All-Natural, Allergy-Friendly Strawberry Cupcake

strawberry cupcake with lots of candles
Amber Cash/Moment Open/Getty Images
Total Time 35 min
Prep 20 min, Cook 15 min
Yield 1 dozen (190 calories each)

Many people with food allergies (and those who value great food in general) prefer to keep their foods all-natural, avoiding such ingredients as food dye and artificial flavoring. It's also just more fun to make foods from real ingredients, such as fresh strawberries.

That's where these super-pink cupcakes come in. The cupcakes have a kid-friendly strawberry flavor that comes from real, honest-to-goodness strawberries. They're also free of dairy, soy, eggs, nuts, peanuts, and artificial colors and flavors—and are just naturally delicious!

You can make these cupcakes without any food coloring at all, and they'll be slightly pink just from the strawberries in the batter. But the natural food coloring called India Tree creates a deep pink hue that is as lovely to look at as it is to eat.

I like to keep a stash of these cupcakes in my freezer for parties, school events, or other times when treats are handed out.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole fresh or frozen (thawed) strawberries, hulled
  • 1/4 cup rice or coconut milk, or other milk substitute
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Natural red food coloring (such as India Tree), optional
  • One recipe dairy-free, soy-free frosting

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line cupcake pan with paper liners.
  2. Place strawberries in blender or food processor and blend until smooth. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the strawberry puree, milk substitute, and oil.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar.
  4. Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, whisking just until everything is incorporated. Add food coloring if using and mix gently. Do not over-stir.
  1. Divide batter among 12 cupcake liners. Bake at 350 F for 15 to 18 minutes, or until the top springs back when pressed gently.
  2. Allow cupcakes to cool completely on a cooling rack before frosting.
  3. These cupcakes can be enjoyed right away or frozen for later use. To thaw, microwave for 20 seconds, or just allow to thaw at room temperature. Toss one in a lunchbox for a special lunchtime treat and it will keep the other food cool as it thaws.

All-Natural Food Coloring

India Tree makes natural red, yellow, and blue food colorings, all from vegetable sources (the red comes from beets). If you remember your primary colors from elementary school, you'll realize you can use these three natural food colors to make any color imaginable for your cupcakes. India Tree also makes all-natural sprinkles and other decorations colored with its food dyes, but those products are not allergen-free—they contain both soy and corn.

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