Allergy Free Strawberry Cupcakes for Mother’s Day


Mother’s Day falls on May 13th this year, which also happens to be my mother’s birthday. So I thought it only fitting to post this recipe for my mother, Susanna, for Mother’s Day, and her birthday (goes along with this two week virtual birthday party I’m throwing here on my site).

Here is a picture of my mother, me, my brothers Dylan and Jude, and my cousin Ila (mother of the little blond girl you see eating cupcakes in the sidebar to your right). I’m the one in the strawberry hat, obviously.

Strawberries hold a very dear place in our family. My grandmother Catherene had a strawberry patch. Really, more of a strawberry field. We all lived together; grandparents and sometimes cousin, and I have very fond memories of picking strawberries with my family, to concoct into an endless array of delicious creations. The strawberry patch was a magical place, where I’d sit for hours, picking, and of course eating one berry for every one that made it whole into the basket. Our strawberry patch was like something out of a Beatrix Potter book, complete with bunnies hiding under the large awning of the rhubarb plants that surrounded the field. We made strawberry rhubarb pie, strawberry ice cream (see birthday recipes), strawberry compote, strawberry jam, strawberries with mint, Marsala, lime, and honey, strawberry shortcake, strawberry pancakes, and I remember many an afternoon, sitting with my mother on the screen porch, paring strawberries to eat sprinkled with just a little sugar. We ate strawberries in a myriad of ways — but I don’t think we ever made strawberry cake or cupcakes. I can’t imagine why not. Strawberry cupcakes are to-die-for. The fresh strawberry puree in the frosting takes buttercream to a whole new level. This frosting, strait from the berry patch is bursting with sweet berry flavor. So mom, these Allergy-Free Strawberry Cupcakes are for you. I’ve found a new way to feature our favorite family fruit. And I’ve made them safe for as many people as possible. Because I think just about everybody loves a strawberry.

With strawberry season in full swing, local farmer’s markets are overflowing with these sweet little beauties. Take advantage of their cheaper price tag, and bake strawberries into all your favorite treats. Brimming with vitamin C and fiber, strawberries make these lovely cupcakes almost a health food! So pretty in pink, these gems are great for Mother’s Day, birthdays, class parties, or an afternoon tea. And don’t forget your Memorial Day barbecue, they are perfect for that too. Don’t they look like they must be bad for you? Nope, 100% natural, gluten-free, vegan, and free of all top food allergens.  Now, that’s a berry special treat.

Allergy-Free Strawberry Cupcakes

(Gluten-free, Vegan, Nut-free)

Makes 12 cupcakes

1 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
1/4 cup rice milk
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups Authentic Foods GF Classical Blend, or my Basic Gluten-Free Flour Mix
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
3/4 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons Spectrum Organic Vegetable Shortening
1 cup granulated sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons Ener-G egg replacer mixed with 3 Tablespoons rice milk
1 recipe Allergy-Free Strawberry Frosting (recipe follows)
12 small strawberries

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a cupcake pan with 12 liners.

2. Puree strawberries in blender, until reduced to 1/2 cup liquid. Add a few more strawberries if necessary.
3. Combine 1/2 cup strawberry puree with 1/4 cup rice milk, lemon juice, and vanilla extract. Set aside.
4. Measure out flour mix by spooning flour into a dry measuring cup, then leveling it off with a straightedge, or the back of a knife. (Do not scoop the flour directly with the measuring cup or you’ll wind up with too much flour for the recipe). Combine flour mix with xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk well. Set aside.
5. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine vegetable shortening and granulated sugar. Mix on medium speed 2 minutes.
6. Add egg replacer to bowl of stand mixer. Mix on medium speed 1 minute more.

7. Using a sifter, sift in the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with strawberry mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture, and mixing until combined, about 30 seconds. Once batter is smooth, spoon about 1/4 cup batter into each liner, filling the liners about three-quarters full. Do not overfill the liners, or they will rise too high.
8. Bake in the center of the oven 20 minutes until a skewer or toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, and cupcakes are a lovely berry color. The cupcakes won’t be pink, they bake up more berry blue. (The frosting is pink!)
9. Remove from oven and transfer cupcakes to a cooling rack to let cool completely before frosting. Either pipe frosting or use a frosting spatula to spread it. Top each cupcake with a strawberry.

Allergy-Free Strawberry Frosting

Makes enough for 12 Cupcakes

1/2 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
1 cup Spectrum Organic Vegetable Shortening
pinch of salt
3 1/2 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. Puree strawberries in blender. Set aside.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream shortening and pinch of salt on medium speed, about 2 minutes.

3. Add confectioners sugar in three batches, beating after each addition. Add 3 Tablespoons of the strawberry puree, and vanilla extract and beat until smooth and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

Allergy-Free Strawberry Cupcakes  ©2011 by Cybele Pascal
(Please note that all my recipes are completely free of all top allergens (wheat, dairy, soy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, sesame, fish, shellfish, and gluten), so as many people as possible can enjoy them. Additionally, all the ingredients are available atWhole Foods, and online at If you have trouble finding something, let me know and I’ll help you find it.)

SAFETY NOTE: Because each person’s food sensitivity and reaction is unique, ranging from mild intolerance to life-threatening and severe food allergies, it is up to the consumer to monitor ingredients and manufacturing conditions. If manufacturing conditions, potential cross contact between foods, and ingredient derivatives pose a risk for you, please re-read all food labels and call the manufacturer to confirm potential allergen concerns before consumption. Ingredients and manufacturing practices can change overnight and without warning.


24 Responses

  1. Margie says:

    Mmmm. I made these last summer and they became one of my favorite cupcakes. Thanks for reminding me to make them again! 🙂

  2. Amber says:

    Hi Cybele,

    What a beautiful post! Your mother sounds very special. Thank you for sharing you with us. You’re too cute in that strawberry hat!

    I agree that strawberry cupcakes are the best. I can’t wait to try your recipe. My son’s 3rd birthday is in a few weeks and these would be perfect (and allergy-friendly for his little friend who can’t have tree nuts). 🙂

    We have a ton of local organic u-pick farms all over here in Northern California. And there’s a great organic strawberry farm just up the road. We are taking the kids this weekend. Can’t wait!

    Thanks Cybele, and have a great rest of your week.

    Be Well,

  3. I love this idea of of fresh strawberries in baked form….thank you for inspiring me Cybel…you always do!

    • cybele says:

      Hi Tessa, I hope you like these. They are so fresh and flavorful. Let me know what you come up with.

      all best,


  4. These look delicious! Too bad strawberries aren’t quite in season here in Chicago yet…

    I have a question, and I think you are the only person who can answer it… I want to make these, but the person I want to bake them for is allergic to corn. Do you have a brand of baking powder that you like that is also corn free?

  5. Grace Beebe says:

    I just wanted to know, do you have a recipe for gluten/dairy free hot pockets?

    I’ve asked you before and you said maybe you would come up with it. Thanks, it would be great!!

  6. Amber says:

    Hi There,

    Just a note to let you know I shared your awesome recipe on my monthly recipe round-up: Mother’s Day Edition. If you get a chance, come on over and check out the other inspiring recipes from sweet indulgence to homemade gifts.

    Be Well,

  7. Yadira says:

    Hi Cybele! Yummy! Think I’ll make these for myself for mother’s day! LOL!!! One quick question on a recipe from the Allergen Baker’s handbook… it’s the bread recipe that is supposed to use GF beer, but it says it can use club soda as well… I couldn’t find club soda at TJ’s yesterday, so I bought sparkling water….. would that work or is there not enough carbonation for the bread to rise? Thanks.

    • cybele says:

      HI Yadira:

      hm, not sure where you got that info. You need to use beer because that’s what contains the wheat that makes the bread rise. Sorry! Sparkling water or club soda won’t work.

      all best,


  8. Yadira says:

    Thanks! I just realized that it was a different recipe from a different book… starting to lose it a little bit. 🙂 Thanks for taking the time to reply though.

  9. cybele says:

    Yeast, i meant yeast!!!!

  10. cybele says:

    not wheat!

  11. These look amazing! In my fridge I have some strawberries that are a little past perfect just begging to be turned into something yummy like this!

  12. Cara says:

    I have made these now several times, and will be making them again this weekend. People can’t believe they are allergen free! I love that i can make something that everyone can enjoy whether they are GF, vegan or none of the above!

  13. Amy says:

    Hi Cybele,

    Can you make the strawberry cupcakes recipe into a 8 inch cake instead?

    Thanks for all of your recipes… I have all of your books! Without you I would be lost!

    • cybele says:

      Absolutely. This is something I’ve been meaning to do. Maybe this weekend? 🙂 I think one needs to adjust the proportions.



  14. Hannah says:

    Another out of the park recipe! HUGE hit at my daughter’s Minnie mouse themed very pink 2nd birthday! Thank you!

  15. Karlie says:

    I made this for my son’s 2nd birthday. Turned out great. There was too much frosting, but we’re not complaining!

Leave a Reply