These chocolate cupcakes with a scrumptious cream cheese filling are a family favorite turned healthy!
Chocolate cream cheese cupcakes are something my Grandma has made for years. It’s always fun when I have memories of a delicious recipe and one day I realize I don’t need to just dream about it. It’s very likely that it can be remade!
I’ll let you in on a secret. This is the first time I’ve attempted to convert a baking recipe! I have no problem creating other desserts but baking always seems so scientific. Especially when they are sugar free and low carb!
I did some research, crossed my fingers, and went with my instincts. And I couldn’t be happier with how they turned out!
They got the approval of my dad, who has always loved these cupcakes, and my sister who has a big sweet tooth. And then just to be sure I took one to a coworker who doesn’t eat sugar free and asked for her honest opinion. And she said they tasted like ‘real’ cupcakes lol.
This recipe has no special ingredients [well, almost none!]
The only ingredient in this recipe I would consider ‘special’ is the peanut flour. I’m always impressed by how well peanut flour can work in low carb baking. When combined with chocolate like in this recipe, you really don’t get any peanut taste at all.
The great thing about peanut flour is that it is defatted. Other low carb flours like almond flour can be quite heavy on calories. And while we Trim Healthy Mama followers are by no means afraid of fats, there is also no reason to abuse them. In some desserts that contain almond flour, and heavy fats from dairy and nuts, the calories can add up fast! These are great treats to have for special occasions and are totally allowed, but it’s also good to have that balance of heavy and light. While these cupcakes do have the heavier fats from cream cheese, the peanut flour lightens them up!
When you are buying peanut flour, make sure you check the label to see that there is no added sugar. I haven’t found any in stores that don’t have sugar so I order mine online and get the Protein Plus brand.
These chocolate cupcakes use xylitol for the sweetener
I decided to use xylitol in this recipe since it is a 1:1 ratio with sugar and gives you the same bulk. Like I said, this is my first low carb baking recipe and I wanted good results! Also, I personally find xylitol to taste a lot like sugar so I use it if I’m baking for family and friends who aren’t used to natural sweeteners. I’m sure you could replace the xylitol with your favorite sweetener but I haven’t tested any others. Let me know if you swap in something else!
Feel free to add chocolate chips to the cream cheese filling
My Grandma’s recipe for these chocolate cupcakes included chocolate chips in the filling. I left them out because, to be honest, I haven’t found sugar free chocolate chips I really like. They all taste like semi sweet chocolate to me and I miss that rich, silky smooth milk chocolate flavor. So while I’m very thankful that there are sugar free chocolate chips, sometimes I just prefer to not use them. In this case, I feel the toasted pecans are totally perfect, but if you love chocolate chips, definitely throw some in!
Update: I have since writing this post discovered Lily’s chocolate chips and they are amazing!
The toasted pecans add such flavor! Please, please don’t skip this step!
Resist the temptation to eat these right away and let them cool completely in the refrigerator. They taste best that way!
The first time I made these I tested out topping them with a chocolate ganache. For once, extra chocolate actually didn’t improve anything! Gasp! My sister and I both agreed it made the cupcakes too rich. Although they look simple, they are perfect just the way they are!
Ingredients you will need:
For the cupcakes:
Baking soda & baking powder
Almond milk or other nut milk
For the filling:
Equipment that might be handy:
Coconut oil spray
Here is the printable recipe
Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Filling
- 1/4 cup softened butter
- 3/4 cup xylitol
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup peanut flour
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 3/4 cup almond milk
- 6 oz. softened cream cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons xylitol
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Heat a small skillet over medium/low heat. [I use a cast iron one.] Put your pecans in it and let toast until starting to brown. Shake them once in a while and watch very closely! Once they start to toast they are done very fast. Place the pecans in a dish to cool.
- Beat together the butter and xylitol with a hand beater until creamy. Add in the eggs and vanilla and combine.
- Stir together the peanut flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder and salt. I use a whisk for this to break up any lumps.
- Stir the dry ingredients into the butter mixture. Add the almond milk and beat on medium speed with the hand beater until just combined and smooth.
- Line a muffin pan with liners and lightly spray with coconut oil. Fill the liners half full.
- For the filling, beat together the cream cheese, salt, egg and xylitol. Fold in the toasted pecans.
- Divide the cream cheese filling between the cupcakes. It ends up being about a heaped tablespoon of filling per cupcake.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until the center doesn’t jiggle and the edges are firm to touch. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then gently remove and cool completely on a rack. Store in the refridgerator.
Here is another recipe that uses peanut flour!
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