Gluten-free chocolate cupcakes

It took me a while to create gluten-free cupcakes that tasted good or didn’t completely fall apart, and I wasn’t prepared to settle for something that didn’t taste quite right. These, in my opinion, have the same texture as regular cupcakes and are just as dense, and you can’t tell they have hardly any fat in them, in fact you could probably do without the oil if you want to. All the people who have tried them couldn’t tell they were gluten-free or vegan, or almost fat free. The glaze is just a mix of icing sugar, cocoa and water.


So you can see the texture


Makes 12 cupcakes
170 g plain gluten-free flour
100 g cornflour
1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/4 tsp salt
40 g cocoa
170 g brown sugar
2 tbsp flaxseed and 6 tbsp water
250 ml soy milk
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
15 ml strong coffee
1 tsp vanilla
160 g prunes, blended
3 tbsp oil
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Gluten-free pecan shortbread with strawberries and cream

This shortbread can be eaten on it’s own as a teatime treat, or add some strawberries and cream to make a cute dessert. This recipe makes 18 biscuits. I used a heart cutter that is 9cm in diameter, but you can use any shape that you like. The cream is coconut cream, which I much prefer to the coconut milk method, as it’s much creamier and less messy, and cheaper. You can use any fruit that you like, I think blueberries or raspberries would be good too!


Makes 6 desserts 
Shortbread ingredients
110 g pecans
75 g vegetable fat
75 g margarine
150 g plain gluten-free flour
60 rice flour
60 g golden castor sugar
pinch of salt
Vanilla cream ingredients
Whipped coconut cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp icing sugar
pinch of salt
400 g or 30 strawberries
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Okra and sweet potato stew

Okra isn’t a vegetable I grew up with and it’s not a typical British vegetable, but I saw it mentioned a lot in Southern cooking and wanted to give it a try. And I really like it! I found that just topping and tailing them and boiling them with some apple cider vinegar gets rid of the sliminess. So this is just a simple stew with a lot of flavour and colour and is very filling.

Serves 2
300g sweet potatoes
175 g okra
375 ml veg stock
1 can butter beans
1 green pepper
1 onion
4 tomatoes
1 green pepper
1 garlic clove
1 tbsp tomato puree
1/4 tsp Dijon mustard
plenty of salt and pepper
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
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Gluten- free bean brownies

I didn’t make the brownies using kidney beans to be healthy, although it is a bonus, but I couldn’t get the right denseness using things like margarine. I tried a few recipes using black beans, but since kidney beans are more economical (a can of Sainsbury’s basic cost 21p) and more readily available in the UK, I thought I would try using them instead. I much prefer the result with kidney beans, and nobody guessed they were vegan/ gluten-free.


One problem I’ve had with using gluten-free flour is graininess, but I didn’t get a trace of that with this recipe and it held together nicely without needing xanthan gum. Plus, the ingredients aren’t too difficult to get or massively expensive. These are super fudgy and dense and people are always surprised that they are made with beans .  You could serve them as they are with some chopped pecans mixed in, or with fudge icing and caramelized pecans, depending on your dietary needs.

Makes 12 brownies (8×8 tin)
Brownie ingredients
1 can of red kidney beans, drained
250 ml maple syrup or golden syrup (be careful if using agave as it is extra sweet)
2 tbsp flaxseed and 1 tbsp of water
15 ml strong coffee
2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
50 g cocoa powder
3/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
110 g gluten free plain flour (I used Dove’s Farm Plain White Flour)
60 g halved pecans, optional
Fudge icing ingredients
50 g margarine
225 g icing sugar
25 g cocoa
2 tbsp soy milk
pinch of salt
Caramelised pecans ingredients
12 pecans
2 tsp margarine
2 tsp brown sugar
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Pesto potatoes

I used to eat this on it’s own as an alternative to the typical potato salad, and it’s just as good using mashed potatoes. I’ve asked a few omnis to taste it and they couldn’t tell it was vegan and said it was delicious. It’s definitely a ‘tastes like the real thing’ invention.


With the pesto you do have to be quite precise with the measurements as one flavor can spoil it all. I’ve not used white miso other than in Japanese cooking, and I just tried it to see what it would be like, and it really made the pesto taste so much better.

Makes enough for 2
Pesto ingredients
15 g basil
25 g cashews
25 g pine nuts
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
17.5 ml lemon juice
1 medium sized clove of garlic
6 tbps oil
1/2 tsp brown miso or 1 tsp white miso
1/2 tsp sea salt
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‘Tuna’ and avocado salad

You could serve this as a starter or just have it as it is. The tangy apple cider vinegar mixes with the creamy chickpeas to make the ‘tuna’, that will fill the smooth avocado, mixed with the sweetcorn salad and the lemon dressing. You could use this combination to make a very nice sandwich.


1 can of chickpeas
2 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chives, finely chopped
2 ripe avocados
vegan mayonnaise (optional)
lemon juice
parsley, finely chopped
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Gluten-free ‘Camille’

I really loved these Italian cakes I got from here. They were one of the first vegan cakes I baked and was so grateful to find this wonderful site. I would advise any new vegans to check it out.I was never a massive fan of carrot cake, but these are gorgeous. These are the only cakes I’ve managed to successfully make gluten-free, and taste just as good. They are light, but full of flavor. You could have them with some icing.


But I think they are lovely with just a dusting of icing sugar.


Makes 14
150 g gluten- free plain flour
150 g cornflour
100 g ground almonds
160 g golden castor sugar
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp baking powder
250 g carrots, liquidised
160 g soy yogurt
120 ml oil
100 ml soy milk
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tsp almond essence
1 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
pinch of salt
Candied carrot nest ingredients
1/2 a carrot
15 g sugar
50 ml water
vegetable oil

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Lentil and sweet potato cottage pie

I already made a cottage pie using vegan mince, this is a healthier version which is just as nice. It’s gluten- free and fat free if you omit the oil. You get a nice ‘meatiness’ from the lentils and mushrooms, and the creamy sweetness from the mashed sweet potato. I think it’s a great meal to have during the colder days, it’s very satisfying and filling.


Serves 4
Base ingredients
1 onion, finely chopped
1 clove of garlic
1 stick of celery, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
70 g mushrooms
125 g green lentils
75 g red lentils
40 g kale, shredded
80 g frozen peas
1 tbsp parsley
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
plenty of salt and pepper
500 ml veg stock (Kallo is gluten-free)
Topping ingredients
800 g sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
pinch of salt
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‘Cheese’ sauce

I’ve been vegan for nearly a year now, and I’ve got used to not having the dairy junk food I used to eat and don’t miss it that much any more, apart from cakes and chocolate. Sometimes though, I want some savory junkfood and I crave macaroni cheese. This is a basic sauce that you can use for many dishes.


Serves 2
14 g nutritional yeast
14 g plain flour
14 g margarine
250 ml unsweetened soy milk
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp onion powder
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Beetroot, kale and pea salad

I think a lot of people are put off beetroot after trying it picked, from a jar. It is much nicer boiled or roasted. This is a simple salad that is very healthy/ I also really like kale, another food that is very good for you and a great source of calcium. I think the slight bitterness of the kale goes well with the sweetness of the beetroot and peas.


Serves 2 people
260 g beetroot
60 g kale
150 g frozen peas

3 tbps olive oil
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
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