Christmas in a cupcake! Expect these keto gingerbread cupcakes to be deeply spiced and beautifully aromatic!
Gluten Free & Keto Gingerbread Cupcakes
With Buttercream Frosting!
In my book, gingerbread anything is a must come winter! And these gluten free and keto gingerbread cupcakes fit the bill perfectly, particularly beautiful when paired with a lemon buttercream frosting.
Expect a deeply spiced and beautifully aromatic muffin (with a killer crumb!), paired with a lightly tangy and citrusy lemon buttercream. And if you’re into our cream cheese buttercream frosting or buttercream fat bombs (same difference), you already know not to skip it. Gingerbread men totally optional; but then again, highly suggested.
And just 3g net carbs a pop. Double whoop!
The Gingerbread Spices
These keto gingerbread cookies are dominantly ginger and cinnamon, with highlights of cloves and nutmeg (freshly ground preferably) and a touch of freshly ground black pepper to round everything up.
So don’t be afraid of the seemingly long list of ingredients, as most of them are spices (and salt etc).
The Buttercream Frosting
A blend of cream cheese, unsalted (grass-fed!) butter, Madagascar vanilla, and a powdered sweetener. It really is the bomb, so don’t miss out.
Plus, essentially nil carbs per frosting serving (0.20g net, if being precise).
Alternatively, feel free to add a touch of fresh ginger, lemon zest or cinnamon to spice things up a bit!
I like a mixture of super fine almond flour and coconut flour best. Add a touch of psyllium husk and xanthan gum, and we’re golden.
And don’t skip the psyllium husk. It helps to retain moisture, create structure (i.e. it’s highly responsible for the killer crumb), and it just so happens to be a killer source of fiber (it’s responsible for 2g of fiber per muffin 💩!). Without it, your muffins will be more crumbly and they may collapse more when cooling. They will, however, taste the same.
Borrowed from molecular cooking, xanthan gum is the binding agent which makes your toothpaste jelly-like (and your cream cheese, well cream cheese-like). And it’s also the most common gluten-replacer in gluten free baking. You can (if you absolutely must), substitute in with twice the amount of ground flax seeds.
In terms of brands, for the almond either Anthony’s or WellBees work great. Both are super fine grinds. And for the coconut, we always favor Anthony’s.
You’ve got good options here. Lakanto Golden (my fav here), xylitol (non-corn though to avoid tummy troubles!) and allulose (add 30% more) are my top choices (no aftertaste at all!).
Pyure (an erythritol and stevia blend) is also a good one for muffins and quick breads, particularly if you’re trying to limit your sugar alcohol consumption (it’s added stevia makes it twice as sweet as sugar… i.e. you add half!).
Oh, and if not restricted by sugars, simply sub 1-to-1 with coconut or regular sugar.
Also note that adding a teaspoon of blackstrap molasses adds that brown sugar kick (i.e. a tonne of umami and improves browning!). Keep in mind that blackstrap molasses is considered a low glycemic sugar. One teaspoon (7g) adds 5g net carbs, so just 0.4g net carbs a slice (i.e. half the sugar of a strawberry!). But carbs aside, it’s also known to be a nutritional powerhouse rich in vital vitamins and minerals; such as iron, calcium, magnesium, vitamin B6, and selenium.
Fun fact: Molasses contain high amounts of chromium, which has been studied to increase glucose tolerance levels.
But if it’s still not your thing, just leave it out or do a brown sugar sub (such as Lakanto Golden!)!
And if using xylitol, make sure to be careful if you have a pup (or kitty!) around the house, as it’s highly toxic to the little guys!
Gluten Free & Keto Gingerbread Cupcakes
Oh, and if baking with cups rather than grams is your thing, just click on US Cups for an instant conversion.
For the keto gingerbread cupcakes
- 64 g almond flour
- 21 g coconut flour
- 1 tablespoon psyllium husk
- 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum or 2 teaspoons ground flaxseed
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg freshly grated
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- pinch black pepper freshly ground
- 2 eggs yolks & whites divided
- 1/3-1/2 cup golden erythritol to taste (I use 1/3 cup)
- 1-2 teaspoon blackstrap molasses totally optional
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 57 g unsalted grass-fed butter ghee, or coconut oil (melted and cooled)
- 60 ml water
For the lemon buttercream frosting
- 1/2 batch keto buttercream frosting
- Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C. Grease and flour (with coconut flour) a muffin tray.
- Whisk together in a medium bowl almond flour, coconut flour, psyllium husk, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices. Set aside.
- Beat egg whites until soft peaks form and set aside.
- In a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat egg yolks with sweetener until pale and fluffy, 1-3 minutes.
- Incorporate molasses (optional), vinegar, and melted butter. Add flour mixture slowly, alternating with water and beating until well incorporated.
- Fold egg whites little by little and gently into batter. The dough will be thick initially, but will loosen up as you begin to incorporate the egg whites. Note that keto cake batters are more cookie dough-like than actually pourable (fret not!).
- Spoon batter onto the prepared muffin tray, evening out the top with the back of a wet spoon (or fingertips).
- Bake for 18 to 20 minutes (covering with aluminum foil at 15), until deep golden and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Allow to cool for 15 minutes in the pan before removing, and cool completely in a rack if frosting. Just note that these are best enjoyed fully cooled, once the flavors have had a chance to mingle. And are SO much better the day after, once all the spices have settled in.
- While the gingerbread cupcakes are cooling, make the lemon buttercream frosting by adding the zest of one lemon to our buttercream frosting. You can alternatively do a cinnamon frosting too! (add roughly 1 tsp cinnamon).
- Store, without the frosting, in an airtight container for up to 3 days, though I'm fairly certain they'll be long gone before then.
Hi Paola! I have made these in the past in mini version…. my absolute fav! Going to make them full size for a company xmas party, question is I would like to use cupcake liner cups but am concerned about the cupcakes sticking to them and falling apart when they are removed. What are your thoughts on this? TIA
Leah that’s so awesome to hear! If you use cupcake liners, then I would definitely leave them on for your coworkers to remove themselves (as you’re right, and they’ll definitely stick like a regular cupcake!). Otherwise you can do as I did, and just ensure your muffin pan is super duper well buttered. xo!!
Yum just made them! They tasted delicious but maybe a tiny bit too moist, maybe next time I’ll try half the amount of psyllium.
You know Mike, you might sacrifice a bit of structure if you remove the psyllium… so I would just bake them a little longer if you found out they came out too moist xo!
I want to use this frosting on cupcakes for Easter. If I make and frost them on Saturday then refrigerate, will that work? If I made them several days ahead and froze them, would that work? Love your blog and all your recipes that I’ve tried. Thanks!
Awesome to hear Brenda! 🙂 The frosting actually freezes great so in the past I’ve even frozen cupcakes fully frosted, put then I’m the fridge overnight and then allowed them to come to room temp (15-20 mins). xo!
These cupcakes were superb, wow! We didn’t have psyllium husk so subbed corn starch (we aren’t keto, just low sugar, so not sure if this ingredient is a no-no). My 7 year old had us make them look just like the picture except our mini cookies were hearts! For us the recipe made 7 instead of 6. The buttercream cream cheese frosting was a bit too cream cheesy so I will use higher quality ingredients and maybe less cream cheese and more butter next time. Thanks Paola! Your recipes are amazing – I can’t wait to try more.
Oh how wonderful to hear Terra! Hope you keep enjoying plenty of more recipes 🙂
I agree with the “Christmas in a cupcake” tag. We made ginger cookies every Christmas for years, with all the flour, sugar and shortening that entails. This cupcake gives you all of the same flavors with none of the guilt and other issues. Went with the cinnamon butter cream frosting and it was ahhhmazing! I could only eat half of one, which meant 12 servings for me 😊. I need a muffin tin that is between mini and regular size. 😂
Awww Cat, its such a delight to hear you’re still cooking (and enjoying!) gnom-gnom recipes. Thank you for always reporting back (this is your 82 (!!!) review from what I can see.
You’re such a valuable member of the keto community, happy new year!!
This is the best thing I’ve baked that’s keto!
I added about an inch and a half of shredded fresh ginger, otherwise l followed the recipe to a T. I like my gingerbread on half a small apple shredded so I did that with the first one. It really doesn’t need a frosting but will make some lemon buttercream next time.
I had the next one with my morning coffee.
My favorite recipe.
Wonderful to hear Mary! Fresh ginger is such a wonderful ad in 🙂
OMgooodnessss! I made these for a christmas lunch and I could not believe how perfect the taste and texture was! The frosting is perfect as well, and Im considering making it to use as a fat bomb 😛
These tasted like regular sugar-filled sweets! FYI, I used allulose and powdered it in the blender for these!
Thanks for another perfect recipe. This makes being keto/low carb absolutely wonderful if I need a treat. I dont have to feel deprived anymore!
Next on my list to try are the dumpling wrappers so I can make my own gyoza again!!