Wednesday, March 4, 2015

EASY Gluten Free Cherry Filled Vanilla Cupcakes with Cherry Almond Icing


Happy Wednesday!  Today I am sharing a quick and easy gluten free cupcake recipe!  I'm not a big celebrator of Valentine's Day.  However, last year, my then 4 year old daughter insisted that we decorate for the holiday.  Problem was...I had nothing to decorate with.  I ended up making a trip to the Dollar Tree for some simple Valentine's Day decor.  My purchase consisted of a plastic table cloth, some paper napkins and plates and some heart shaped paper doilies.  Voila!  Instant Valentine's Day dinner table.  Budget friendly, fun and one HAPPY daughter. She loved it so much she insisted we do it again this year.  Needless to say, a tradition was born.

This year's table
We did the same thing again this year!  Dollar Tree table decor, homemade gluten free heart shaped pizzas and salad.  Last year we made cupcakes from scratch, divided the batter, colored it red and pink and layered them for a tie dyed affect.  But I felf lazy this year. Yes, it does happen to all of us. 
I used what I had on hand.  Turns out, sometimes improvising ends up being really tasty.  


I normally make my cakes from scratch because I don't like store bought gluten free mixes. I find them to be very dry. There is one exception to that rule.  I actually like Aldi's GF Vanilla Cake mix ($2.99) and keep one on hand for those times when I want something quick and easy.  

Here's what we did....


Cupcakes
1 - Aldi's Gluten Free Vanilla Cake Mix (follow package instructions)
1 - package Aldi's instant Vanilla Pudding (any brand will work, just make sure it's GF)
1 - can Aldi's Cherry Pie Filling  (any brand will work)

Pour cake mix into a large mixing bowl.  Add 1 package of instant pudding (make sure it's gluten free, Aldi's is and is only $0.45).  Add remaining ingredients listed on the cake mix package and blend well.
Fill cupcake pans lined with liners about 1/3 full with cake batter.  Then add approximately 1 T cherry pie filling (Aldi Brand $1.79) on top of the cake batter.

 Top this with approx 2 T more cake batter.  They should be approx 2/3 to 3/4 full.  Bake according to package instruction. This made 18 normal sized cupcakes.Cool completely and ice with Cherry Almond Icing.  Recipe below. 


You will see little pink specks in the cupcakes.  I had some Wilton Colorburst Batter Bits that created that affect.  I'm not sure they make them anymore. They are not officially listed as gluten free either.  The actual ingredients does not contain wheat but they are processed in a plant that processes wheat.  They do not bother us so I am able to use these.  Simply skip this step to make sure they are completely gluten free.  

Cherry Almond Icing Recipe:
1 stick butter or margarine
3 3/4 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp almond extract
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 T Cherry Pie Filling 
(this replaces milk.water or juice you would normally use)

Place the butter/ margarine in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed until fluffy, 30 seconds. Stop the machine add vanilla and almond extract.  Begin adding the sugar 1 cup at a time and blending between cups.  Blend with the mixer on low speed until the sugar is incorporated, 1 minute. Add 3 T of Cherry Pie Filling. Increase the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, 1 minute more. If the icing is too thick, at a bit more pie filling.  If it's too thin add more powdered sugar 1/4 cup at a time.  Top cupcakes as desired. 

That's it!  Only thing left to do is ....ENJOY!  And they were SOOOOO Yummy!
It was fun, quick and tasty.  We will be making these again well before Valentines Day next year!


Ciao! Kellie

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