Unicorn Cupcakes

Unicorn cupcakes… They are straight up the definition of magical. The cake is a strawberry lemon “ricotta” topped with strawberry banana buttercream frosting. See what I mean when I say they are magical?! These might be the best cupcakes I have ever made. Why call them Unicorn cupcakes? Well, not only are they exuberantly vibrant and reminded me of a unicorn, but unicorns give us the imagination to believe that anything is possible, right?! And when you open up to infinite possibilities you can be amazed at all of what you imagined to become reality. That is the perfect description of what these are to me. I know it sounds silly, a cupcake being all of that… but see, I imagined myself making cupcakes that would look like this, and tried many times and failed. If you read my Caramel Apple Cupcake post, you’ll know that I am not gifted at baking, but I think lately I’ve been taking that as a challenge and really trying to get better at it. These, to me, are proof that my efforts are paying off! Go get your unicorn on, friend.

Unicorn Cupcakes

Strawberry Lemon "Ricotta" Cupcakes with Strawberry Banana Buttercream Frosting

Course: Dessert
Servings: 10 cupcakes
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 20 min
Total time: 30 min

Ingredients

Cupcake Dry Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup almond flour (meal)
  • 3/4 cup flour (I used Bob's Redmill 1:1 gluten free baking flour)
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Cupcake Wet Ingredients

  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp flaxseed meal + 2.5 tbsp water)
  • 4 oz unsweetened applesauce
  • 4 tbsp (1/4 cup) Earth Balance butter (melted)
  • 1/4 cup almond ricotta (see below)
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 3/4 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup strawberry banana mixture

Strawberry Banana Mixture

  • 14 strawberries (blend with banana + lemon juice)
  • 1/2 banana (blend with strawberries + lemon juice)
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice (blend with strawberries + banana)

Almond Ricotta

  • 2 cups slivered blanched almonds
  • 2-3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • pinch garlic powder
  • 3/4-1 cup water

Strawberry Banana Buttercream Frosting

  • 4 tbsp strawberry banana mixture
  • 4 tbsp Earth Balance butter (melted)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 1/2 cups organic powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees

  2. In your blender, blend together your almond ricotta ingredients until smooth

  3. Rinse out your blender and then blend together the strawberries + banana + lemon juice (the strawberry banana mixture) until smooth

  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together your dry cupcake ingredients until well combined

  5. Add the wet cupcake ingredients, including 1/3 cup of the strawberry banana mixture. Stir until batter forms

  6. Line your cupcake pan with cupcake liners, then add 1/4 cup of batter to each. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean

  7. While those are baking, make your frosting by blending the butter + vanilla + 4 tbsp of strawberry banana mixture with your hand mixer and then add 1 cup of powdered sugar at a time. Blend until smooth and creamy

  8. Once your cupcakes are cool, frost and devour!

Notes

** Vegan Almond Ricotta recipe from Minimalist Baker

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