I assumed it wouldn’t since most of what’s in almond milk actually is just water.

Oh no! It sound like something went horribly awry here. The water may have been the issue, it also sounds like they were undercooked or possibly measured an ingredient wrong… difficult to tell if I am not in the kitchen with you! These cupcakes always work out perfectly every time I have made them (which is many times). So if you ever try them again, I hope they work out better for you next time!

Hello. I’d like to try to make these for vegan friends of mine, but I have a nut allergy and I’d like to be anllergylmond baking to eat them too 😉 Will soya milk work instead of almond milk? Thanks!

Hi! I just tried this recipe and the flavor and texture is amazing. I did run into a small problem though… the cake was very crumbly. Once you removed the wrapper to eat it the cake fell apart making it difficult to eat. I live in a very humid environment and am wondering if reducing the amount of oil help with this? I’m not sure how to fix this, and really want to use this recipe to make my friends daughters birthday cupcakes. Any advise/ help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks so much!

My grocery store carries the parchment liners, but if yours doesn’t a kitchen supply store might. You could also try cutting squares of parchment and just shoving them in the cupcake pan.

**Update** I Just pulled these out of the refrigerator this morning, let them get to room temp, and then peeled off the wrapper… Perfections! No crumbles!

Oh my goodness, these cakes are AWESOME!!

I made them for my friends sons birthday. They were on holiday here and I wanted to do a little something for him but was worried as he is a vegan. I trolled through the Internet looking for a good recipe that had great reviews and found this one. It lived up to and even exceeded the rave reviews. The non vegans enjoyed it as much as her son. Pure awesome-ness! What a hit!

I made these for a baby shower and they turned out perfectly! The icing split but that was my fault. There were lumps of vegetable shortening in the icing so I popped the bowl in the warm oven to try and melt it. Think that’s why it split! But still tasted fine! Just wondering how long they last for iced in a airtight container? Thanks!

So happy you enjoyed them Lauren, and too bad the icing split. Yeah, an oven for the icing it a no go. Next time if it’s lumpy use a mixer to blend. If you don’t have a mixer an immersion blender works well too. To keep the cupcakes, I would keep them covered at room temperature. They should last a few days, but will be the softest and fluffiest on day one. Alternatively, cupcakes and frosting can be frozen separately. Thaw and then frost. Hope that helps!

Oh I did use a beater to try and get the lumps out! Nothing worked. I was in a hurry so that’s why I popped it in the cooling oven. Next time I’ll beat the shortening and vegan spread first before adding the other ingredients! Had the last cupcake last night (4 days later) and it was still tasty! Thanks for replying xx

These turned out amazing. Very yummy and super easy to make. I added fresh blueberries also. I didn’t make the frosting for them as I didn’t have any of the ingredients on hand.

Well I am sad to say that this recipe did not work out for me at all. First, I have to say that I am not vegan, so I guess I didn’t really know what to expect. Second, I live at about 8000 feet elevation, so that may have had some effect on the outcome of the finished product.
I made this recipe twice, back to back. The first time I followed the directions exactly. They sunk in the middle and were considerably greasy, but they tasted pretty good The second time I added a little more flour, hoping to compensate for altitude, and made sure not to over mix. They still sunk, not as bad, but they didn’t taste as good- they had a bitter, baking soda flavor, and they were still quite greasy.
As this was my first attempt at vegan baking I am going to chalk up my failed cupcakes to inexperience, but I don’t think I’ll attempt this recipe again.

Oh no! That’s too bad. I know nothing about cooking at higher elevations so I’m not sure if that is the problem, but these cupcakes work for me every time. Not sure what to recommend! Sorry they didn’t work out for you Emily!

You add 1/2 cup sugar and you add 1/3 cup of sugar. When writing the recipe I just found 3/4 cups of sugar was to little and 1 cup was too much, so that is the in-between measurement. Hope that helps!

Hi! These tasted delicious although they sank in the middle. I used earth balance vegan buttery sticks for the frosting and it was a little runny, so I’ll try putting them in the fridge prior to frosting.
Both toddler and husband declared them yummy. I’ll be making some for her birthday in a few weeks.
I was wondering if this would work for mini cupcakes, too. I plan on making 24 big ones and a batch of minis.

So happy they were declared yummy! The sinking in the middle is likely due to over-beating the batter. If you make them again make sure to mix them until just combined. They will definitely work for mini cupcakes, the cooking time will be much shorter so just keep a close eye on them. Enjoy!

yes yes yes! I agree with every positive comment about these cupcakes. Heaven in the ease of making them, heaven in the eating of them. 🙂 Just happiness.

I made a batch with fresh cut up strawberries in them, and honestly they were extremely delicious. I’ve made these twice in 2 days, and had no problems with sinking in the middle. These are the fluffiest vegan cupcakes I’ve ever made. Thanks.

I’m excited to try this recipe but I was wondering if you could use gluten free flour? My sister is vegan and she also has a gluten allergy and it would be awesome to make them and surprise her for her birthday. Will it work?

Hi Gabrielle,
Gluten free baking is very different than regular baking. I know there are some gluten free all-purpose flour mixes, but I have never tried them in this recipe so I am not sure how well they work. If you give it a try, I would recommend doing a test batch first. Hope that helps!

Well these are just perfect. I made a test batch last night for my daughter’s birthday on Saturday (she has a milk, egg. & almond allergy) and had only planned on making enough for the kids because I didn’t expect them to be so delicious! So I threw them in the freezer & will definitely make another batch before the party. I wanted to say thanks for such a great recipe, so happy my little one doesn’t have to miss out because of her allergies!

These cupcakes turned out great!! I did mini cupcakes. I just floured my pan and shortened the cooking time to 10-13 mins.

Just not sure about the frosting. I followed the recipe exactly, however mine was very thin. Tasted great, just not thick enough. Any suggestions?

So happy the cupcakes turned out! For the frosting, was it a very hot day? If the vegan butter and shortening start melting it will be very thin for sure. The solution on a hot day is to chill all of the tools you are using, then keep the frosting in the fridge until ready to use. Hope that helps!

Last minute Birthday Cupcakes-

Didn’t expect to make these last Sunday BUT i remembered this recipe and made them! OMG they were amazing… I’m vegan but my grown sons are not- as we sat around eating these wonderful light airy cupcakes, my son said ” your not suppose to be eating these” haha yes I can cause they are vegan!!! They could not believe they were vegan! This recipe is one of the best cupcake recipes out there vegan or non vegan. Thanks for sharing

It sounds like your oven temperature could be too high. If the oven is too hot, the cupcakes would raise too quickly and then collapse into themselves. If you think that may be the problem, you could pick up an oven thermometer to help get the temp right. Hope that helps!!

Hi Samantha,
This recipe looks great. I’m just starting to feel my way through dairy free for my son. He’s only 16months old but is already jealous his older sister can have cupcakes. I was wondering if I can freeze these cakes? I don’t think a toddler would get through 12 cupcakes quickly enough. Thanks

Yes, if you freeze them without the frosting they should be fine. You could freeze the frosting separately, thaw, and then apply. Alternatively, you could half the recipe to make just 6 cupcakes 🙂

Oh, yes! Almond Flour was an epic fail! I don’t even know what came out of the oven, but it exploded onto the bottom, and crystallized on the sides I’ll try whole wheat flour next time! It was a super easy recipe.

One more question, the sugar. Do you really need 1/2 and 1/3 cup sugar, or should they be split somehow?

Haha, oh no!!
For the sugar, yes, both. When I wrote the recipe I just didn’t think that 3/4 cup was enough, but 1 cup was too much. I’m picky I know! Haha.

Love this recipe. I made the best cupcakes ever! 😀
Before turning vegan , the cupcakes I used to make had this strong egg smell.Now, It is light, fluffy and fragrant full vanilla cupcakes. Thanks a lot for this recipe.

Great recipe! I dyed my batter, and it turned out great. My advice for some of those whose didn’t turn out: let the wet ingredients sit for about 5 mins before you mix with the dry (the cinegar helps “sour/thicken” the milk). also, do NOT over-mix, and check your oven. I cooked mine at 25 degrees hotter because my oven temp is off.

Great recipe. These truly are the best vanilla cupcakes i have tasted. I shared a link to your recipe with my danish vegan community on Facebook. I hope that was ok 🙂

Hi, Samantha! I made these cupcakes a couple weeks ago for a trial run and they didn’t disappoint!! I was wondering what the conversion would be to bake the batter in a 5″-6″ cake pan? I want to make a 3-4 layer cake for my daughters 1st birthday. What would be your recommendations? Double batter? Thank you:)

Hi Kelly,
So happy you loved them! I would say this recipe would make a one layer 9″ cake, so yes, I think doubling it would get you 3 layers, maybe 4. Sounds like it’s going to be gorgeous! Tag me on instagram or post a photo on my Facebook page 🙂


I have searched and searched for a decent recipe for vegan vanilla cupcakes! Yours is definitely the best I’ve tried.
Just one thing, I found the sponge to be a little oily!! I used pure vegetable oil. the texture was super moist, but did compact when touched. Would it alter the texture too much if I added a little less oil?

Please let me have you thoughts, the recipe is definitely worth it.

PS How do I add a photo?
Love Jean x

Oh yay! So happy you love the cupcakes so much! Too be honest I am not sure how much the recipe would change with a reduction of oil. I know some people replace some oil with apple sauce in baking, but I have never tried it in this recipe. If you give it a try, I would love to hear how it works for you!
You can’t up load a photo on my site, but I would love to see one on my Facebook page, or if you tag me on Instagram. 😀

wow….I was a little concerned because these fell a little in the middle after I took them out of the oven….but omg the taste is to die for. I didn’t frost them, they absolutely don’t need it and I don’t need the extra calories. I am so happy I found this recipe.

The recipe works ! i did make a few changes: sunflower oil, soya milk and self raising flour. The cupcakes were light and fluffy. I made 10 cupcakes.
I didn’t use cup measurements :
200g flour
280g sugar
150ml soya milk
85ml oil

I would advise to use a deep cupcake tray and 2 cupcake cases for support.
I’m sure i mixed the batter in less than a minute. I stopped when it appeared smooth because i did not want to overmix. I didn’t use an electric whisk.

Unfortunately I forgot to add vanilla essence so it is a bit bland.
I made my own buttercream with vitalite dairy free butter and icing sugar.

live in England and my daughter recently became allergic to egg and milk. I’ve struggled to find recipes that worked, they’re usually too dense. But this has to be the best by far! Thank you so much for posting

I used rapseed oil so im not sure if this is why they didnt turn out great they did rise they were fluffy but the smell made me think of fried eggs and the top of the cupcakes didnt look so great. i dont no what conala oil is so o just bought what i found in the shop. Can i substitute the oil for a vegan butter? Thank you

Hmm I don’t think rapeseed oil was the problem here, that should work fine. Vegan butter would be to heavy for this recipe. I really don’t know where the fried egg smell came from! If you wanted to try another oil, any oil that is very light in flavour would work such as vegetable oil. Hope that helps!

Thank you for the reply im trying it now with Vitalite butter melted the butter to see what happens … Lol wish me luck .. Maybe its my sences in quite sensitive to smells but other than that recipe was great

The texture turned out amazing! I didn’t like the aftertaste that the vinegar left so for the second batch I used 2T lemon juice and they turned out much much better tastewise with no compromise to the texture.

Sneaky, this doesn’t allow me to rate it anything other than 5 stars. I got 9 cupcakes with the measurements provided.

Really? There must be a glitch in the recipe software. I just tested it from my end and all appears to be working, can you tell me if you are on mobile or desktop? You should be able to pick however many stars you like!

Thank you 🙂
I have contacted my mobile site team about this, they told me that a few of the other sites they are managing are also experiencing this problem, so they are working on fixing it. I will let you know when the star system is running again 🙂

I haven’t tried it myself, so I can’t know for sure, but I think it might be ok. If you give it a try, let us know how it turns out. 🙂

Hi Mina,
Yes, one batch of this recipe would make enough for one 9″ round, so I would double the recipe. It will probably take longer to bake, so I would keep an eye on it and you will be able to tel when it is cooked when a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Enjoy!

2nd time around and not a flop! yay!
1st time around I used brown sugar, and it wasn’t as sweet. 2nd time around I am using white sugar, seems to have fixed the issue even though the 1st round wasn’t bad.
1st time around I used cup measurements and only got 9 cc; 2nd time around got 12 and I used the g and ml measurements provided in the comments.
I didn’t make the frosting, because in South Africa, vegan margarine is not available. If it is, not readily so. And shortening I have never even heard of.
I am not a champion baker, so I hesitate to alternate recipes, but I would love to try out some healthy alternatives to some of the ingredients. Maybe. One day.
Thanks for the recipe.

Hi Nadya

You can use Wooden Spoon White Margarine or Blossom Lite. I checked the ingredients yesterday. Don’t worry about shortening. I always do marg (only about 2T), icing sugar, vegan milk and vanilla. For chocolate frosting add a little cocoa.


That is true of some brands, but many brands are safe for vegans. Usually you can just check on their website. One of the more common brands of sugar here in Canada is Redpath, and a visit to the Redpath FAQ page shows me that it is indeed safe for vegans.

In South Africa, all white sugar is vegan. And actually this is true for a large part of the world. Using bone char is a very old method as I understand it, but for some reason the US is still clinging to it and many other outdated methods in processing items.
We just need to watch out for sweets made in the US therefore, but our Oreos for instance, are vegan because ours come from the UK, or some other vegan Oreo maker 🙂

Not sure if I was clear on my last question, my main concern is doubling or tripling the apple cider vinegar and the baking soda? Do I triple those ingredients if I want to triple the recipe? Thanks.

how should I store these cupcakes if I want to use them for the next day? Also can I triple the recipe or do I need to make each batch individually? Thanks!

Hi Quyen,
The only concern for tripling the recipe is if your cupcake batter is left sitting around at room temperature for a long time it may fizzle out before the cupcakes are baked. I would try to keep the batches to however many you can fit in your oven at once. You can always have the wet mixture and the dry mixtures ready and waiting, just don’t mix them together until you’re ready to bake. To store them, I would keep them in a cool area (but not the fridge), covered with plastic wrap or something similar. Hope that helps!

Have you tried this recipe with adding something to it, like bananas? Is it still fluffy? How much bananas could I add to flavor it but still remain light and fluffy?

Hi Quyen,
I haven’t added bananas to this recipe, but because bananas are quite wet, I would reduce some to the liquid to make the cupcakes. That said, I haven’t tried this myself, so I can’t predict how it will turn out for you. Enjoy!

I want to make this as a cake for my daughter’s birthday party Friday. So I baked up a test batch yesterday and sent the cupcakes off with my husband this morning. He called me and said that one of his co-workers said it was the best cupcake he’d ever eaten. (And I used to work in a cupcake bakery and brought in cupcakes daily!)

So…it doesn’t get much better than that! 😀

just made these – they taste delicious, but the texture turned out to be very sticky? i don’t know if i did something wrong or they’re supposed to be like that.

same here…they got kinda doughy. what do I need to add more of to make them more fluffy? Cause I think I got the ratio slightly wrong. had to convert the recipie into grams/ml and got conflicting information on the internet.

Hi Franziska,
Yeah, I think switching the recipe from volume measurements to weight measurements (grams) is what didn’t work too well. None of my ingredients are listed by weight, so to try and switch them to that is probably what through off the recipe. If you want to convert the entire recipe to ml, here is a handy chart. Hope that helps!

I made them today and weighed the ingredients after measuring them in american cups.
1 1/4 cup flour is 200g.
1/2 + 1/3 cups sugar is 180g sugar.
2/3 cups soya milk is 150ml.
1/3 cup oil is about 85ml.

They were yummy, rose very well. I butterflied the tops and filled the dip with strawberry jam and vanilla buttercream and topped with the cut-out cake and a strawberry and dusted with icing sugar. Victoria sponge cupcakes 🙂

Thanks for translating the recipe tamlyn! I am sure you aren’t the only one that will find that helpful. So very happy you enjoyed the cupcakes 🙂

My cupcakes also came out sticky. I tried used 1/2 the batter with liners and 1/2 by greasing the pan. I had a hard time getting them out of both the wrapper and the pan. When I set them on a wire rack they stuck a bit as well so I put them on parchment. Handling them for frosting was problematic because they kept sticking to my hands and coming apart. Wah wah. I know I didn’t miss anything. There is a chance I may have added just a drop too much almond milk . . . That’s all I can think of as far as a misstep. I baked them for 18 minutes. Perhaps I should have gone an extra minute or two? They taste good; however I’d like to try again for a not-so-sticky batch, perhaps using the lemon juice as someone else suggested.

Hmmm, I don’t know what’s going on here. My cakes are maybe slightly sticky, but definitely not sticky enough to pull apart in your hands! Are you in a very humid place? Humidity could affect the stickiness. Otherwise it could be a combo of too much liquid and undercooking slightly. The next time you try to make the cupcakes, try removing them from the pan and cooling in a place with lots of fresh air. I am also a big fan of parchment cupcake liners. I hope some of these tips help a bit. Glad you liked the taste of them 🙂

So . . . they only stick to the wrapper when you eat them fresh and hot out of the oven because you just can’t wait to taste their deliciousness. The cupcakes that were allowed to cool came out just fine but they were still a little more fragile than the average cupcake. Yes, I do live in a more humid climate; however, Florida isn’t crazy humid just yet. I will try to be more precise with the milk next time. I may have accidentally gone up to the 3/4 cup mark. I will also cook them an extra minute or two. Other people are getting cupcakes that turned out just fine so it must be something on my end. Fingers crossed!

I loved this recipe! I had some issues with any alterations I made so I keep right to the recipe now. I had no success doubling it. And adding baking powder was a DISASTER for me! Embarrassingly so… I do wish mine were a little lighter (why I tried the baking powder recommendation) but I think that is more my ovens issue than the recipes. Thanks!

So happy you enjoyed the recipe Jessica! You might want to get an oven thermometer, sometimes if the temperature of your oven is a little off it can mess with recipes, especially baking. Enjoy!

Made these yesterday! Yummy! These have great flavor and are so light and fluffy. I didnt have canola so I used sunflower oil and I also made a chocolate buttercream frosting. Delicious. This is my new go to recipe.

Hi!! I just made these and they are amazing!! The icing was perfect when I first made it but now it’s melting some… It might be that my kitchen is warmer because of the oven? Should I just wait it out and see if it hardens on the cupcakes?

Yay! So happy you enjoyed them.
Yes, your kitchen may be just a little warm. You could pop the icing in the fridge for a bit to let it firm up, and I would store the cupcakes in a cool area of your home. So happy you love the cupcakes Michele 😀

Okay so I made a second batch and they were unfortunately just the same as the first ones . The taste is good, but they don’t rise, they sink in the middle, they look very oily, are not fluffy at all, and they stick to the liners. This time I used white vinegar and I added half a teaspoon of baking soda. I am kind of sad right now lol.. the only thing that i can think of that would be logical would be that my baking soda is old, but it expires on 2017!
I would really appreciate any thoughts or tips on what could’ve gone wrong. Thanks!

The same thing happened to me. 35 minutes in the oven and they *still* looked oily on top/bubbly under the surface and were flat in the centre 🙁 I’m kind of disappointed as the recipe seemed to work for everyone else. I used rice milk and vegetable oil, as those were what I had. I feel like that shouldn’t have made a difference, but perhaps that was the problem?

Oh no! That’s such a bummer. I agree that the rice milk and vegetable oil shouldn’t have made much of a difference. I am not sure what the problem is here. Do you have an oven thermometer? Sometimes ovens can be quite off… Just a thought

This is my go to recipe for vegan vanilla cake / cupcakes! Tastes amazing, but every time I’ve made them I add 1 1/2 tsp of baking powder as well because I love how fluffy it makes them. Maybe that could help you!

I made the following mods and it came out really fluffy!

I combined the ACV and almond milk first int heir own bowl and let them curdle a while.

To the dry ingredients I added a heaping 1/4 tbsp baking powder.

When combining i used a beater to fluff up the batter.

I don’t know what went wrong. The cupcakes didn’t rise much and they sunk in the middle. Also, they were super oily and the texture was just awful. The taste was pretty good, though. I used apple cider vinegar and sunflower oil (we can’t get canola oil in my country), and I did open the oven door one time while they were baking, so maybe that’s what ruined them? They where nothing like in your picture. I’ll make them again and tell you if they come out right this time. I’ve got hope for this recipe!

I seriously cannot believe these are vegan, and I made them myself! These cupcakes absolutely have the best texture and taste of any vegan cake I’ve ever made (and I’ve made quite a few). I used coconut sugar in mine (I don’t eat refined sugar) and added in some pomegranate seeds for an extra treat and they came out perfectly! I will definitely be making these again soon.

Can you also use this recipe for a cake—like a 4 tier naked wedding cake? Just increase the recipe? Will the texture hold up?

Hi Claire,
Some people have told me they made this into a cake with success, so I don’t see why not. The cake is very light and fluffy, so I am not sure how well it would stack. (Denser cakes tend to be better for stacking high). I think they cake would take longer to cook all the way through than the cupcakes, so be sure to check that a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean before taking it out of the oven. I would definitely give this a test before hand if you plan on using it for a wedding cake.
If you do, let us know how it turns out!

Highly recommended! I was looking for a vegan alternative because I have no eggs! I know vegan can be delicious so I made these. They’re great! I just put the whole cup of sugar as opposed to the 5/6c. I added a lot more vanilla (I taste my batter and go from there) . I filled my liners 2/3 full because it’s a more liquid batter and I wanted to have the mound on top.

Hi Annie,
Because I felt there was no better way for me to explain the measurement. 1/2 cup plus 1/3 cup equals 5/6 cup. I don’t think most people have that 5/6 measuring cup, so I was trying to make it simpler.

I Googled “vegan vanilla cupcake recipe,” and this was the top result — congrats on that, by the way! I used cane sugar for white sugar, and I mixed in the white vinegar with the unsweetened almond milk and let that mixture sit for a couple minutes before adding the other liquids. I also added some blue gel food coloring to the cupcakes’ centers before baking them (these were for a baby shower) and used homemade vegan chocolate buttercream frosting. I was only able to make 8 or 9 cupcakes for each of my 2 batches; perhaps I put too much batter into my liners. My 1st batch had slightly crispy edges (nothing that good frosting couldn’t save), so I pulled my 2nd batch out sooner. The party guests, who were mostly omnivores, devoured the cupcakes without knowing they were vegan, and I received rave reviews! My vegan friend wanted a copy of the recipe, so I’m glad to have her stamp of approval. I’m definitely curious to try more of your recipes for myself!

Hi Sarah,
So happy you loved the recipe and that everyone at the baby shower devoured them! Haha.
Your cupcakes sound so cute, I wish I could have seen a picture!

I would love to the your favourite person of the day 🙂

I’ve never made vegan vanilla cupcakes but I’ve been searching for a recipe to use for my wedding cupcakes. I have a dairy allergy so I need something yummy for me and my hubby to be 🙂

I’m making cupcakes in a jar as we are travelling an hour out of town to get married and I thought what a great idea to dress up the jar with a pretty sticker on the top and ribbon in our matching colours.

This recipe sounds delicious and the frosting sounds perfect !!! I already use Earth Balance margarine and will look for the shortening as well.

I hope you’ll let me post a pic of the yumminess I create.

All the best,

Haha, you are my favourite person of the day Anj!
That sounds too cute, cupcakes in a jar, love it! Be sure to keep the cupcakes as cool as possible in your travels, they do hold up in heat pretty well, but just in case.
Absolutley, please share pics! You can post them on my Facebook page.
Hope you have a fabulous wedding. 😀

Hi Sam, I’m Nicoletta, the one half of sugarlovespices. Your site is beautiful and your cupcakes are amazing. Although we are not vegan, we cook vegan meals sometimes and I attended a vegan baking course becuse I realy like baking vegan desserts. I am going to try these vanilla cupcakes for sure and I’ll keep coming in!

How do you scoop/measure your flour? I do the whisk/scoop/level method developed by Fran Costigan and it always results in a 4.5 ounce cup of flour which is on the lighter side? When you simply scoop it from the flour bag or container it compacts the flour and results in a heavier cup of flour. There is also the spoon/level method. Thanks! Gonna give these a try but am hoping that they don’t turn out gummy or too wet which is why I asking about how you measure your flour. Sorry for all the questions. Thanks in advance

Hi Erin,
No problem! You can always do a 1/2 batch so you are committing to the whole thing, just to test it out. I just dunk the measuring cup into the flour bag and use my finger to scrape off the top. I’m a fan of keeping it simple! 🙂

Can you provide weight measurement for dry ingredients? I’d like to make these for my daughters birthday coming up but sometimes the way one person measures flour can be different from the way another person measures, with regards to volume. Or how do you measure your flour? I’m gonna try these and maybe cut back on some of the sugar.

Hi Erin,
I don’t actually have a kitchen scale! So unfortunately no, not until I get one anyways. I just use cups like in the recipe.
I can’t guarantee success with cutting the sugar as I have never tried that, but I hope they turn out well for you.

When I try a new recipe that uses cups, I measure it out in cups as instructed then weigh it and make a note. This was 150g flour and 180g sugar.

I made these cupcakes for Easter dessert and they were a big hit. I doubled the frosting and piped it on nice and thick. I added the sugar to the wet ingredients after reading a comment above and they turned out light and fluffy. Probably wasnt necessary but that commenter freaked me out. Thank you for this delicious recipe. I can see myself making these again many times.

Hi Gary,
So happy they turned out for you! I always worry when recipes don’t work out for people, it’s such a bummer. Happy Easter!

The extra 1/3 cup of sugar in the muffin recipe created many problems for me: the muffins collapsed while baking, because the extra sugar made the batter too thin and fragile to support their own weight as they rose. The muffins were granular in texture with crusty, sugary tops. They smelled heavenly, but were cloyingly sweet and had an unpleasant texture.
Sugar is considered a “liquid” ingredient in recipes like these, and I think 1/2 cup is plenty for a 12-muffin recipe.
I will definitely try them again, but minus the extra 1/3 cup of sugar and perhaps a pinch of gluten for added body.

Hmmm I’ve never had any of those problems. Bummer that they didn’t work out for you. I make these all the time and they are always light and fluffy. Sorry they didn’t work out for you Alex! If you try adapting the recipe let us know how it turns out for you.

Hi Summer, yes I do, except it will make the cupcakes a little bit heavier and less fluffy due to the fact that coconut oil hardens at room temperature. If you are ok with that, then go for it! Enjoy!

hi! I was wondering if i can use 1/2 a cup of Earth balance butter instead of 1/4 earth balance butter + 1/4 earth balance shortening 🙂

Hi Gigi,
You can, but the results will be a much softer frosting, that may melt a bit depending on the temperature. Adding the shortening helps stiffen and strengthen the frosting. If you want to go for it anyways, keep your ingredients cold. Make sure to frost the cupcakes only when they are 100% cool, and keep the cupcakes in a cool place once frosted (if you don’t eat them all immediately). Enjoy!

Hi amélie,
I’m really not sure, I haven’t baked with spelt much before, so it’s not something I really know well. If you are looking for a gluten free alternative, I would try an all purpose flour blend.

I tried a regular cake recipe last night, but with substitutions The end result was a cake so bland and dense that I had to throw it away. The logical part of my brain finally clicked into thinking, maybe I should just look up a vegan recipe. All of the other ones I found said they had a “deliciously dense cake” which I didn’t want, I wanted a normal, light fluffy cake. I made these after seeing the good reviews. I’ll be giving them to a large group of omnivores this afternoon, for Valentine’s Day.

That’s wonderful Sydney! Yes, I love dense cakes too, but sometimes that’s just not what you are looking for, especially for a vanilla cupcake in my mind. So glad you found the recipe, I hope everyone loves them. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Hmm…. I haven’t perfected the recipe yet, but I would try adding 1/3 cup cocoa powder to the dry, and adding 1/3 cup of non-dairy milk, or water to the wet. I’m not 100% sure they will be awesome though as I will have to work on the recipe. So no guarantees! But if you try them let me know how they work out.

Hi Samantha
Just discovered your site & baked your vanilla cupcakes. (I’m on a quest to make the ultimate vegan vanilla cake). I thought this was a good recipe but a tad too sweet for me, so I’ll dial back the sugar next time. BTW do you think this recipe could be made gluten free? Didn’t make the icing this go round as I wanted to perfect the cupcake before moving on. Thanks again for a solid cupcake recipe.

Thank you so much JA. I think you should be able to cut back on the sugar without changing the recipe too much. I am not very experienced with gluten free cooking, but I know one of my favourite vegan chefs Chloe Coscarelli will use a gluten free all purpose flour and add 3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum for a batch of cupcakes. I haven’t tried this myself yet, so I don’t know how good well it works out. If you try let me know how it goes.

These are baking now! I’m making these for my cousin’s birthday, she’s not vegan but I am! 🙂 I filled each case 2/3 full, but was only able to make 9 cupcakes! I scraped the bowl as well. Perhaps my 2/3 gauge is a little off. Can’t wait to see how they come out!

Made these today for my wifes Thirtieth birthday. These were super easy and very tasty. I used half the oil and added applesauce to shave a few calories. Thanks for the great recipe and I am bookmarking your page! We fed them to five omnivores and they had no clue they were vegan.

Haha! I love tricking omnivores. It’s ridiculous to me when people think vegan baked good would taste gross… Because I know so many people that like their cupcakes to taste like egg? Don’t think so! So happy you love the cupcakes and that your alterations worked too. Thanks for coming back and leaving your review Drewbie!

These were just requested for our Christmas gathering at both family’s houses! They really did enjoy them! I’m making 6 batches, thanks again!

Hi Jen! Hmmm this should be no problem. I have heard other people have tried this with success. One recipe for these cupcakes (12 cupcakes worth), should make 1 layer of 2″x8″ cake. Make sure you fill the cake pan about half to two thirds full, but not more full than that, so it doesn’t overflow in the oven. The temperature of the oven should be the same but you will probably have to cook it longer, maybe 25 minutes? Just keep an eye on it and you will know its done when a tooth pick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Let me know how it turns out for you. Enjoy! 🙂

Loved the cupcakes. My daughter is the vegan and we made these cupcakes together. She brought them to school and they were a big hit. Thanks!!

Every time I bake these cupcakes the rim around them turns out to be hard, while the rest of the cupcake is perfectly baked. Is there something that I’m doing wrong?

Hmmmm… It may be that your oven runs a little hot, or is extra hot at the top. You could try moving the cupcakes to a lower rack or try reducing the temperature a bit. My cupcakes to get a bit chewy around the edges after a day or two but they should be soft and fluffy when they are fresh. Let me know if that helps!

I was so excited when I came across this recipe! I need bday cupcakes for my little guy with egg allergies. They look great and the ingredients is easy and on hand. When I added my wet to dry there was not enough to make the batter smooth. It was more like dough. I followed exactly… any tips. The final products were flat, hole down the middle but were light and what I could salvage out of the liner was good. Can you confirm the sugar was 1/2 and 1/3 cup! Thank you! Yours look awesome!!

Hi lydia. Oh no! That’s such a bummer. I’m pretty sure the recipe is correct. I have followed my own recipe multiple times (yep I do that) and have heard of others successfully making these cupcakes. It’s sounds like there wasn’t a problem with the sugar quantity but the dry to wet ratio. Could you have perhaps forgot or miss-measured a wet ingredient? Or added too much flour? When you mix the wet and dry the batter should be soft and light. Let me know how it goes. 🙂

hey I find the apple cider vinegar flavour rather overpowering, it takes away from the vanilla flavour even when I cut back on it, is there something else that can be used instead? I imagine it’s to activate the baking soda and help the muffins rise and become fluffy, would it be possible to substitute baking powder which already has an activating agent, or add cream of tartar instead?

Hi Jess!
Huh. I find that the apple cider vinegar flavour cooks right out and you can’t taste it all. Apple cider is usually very mild, and also has health benefits which is why I opt for it, but you could use any vinegar. Try finding one that has the least amount of flavour or try lemon juice. You’re right it’s about the acidity, think volcano experiment from science project days. The reaction makes the cupcakes light and fluffy.

Maybe a citrus juice such as lemon, lime, or orange would give the needed acidity???? It would probably be tasty too!

Yes, absolutely. Apple cider vinegar or white vinegar will work just fine. Just don’t use balsamic…gross! Haha.

Haha. I am currently baking with balsamic vinegar as that’s the only one I have in the house 😉
It’s the vinegar I use for my legendary chocolate cupcakes 😉
I shall let you know how it goes but the batter tasted great hahaha