¼cup1.5 oz vegan baking chocolate, melted (such as Hu Kitchen Chocolate Gems)
¼cup64g creamy almond or cashew butter
1large egg + 1 yolkroom temperature or 2 flax eggs (see Notes)
2tsppure vanilla extract
For the frosting & garnish
1 ¼cupsfinely chopped dark chocolatedivided (vegan if desired)
¾cupfull-fat coconut creamchilled and drained of any coconut water
For the strawberry jam
In a saucepan, combine the strawberries and maple syrup. Cover and bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently. After 5 minutes, when the mixture is starting to release juices, use a potato masher (or a fork) to lightly mash the strawberries.
Add the chia seeds and lemon juice and reduce the heat to medium-low. Continue cooking uncovered, stirring occasionally to prevent the bottom from scorching, for about 10 to 15 minutes or until the mixture has thickened and there are no big fruit chunks.
The jam will continue to thicken as it cools. Let cool completely before using.
For the cupcakes
Preheat oven to 350°F and line a cupcake pan with 12 cupcake liners.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the almond flour, tapioca flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, coconut sugar, and cacao powder. Whisk all dry ingredients together.
In a separate mixing bowl or large liquid measuring cup, whisk the milk, applesauce, coconut oil, and melted chocolate. If the coconut oil or chocolate firms up at all, warm the mixture for about 20 seconds to re-liquify the mixture. Whisk in the nut butter, eggs or flax eggs, and vanilla extract.
Pour the wet ingredients into the mixing bowl with the dry ingredients and stir until fully combined.
Divide the batter between the 12 cupcake liners; they’ll be about 2/3 full. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and the top springs back when pressed. Let cool completely.
For the frosting
Place 8 ounces finely chopped chocolate in a large mixing bowl, reserving 2 ounces to dip the strawberries in.
Scoop the coconut cream (leaving any liquid behind) into a liquid measuring cup or microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds, and then again in 10-second increments until the coconut cream starts to bubble. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and let it sit for 5 minutes.
Once the chocolate has had time to melt, stir until the chocolate/cream mixture is smooth and creamy.
If the chocolate gets grainy at all, warm up additional coconut cream and stir in slowly until ganache is smooth.
Let set at room temperature for a few hours, or place it in the fridge for about an hour to chill.
When ready to frost (after filling with chia jam- see below), use an electric hand mixer or a stand mixer to whip into a fluffy frosting. These cupcakes have a rustic frosting, but this frosting can also be piped.
To assemble and garnish
Once cupcakes are fully cool, core the cupcakes using a cupcake corer or a paring knife.
Fill the cupcakes with the cool strawberry jam.
Frost cupcakes with the chocolate ganache frosting as desired.
Melt the remaining 2 ounces dark chocolate in the microwave for 30 seconds and stir until smooth. Dip the top part of the strawberry in the chocolate, and place on the cupcakes to garnish. Let chocolate firm up in the fridge, if desired, before serving.
To make 2 flax eggs: 2 Tbsp flax meal whisked with 1/3 cup water; let set for 5 to 10 minutes, until gelled.
Nutrition calculated using unsweetened almond milk.