These healthy vanilla cupcakes are light and fluffy low-sugar vanilla cupcakes for kids. They contain three times less sugar than regular cupcakes and less saturated fat. Plus, they are super easy to make in less than 30 minutes!
Healthy cupcakes are low-sugar cupcakes for toddlers. They are made with a few simple, wholesome ingredients but overall, they really add nutrients to the kids while enjoying a treat.
To make healthy cupcakes for kids, this recipe twists your kids favorite cupcakes a little bit by using:
- 3 times less sugar – most cupcakes recipe use 1 cup to 1 1/2 cup sugar. Here we use only 1/2 cup.
- Unrefined sugar – like unrefined cane sugar or coconut sugar. These contain added nutrients but provide the same level of sweetness.
- Half saturated fat using half butter than regular cupcake recipe and adding milk that adds calcium to this kid cupcake recipe.
How to make healthy vanilla cupcakes?
The best part about this healthy cupcake recipe, they are ready in barely 30 minutes, and even the kids can make a batch. It’s certainly an easy cupcake recipe that you can make any time you need a quick batch of celebration cupcakes.
All you need to make these healthy vanilla cupcakes are 7 ingredients:
- Unsalted butter at room temperature – I like to dice the butter and let it sit on the kitchen counter for 30 minutes to soften.
- Unrefined cane sugar– or coconut sugar. Of course, white sugar works very well in this recipe, but unrefined cane sugar contains more nutrients while keeping the same sweet flavor, so it’s my favorite choice for kids.
- Milk – most cupcake recipes won’t use milk, but here we add milk to add calcium and halve the butter in the recipe to make low-fat cupcakes. You can use dairy-free soy milk in the recipe. But note that it’s better to focus on full-fat milk for moist cupcakes, so avoid almond milk, for example.
- All-purpose flour or cake flour – for a gluten-free cupcake recipe, use a gluten-free all-purpose flour blend that contains added gums.
- Baking powder or use half baking soda, so 3/4 teaspoon baking soda.
- Vanilla extract
Before you start, preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line a 12-hole muffin pan with cupcake liners use an oil spray to oil the paper cases. This prevents the cupcakes from sticking to the paper liner when they cool down. Set aside.
First, melt butter and milk in a small saucepan over medium heat or bring to microwave-safe bowl and microwave until fully melted. Set aside to cool down.
Beat eggs and sugar
In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs, sugar, and vanilla on high speed until light, fluffy and foamy in texture. It takes about 2-3 minutes using the high speed of your hand mixer – I used speed 10 of my stand mixer.
Add The Dry Ingredients
Now, add the flour, baking powder and start mixing on low speed until the flour is just incorporated. When you can’t see the flour any more, add the lukewarm milk butter mixture.
Add Lukewarm Milk and Butter
The batter should be runny with a pale yellow color. If you want to make funfetti cupcakes, you can stir in 1/3 cup of funfetti sprinkles in the batter now.
Bake and cool down
Bake the cupcakes in the center rack of the oven for 20 minutes or until golden on top, and a pick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool the cupcakes down immediately on a cooling rack and wait 2 hours before frosting.
Healthy cupcake toppings
There are many ways you can decorate cupcakes and keep things healthy.
First, frost the cupcakes, using my healthy frosting recipe – it’s a cream cheese frosting that contains half butter and sugar to make healthy cupcakes for toddlers.
In fact, cream cheese contains half the calories and less saturated fat than butter, so it’s a great swap to buttercream for birthday parties cupcakes for kids.
Then, decorate with a pinch of your favorite sprinkles, you don’t have to go overboard, and there are also sugar-free sprinkles available in grocery stores if you want to avoid sugar for healthy first birthday cupcakes.
Other options are:
- Chopped nuts
- Shredded coconut – easy to color with natural food coloring!
- Berries – strawberry slices, raspberries, blueberries.
- Pinch of ground cinnamon.
It’s a great recipe for any occasion. You can also make small cupcakes with this recipe. To do so, bake the batter into two 12-hole mini muffin trays. The recipe makes 24 small cupcakes.
These are absolutely the best moist cupcakes. They won’t dry out even after a few days. However, to keep them fresh, especially with the cream cheese frosting on top, store them in the fridge.
Yes, cream cheese frosting must be refrigerated, or it turns bad.
Place the frosted cupcakes in a cake box, and store them for up to 4 days in the fridge.
You can freeze these healthy vanilla cupcakes as well and thaw them the day before.
These healthy cupcakes have many ways to be adapted to any food allergies.
- For low-fat, sugar-free cupcakes, swap sugar for erythritol or allulose. Both are natural sugar-free granulated sweeteners that can replace sugar with a 1:1 ratio. You can use a low-fat spread to replace the butter.
- Dairy-free– swap butter for light flavored olive oil or melted coconut oil. Use soy milk or oat milk as a milk replacement.
- Egg-free – I didn’t try the recipe egg-free, unfortunately.
- Gluten-free – almond flour works in this recipe.
- Chocolate cupcake flavor – you can add 3 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder to add a chocolate flavor to the recipe. Add the cocoa powder at the same time you add flour.
You can play with these healthy cupcakes by adding some delicious things in the batter like:
- Lemon zest
- Blueberries – stir in 1/2 cup at the end.
- Funfetti sprinkles – stir in 1/3 cup at the end.
- Chocolate chips – stir in 1/3 cup at the end.
More healthy kids baking recipe
Below I listed some other kid recipes for you to try
Have you made these healthy cupcakes? Share a comment or review below to connect with me,
Healthy Vanilla Cupcakes
- ¼ cup Unsalted Butter at room temperature
- ½ cup Milk full-fat, or soy milk
- 2 large Eggs at room temperature
- ½ cup Unrefined Cane Sugar or coconut sugar
- 1 cup All-purpose Flour
- 1 ¼ teaspoon Baking Powder
- 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
- 1 batch Healthy vanilla frosting
- Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Line a 12 hole cupcake pan with cupcake paper liners. Lightly oil the paper with oil spray to prevent the cupcakes from sticking to the paper. Set aside.
- In a bowl, add milk and butter and microwave by 30-second bursts until completely melted. You can also bring the mixture over medium heat in a saucepan. Set aside to cool down.
- In a large mixing bowl, add eggs, vanilla extract and sugar and beat on high speed for 2-3 minutes or until lighter in color, almost white and fluffy. If you use a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whisk on speed 10 for 2-3 minutes.
- Add flour, baking powder and beat on low speed (speed 2) until the flour is just incorporated - can't be seen.
- Now, still beating on low speed, pour the lukewarm milk-butter mixture. Stop the beater as soon everything is well combined. The batter should be quite liquid and light in color.
- Fill each paper liner with 1/4 cup of batter.
- Bake on the center rack for 20 minutes or until a pick inserted in the center of the cupcakes comes out clean.
- Cool down on a wire rack for 2 hours before frosting with the cream cheese frosting.