Fresh Squeezed Raspberry (or Blackberry) Lemonade Cupcakes


Allergen free Berry Lemon Cake

Gluten free, Vegan Raspberry Lemonade Cupcake


My  Mantra

Nothing says summer like fresh squeezed raspberry lemonade – especially when it’s in the form of a CUPCAKE!  (A quick reminder of my mantra.)

Before launching this food allergy friendly blog, I visited a couple girlfriends in New York who were guinea pigs for some of my earliest allergy friendly treats – including my strawberry cupcakes with raspberry lemon champagne icing (which my artist girlfriend who designed the Nom Yum O’babybot image is still raving about). My hostess (whose birthday was this past weekend – HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!) had the great idea at the time that I buy a pastry piece to make filled cupcakes. I’ve tried making a few filled cupcakes since then, but my favorite has been lemon cupcakes with berry filling.

My guess at why lemon cupcakes have been my favorite is because I love everything lemon! Actually, the mom of my girlfriend who recommended I try making filled cupcakes actually refers to me as “lemon thingy.” It was a name I picked up in college because due to my requests when she would send care packages to her daughter – she always was sweet enough to include items my girlfriend’s hungry friends (aren’t all college kids hungry?). I always would request any pastry with LEMON. Since then, keeping with the theme, my lemon mommy has sent me other lemon gifts, like comfortable lemon print pants pajamas when I got married (surprisingly, my husband’s favorite) and even a lemon-head onesie when I had my first child(which took me back, as lemon-heads were my favorite candy from the penny store as a kid).

Fruit Filled Allergen Free Lemonade Cupcakes

Raspberry Filled Allergen Free Cupcakes

Since I first made these raspberry lemonade cupcakes, I have been toying with the recipe, in part due to the development of my nursing daughter’s food allergies (e.g., learning later in the game that she’s allergic to eggs.) When I recently learned that one of my blogger mommy friends – who also has food allergy stricken children (perhaps one reason we clicked immediately) just discovered her daughter also might have a wheat allergy, I thought to try to play with this recipe even more to make it free of all of the top 8 most common food allergens – gluten included. I will admit, however, eliminating the gluten (having already eliminated eggs) was probably the hardest adjustment I’ve made – and not just because it added several more costly ingredients to the recipe.

This cupcake recipe is dedicated to my NY girlfriend as a belated birthday gift and to all the awesome moms I have met (both online and offline) along my journey as a mom new to the world of food allergies – a cupcake that has evolved like the food allergies of my daughter.

I would be interested in knowing how your child’s food allergies may have adjusted? We’ve heard the myth that a lot of times kids outgrow their allergies. Have you had that experience, or have you seen your child’s allergies increase? Please share in a comment. Thanks!

FREE Ingredients

I think my son’s favorite version of these cupcakes was the vegan wheat-containing ones. If you are not limited by gluten and/or egg allergies and you would like to try the other versions, just leave me a comment, and I will try to email you the other recipe(s).

Lemon Cupcakes:

  • 1 cup gluten free flour mix (like Cybele Pascal’s)
  • ½ cup quinoa flour
  • ½ tsp xanthan gum
  • ¼ tsp ground sea salt
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ½ cup plus 1 tbsp vanilla rice milk
  • ¼ tsp apple cider vinegar
  • ⅓ cup canola oil
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp pure lemon extract
  • ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp lemon juice
  • 1 ½ tsp grated lemon zest (how to zest a lemon)
  • additional 1 tbsp lemon juice

Raspberry (or Blackberry) Filling:

  • 2 cups raspberries (or blackberries)
  • ½ cup water (increase if use blackberries)
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch

Raspberry (or Blackberry) Lemon Swirl Icing:

1.  Lemon Buttercream Icing

  • 2 tbsp dairy-free, soy-free shortening (like Spectrum Foods)
  • 2 tbsp dairy-free, soy-free buttery spread (like Earth Balance)
  • 2 – 2 ½ cups powdered (confectioner’s) sugar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp vanilla rice milk
  • 1 tsp pure lemon extract
  • 1 tsp lemon zest (how to zest a lemon)

2.  Raspberry Buttercream Icing

  • 2 tbsp dairy-free, soy-free shortening (like Spectrum Foods)
  • 2 tbsp dairy-free, soy-free buttery spread (like Earth Balance)
  • 2 – 2 ½ cups powdered (confectioner’s) sugar
  • 1 ½ tbsp of remaining raspberry filling
  • 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp vanilla rice milk
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Method (or Mistakes)

Lemon Cupcakes:

Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners (or grease well). Preheat oven to 325° F.

Stir together vanilla rice milk, vinegar, and ¼ tsp lemon juice. Then set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine flours, xanthan gum, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Then sift together and set aside.

In a large bowl, use a hand mixer (or electric mixer) to beat together oil and sugar until a bit fluffy. Add extracts and beat to combine. Add in dry ingredients in 3 parts alternating with ½ of milk mixture, ½ of remaining lemon juice, and ½ of zest at a time. Start and end with dry ingredients. Use a medium cookie scoop (or ice cream scoop) to fill cupcake liners ⅔ of the way full.

Bake in preheated oven for about 20 minutes, or until toothpick entered in cupcake center comes out clean. Let cool in pan on rack for 10 minutes, then remove cupcakes from pan to cool completely on cooling rack.

You’ll know the cupcakes are done when the lemon aroma begins to fill your kitchen. Now I see why so many cleaning products use that fresh lemon smell – it really makes everything smell clean, light, and spring-like. And it really takes over and eliminates any other lingering smells.

Raspberry (or Blackberry) Filling: 

Fruit Filling in Egg Dairy Gluten Free CakeThe raspberry filling recipe comes courtesy of Emeril. It’s a very simple recipe – I just halved it. (You will have to make a couple adjustments (see below) if you use blackberries instead of raspberries.)

In a saucepan, combine the raspberries with the water (minus 3 tbsp that you set aside), and sugar. Bring to boil. Simmer until raspberries have broken down (15-20 minutes). Remove mixture from heat and strain in a fine mesh sieve. Return strained raspberries to heat. Dissolve cornstarch in the remaining 3 tbsp of water, and then whisk into raspberry liquid. Bring mixture back to boil, and then simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool completely before filling completely cooled cupcakes.

To fill cupcakes, use your finger or the end of a rounded spoon (a thick baby spoon also works :)) to poke a hole in the center of your cupcake. Then fill with filling (it’s easiest to use a pastry bag and piping tool). Reserve remaining filling for swirled icing.

Berry Lemonade Cupcake allergen free

Blackberry Lemonade Cupcake

I also decided to make these a couple times using summer blackberries. Although they tasted fine, I prefer the raspberries to the blackberries primarily due to the color of the icing. (Seriously.) Also, the raspberries break down a lot easier when cooking than blackberries. So if you do decide to use blackberries, slightly increase the amount of water you use and add 10 minutes to the cooking time.

Raspberry (or Blackberry) Lemon Swirl Icings:

Allergy Friendly Berry Lemon CakeSo I got the idea of using two different colored icings to make a swirled icing from the Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World cookbook that was the basis for my rum raisin cupcakes. Since I was combining two different flavors in these cupcakes, I thought it was the perfect cupcake for two different icings too – a lemon buttercream and a naturally pink raspberry buttercream.

Beat together the shortening and buttery spread until smooth (about 30-60 seconds). Add ½ of the sugar and beat until combined. While beating on low speed, add remaining ingredients (other than sugar) and beat until well combined. Slowly add remaining powdered sugar (adding less if icing is too thick or adding more if too thin).  Then beat on medium high until fluffy (about 4 minutes).

To swirl the icing put one flavor on one side of a piping bag and then the other flavor on the other side. (Warning: this can be a pretty messy process.) Pipe icing out of your bag until you see both colors coming out at once.

To frost your cupcakes, put a small dab of frosting in the center of each, covering the filling hole. Then frost as usual – starting on the outside and circling to the center over the icing dab. (Optional: sprinkle a bit of lemon zest on the top of frosted cupcakes.)


These cupcakes were so nom yum yummy! (And I’m not just saying that because of my love for lemon pastries – others agreed.)

The lemon flavor really came out in taste and aroma.  One of my coworkers was excited when I finally put these out, commenting on how she could smell them in the hall aroma when they were coming to room temperature in my office. When I first experimented with the vegan and non-vegan versions, my coworkers couldn’t tell the difference between the two (I actually polled each tester to see if he or she could guess correctly which version s/he had).

Everyone was also surprised that these were homemade because of the swirled buttercream icing. No one could get over how fancy the frosting looked, its soft consistency, and how YUMmy the raspberry lemon swirled icing tasted. I’ve learned that the swirled icing trick is a great way to impress all guests!

My son loved these cupcakes. In fact, he loved them so much he requested that I give him some of the vegan wheat-containing ones to his grandmom he was visiting one weekend I made these. And of course, he again loves the naturally pink icing.

Linked to Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Tuesday Talent Show, {Gluten Free} Weekly Meal Plan, Allergy Free Wednesdays, It’s a Keeper Thursday, Friday Food, Gluten Free Friday, Allergy Friendly Friday, Full Plate Thursday

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