Maple Alps


Chocolate Beet Cupcakes with Avocado Frosting (vegan + gluten free)

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps24 Comments

Have you ever had a chocolate beet cupcake? What about frosting made with avocado? Intrigued? So was I when I decided to try!


Once in a while, I'll get bored or curious, and find myself in the kitchen making something really random. These beet cupcakes are definitely a product of that. I had heard of people putting beets into everything, and so I figured, why not a cupcake? There is only one problem with cupcakes in our house: nobody eats them. The husband doesn't care for them, and I prefer to go on long runs. 

Chocolate Beet Cupcakes With Avocado Frosting |

I am now taking applications for new guinea pigs to cook for...

Despite all of this, these turned out better than I expected in the sense that I ate one, my husband ate one, and we both liked what we tasted. They weren't too sweet, nor did they taste "too healthy," even though they are vegan and gluten free. The frosting is sweetened with a little bit of maple syrup, and has no refined sugar in it. 

Chocolate Beet Cupcakes with Avocado Frosting (vegan and gluten free) |

I am always a little weary of gluten free experiments especially, but these rose wonderfully - which I attribute partly to the baking powder added into the mix. The tops even had that perfect crinkle to them. I'm not going to lie, I ate one still warm, and it was heavenly. It was so light and so fluffy I almost died.

Did I taste the beets? Well, no, not really. The gluten free flour has a very distinct taste to it, however, so that may have overpowered it. I almost used regular all-purpose, but the gluten free mix was calling to me - it really was. 

The avocado frosting, I made the next day, just before serving. It's best fresh on the day of. Again, it doesn't taste like avocado, which is cool.

Though I personally preferred the cupcakes still warm, they were fine the next day. This was all that was left by the time all was said and done:

Chocolate Beet Cupcakes with Avocado Frosting (vegan and gluten free). Yup, that good. |

Chocolate Beet Cupcakes with Avocado Frosting

For the Cupcakes:

  • 1 cup all purpose gluten free flour

  • 1/4 cup ground almonds

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 small roasted beet, diced

  • 1/2 cup unrefined cane sugar

  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

  • 3/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk

  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1/4 cup unrefined coconut oil, melted

For the Frosting

  • 1 very ripe avocado

  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • pinch of sea salt

  • 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil

What to do:

1) Preheat the oven to 350°F then grease or line a muffin pan for 10 cupcakes. 

2) In a large bowl, mix dry ingredients

3) Stir together the almond milk and the apple cider vinegar in a blender or a food processor and allow to curdle. Add the roasted beet, cane sugar and vanilla extract. Blend on high until a smooth liquid forms.

4) Pour the liquid into the bowl with the dry ingredients then add the melted coconut oil. 

5) Fold together, making sure there are no lumps. 

6) Fill each muffin cup about 1/2 full to make 10 cupcakes. 

7) Bake for 20 minutes, or until cupcakes pass the toothpick test.

8) Make the frosting by combining all of the ingredients in a blender or a food processor and blending until smooth. 


* Make sure cupcakes are completely cool before frosting them. 
* Icing is best fresh!
* Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days (if they last that long).

vegan pantry maple alps
Chocolate Beet Cupcakes with Avocado Frosting (vegan and gluten free) |

Are you going to give these a go? Let me know if you do!

Chocolate Beet Cupcakes with Avocado Frosting (vegan and gluten free) |

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies (vegan + gluten free)

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps23 Comments

You all probably think I have nothing else to do than bake unhealthy things to eat. Well, you're only partially correct. I've been up to all sorts of things these days, like seeing different parts of the state, and training for a "Tough Mudder." On that note, this recipe should not have been partaken of, since I'm cutting down on my sweets. But let me just say, if I were to cheat, these would be worth cheating for. 

Seriously delicious Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies - #Vegan and #GlutenFree?! Yes please!! |

I didn't actually intend to make these. Here were the circumstances: There was a very ripe banana on my counter, and I had gluten free flour that I was dying to use for something. I also just loved the idea of a peanut butter cookie - the kind that melts in your mouth and tastes oh-so-good with a cold glass of [almond] milk. I've always loved a good peanut butter cookie.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookes (Vegan & Gluten Free) |

When I was in university, I used to make huge batches of these (a non vegan version though) and keep them in the freezer in a large airtight container. I would train my self discipline by not eating all of them in one sitting. Seriously the best poor student dessert - cheap! Haha.

Since making this batch, I catch my husband every once in a while snacking on a cookie or two. I guess that's a good sign, right? Or not...I'll let you and his waistline decide. 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies (Vegan and Gluten Free) |

This was the first time I tried these with gluten free flour, and I must say that I am quite pleased with the result! It turned out better than I thought it was going to, and I couldn't even tell the difference.

Seriously delcious Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies - #Vegan and #GlutenFree?! Yes please!! |

Vegan & Gluten Free Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

What You Need:

  • 1/2 cup vegan butter, softened

  • 1/2 cup natural creamy peanut butter

  • 1/4 cup organic cane sugar

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

  • 1/2 ripe banana + 1 tsp baking powder (mashed together)

  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose gluten free flour

  • 1/2 TBSP non dairy milk

  • 1/4-1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips

What to Do:

1) Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F

2) Cream the butters together for 30 seconds. 

3) Add sugars, baking soda, and baking powder.

4) Add banana mixture and vanilla

5) Beat in as much flour as you can, and stir in the rest.

6) Add the nondairy milk until dough is creamy.

7) Fold in the chocolate chips.

8) At this point, you can chill the dough if necessary.

9) Drop dough on parchment covered pan in small balls and bake for 7-9 minutes.

10) Allow to cool slightly on pan (to avoid the complete crumbling of the cookies when you move them), and then finish cooling on wire rack.

Are you a fan of peanut butter chocolate chip cookies? Any tips for Tough Mudders? I love reading your comments, so let me know below!

vegan pantry |
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies (Vegan & Gluten Free) |

Dark Chocolate Coconut Muffins (vegan + gluten free)

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps22 Comments

It's been a chocolate kind of week for me - which, now that I think about it, is slightly ironic, considering my last published post. Then again, you at least now that I brush my teeth

Anyway, because I've had chocolate on the brain (I blame the grey weather), I decided to share with you a recipe I was playing around with this week.

Dark Chocolate Coconut Muffins (vegan & gluten free)

To be completely honest, I spent a better number of my years skeptical about foods labeled "vegan" or "gluten free." Whenever I saw one of those words, I replaced it right away with "unfit for food." Embarrassing, I know, but you have to understand that I had some awful experiences leading to this association. It wasn't until the last few years I started to realize that plant-based foods could, in fact, be delicious! 

What does this have to do with chocolate? Nothing. I'll get back to the point now...

Dark Chocolate Coconut Muffins (vegan & gluten free)

This weekend, we have some friends over - one of whom is gluten free - so I spent all week trying to figure out what I could do to make sure she could eat. This was by no means a chore (I know you're reading this!), because I love experimenting! The one thing that I purposed in my head to make was some sort of muffin (probably because I was craving banana chocolate chip muffins that day.). I set to work trying to make something edible.

Dark Chocolate Coconut Muffins (vegan & gluten free)

My first attempt was a disaster. I tried an oat flour. I kind of guessed by the batter that it was going to be fail. The silly things didn't rise much. They at least tasted okay-ish. I didn't really think so, but my husband has been nibbling on them for days. My second attempt....also not so great. Actually, they turned out worse than the first ones. I used coconut flour this time with the brilliant idea that I would make coconut wonderfulness. Nope. They turned out even worse than the first ones! I wasn't terribly discouraged since I had no clue what I was doing (though that coconut flour was $$$...).  I finally decided to buy an all-purpose gluten free blend (bonus: it was on sale!). 

Dark Chocolate Coconut Muffins (vegan & gluten free)

The result was a delicious [chocolaty] muffin. Well, 12 of them. They didn't rise as much, but they were yummy. I still have plenty of intentions to keep experimenting, but for the love of my time, I just had to make something work. And this worked. Oh boy did it work! It worked so well that I downed like four as soon as they were cooled. Okay fine, I didn't wait till they might not either! 

The one downside was that they were a little dry the next day - which a few minutes in the oven remedied quickly.  

Dark Dark Chocolate Coconut Muffins (vegan & gluten free)

Dark Chocolate Coconut Muffins (Vegan & Gluten Free)

Makes 12 muffins
Adapted from Baking Ginger

1/2 cup coconut oil
3/4 cup gluten-free flour
1/2 cup organic cane sugar
2 TB ground flax seed
5 TB water
1/2 cup cocoa
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
dark chocolate chips (to top)
(optional) organic shredded coconut (to top)

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and lightly grease muffin tin.
2) Mix ground flax seed and water in mixing bowl. Let stand for five minutes
3) Add coconut oil and sugar. Mix well
4) Add the rest of the ingredients (except for the chocolate chips and coconut) and mix well.
5) Pour batter into muffin tin and top generously with chocolate chips or coconut...or both!
6) Bake for 20 minutes, or until muffins pass the toothpick test (toothpick comes out clean)

Dark Chocolate Coconut Muffins (Vegan & Gluten Free!) Super easy and really delicious - especially warm!

So there you have it. These babies are quick to whip up, delicious, and no one will even know they're vegan AND gluten free. What could be better? By the way, does anyone have any coconut flour tips?

PS: It may be a while before I write about chocolate again. But don't worry, it will be back.