By Wendy Stoltz / Last Modified On January 22, 2023
These Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes are dairy-free, simple to make, and lend a bakery style texture and a vanilla bean finish.
You can bake up a batch of these perfect homemade gluten-free vanilla cupcakes in no-time.
If you like these Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes, you might also like my Gluten-Free Chocolate Cupcakes.
They are simple to make and bursting with chocolate flavor. I've also recently updated the photos for my Gluten-Free Lemon Cupcakes. If you're a lemon fan, you're going to love them.
For more cupcakes and desserts please visit my Gluten-Free Desserts.
Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes
These are seriously the most incredible, better-than-bakery style Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes! They've been shared thousands of times and people come back weekly to tell me how amazing they are.
I've been making these gluten-free cupcakes for years and this is the third time I have redone the photos.
I really want you guys to see how lovely they are and be excited about how amazing they taste. Just read the comments below. You will fall in love with these cupcakes.
Here's an old photo that I took of these gluten-free cupcakes. You can see how perfect the texture is.
Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcake Recipe
I use vanilla bean paste these days, but you can easily use Rodell's vanilla extract. Rodelle Vanilla Paste is my newest favorite item to bake and cook with and that's why I use it in my vanilla cupcakes.
Now that I've tried it, I may never go back to extract again. It has such a deep, rich flavor and it's never too much.
I do love Rodelle's Vanilla Extract, but the paste is dreamy, especially in these Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes.
When I first developed this gluten-free cupcake recipe, I used vanilla extract, so please don't think that you have to use vanilla bean paste.
Extract lends a lovely flavor too. You are going to love it in these gluten-free vanilla cupcakes.
I have been working on perfecting my gluten-free vanilla cupcake recipe since 2010. It's not that it's a complicated recipe or anything.
I usually work on new recipes, not improving old ones.
My old gluten-free cupcake recipe was fine but I wanted a better texture. I wanted it to be fluffy and crumbly at the same time.
I made these Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes a couple of times in January for one of my daughters birthday's.
Finally the last time I made them I found the right amount of ingredients to get the exact flavor and texture that I had been dreaming about.
From frosting to cake, they are now perfect. They're buttery (even though dairy-free), tender, crumbly, and have the perfect amount of vanilla.
And guess what? These gluten-free vanilla cupcakes only cost about $5 to make a dozen of them! Can you imagine what you'd pay at a bakery for these? They are easy and you can make them yourself.
Do you love whipping up delicious desserts in the kitchen, but want to improve your skills? Take this Raw Vegan Desserts Course to become a gluten-free, dairy-free dessert pro!
Working with Gluten-Free Flours
When working with or measuring gluten-free flour, spoon the flour into the measuring cup and level. Do not scoop your measuring cup into the gluten-free flour.
The best method really is to weigh the gluten-free flour but I don't have the ingredient weights for all my recipes yet.
How to make gluten-free cupcakes
There are a couple of tips and tricks to getting the right texture with gluten-free cupcakes.
First, you have to follow the recipe. So many people comment on recipe posts saying that they made a ton of substitutions and the recipe didn’t turn out.
Other than the dairy substitute, I haven’t tried other substitutes in this recipe. If you use substitutions, you are doing so at your own risk.
Follow more Dairy Free Gluten Free Recipes.
Second, you want to mix at the right time and not over-mix.
Why did my cupcakes explode?
First off, you may have overfilled the cupcake wells. Never fill more then ¾ of the way full, and it’s best to stick to around ⅔’s of the way full. I use a ¼ measuring cup to fill mine.
Another reason could be that you added too much leavening agent, or that you are at higher elevation.
Baking powder tends to work twice as hard at higher elevations. Consider cutting your baking powder in half if you are at a higher elevation.
All those tips are relevant to most cupcake recipes, not just these Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes.
Why did my cupcakes sink?
There are several reason why cupcakes sink, one is from over beating the batter and adding too much air. Also, cupcakes often will sink when there is too much moisture.
This is more common in humid climates where added moisture can collect naturally in ingredients such as flour.
When this occurs, cupcakes may rise rapidly and then fall during baking. In higher elevations, the leavening agent works twice as hard and may cause the batter to rise rapidly and sink before it's had a chance to set up.
Looing for an extra special treat? Use these cupcakes to make birthday cake ice cream.
Did you make these gluten-free vanilla cupcakes? Stop back by and let me know what you thought of this gluten-free vanilla cupcake recipe.
Gluten-Free Vanilla Bean Cupcakes
These Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcakes are dairy-free, simple to make, and lend a bakery style texture and a vanilla bean finish.
For the cupcakes:
- ½ cup (4 oz.) vegetable oil (or oil of choice)
- ¾ cup (160g.) granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 ¼ cups (180g.) all purpose gluten-free flour blend (I used Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 ¾ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ cup (4 oz.) dairy-free milk (or dairy milk)
- [2 teaspoons gluten free vanilla extract (or vanilla bean paste)
For the frosting:
- ½ cup (4 oz.) dairy-free butter (or dairy butter), room temperature
- 1 teaspoon gluten free vanilla extract
- 3 cups (360g.) powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons dairy-free milk (or dairy milk)
- For the cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Position rack in center of oven. Line cupcake pan with paper liners; set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl combine oil and sugar.
- Add eggs and beat with an electric mixer at medium speed for one minute. Add flour, salt, baking powder, dairy-free milk, and vanilla extract (or paste); beat at medium speed for one minute.
- Spoon batter evenly into cupcake liners. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until the centers springs back when touched and cupcakes are very lightly browned.
- Let cool in the pan on rack for five minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan onto rack and cool completely before frosting.
- For the frosting: In a medium mixing bowl, beat together dairy-free butter and vanilla paste until smooth and creamy.
- Gradually add powdered sugar, one cup at a time, beating well. Alternate one cup of powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon of dairy-free milk until all ingredients are blended.
- Beat in additional dairy-free milk if needed to obtain desired constancy.
- Frost and enjoy!
- You can use regular milk and butter in this recipe if you don't need to eat dairy-free.
- When working with or measuring gluten-free flour, spoon the flour into the measuring cup and level. Do not scoop your measuring cup into the gluten-free flour. The best method really is to weight it but I don't have the ingredient weights for all my recipes yet.
- This recipe makes 12 standard sized cupcakes. You can double the recipe to make 24.
- To Store: These cupcakes can be stored in a covered container at room temperature for up to 3 days. You can also store them in the fridge if you prefer, but you'll want to let them come to room temperature so that the frosting softens before serving.
Serving Size:1 cupcake w/frosting
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 73Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 33mgSodium: 66mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 0gSugar: 2gProtein: 3g
This nutrition info is based on the exact ingredients and brands that I used a the time. It may not be 100% accurate. Please check your ingredients nutrition labels.
Hi! I'm baking these for my friend's daughter's bday next weekend. I'll be out of town so I was thinking baking Wednesday night and frosting them Thursday morning. The party is on Saturday. Can I keep them in the fridge in the mini cupcake plastic containers that can be sealed? Thanks.
Gluten-free cupcakes last 5 days in the refrigerator. I would seal them up nicely so they don't dry out. Alternatively, you can bake, let them cool and then freeze them. Take them out on the day and frost them.
Perfect! TYSM for replying =)
I’ve made these today and they’re AMAZING. Can I just ask as couldn’t find it in your blog, what’s the reason you use oil and not butter in the cake mix?
Hi Lucy. Oil makes the cupcakes moist and is far more reliable to use. Oil remains liquid at room temperature while butter solidifies.
Hello! Can this mix be made into a small cake, perhaps in a 8-9” pan? Just wondering if anyone has tried that instead of individual cupcakes. I absolutely LOVE this recipe, it’s my go-to for cupcakes! 🙂 thank you!
With a few modifications and adjustments, you can adapt this recipe. You need to adjust the baking time, you may need to add more liquid to the batter to make it pourable, or you may need to adjust the leavening agents to ensure that the cake rises properly. I, unfortunately, have not tested it, but I have given you advice if you decide to try it. Let us know. Alternatively, try this cake https://www.glutenfreepalate.com/easy-gluten-free-vanilla-cake it is also good!
Do you think it will be possible to add a filling, like strawberry preserves?
Definitely, sounds good!
I want to use this recipe for a bake-off at work, however I'm from the UK and don't have the flour you've listed. I do have a gluten free blend (Rice Flour, Potato Starch, Maize Flour) do I need to add xanthan gum? Or make any other adjustments to the recipe?
You can buy the flour on Amazon if you like. If the flour blend doesn't have added xanthan then yes, you need to add it in. I have not tested the recipe with that type of flour. I would suggest you do a trial run and let us know.
Has this recipe been tried with King Arthur measure for measure?
I haven't, I used Bob's Red Mill. It should however work.
Hey! Could I use an egg substitute for this recipe for egg allergies?
I have not used an egg replacer. Give it a try and let us know.
Holy crap, these are the best gluten free anything I’ve had so far. To get 12 gluten free cupcakes in my city from a bakery is $70 and to be honest they’re still subpar. This recipe BLOWS THEM OUT OF THE WATER. My god, great job. I’m not even a great baker and these came out AMAZING. 10 stars. Can t wait to make more for my birthday in 3 weeks!
Thanks Katie, so glad you really enjoyed these.
Hi, I made these but noticed the flour stated 1 1/4 cup flour (180g) but my scale measured 180g at 1 cup of the Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 flour. Is that the flour you used too?
Hi Teresa, yes I used 1 to 1 flour and it is 180g. How did you measure out the flour?
I made these for my birthday and they came out great! I really liked them a lot. So did other family members who don’t need to eat gluten free. I’m wondering if they freeze well. If so, how do you recommend freezing them and how long will they keep in the freezer? Thanks!
You can bake them, let them cool and then freeze them. Take them out on the day and frost them.
I would love to use this as a base for other flavors. Is that possible? My son, a culinary student has a vanilla cupcake with rum and orange zest that was amazing, I would like to know if that would be possible?
It should be possible but would just require recipe testing as different ingredients cause different reactions.
I would like to make these as a white cupcake. How many egg whites should I use instead of the whole eggs?
I have not tested these with egg whites only. All other ingredients would need to be adjusted to make them white cupcakes.
I made these cupcakes today but they ended up coming out extremely dense when cooked and the dough was extremely sticky while mixing. What did I do wrong?
How did you measure out your gf flour?
I'm going to attempt using JustEgg and plant cream in place of milk since we have to be completely vegan and gluten free. I will let you know how they turn out!
Please do Ellen!
These are AMAZING!! I Have made them twice now and everyone loved them !! It’s such a struggle to get your sweet fix being gluten intolerant! These definitely hit the spot !! I am wondering if you could add strawberries to the icing or mix to do a strawberry flavor ?? Has anyone tried this yet ?
I would suggest you make this recipe https://www.glutenfreepalate.com/gluten-free-strawberry-lemonade-cupcakes/
So yummy!! Best gluten free vanilla cupcake recipe I’ve ever tried
2 questions- What milk would you recommend for dairy free? I’ve found that almond milk ruins the texture. Also can this be made into a cake? Thanks!
1. Perhaps try soy milk.
2. You can make this into a cake but would need to bake it for longer.
I use oatly the light blue box!
based on the sheer number of reviews I came in skeptical that they could be THAT good until that first bite hit my mouth. These are literally the best cupcakes I have ever had. Also... I used powdered monkfruit as a replacement for the powdered sugar in the frosting and it was absolutely delicious. (expensive tho ;-D) Just wow. Can't wait to try the lemon and chocolate. Also, I used safflower oil and Chobani extra creamy oat milk. I didn't see the xanthum gum in my version of Red Mills GF flower so I added just shy of a 1/2 teaspoon. Accidentally spilled too much vanilla in there giving it an extra punch of flavor. Thank you for this mouth watering experience.
I am so glad you took the chance and loved the recipe. It is a keeper.
These are fantastic!!!! I made for my Brother in law for his birthday and all of us that tasted them were so surprised at how good they are. They really are the best GF thing I've tasted. My sister claimed best tasting cupcake she's ever had and I've made so many! I did use dairy In the frosting but stuck to oat milk in the cupcake itself. This will be my go to and I almost want to try with a cake flour just to see how it would come out. I used targets GF flour which isn't bad at all and a quarter of the price of other GF flours. Thanks for a great recipe!
Thanks so much for coming back and leaving a review. I am so glad it is the best-tasting cupcakes. We like to think so too!
Thanks so much for this recipe!!!. I am a home baker and sell at a local farmer's market. Last weekend alone I had 4 customers ask for gluten free cupcakes. I made them yesterday and they were the first thing to sell out today. My chef friend liked them better than the reg cupcakes. I used a light lemon buttercream than complimented them perfectly. I guess gluten free will become one of my brands now. Next.... chocolate! Thanks again!
I am so pleased they have worked for your customers. Thanks for sharing your success!
I just baked these cupcakes using the recommended Bob mills 1:1 gluten flour. I weighed everything out and they are the best tasting gf cupcakes I have made. I did add raspberry jam into the middle. But as I was scooping the middle out, I found the cupcakes a little too crumbly and were falling apart too easily. Did I maybe under bake them? They were golden brown on top. Thanks for an amazing recipe. This is a keeper. Now that I've been diagnosed with celiac disease, gluten free is my only option.
Thanks for commenting; I am so glad you enjoyed the taste. It could be due to overmixing, or perhaps the liquid added may not have been enough - check you added enough according to the recipe. Also, check your temperature and baking time next time. I hope this helps.
I bake very often, always trying new recipes, and I've never felt compelled to comment...until this recipe. If you are reading this: MAKE THESE! These cupcakes are incredible, you would never know they are gluten and dairy free. Thank you so much for sharing a recipe I will now always use.
Your kind words mean a lot to us, Natalia! Thank you for trying our recipe.
These are the BEST gf cupcakes I've made ever! I added freeze dried strawberries and they turned out amazing. The texture is what I miss about regular flour and these gave the springy, fluffy texture I've been missing! I did use king Arthur's gf flour though, since it is what I had.
I'm so happy you tried our recipe and liked it, IC! Thank you for sharing your feedback.