After hopelessly searching through my “treat pantry” (ie. the cupboard where I shove all my baking supplies), I decided to make the most of what was in stock. I was really hoping to forego a trip to the grocery store, and I wanted to remain clad in cozy sweat pant attire. You know the feeling?
Well, this rosy treat did the trick. If you’re seeking a healthy fuss-free dessert, with a couple of hours on your hands to be at home multi-tasking (or binge-watching Grace & Frankie while your beets cook), then this sweet vegan recipe is for you.
I’m a huge fan of covert desserts. The main base in these beauty cakes involves beet, almond and coconut flour. Avocado gives the icing its creamy consistency. No icing sugar, butter or heavy cream required here.
The sweetness factor can be entirely adjusted to your desire. With type 1 diabetes and years of using raw stevia, my taste buds are pretty accustomed to bitter and savory over hyper-sweet. But I find my insulin requirements aren’t as high (and blood sugar levels do better) when natural sweeteners are buffered by healthy sources of fats and fiber. It also depends on the day, how active I’ve been and how fast my cells want to uptake glucose. All the fun things.
I’m a firm believer in balance and moderation. As the classic life saying goes, sometimes you just gotta treat yo self.
Cacao Beet Cupcakes with Avocado Icing
Inspired by Making Thyme for Health
for the cupcakes
1 cup almond flour
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 cup chopped beets (pre-cooked*)
1/2 cup cacao powder
1/3 cup coconut sugar, raw stevia, or preferred lower glycemic sweetener (apple sauce could work too)
1 tbsp Yacon syrup
3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp true vanilla extract
1/2 tsp non-aluminum baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tbsp unrefined coconut oil, melted
for the icing
2 medium avocados, ripe
1/3 cup raw cacao powder
1/3 cup date paste (or preferred sweetener)
2 tsp true vanilla extract
2 tbsp cacao nibs, to sprinkle on top
- Preheat oven to 400 ° F. Wash and trim the stalk of two small beets and place them in a pyrex dish (save any beet greens for juicing or sauteeing). Drizzle the beets with 1 tbsp of melted coconut oil and cover your dish with foil. Place in oven and allow to cook for 45 mins or until tender.
- While the beets are cooking, go pick up where you left off in that novel, enjoy a breath of fresh air, or cave and click on Netflix (be sure to set a timer for the beets!).
- When the beets are completely cool, use a glove (unless you want to scrub your hands) and the beet skin should easily peel off. Cut the beets into small pieces and set aside. Turn oven down to 350 ° F.
- Combine almond milk with apple cider vinegar and let sit for several minutes to create vegan buttermilk.
- In the bowl of a food processor, add beets to coconut sugar (or sweetener of choice), yacon syrup, almond buttermilk and vanilla. Process until a thick gooey mixture forms.
- In a large bowl, combine your almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda, baking powder and cacao. Slowly add in your beet mixture, followed by your melted coconut oil. Mix well.
- Pour your batter into a lined muffin tray, and let cook in oven for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. While cupcakes are cooking, combine icing ingredients in a food processor until silky smooth. Once cupcakes have cooled, spread on the icing with a knife or pastry piping bag.
Happy, healthy treat time! ❤ xo