Candied Lemon Cupcakes & Vanilla Icing (Gluten Free)

September 12, 2023

Dairy-free and gluten-free these lemon cupcakes with vanilla buttercream icing and a candied piece of lemon are the bomb. Recipe makes 12 large cup cakes or up to 30 mini cupcakes.


113 g plant-based Nuttelex softened at room temperature

1 cup castor sugar

2 large eggs

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

2 medium sized lemons-zest only

1/2 cup plant-based milk (e.g. almond milk)

1/3 cup lemon juice

1 1/2 cups sifted gluten-free flour

2 tsp baking powder

Vanilla Buttercream Ingredients

200 g plant-based Nuttelex at room temperature

4 cups sifted pure icing sugar

1 tsp vanilla bean paster or extract

3-4 tbsp plant based milk (e.g almond milk)

Candied Lemon Slices

1 cup white sugar

1 cup water

1 lemon cut into thin slices


1 large bowl


hand mixer or stand mixer


ice-cream scoop

Two 6 x muffin pans (or for mini cupcakes, use two 12 x mini muffin pans)

cupcakes paper liners to fit chosen muffin pan

piping bag for buttercream


The Cupcakes

1Preheat the oven to 155°C fan forced or 175°C conventional Line a muffin pan with the cupcake liners.

2In a large bowl add Nuttelex, castor sugar, lemon zest & vanilla and beat on medium-high speed or 3 minutes until creamy. Next add the eggs & baking powder and beat again on medium-high speed for 1 minute to combine. Then add the plant based milk and lemon juice before beating again for 1 minute. Finally, fold the sifted gluten-free flour through the mixture with a spatula.

3Spoon cake batter evenly into the 12 cupcake liners, filling them 2/3 full. Then bake in oven for 18-22 minutes. (If baking mini cup cakes bake for 11- 13 minutes)

4To test cup cakes are baked, place a toothpick in the centre. If it comes out clean, they are ready.

Vanilla Buttercream

1Using a large bowl a mixer, beat the Nuttelex until creamy for 2 minutes then add the sifted icing sugar and plant-based milk plus the vanilla. Beat on low for for 30 seconds then increase the speed to medium-high for 2 full minutes. Then spoon the buttercream into a piping bag ready to ice the completely cooled cupcakes.

Candies Lemon Slices

1Place the sugar and water in a large frypan and stir until dissolved then add lemon slices. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer for an hour.

2Carefully remove lemon slices one by one and lay on baking paper to cool. When cooled, cut each slice into four to top cupcakes. NOTE: Any leftover candied lemon slices can be dunked in dark chocolate as another treat!