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Vanilla Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting: Low Carb, Gluten Free, Grain Free, Sugar Free

Some of you already know this about me, but before I stopped eating wheat, I used to be a cupcake fiend. I ran a side business baking event cupcakes for weddings, showers, birthdays and charity events. It’s sufficient to say that cupcakes were my life. (lol)

Finding the perfect grain-free, sugar-free cupcake recipe hasn’t been easy, but I think I’ve finally perfected it. These moist vanilla cupcakes complete with real buttercream are as close to the “real” deal as you’ll get. They look amazing and taste amazing too. As with my muffin recipes, arrowroot starch is part of the secret. It’s not inherently low carb, but it’s much lower in carbs than flour and you only use a tiny bit of it to keep the taste and texture authentic. These cupcakes have only 6g of net carbs apiece (and that’s including the carbs found in Ideal, which is the sweetener I used), so they’re a great way to indulge your sweet tooth on a family member’s birthday without undoing all your hard work.

I chose to add pink food coloring to the frosting, but you can choose if you want to add coloring when you bake these up. Also, it is imperative that you use a light granulated sweetener such as Ideal or Stevia in the Raw– because it is highly dissolvable. Splenda would also work here, if you use Splenda. Using a pure granulated form of erythritol or xylitol will result in a grainy texture in the frosting.

If you’re looking for healthier sprinkles, these ones from Let’s Do are organic and all natural. They’re not sugar free, but a few will add a nice touch without processed sugars or artificial colors.

Keto Ingredients

Vanilla Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting 



  • 2/3 C almond flour
  • 1 T coconut flour
  • 1/4 C arrowroot powder
  • 1/2 C almond or coconut milk (unsweetened)
  • 1/3 C coconut oil, melted
  • 1/3 C erythritol, xylitol or your preferred sweetener
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 T vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 stick + 2 T butter, softened and cut into small cubes
  • 2/3 Cup lightly granulated xylitol or stevia (Use Ideal brand or Stevia in the Raw)
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 T hot water
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line 10 cupcake wells in a cupcake pan with paper liners. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine coconut oil, vanilla extract, salt and sweetener by mixing on medium speed.
  3. Add in baking powder and eggs and whip on medium speed until just blended.
  4. Add in almond flour, coconut flour and arrowroot powder and mix on medium-high until a nice batter forms–about one minute. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add in the almond milk to thin out the batter slightly, mixing it on medium speed until it all comes together–less than 30 seconds.
  5. Scoop batter into paper-lined muffin tins until each well is 2/3 full.
  6. Bake cupcakes on middle rack for approximately 15 minutes or until the edges are just beginning to turn golden. Remove from oven and allow cupcakes to cool completely.
  7. Begin to prepare the buttercream frosting by beating the egg whites in a stand mixer with the whisk attachment on high speed until soft peaks form. Stop the mixer…
  8. In measuring cup, combine water, vanilla extract and granulated xylitol or stevia and stir with a spoon until all of the sweetener dissolves. Some small grains may remain, but you will wind up with a thick, sticky syrup.
  9. Turn the mixer back on medium-high speed and slowly drizzle the sweetened syrup into the whipped egg whites.
  10. Slowly add cubes of softened butter–one at a time–into the egg mixture, until all of the cubes have been added. The egg mixture will turn soupy. This is OK.
  11. Continue to beat the mixture on high speed with the whisk attachment for about 15 minutes. It will look curdled and soupy for a long time, but this is OK. ******
  12. Once the frosting has come together, add in natural food coloring if desired. Beat until the coloring is incorporated.
  13. Spread or pipe finished frosting onto cooled cupcakes.
*****You will beat the mixture on high speed for 10-15 minutes before the frosting will begin to come together. Don’t worry if it’s taking a long time– it WILL eventually come together– I promise. Also, you may wish to drape your mixer with a clean towel during this process as the liquid will splatter all over and make a mess.*****
Makes about 10 cupcakes.
NUTRITION (1/10TH OF RECIPE): 235 calories, 7 g carbs, 1 g fiber (6 g net carbs), 22 g fat, 4 g protein

Need Ingredients for That Recipe?


It takes a lot of trial and error to find the "right" fit for a low carb recipe. I have made some ... different low carb desserts. You don't need to go through that! I made a list of my favorite ingredients as well as what stores you can find them at. Enjoy!

About the author

Leeann Teagno

Eating healthy, for me, is about more than weight loss like it used to be. It’s about controlling my blood sugar levels and obtaining normal–or relatively normal–hormone levels. I still struggle to lose weight efficiently, but eating a wheat, sugar and gluten free diet helps to control some of the problems I’ve encountered with these health issues of mine.


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