Two Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes on a wooden board

Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes (Gluten-Free Option)

Light and fluffy lemony cupcakes with a sticky strawberry jam centre topped with whipped vanilla buttercream. These cupcakes are naturally vegan, nut-free and easily gluten-free plus they are easy to make in one bowl.

This late summer sunshine has me craving all the summery bakes and these cupcakes are one from earlier on in the season that finally I am able to share. I have fallen a little bit (a lot) in love with piping buttercream recently so whether it is on top of these lemony cupcakes or onto large layer cakes (or wedding cakes), I love being able to take bakes to the next level with a deliciously sugary and buttery frosting.

Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes

These Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes are:

  • Perfect all year round
  • Light, fluffy and moist
  • Cakey and spongey
  • Packed with lemon flavour
  • Filled with an oozing jammy centre
  • Topped with delicious vanilla buttercream
  • Easy to make in one bowl
  • Naturally vegan and easily gluten-free
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes

There’s not much else to say about these Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes as they are easy to make, reply on simple kitchen staple ingredients and they are so delicious. I first made these for Mother’s Day and they have been requested several times over the summer ever since. You can jump ahead for the recipe card or let’s see what goes into these cupcakes:

  • Plant-based milk: any milk will do here, like oat, almond or coconut.
  • Sunflower oil: or you can use a light olive oil, vegetable oil or melted and cooled coconut oil.
  • Coconut or caster sugar: the coconut sugar will lend a richer colour and flavour to these cakes but caster sugar will work just as well.
  • Lemon juice: I love using lemon juice in baking recipes as it helps to form a vegan buttermilk that binds the batter but here it also works to add a lot of lemon flavour to the cupcake mix. You can use freshly squeezed lemon juice or the kind you find in the baking aisle.
  • Lemon zest: this is where most of the lemon flavour comes from so do not be tempted to skip it.
  • Vanilla essence: just a little for the sweet flavours.
  • Plain or GF plain flour: this keeps the cupcake batter really light and airy. If you are using GF flour, make sure to use a 1:1 baking blend with xantham gum otherwise the mix may not hold up and they may dry out.
  • Baking powder: for the rise! These little beauties rise so well in the oven and are so springy once baked.

Method-wise, these Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes are simple. Whisk together the wet ingredients before sifting in the dry ingredients and then the batter is ready. I like to use an ice cream scoop to divide the batter equally between the muffin cases and then bake until golden brown and smelling amazing.

Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes

Once the Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes are cooled, you can core out the centre and fill with your favourite jam. I have a delicious homemade chia jam here or you can use shop-bought, too. 

The buttercream frosting is a simple one but with the added aquafaba it becomes even fluffier. This technically makes it into more of a Swiss Meringue Buttercream which is lighter and ultra-creamy, but you can also use plant-based milk and the buttercream is just as delicious. I like to use a star-shaped nozzle to pipe on the buttercream and then finish with a half strawberry before serving these cupcakes.

How long do these Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes last?

They last well in an airtight container for 2-3 days at room temperature although if it is warm, it is best to keep them in the fridge for 3-5 days. I prefer to add on the strawberry just before serving as this can turn soggy. You can also freeze un-frosted cupcakes for up to 1 month.

Can I use other flavours?

Yes, of course. If you don’t have strawberry jam, you can use another jam or marmalade like blueberry, cherry or raspberry jam or try orange or lime marmalade, too. You can then decorate the cupcakes with other fruits or nuts, even.

If you are a cupcake lover, how about looking at my other vegan cupcake and muffin recipes:

Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes (Gluten-Free Option)

  • Servings: 10-12
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Light and fluffy lemony cupcakes with a sticky strawberry jam centre topped with whipped vanilla buttercream. These cupcakes are naturally vegan, nut-free and easily gluten-free plus they are easy to make in one bowl.

Ingredients

    For the Cupcakes:
  • 60ml plant-based milk
  • 90ml sunflower oil
  • 90g coconut or caster sugar
  • 90ml lemon juice (6 tbsp)
  • Zest 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 220g plain of GF plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • For the Frosting and Filling:
  • 6 tsp strawberry jam
  • 75g vegan butter
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) aquafaba or plant-based milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 200g icing sugar

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven two 160Fan/180*C and line a cupcake/muffin tray with 10-12 cases.
  2. Whisk together the plant-based milk, sunflower oil, sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla essence in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Sift in the flour and baking powder and add the salt. Whisk to a thick smooth batter.
  4. Divide the batter between 10-12 cases (I use an ice cream scoop) filling them about ¾ full. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown, firm to touch and an inserted skewer comes out clean.
  5. Allow to cool for a few minutes, remove from the tin and cool fully on a wire rack.
  6. When ready to decorate, chop the butter and add to a large mixing bowl. Beat with an electric hand whisk (or in a mixer) until fluffy (1-2 minutes). Now gradually add in the aquafaba or plant-based milk, vanilla essence and the icing sugar and continue to beat/whisk until fluffy – about 3-5 minutes once combined. Keep going until really light.
  7. Remove a small section from the middle of each cupcake and add in ½ teaspoon of jam (or enough to fill the hole). Pipe on the buttercream and top with a strawberry half.
  8. Eat straight away or keep in an airtight container for 2-3 days, or in the fridge if it is warm for 3-5 days. Unfrosted cupcakes will last up to 1 month in the freezer.
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes
Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes

I look forward to hearing what you think of these Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes so please let me know in the comments below. If you do make the cupcakes, I’d love to see them so please tag me in your bakes – I’m @nourishing.amy on Instagram and use the hashtag #nourishingamy. I’m also on TwitterFacebook and Pinterest  – please say hello!

With lemony strawberry love x

3 thoughts on “Vegan Lemon Strawberry Cupcakes (Gluten-Free Option)

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