Category Archives: Desserts

Vegan Gluten-Free Eggnog Cupcakes

Better late than never?


I do apologize for the tardiness of this post, fellow Keeners, as the holiday season is drawing to a close and I’m not sure people still have the need for an eggnog cupcake post. But, gosh, these were tasty little morsels of holiday cheer, so I’m posting the recipe anyway!

Christmas was the usual whirlwind and I’ll spare the gory details but, suffice it to say, I spent Boxing Day curled up on the couch in my pyjamas with my kitty cat, officially christmassed out.

I’d like to think of this post as a last hurrah, as it is New Year’s Day and the usual No more sugar! No more flour! thoughts are swirling in my head. I’m feeling inspired by this post on FatFree Vegan Kitchen. The meal plan Susan proposes kind of resembles how I used to eat and I remember how good it felt to eat a diet of mostly fruits and vegetables, whole grains and beans. So, just putting it out there that there may be a few changes afoot. Nothing crazy, just maybe less baked goods.

With that said, let’s talk about cupcakes! I used Karina’s vanilla cupcake as a base for these because, as I can’t stop saying, she is the vegan and  gluten-free baking goddess. I eggnog-ized them by adding nutmeg, cinnamon and soy nog. I decided a cream cheese icing would be best (when isn’t it the best, really?) and made it eggnoggy with the aforementioned spices.

These cupcakes were enjoyed on Christmas Eve with coffee and brandy and good company.

Happy New Year, everyone!

A spiced eggnog cake adorned with cream cheese icing: a delicious last hurrah

* Recipe taken from Gluten-Free Goddess and tweaked slightly. Makes 12 cupcakes.

Dry Ingredients:

1/2 cup sorghum flour

1/2 cup brown rice flour

1 cup tapioca starch

1 cup organic cane sugar

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp xanthan gum

1 tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp nutmeg

Wet Ingredients:

1 cup soy nog

2 eggs worth of vegan egg replacer (or 2 eggs) (Follow package directions for egg replacer to water ratio)

3 tbsp vegetable oil

1 tbsp vanilla extract

1/4 tsp lemon juice


Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit and line a 12-cup muffin tin with cute paper liners.

In a large bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients.

In a large measuring cup, whisk together all wet ingredients, except for the egg replacer. Whisk the egg replacer in a separate bowl or measuring cup, then mix it in with the rest of the wet ingredients.

Add wet to dry and beat with an electric mixer until smooth, being careful not to over mix.

Evenly divide batter into the muffin tin and bake for 15 to 22 minutes, testing after 15 with a toothpick.

Let cool in tin for a few minutes, then transfer cupcakes to a wire rack.

Cool completely before icing.

Icing Ingredients:

4 oz (half a tub)  Tofutti cream cheese (vegan)

1/4 cup vegan margarine

1 tsp vanilla

splash soy nog

2 cups icing sugar (not sure if this is officially vegan, guys)

2 dashes cinnamon

2 dashes nutmeg


Cream together margarine and cream cheese with an electric mixer. Add vanilla, soy nog, cinnamon and nutmeg, mixing until combined.

Beat in icing sugar, 1 cup at a time.

Taste for spice and add more cinnamon and nutmeg as desired.

Frost cupcakes and sprinkle with a little more cinnamon.





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Karina’s Gluten-Free Vegan Plum Cake

Perfect vegan and gluten-free plum cake with cinnamon sugar topping.

The weather has turned and there is the slight scent of fall in the air. Goody, this means more baking in the Keen Kitchen!

I love plum cake. My Oma frequently serves a delightful version: Dense white cake topped with tart-sweet black plums and served  with a dollop of vanilla flavoured whipped cream. Yum. Well, after Jack picked a bunch of plums off the tree in our yard, I immediately envisioned cakes, cakes, and more cakes. And maybe a crumble for good measure.

Cake-bound plums

A lesson learned: when you start craving any sort of baked good, but need to veganize it and make it gluten-free, turn to Karina, the Gluten-Free Goddess. I know I have said this before, but it is worth repeating. The woman is a magician in the kitchen. So, I decided to not do my usual mucking around ingredient-switching thing and stuck pretty much religiously to her recipe for Gluten-free Peach Cake, using plums instead. As for the whipped cream, I served this with So Delicious Vanilla Bean Coconut Ice Cream instead. It was also pretty spectacular served unadorned. It is the super moist, dense, sweet but not overly so, cake that I desired and it suited the tart plums perfectly. I will definitely be making a few more of these with the many plums I have left over.

Anyone want to come over for coffee and a slice or two of plum cake?

So cakey and plummy.

As previously mentioned, I followed Karina’s recipe almost to a T. As such, I do not really feel comfortable rewriting her recipe. Please refer to her amazing recipe here.

Here’s what I did differently:

  • I used plums instead of peaches.
  • I mixed brown and white organic cane sugar because I didn’t have light brown sugar.
  • I used tapioca starch instead of potato starch.
  • I used virgin coconut oil instead of olive oil or shortening. I realize that coconut oil is high in saturated fat, but I love the butter-like texture and light coconut flavour it gives baked goods.
  • I used millet flour instead of buckwheat flour because I didn’t want a grainy cake.
  • I used light soy milk instead of peach juice.
  • I omitted the nutmeg because I don’t have any and am still not certain if those with nut allergies can have it. Can anyone help me with this?
  • I used apple cider vinegar for the “light tasting” vinegar.
I highly recommend this recipe. You would never know this cake is vegan and gluten-free. And thanks to the higher-fibre flours, it’s a little healthier than its wheaty counterpart.


A perfect vegan and gluten-free plum cake, fresh out of the oven. Recipe courtesy of Karina.


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Vegan Strawberry Milkshake

"This tastes like dessert." Mission accomplished!


To those of you who have been requesting lentil soup and lasagna recipes: I am sorry. I realize a milkshake recipe is a bit of a cop-out. Those will come, I promise! For now, here’s a creamy vegan strawberry milkshake to sip on while you wait ever so patiently.

I have strawberries on the brain and in my freezer big time since I went strawberry picking with some of my family. We spent a delightful afternoon trekking out to Ladner and picking about $40 worth of perfectly ripe sun-warmed strawberries.

The little ones with us were expert pickers!

After we packed up our overwhelming amount of strawberries, everyone had a strawberry milkshake. Except me, of course.

A well-deserved treat after a hard afternoon's work!

Do not despair. I certainly did not miss out on the strawberry fun. After we cleaned the ridiculous amount of strawberries, we decided to have a strawberry themed meal. We had salad, garlic mashed new potatoes, salmon and tofu with strawberry salsa (amazing!), strawberry crisp and strawberry basil spritzers.

Vodka, Strawberries and Basil. A winning combination!

All in all, it was a great way to spend the day. Even though we didn’t actually grow the berries ourselves, there was something really satisfying about picking, cleaning, cooking and enjoying them together.

The next day, however, I still wanted my darn strawberry milkshake!

So, without further ado, here is my take on a strawberry milkshake.

A delightful summer sip.



15 small frozen strawberries (Mine were quite small. Use less if they’re the monster ones from California.)

1/3 cup + 2 tbsp. canned coconut milk

1/3 cup + 2 tbsp. soy milk or other non-dairy milk

1 tsp. vanilla

1 tbsp. agave (add more if you want it more dessert-y)

5 ice cubes


Blend it up ! Serves 1.


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Vegan Coconut Mango Pudding

A taste of the tropics in a teacup!

I really keep meaning to do more dinner and main course posts. Really, I do. But my insatiable craving for sweets after dinner seems to be inspiring me more than, say, cravings for vegan stews and stir-fries.

I had a bunch of coconut milk in my fridge that needed to be used, to be fair. And I don’t know if I’ve already mentioned it, but I am borderline obsessed with coconut. When you don’t eat dairy, it really can be a godsend when you desire something creamy and fatty. So, I consume coconut in some form every day.

On that note, So Delicious coconut milk ice cream is amazing! It’s not health food, as its fat and calorie content is similar to that of regular ice cream, but it somehow has good fibre content and I find that I do not overindulge in it like I did with dairy ice cream. Plus, they have a vegan, gluten-free cookie dough flavour!

I digress. This creamy, yet firm, pudding was born of a coconut craving and inspired my decision to stop being cheap and finally buy some agar powder, which is made of seaweed and is a vegan gelatin substitute. I paid $11 for a bag of it, but it’s going to last a long time. Unless I make puddings like this every day.

Vegan pudding for dessert! Go ahead and satisfy that craving.


1 1/2 cups full-fat canned coconut milk

1 ripe mango, peeled and cubed

2 tbsp. agave, honey or sugar (I used agave)

1 tsp. vanilla

1 tsp. agar powder


In a saucepan, whisk coconut milk, agave, vanilla and agar powder together and bring to a boil over high heat.

Once boiling, turn heat to medium and simmer for 5 minutes, whisking every so often to make sure the agar dissolves and doesn’t get lumpy.

Combine the coconut mixture with the mango in a blender and blend until the mixture is a smooth, uniform liquid.

Pour into small bowls, or cute teacups, and chill in the fridge for an hour until firm.

Makes around 4 servings, depending on how big your bowls or teacups are. 

Coconut Mango Pudding with Strawberry and Mint


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