Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Vanilla Cupcakes with Stevia

I have been avoiding buying white sugar because if I have it in the house I bake with it. And in our quest for healthier eating I'd rather just do without. Jason's trying to get in shape for the triple by-pass this Summer (the race, not the surgery) and I think he appreciates me cutting out the baking! I have been satisfying my cravings for sweetness with about a square of chocolate a day from Trader Joe's Pound Plus Bars (thanks for introducing us to those, Becca!)

But I figured I better bake for my son's birthday and I thought I would try using stevia. Joshua's request was vanilla cupcakes with chocolate frosting. I thought they turned out yummy - they do have a cup of butter in them, I'm not pretending they're healthy!
But I felt good about replacing the two cups of sugar the recipe called for with stevia.

Vanilla Cupcakes
with Stevia (original recipe found here.)

Makes about 18 cupcakes
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 t pure stevia extract (I found mine at Trader Joe's)
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes
4 large eggs
1 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 325°. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine flours, stevia, baking powder, and salt; mix on low speed until combined. Add butter, mixing until just coated with flour.

2. In a large glass measuring cup, whisk together eggs, milk, and vanilla. With mixer on medium speed, add wet ingredients in 3 parts, scraping down sides of bowl before each addition; beat until ingredients are incorporated but do not overbeat.

3. Divide batter evenly among liners, filling about two-thirds full. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 17 to 20 minutes.

4. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat process with remaining batter. Once cupcakes have cooled, use a small offset spatula to frost tops of each cupcake. Decorate with sprinkles, if desired. Serve at room temperature.

I tried three different chocolate frostings before I settled on this one.


Kate said...

Well I don't know if I can go to the extreme of not having any sugar in my house... but I can see how it would totally help!

And thanks for your comment on my blog. I agree with you. I think there are lots of great teachers out there, no doubt. And I agree with you that they have a certain amount of material to cover in a certain time frame. I guess this and several other things over the years has got me more and more looking into homeschooling - at least for the first years until my children want to go to school, because I've heard that happens too. But I do have my reservations about the public school system. That's all. I'm definitely not ready to start a debate about it though. So I'm with you that I think I can give my kids what they need at home.

I'm interested to know what materials you use to teach! Obviously I'm a couple years from needing it, but I'm starting my research now so any info you have to offer I would love!

Let the party begin... said...

Hey we have had stevia in our home now for years...I think I'm going to give those cupcakes a try. Good luck with the training!

The Bredensteiners said...

you are my hero- you make difficult seem so simple...thanks for all your inspiration! when i grow up i want to be just like you :)

Rebecca said...

Christina, HELP! I just tried making apple bread the other day and substituting the 2 cups of sugar with stevia. It was a disaster! The texture was completely wrong...it was just a crumbly mess that I basically had to toss. It seemed like there was no liquid at all, instead of the normal sticky bread dough. I thought it was just too large an amount of sugar to substitute, but yours seems to have worked great. Any ideas on where I went wrong? I also used whole wheat flour, but I've already made that substitution before with no problems.

Christina said...


I think 2 cups is probably too much to substitute in most recipes. It worked in this one because there was so much butter. It turned out more the texture of a pound cake instead of light and fluffy cupcakes. I would try substituting some honey for maybe half of the sugar. If I get apples this week in my food box I'll try it and let you know!

Christina said...


I think that it's a great time to start looking into homeschooling when Charlie is so young, it gives you time to try and get things figured out.

I would recommend that you read A Thomas Jefferson Education by Oliver DeMille and A Well-Trained Mind by Susan Wise Bauer. You'll be able to find both of those at the library. I don't have a set curriculum that I use. Basically, we have a morning devotional where we sing songs and study scriptures. Then we take time to read what they're interested in or I'll share what I am interested in. We have a big book of math games that Joshua likes to choose from, and I try to surround them with toys that encourage creativity. We want to be encouraging life-long learning so I try to be an example of that. We cook together, we clean together. School is life. Life is school. And most days I love it!

Honey said...

You're awesome, Christina. Wish we could have tried your cupcakes - they look great.

canaan guthrie said...

I made these and they came out super plain :( should i add more vanilla or more stevia? It kind of tasted like corn bread instead of cupcakes