Breakfast/Brunch, Seasonal, Sweet Treats, Yummy Recipes

Easter Bun Cupcakes Healthy Reboot: Gluten Free, Dairy Free Options

7 years later I’ve pulled this Easter Bun Cupcake recipe back out of my archives and made it for Easter this past weekend.  Our dietary choices have changed in the years in between.  My husband and eldest son discovered they feel 100% better when they are gluten free.  My youngest son and I are still dairy free (we have a dairy allergy) and I discovered over a year ago that I have the MTHFR gene mutation that means the synthetic ‘folic acid’ added to all flour is potentially toxic to my body (additionally since I have the gene mutation, there’s a chance my kids do too!).  For all those reasons and just basically feeling so much better when we eat well, I needed to make some tweaks to these cupcakes before making them for my family.

Here’s the Original Post from 2012 of my Easter Bun Cupcake Recipe.

I subbed gluten free flour for the flour, coconut oil (at a temperature so it was a solid not a liquid) for the butter, himalayan pink salt instead of regular table salt, water in place of the milk (I was going to use soy milk but then decided I’m a cheap skate and used water instead) and because we avoid refined sugar I used coconut sugar in place of the regular caster sugar.  I reduced the dried fruit to 1 cup as the batter just wasn’t as fluffy or as full as the original regular flour and butter version.  They worked out fine…except all that chocolate had clearly gone to my head because I totally forgot to add the baking powder so they didn’t rise at all.  Thus the lack of up to date photos!  I also didn’t bother with the frosting crosses this time.

Originally I invented these Easter Bun themed cupcakes because as I was kneading the dough for my Easter Buns I realised that not everyone has the luxury of time to spend hours chained to your kitchen waiting for your dough to prove and heading back in for another punch and knead session…before yet another wait…ugh!

These taste like Easter Buns but with minimal effort, yum!

(Original Ingredients Pic)

wmedDSC08332(Ingredients in 2019)

Easter Bun Cupcakes




  • 2 cups of Plain/All Purpose Flour (Sub for Gluten Free Flour)
  • 3 tsp of Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp of Salt
  • 1/4 cup of Caster Sugar (you can use regular sugar if you don’t have any caster/superfine sugar in the cupboard) (Sub for Coconut Sugar)
  • 1/2 tsp of Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp of Ground Ginger
  • 2 tsp of Ground Mixed Spice
  • 1/2 cup of Butter, softened (Sub for Coconut Oil or Dairy Free Margarine)
  • 1 and a 1/2 cups of Dried Fruit (sultanas, raisins and currants, or alternately dried cranberries, goji berries, blueberries etc work too) (May need to reduce to 1 cup)
  • 1/4 cup of Milk (Sub for Dairy free Milk or Water)
  • 3 Eggs

For Frosting Crosses (optional)

  • 1 cup of Icing/Confectioners Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of Vanilla Extract
  • 1-2 dessert spoons of Milk of Choice



Pre-heat your oven to 180 C/350 F and either line a muffin tin with cupcake papers or use a non-stick tin (I used the shallow ones used for fruit mince pies and patty cakes, here’s an example).   This recipe makes 18 small buns or 12-15 cupcakes (Gluten and Dairy Free version only stretched to 12 cupcakes)

1/ In a large bowl beat the softened butter and caster (super-fine) sugar until smooth

2/ Add the eggs and beat until combined

3/ Sift into the butter mixture; the self-raising flour, baking powder, salt, spices and the dried fruit.  Fold in until combined

4/ Stir in the 1/4 cup of milk

(Original Batter from 2012)

wmDSC08336(Batter from my Gluten and Dairy Free Version in 2019)

5/ Fill your bun tins almost to the top (about an ice cream scoop’s worth) or the cupcake papers 2/3rd’s full

(Original cupcake batter in the tin from 2012)

wmDSC08337(Gluten and Dairy free cupcake batter in the tin from 2019)

6/ Bake for 10-15 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean

Leave to cool on a wire rack and prepare the frosting if you’re planning to use it

(No new after pic cause I’m a dork and forgot to add baking powder!!)

The easiest way to make you’re crosses is to prepare your frosting/icing in a  tall ziplock bag (or divide between two smaller bags).  Place the cup of icing (confectioners) sugar, 1/2 tsp of vanilla and 1-2 dessert spoons of milk in the bag , force out most of the air and seal.  Gently knead until combined and you’re left with a thick paste like frosting.  Push the frosting toward one corner so you can use your baggy as a piping bag

Snip the corner of the ziplock bag and test the consistency on a plate before piping the crosses onto your cooled cakes

You could add food colouring to your icing to pretty it up.  I think this frosting is cheap and easy enough that you could make a few batches in different colours or flavours.  Yum!



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