Dairy free cupcakes recipe

(2021 ratings)

Our dairy free cupcakes are made with five ingredients and take 13 minutes to bake.

Dairy free cupcakes
(Image credit: Future)
  • Vegetarian
Preparation Time10 mins
Cooking Time16 mins
Total Time26 mins
Cost RangeCheap
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories302 Kcal15%
Sugar37.5 g42%
Fat13.4 g19%
Saturated Fat3.7 g19%
Salt0.27 gRow 4 - Cell 2
Protein2.1 g4%
Carbohydrates43.4 g17%
Salt0.27 gRow 7 - Cell 2

These dairy free cupcakes are easy to make and can be topped with our delicious dairy free frosting for an indulgent afternoon treat. 

Unlike our classic cupcake recipe, these dairy free cupcakes are made with a soya spread instead of butter. They are still wonderfully light and fluffy but the flavour is a little different. It’s important to note that these cupcakes use eggs and are therefore not suitable for those who follow a vegan diet. 


  • 100g soya spread
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 100g self-raising flour
  • 1tsp baking powder

For the topping:

  • 175g soya spread
  • 350g icing sugar couple of drops of vanilla essence
  • Few drops of food colouring (optional)
  • Sprinkles to decorate (optional) 




  1. Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan, Gas 6). Line a muffin tin or tins with 12 cupcake cases.
  2. Put the soya spread, sugar, eggs, flour and baking powder into a large bowl & whisk with electric beaters for a couple of minutes.
  3. Once the batter is well blended and smooth, divide the mixture between the cupcake cases. You want to fill the cases around halfway so that once baked, there is room for the frosting.
  4. Bake for 13 - 16 minutes until the cakes are risen and spring back to the touch. Lift the cases out of the tin and cool on a wire rack.
  5. Beat together the soya spread, vanilla essence and icing sugar, then if using, add food colouring in small drops until you reach the desired colour.
  6. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a nozzle if you like or simply snip the end of. Pipe swirls of frosting onto each cupcake and finish with sprinkles if you like.

Top tip for making dairy free cupcakes

If you don’t like the taste of soya spread you can use margarine instead. You will achieve the same texture but again the flavour and colour will be a little different to if you used butter. Continue reading if you’d like more dairy free cupcake tips. 

Can you use oat milk in cupcakes?

If your cupcake batter is looking a little thick you can loosen it with your choice of dairy free milk. Oat milk is a nice choice and depending on the brand used, you may have a slightly nutty, cereal-like after taste.

The cupcake batter should be dropping consistency which means it reluctantly falls off the spoon and loosely holds its shape when it falls back into the bowl with the remaining batter. 

What is the difference between a vegan cupcake and a regular cupcake?

Vegan cupcakes will be made with plant-based ingredients. This means they will have alternatives to milk, butter and eggs in the ingredients. This recipe is dairy free but it still uses eggs which means that they are not suitable for vegans. 

To make the recipe vegan, swap each egg for 65g smooth apple sauce. 

What is a substitute for milk in cupcakes?

You can loosen the batter with a little water if you like. Alternatively, for a subtle citrus flavour you can use some lemon or lime juice. 

Using a piping bag with a star nozzle will help you achieve a classic swirled icing topping. If you’re put off by single-use piping bags, consider investing in a reusable one.

Silicone Piping Bags, 6 pcs Stainless Steel Nozzles Set - View at Amazon 

Silicone Piping Bags, 6 pcs Stainless Steel Nozzles Set - View at Amazon 

There are six different nozzle attachments in this set so you can experiment with your favourite design. The piping bag can be washed and used multiple times.

You can replicate our vanilla cupcake recipe by adding some vanilla extract to this recipe if you like. Alternatively you might like our mini cupcakes or this chocolate cupcakes recipe

Jessica Dady
Food Editor

Jessica Dady is Food Editor at GoodtoKnow and has over 12 years of experience as a digital editor, specialising in all things food, recipes, and SEO. From the must-buy seasonal food hampers and advent calendars for Christmas to the family-friendly air fryers that’ll make dinner time a breeze, Jessica loves trying and testing various food products to find the best of the best for the busy parents among us. Over the years of working with GoodtoKnow, Jessica has had the privilege of working alongside Future’s Test Kitchen to create exclusive videos - as well as writing, testing, and shooting her own recipes. When she’s not embracing the great outdoors with her family at the weekends, Jessica enjoys baking up a storm in the kitchen with her favourite bakes being chocolate chip cookies, cupcakes, and a tray of gooey chocolate brownies