My two girls have birthdays within a month of each other.  The two-in-one birthday parties are convenient but they also give me anxiety!! (sort of kidding).  Especially with 3 weeks of consecutive parties. #birthdaypartiesthatneverend

Because with kids’ birthdays comes birthday cake.

With cake comes sugar (a lot of it).

With sugar comes runny noses, less room for nutrient-dense foods, and sugar cravings! (not to mention a slew of other health issues).

When it comes to the birthday menu, I don’t have as much of a say in the selection.  My amazing mother and my mother-in-law graciously purchase and prepare most of the food (cake included).  And with Italians on one-side and British on the other, it’s safe to assume that a homemade, gluten-free, dairy-free, low-sugar birthday cake wouldn’t be the sweet of choice.

Unless….they don’t know it’s homemade, gluten-free, dairy-free, low-sugar?  [sneaky!!]

I’m all for balance and not making sweets seem forbidden.  But there is a better (and healthier) birthday cake for our littles.

It doesn’t HAVE to be full of processed sugar, white flour, or topped with artificially coloured icing.  Without all of the above, it doesn’t mean it has to taste like cardboard either.

Healthier birthday cupcake

This weekend I took a chance on these simple vanilla coconut flour cupcakes.  Unlucky for me, there was a decadent ice cream cake cozied right up beside it.  Yet I still confidently offered my homemade, gluten-free, dairy-free, low-sugar cupcakes.  And, for the most part, they ate them!  [tough to compete with a Frozen themed ice cream cake].

Now my warning:  Because they are made with coconut flour (which is very absorbent), they have a more crumbly texture than your typical wheat-based cupcake.  Think cornbread.  But that didn’t stop us from eating them!


The Healthier Birthday Cupcake (made with coconut flour)

The Better Birthday Cupcake (made with coconut flour)

Course Dessert
Servings 11


  • 1/2 cup melted grass-fed butter or coconut oil I used a 1/4 of both
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar optional for more sweetness
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 6 large pastured eggs
  • 2 tablespoons dairy-free milk or regular milk if preferred
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease muffin pan. 

  2. Beat oil/butter, sugar, salt, vanilla, milk and eggs. 

  3. In a separate bowl, mix coconut flour and baking powder. 

  4. Mix wet and dry ingredients. 

  5. Fill each muffin slot 1/2 full (for smaller cupcakes) or to 3/4 full (for larger ones). 

  6. Bake for 16 to 20 minutes.  

Note on the icing:

I could have made my own icing as I had in the past, but being out of town with limited ingredients, I kept things simple with coconut milk whipped cream (dairy-free).  If I had coconut milk on hand, I would have made this recipe from Minimalist Baker.

Let me know how you like the Healthier Birthday Cupcake below!