This recipe has definitely been a long time in the making. I’ve been wanting to make a healthier version of funfetti for a while now, but I haven’t been sure what to use in place of all the usual sprinkles and food dyes.
When I was really little, my Grandmother and I used to bake our ‘birthday cake or cupcakes’ together every June. We both had birthdays close to each other, and so we’d go to the store to pick out a boxed cake mix and can of frosting. My most vivid memory is picking out a funfetti mix because as a child those polka dots in a cake were so appealing.
However as an adult those same polka dots take on new meaning once you start looking into the ingredient list. But luckily you can buy sprinkles now that are made with completely natural colors, no artificial dyes at all!
So of course the minute I found all natural sprinkles, I knew exactly what I was going to make! I might not be a child anymore, but I think the child in everyone likes funfetti cupcakes. In fact I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t smile when presented with sprinkles on pretty much any dessert!
For the frosting I used freeze dried strawberries to create a strawberry buttercream. And since the berries are so brightly colored, you don’t even need natural coloring for the frosting.
How to make Funfetti Cupcakes:
- Start by mixing together the dry ingredient, then add in the sprinkles.
- Next mix in the wet ingredients until a batter forms.
- Portion the batter equally into a muffin tin, lined with cupcake liners.
- After they’ve baked, let them cool in the pan until they’re easy to remove.
- Let them cool completely to room temperature on a wire rack before frosting them.
- While the cupcakes are cooling make the frosting.
- Frost the cupcakes and top with more sprinkles to serve.
- These are best the first day, but we enjoyed them even on day 3.
Tip: To crush/powder the freeze dried strawberries you can use a mortar and pestle, or you can crush them right in the bag they come in using your hands.
Freeze dried strawberries might seem like a bit of a splurge. But I promise you that after one bite of these cupcakes, you’ll never regret the freeze dried berries. Plus when it’s a birthday, it’s nice to go all out!
And if you need anymore convincing, after one bite of these cupcakes, Tyler decided he needed to learn how to make them. Since he doesn’t cook, I was shocked that he loved these enough to try out baking.
But I do have to agree, these might be the best cupcakes I’ve ever tasted. And you can’t beat the good memories of birthday baking with Grandma either!Print
Crowd pleasing and so fun for birthdays!
2 cups very fine almond flour
1/2 cup tapioca starch, sometimes called tapioca flour
1/2 Teaspoon sea salt
2 Teaspoons baking powder, see notes
1/4 cup natural sprinkles, 1 – 1.25 ounce package, see notes
1/2 cup maple syrup, I used Grade A amber
1/4 cup melted ghee, or butter
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 sticks salted butter, 8 ounces, softened to room temperature
1 pkg (1.2oz) freeze dried strawberries
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
Extra sprinkles for the tops
Preheat the oven to 350ºF and line a muffin tin with muffin cup liners.
In a medium sized mixing bowl, stir together the almond flour, tapioca starch, sea salt, baking powder, and sprinkles until no lumps remain.
Add the maple syrup, eggs, melted ghee/butter, vanilla extract, and lemon juice. Mix just until a batter forms, then portion the batter evenly into the muffin cups.
Bake until puffed in the middle, and a toothpick inserted comes out clean, about 18 minutes.
Cool for at least 10 minutes on a cooling rack before carefully removing the cupcakes from the muffin tin. Continue to the let the cupcakes cool to room temperature before frosting.
To make the frosting, add the butter to a mixer with a whip attachment and whip to break up the butter. Crush the strawberries into the finest powder you can. You can do this in a mortar and pestle, or just crush them by hand right in the bag they come in. Add the powdered freeze dried strawberries to the mixing bowl, and beat again on low speeds to combine.
Then add the powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and lemon juice. Turn the mixer on low, and increase the speed as the powdered sugar is incorporated. When all the powdered sugar is mixed in, turn the mixer up to high and beat until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
Frost the cupcakes generously, and top with more sprinkles if desired. Serve within the first day for the best results, although these hold up fairly well for up to 3 days.
Baking powder can have all sorts of additives, and isn’t always gluten free or paleo. To be safe, you can make your own by mixing together 1 part baking soda to 2 parts cream of tartar, and use the mixture right away.
I’ve been using the all natural, (no artificial dyes) sprinkles from the Color Kitchen, (not sponsored).
Keywords: Paleo Friendly, Gluten Free, Grain Free, Funfetti