Gluten-Free & Vegan Rose Water Cupcakes Recipe

By admin |

Rose water is such a beautiful ingredient. When used sparingly, it adds a wonderfully subtle flavor that is both delicately sweet and deliciously perfumed.

Working with gluten-free flour can be tricky. It usually requires a little more liquid and it has a tendency to become incredibly dense in texture – think little rocks! In order to combat this issue,  I’ve eliminated the egg replacer (I normally use soaked flaxseed meal as the binding agent) and not included my usual tablespoon of cider vinegar, as I didn’t want the flavor of the rose water to be overpowered in any way.

The end result was better than I could have anticipated and I think I’ve found my new favorite cupcake recipe – at the very least it comes in a close second to my chocolate cupcakes with vanilla frosting.

For gluten-free cupcakes, these are fantastically moist and light. Oh, and the taste? Well, let me just say I’ll absolutely, without a doubt, be making these for my next afternoon tea party. Complete with cucumber sandwiches, petit fours and freshly brewed tea, I can’t think of anything more delightful.

Aine Carlin is a vegan blogger who specializes in vegan recipes. She also has a keen interest in vegan fashion and is currently training to be a stylist where she hopes to promote cruelty free clothing and beauty. You can find more of her vegan recipes and vegan friendly fashion over at


1/2 cup gluten-free flour (I used a mix of rice, potato, tapioca, maize and buckwheat)

1/4 cup sugar, or 1/8 cup if you want them less sweet

1 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt

3 tbsp unsweetened apple sauce

1/4 cup hemp milk, or soya

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tbsp rose water

For frosting:

1/4 cup vegan margarine

1 cup unrefined icing sugar

1 tbsp rose water

For decoration:

1 fresh fig


1. Pre-heat the oven to 175 degrees celsius/350 fahrenheit.

2. Sieve the flour sugar, salt, baking powder and bicarb into a large mixing bowl and gently stir with a spatula to evenly disperse the ingredients.

3. In a smaller bowl combine the apple sauce, hemp milk, rose water and vanilla extract.

4. Make a well in the centre of the flour and pour in half the amount of the wet ingredients. Gently incorporate the ingredients using a light folding action adding more liquid as and when needed ensuring not to overwork the mixture.

5. Line a muffin tray with silicon muffin cases or paper ones depending on what you need the cupcakes for. Half fill each of the cases and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

6. At the 20 minute mark insert a toothpick into the centre of the cupcakes, if it comes out clean, they are ready. If not, turn the oven off and let them sit in the cooling oven for a further
5 minutes to ensure they are not baked into rocks - when dealing with gluten free flour always err on the side of caution.

7. Remove from oven and allow to cool a little before transferring them to a cooling rack.

8. Meanwhile, make the frosting by beating the margarine, icing sugar and rose water together using a spatula initially and then a whisk to get it light and fluffy. Set in fridge until needed.

9. When the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost them using a butter knife or small palate knife. You could also ice them using a frosting bag and pipe but I think they look sweeter when smoothed on with a knife.

10. Quarter the fig and using a sharp knife remove the skin. Then slice each quarter into thin slices and adorn each cupcake with three pieces. Odd numbers work best with food.