Chocolate Pomegranate Cupcakes

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There's something very delicious about these little gluten-free chocolate cupcakes with their tangy sweet icing. The icing has to be one of my favourites to date. It's made with freeze-dried pomegranate powder that gives an intense, sweet and sour flavour hit.

Although it's a bit of a specialty ingredient, if you're a fan of pomegranates you have to try the fruit in its freeze-dried form. You can buy freeze-dried pomegranate arils and powder online or at some health food shops.

Apart from using it in this recipe, you can add it to smoothies, sprinkle it on porridge or smoothie bowls or just eat it with a spoon. I also developed a recipe for a Pomegranate Slice using freeze-dried pomegranate arils if you want to check it out.

Chocolate Pomegranate Cupcakes

Gluten free | Dairy free | Nut free


For the cupcakes:

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 1/4 cup rice malt syrup
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk (or your milk of choice)  
  • 1 free-range egg
  • 3/4 cup brown rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon gluten-free baking powder
  • 1/4 cup cacao powder (or cocoa powder)

For the icing:

  • 1 cup thick portion of refrigerated coconut cream *
  • 2 x 20ml tablespoons freeze-dried pomegranate powder **


  1. Preheat your oven to 170°C (fan-forced) and line a mini muffin tray with 10 paper or silicone cases.
  2. To make the cupcakes, beat the coconut oil, rice malt syrup, coconut milk and egg together in a large bowl. Add the brown rice flour, baking powder and cacao powder and stir until well combined.
  3. Spoon the mixture into the mini muffin cases and bake in the preheated oven for about 15 – 20 minutes or until the tops spring back when lightly touched. Once cooled completely, store in an airtight container until ready to serve.
  4. When ready to serve, prepare the icing by beating the coconut cream and pomegranate aril powder together until well combined and smooth. Top each cupcake with a spoonful of icing and sprinkle over a little extra pomegranate powder. Enjoy straight away.

Makes 10 mini cupcakes

* Leave a 400ml can of coconut cream in the fridge overnight. The cream will separate leaving the thick portion at the top of the can and the liquid portion at the bottom. Carefully spoon out the thick portion to use in the recipe.

** You can buy freeze-dried pomegranate powder online or at some health food stores. You could use another freeze-dried berry powder if you can't find pomegranate. If you can find any powders you could simply sweeten the coconut cream with some rice malt syrup, maple syrup or honey instead.

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